5 things you should know on Wednesday

5 things you should know on Wednesday

Inflation falls from 40-year high but remains elevated at 8.5%

Inflation remained high but fell from historically high levels in July, raising hopes that unrelenting price increases may have peaked. According to the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index, consumer prices rose 8.5% year-on-year, compared with a 9.1% annual increase — a 40-year high — in June. Gasoline prices fell, but groceries and rents continued to rise. Economists polled by Bloomberg had estimated annual inflation would fall to 8.7%. On a monthly basis, consumer prices were flat compared to a 1.3% increase in June. Core prices, which exclude volatile food and energy and generally provide a better gauge of future price trends, rose 0.3% in July after rising 0.7% in the previous month. That held the annual gain at 5.9% after three consecutive monthly declines.

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US inflation hits highest rate in 4 decades

US inflation rose 9.1% year-on-year. Rising gas, food and rent prices propelled inflation to a new 40-year high in June, putting further pressure on households and likely forcing another big rate hike by the Federal Reserve. (July 13) (AP Video/David R. Martin)

AP

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Trump says he will testify in New York’s civil investigation on Wednesday

Former President Donald Trump will be questioned under oath about his dealings as a real estate mogul in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ long-running civil investigation Wednesday, he confirmed in a social media post. The New York civil investigation led by James includes allegations that Trump’s company, the Trump Organization, misrepresented the value of valuable assets such as golf courses and skyscrapers, misleading lenders and tax authorities. In his post on Truth Social, Trump called James a “racist,” citing his oft-repeated claims about James being black and the investigation. Trump’s testimony comes amid a flurry of legal activity surrounding him, which came just days after FBI agents raided his Mar-a-Lago, Fla., home as part of an independent federal investigation into whether he took classified recordings when he left the White House. Trump held a dinner with a dozen House Republicans on Tuesday, and his guests said he exuded confidence despite the FBI’s search of his Florida home.

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GOP rallies around Trump after FBI search of his estate

Republican lawmakers on Tuesday strongly opposed the FBI’s search of secret records at former US President Donald Trump’s Florida home. (9 Aug)

AP

Biden signs PACT Act to help veterans exposed to toxic burn pits

Despite support from some Republicans, President Joe Biden will sign legislation Wednesday to improve health care and disability benefits for millions of veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pits while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill, known as the PACT bill, finally passed the Senate by an 86-11 vote last week, ending a brief standoff that had infuriated supporters and inspired some to camp outside the Capitol. Biden described the legislation as the largest expansion of benefits for service-related health problems in 30 years and the largest single bill ever to address exposure to fire pits. “I look forward to signing this law into law so that veterans and their families and caregivers affected by toxic burdens can finally receive the benefits and comprehensive health care they deserve and deserve,” Biden said in a statement last week . Hundreds of thousands of Vietnam War veterans and survivors will also benefit from the legislation.

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Pelosi prepares cremation pit bill for Biden’s signature

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signed her name and officially filed for legislation that will improve health care and disability benefits for millions of veterans exposed to toxic burn pits. (9 Aug)

AP

Sen. Lindsey Graham wants to challenge Georgia election interference subpoena

Sen. Lindsey Graham, RS.C., is expected Wednesday to challenge his subpoena in federal court to testify before an Atlanta-area grand jury investigating whether former President Donald Trump interfered in the 2020 election. The South Carolina senator and staunch Trump ally claimed in a motion to have Fulton County, Georgia’s subpoena vacated, that as a legislature he was conducting legitimate investigations when he contacted a Georgia official after the election and that legislative privilege protects him from doing so Requirements. The expected move would come a day after a Georgia judge granted Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani’s request to delay his testimony. But the judge added Giuliani must appear in person in Atlanta to testify. Graham and Giuliani were subpoenaed along with a number of high-profile Trump allies, including attorney John Eastman, who devised a plan to collect alternative voter lists to overthrow President Joe Biden’s election.

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Graham calls for prosecution of Russian war crimes

Sen. Lindsey Graham, RS.C., said he would introduce a resolution supporting Ukraine’s case in an international court alleging Russia’s war crimes in its war on Western-style democracy. (2nd March)

AP

Serena Williams returns to court after announcing she will retire soon

Serena Williams, one of the greatest tennis players of all time, will play her first match on Wednesday since announcing her decision to retire from the sport in the coming weeks. After her first win in more than a year, Williams takes on No. 12 Belinda Bencic of Switzerland in the second round of the National Bank Open in Toronto. Williams, the 40-year-old and 23-time Grand Slam champion, announced she is retiring from tennis Vogues September issue and said, “It’s the hardest thing I can ever imagine.” The four-time Olympic gold medalist added in an Instagram post on Tuesday that “the countdown has started” and that she will be enjoying the next few weeks. Williams will retire after the US Open – a tournament she has won six times and is set to start on August 29 – to focus on building her family. Williams and entrepreneur and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian have been married since November 2017 and have one child together.

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Armor: Serena Williams exuded greatness on and off the pitch

USA TODAY’s Nancy Armor puts Serena Williams’ legendary career into perspective and what it means for female athletes for generations to come.

US TODAY

Contribution: The Associated Press