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American killed in London terror attack was celebrating 25th wedding anniversary

An American tourist was among four people who were killed when a man plowed through several people on London’s Westminster Bridge on Wednesday before attacking a police officer who was guarding Parliament.

>> Read more trending stories

The terror attack claimed the life of Utah resident Kurt W. Cochran, family members said in a statement.

Cochran was visiting London with his wife, Melissa, to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They were expected back in the United States on Thursday.

Melissa Cochran suffered what family members described as “serious injuries” in the attack.

“We express our gratitude to the emergency and medical personnel who have cared for them and ask for your prayers on behalf of Melissa and our family,” the family’s statement said. “Kurt will be greatly missed, and we ask for privacy as our family mourns and as Melissa recovers from her injuries.”

Family members told KSTU that the couple was on a “dream vacation” and spent time in Germany and Austria before arriving in London.

“Our family is heartbroken,” the family statement said. “Kurt was a good man and a loving husband.”

London metropolitan police said four people died in the London terror attack, including Cochran, the unidentified assailant and Keith Palmer, a 15-year veteran of the London metropolitan police force who was killed as he was protecting Parliament.

The fourth victim was identified by The Guardian as Aysha Frade, 43, a mother of two who taught Spanish at DLD College in London.

Police said they have arrested eight people in connection with the attack. They continued to investigate on Thursday.

Health care insurance vote: What time is the vote; what does the bill do; who is voting against it?

The Republican bill that is set to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act is scheduled for a vote Thursday, as President Donald Trump and leaders in the House scramble to secure enough support for the measure to pass.

The American Health Care Act could be dead on arrival at the House, however, as a number of Republican lawmakers are saying they intend to vote “no” on the bill.

The bill would repeal and replace some of the Affordable Care Act, shifting the way millions of Americans fund their health care needs. It would also mean that millions would be left without the health care they gained under the ACA, or Obamacare.

Here’s a look at the AHCA and what is scheduled to happen today.

What does the bill do?

According to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, (R-Wisconsin), the AHCA will retain some of the features of the ACA – insurers would still be required to cover customers with pre-existing conditions, for instance – but would take a sharp turn on others.

The bill would eliminate the requirement that a person have health insurance. It would also give larger companies a break by saying they are no longer required to provide coverage for employees. It will allow insurers to charge older Americans higher health care premiums.

The bill keeps the ACA provision that allows children to stay on a parent’s plan until they turn 26, but it cuts the amount of tax credits that are in place for those buying insurance, and reduces Medicaid spending in the states. In addition, it provides fewer funds for subsidies.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, the new bill would reduce the deficit by $337 billion during the next 10 years, but cost 24 million Americans their coverage over the next decade.

Will it pass?

That’s to be seen. Early on Thursday, it was not looking like Republicans had enough votes among their membership for the bill to pass. Republicans need 216 votes to move the bill to the Senate. That means they can lose no more than 21 of their current 237 votes. If they lose 22 votes the result would be a 215 to 215 tie. If the vote is a tie, the bill fails.

Who is on the fence?

That count has varied over the past two days, but as of 7 a.m. on Thursday, here’s a list compiled from several sources of legislators who say they are leaning toward voting “no” on the bill.

  1. Justin Amash, R-Mich. 
  2. Dave Brat, R-Va.
  3. Mo Brooks, R-Ala. 
  4. Rod Blum, R-Iowa
  5. Ted Budd, R-N.C. 
  6. Rick Crawford, R-Ark.
  7. Warren Davidson, R-Ohio
  8. Charlie Dent, R-Pa.
  9. Scott DesJarlais, R-Tenn.
  10. Dan Donovan, R-N.Y.
  11. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa. 
  12. Tom Garrett, R-Va. 
  13. Louie Gohmert, R-Tx. 
  14. Paul Gosar, R-Az. 
  15. Andy Harris, R-Md. 
  16. Walter Jones, R-N.C. 
  17. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio
  18. John Katko, R-N.J. 
  19. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho 
  20. Leonard Lance, R-N.J. 
  21. Frank LoBiondo, R-N.J.
  22. Thomas Massie, R-Ky.
  23. Mark Meadows, R-N.C.
  24. Scott Perry, R-Pa. 
  25. Bill Posey, R-Fl.
  26. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fl. 
  27. Chris Smith (R-NJ)
  28. Glenn Thompson, R-Pa. 
  29. Robert Wittman, R-Va. 
  30. Ted Yoho, R-Fl. 
  31. David Young, R-Iowa

