House poised to move forward on infrastructure bill
The House is expected to begin debate Monday on a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill aimed at modernizing the nation’s deteriorating transportation and public works systems. Moderate House Democrats won an agreement from Speaker Nancy Pelosi to bring the infrastructure package to a vote to avoid it becoming entangled with a $3.5 trillion bill to fund President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda. Some House progressives, however, oppose a vote on infrastructure unless it moves in tandem with the $3.5 trillion package. Either faction could prevent approval of the other’s priority – unless some Republicans join Democrats in approving infrastructure. The Senate approved the bill on a bipartisan, 69-30 vote, so House approval would send the bill to Biden.
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Answers sought in deadly Montana train derailment
Amtrak and federal officials are continuing to investigate a Montana train derailment that left at least three people dead and rural communities scrambling to provide food and shelter to dozens of stunned survivors. The Seattle-bound Empire Builder train with 141 passengers and 17 crew members derailed Saturday afternoon near Joplin, a town of less than 200 people just a few miles from the Canadian border. An Amtrak spokesman said eight of the train’s 10 cars toppled off the tracks. The National Transportation Safety Board dispatched a team to investigate the crash on site. The 14-member team includes investigators and specialists in railroad signals, NTSB spokesman Eric Weiss said.
Will Hurricane Sam impact the US?
Hurricane Sam stormed westward through the Atlantic Basin on Monday, a powerful Category 4 storm that forecasters hoped would stay far enough from land to avoid major damage from its 150 mph winds and heavy rains. AccuWeather forecasters said a due west path through the northern islands of the Caribbean seemed unlikely. A dip in the jet stream would steer Sam away from the USA, AccuWeather meteorologist Bernie Rayno said. “But if that jet stream dip sets up farther west or meanders westward, then there is room for Sam to get very close to the U.S. next weekend,” Rayno said. That scenario, nine years ago, helped steer Superstorm Sandy west into New Jersey. Sandy was blamed for almost 300 deaths across multiple nations and damage of almost $70 billion.
Search continues for Brian Laundrie; funeral held for Gabby Petito
Authorities continue to search for Brian Laundrie, Gabby Petito’s fiancé Monday, less than 24 hours after funeral services were held in New York for Petito, 22, a blogger whose death on a cross-country adventure fueled intense interest across the nation. Laundrie, 23, was last seen on Sept. 14, when he told his parents he was going hiking in the Carlton Reserve, a sprawling wilderness area near his home in North Port, Florida. The search in the 24,000-acre park in Sarasota County comes after the FBI issued a federal arrest warrant Thursday over events that occurred following Petito’s death. TV personality Duane Lee Chapman, “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” joined the search and promised to nab Laundrie before his 24th birthday on Nov. 18.
NFL adds a Monday night playoff game
The NFL is super-sizing its “Super Wild Card Weekend.” The league announced Friday that its opening round of the playoffs will now feature a Monday night wildcard game. Two games will take place on Saturday and three on Sunday before Monday night’s game. The NFL last season expanded the playoffs from 12 teams to 14 teams, adding two additional wildcard teams. The top team of each conference receives a bye, and the remaining division champions are seeded second, third, and fourth, hosting the next three teams of each conference.