(Sources: CBS News; Huffington Post; Twitter; The Associated Press)

The House Freedom Caucus, a group of conservative Republicans, many of whom identify with the Tea Party, will meet with the president at 11:30 a.m. Thursday. Some votes could change after that meeting. 

(Update: The Associated Press reports at 1:30 p.m. ET that the “House Freedom Caucus chairman says "no deal"was  reached on health bill after meeting with Trump, putting vote in doubt.”)

If it does pass, what then?

If the bill passes the House, it moves to the Senate where Senators will have a chance to add to, or subtract from the bill. If the bill gets to a vote on the floor of the Senate, Republicans will face a similar close margin when it comes to passage. Republicans have a 52-48 advantage in the Senate, so they could lose only two GOP votes and still pass the bill.

Like the NFL, nothing ends in a tie in the Senate. If the vote happened to be 50-50, Vice President Mike Pence would cast the deciding vote.

If it doesn’t pass, what then?

Another bill could be introduced to either fully repeal the ACA, or to offer something like the bill that is up for a vote Thursday, but with some modifications.

When is the vote? 

There is no set time for the vote yet. Meetings will be happening throughout the day prior to a call for the vote. The vote could also be delayed for another time, but Ryan has said that wouldn’t happen. (Update: The vote has been moved to Friday, or possibly beyond. This post will be updated when the time for the vote gets near. Check back here during the day Friday).

7 things to know now: Trump conversations collected; health care vote; Sweet 16 play; London attack

Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today.

What to know now 

1. Trump communications collected: Rep. Devin Nunes, (R-California), announced Wednesday that private conversations between President Donald Trump and his transition team may have been improperly distributed to spy agencies after they were inadvertently collected as part of an intelligence investigation of other targets. Nunes said he was troubled enough by information provided to him about the communications to go to the White House on Wednesday to inform the president in person. Nunes said the information collected had nothing to do with the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. The FBI said Monday it is investigating any possible connection between the Trump campaign and Russian meddling in the election.

2. Health care vote: A vote on a health care bill that is essential in repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act – Obamacare – is set to take place Thursday in the House. Trump and leaders in the House have lobbied members to vote for the bill, but as of late Wednesday, they had not locked down enough votes for it to pass. The president has warned those who don’t vote for the bill that they could face consequences come re-election.

3. London attack: A man stabbed a London police officer to death Wednesday after he ran down pedestrians on a bridge near Parliament in a terror attack on the British government. Four people, including the attacker, were killed, and at least 40 others injured. British lawmakers sheltered in place in Parliament for hours after the mid-afternoon attack. One woman was pulled alive from the waters of the Thames after she was either knocked off the Westminster Bridge or jumped to avoid the car. The suspect has not been identified. An early morning raid in the London area Thursday netted seven people suspected of being involved with the attack. 

4. Wisconsin shootings: A Wisconsin police officer and three others were killed Wednesday in what law enforcement officials said was a domestic violence incident that led to three separate shootings. The shootings took place in a bank, at an attorney’s office and in an apartment complex near Everest, Wisconsin, which is about 90 miles west of Green Bay, Wisconsin. 

5. Sweet 16: The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament continues Thursday as the next round of playoffs gets underway. Sixteen teams – the Sweet 16 – will play over the next two days as we make our way to the Elite Eight, then the Final Four. The championship game is set for April 3. 

And one more

Nominations for the Daytime Emmy Awards were announce Wednesday. The CBS daytime drama “Young and the Restless” snagged 25 nominations, with ABC’s “General Hospital” and CBS’ “Bold and the Beautiful” getting 23. NBC’s “Days of Our Lives” got 22 nods.

In case you missed it

George Clooney surprises 87-year-old fan at nursing home for her birthday

George Clooney went above and beyond to show one of his fans some love on her 87th birthday.

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news

Photos shared on social media show 87-year-old Pat Adams smiling broadly as Clooney bends down beside her for the photo.

>> Read more trending news

According to the Associated Press, Clooney showed up to the Sunrise of Sonning Retirement and Assisted Living Facility in England with a card and flowers for the elderly resident on her birthday. Clooney received a letter asking if he would make Adams’ dreams come true by paying her a visit.

Linda Jones, who works at the assisted living facility, shared a photo of the encounter on Facebook.

>> See the post here

Who is Adam Schiff? Here are 7 things you may not know about him

California Rep. Adam Schiff grabbed the national spotlight Monday when he was given 15 minutes to present a case accusing President Donald Trump’s campaign of colluding with Russian officials to meddle with the 2016 presidential election.

Schiff, who was elected to Congress in 2000 and is the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, took the time to lay out a blistering attack against Trump, naming campaign workers and other associates whom he claims have ties that are too close for comfort with various Russian officials and those who support them.

On Wednesday, Schiff was in the spotlight again when he attacked the HPSCI chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes, (R-California), for announcing publicly that it is likely that some of Trump’s communications ended up being “captured” during routine surveillance operations. That information, Nunes said, included names of the people involved in those conversations and those names, he claims, were shared among intelligence organizations. 

Schiff responded with his own press conference, claiming that Nunes had “tainted” the investigation into Russian interference in the election and now only a special prosecutor could fairly look into the accusations.

Who is Adam Schiff and how did he get to this position? Here are a few things you may not know about him.

  1. He is an attorney. He graduated from Harvard. 
  2. He wasn’t a shoo-in for Congress. He lost three elections to the California State House before being elected to the state Senate. He was then elected to the U.S. House in 2001.
  3. He may run for Sen. Diane Feinstein’s Senate seat if she retires in 2018.
  4. As the ranking member of the HPSCI, he’s a member of the “Gang of Eight.” In that role, he is privy to high-level intelligence information. By law, he receives information about intelligence from the White House.
  5. He is on leave from the House Appropriations Committee, and served on the House Select Committee on Benghazi.
  6. He voted for the Patriot Act, and also has sponsored animal rights legislation.
  7. He’s married. His wife’s name is Eve. The couple have two children.

EpiPens recalled abroad due to potential failure to activate

The company behind the EpiPen, a life-saving drug delivery device for severe allergic reactions, recalled some sets of the auto-injector abroad on Monday, although none were recalled in the U.S.

>> Read more trending news

Pharmaceutical company Mylan said in a recall notice that one batch of EpiPens might not work properly. The batch went to Australia, New Zealand, Europe and Japan. The company voluntarily recalled those.

Mylan said that it got two reports worldwide of EpiPens to activate out of a batch of 80,000 devices. The issue came from a defective part, the company said.

Mylan came under fire recently for raising the price of the EpiPen to $600. The cost amounts to a 400 percent increase in price between 2007, when Mylan acquired the devices, and 2016.

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

Trump’s personal communications captured by intelligence surveillance, House chair says

House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes will be briefing President Donald Trump on Wednesday about some of his personal communications that might have been recorded by investigators through “incidental collection” methods, according to The Associated Press.

"This is a normal, incidental collection, based on what I could collect," Nunes, a Republican from California, said. "This appears to be all legally collected foreign intelligence under" the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

According to a story on CNN, Nunes said he was alerted by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, to the fact that communications had been collected.

Nunes said the intelligence surveillance produced "dozens" of reports that eventually unmasked several individuals’ identities and were "widely disseminated.”

While it is not illegal to unmask a person who has been caught in “incidental collection,” it is a crime to leak classified information. If the communications were gathered by authorization of a FISA warrant, the material would have been classified. 

Nunes said that he does not know if the information was collected at Trump Tower.

Nunes said he called a news conference Wednesday to update the public on information from the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Nunes emphasized at the news conference that the surveillance through which the communications were collected had nothing to do with Russia or any investigation into Russia and the 2016 U.S. elections. 

Nunes' committee heard Monday from FBI director James Comey and National Security Agency director Mike Rogers during a more than five-hour hearing. Comey confirmed that there was an investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian meddling in the presidential election.

Nunes said the collection included Trump transition officials. He also said the collection happened after the election. He said he could not say whether it meant that Trump was "spied on."

"I'm not going to get into legal definitions, but clearly I have a concern," he said.

Photos: Parliament attack in London

Officials believe that a man mowed down several pedestrians on Westminster Bridge before stabbing a police officer at the Parliament building Wednesday, BBC News reported.

London terror attack: What we know

Five people died and at least 40 others were injured Wednesday after a man rammed into several pedestrians on London’s Westminster Bridge before attacking a police officer stationed outside the British Parliament, police said.

>> Read more trending news

Mark Rowley, national head of counter-terrorism and policing for London metropolitan police and acting deputy commissioner, said the attacker and a police officer who he stabbed were among those killed.

The Islamic State group claimed through its Aamaq news agency on Thursday that the attacker, who  was identified by police as British-born man Khalid Masood, was “an Islamic State soldier,” according to multiple reports.

Police were called at 2:40 p.m. GMT to respond to reports of a “firearms incident” at the bridge, just down the street from Parliament’s home at the Palace of Westminster, London metropolitan police said.

Here’s what we know so far:

7 things to know now: Manafort working for Russians; Chuck Barris; ‘Fox & Friends’

Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today.

What to know now:

1. Manafort working  for Russia: The Associated Press is reporting that President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, secretly worked for a Russian billionaire in an effort to bolster the image of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The AP is reporting that Manafort told the Russians he would work to “influence politics, business dealings and news coverage inside the United States, Europe and the former Soviet republics to benefit the Putin government.”

2. Chuck Barris dies: The man who brought “The Dating Game,” “The Newlywed Game” and the quirky “Gong Show” to television in the 1960s and ’70s has died. Chuck Barris, who at one time hinted at a past working as a spy, died of natural causes Tuesday afternoon at his home in Palisades, New York, according to publicist. He was 87.

3. “Fox & Friends” is most watched: Fox News Channel’s morning show, “Fox & Friends,” has seen a 49 percent increase in viewers since Donald Trump became president, according to Nielsen ratings. The morning show averaged 1.72 million viewers in February, more than MSNBC's "Morning Joe" with Joe Scarborough, and CNN's "New Day" with Chris Cuomo, combined.

4. Health care vote: With a vote to dismantle the Affordable Care Act just 24 hours away, President Trump continues to lobby House members who are on the fence when it comes to repealing and replacing Obamacare. Trump told fellow Republicans in the House on Tuesday that they would have to deal with "political problems" if they decide not to vote for the bill. "The president was really clear. He laid it on the line for everybody," House Speaker Paul Ryan, (R-Wisc.), said. 

5. CBC meeting: President Trump is scheduled to meet with the Congressional Black Caucus on Wednesday. According to the CBC, the group will discuss issues such as criminal justice reform and education with the president.  

And one more

Ninety percent of foreign exchange students who studied at American high schools say classes were tougher in their home countries, according to a survey. The students, who answered questions in a Brooking’s Institute survey, said American students spend 64.5 percent less time on schoolwork, and don’t have nearly the homework requirements they do in their home schools. 

In case you missed it

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