Ireland

Committee passes easing of abortion limits

A parliamentary committee recommended that a ban on abortion be repealed, paving the way for the liberalization of one of the world’s strictest abortion laws. The committee endorsed removing the provision in the Irish Constitution that gives a fetus and the mother an equal legal right to life, which has been the law since 1983. That provision has been used to ban abortion in all circumstances. The recommendations go to the full Parliament, which can decide to accept them or call a referendum.

Washington, D.C.

Two judicial nominees will not be confirmed

Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley, the Judiciary Committee’s top Republican, said that two of President Donald Trump’s nominees for the federal bench will not be confirmed. The nominations of Jeff Mateer and Brett Talley were pulled after both made public comments celebrating discriminatory groups or policies.

Trump aide from ‘The Apprentice’ to depart

Omarosa Manigault Newman will leave her role as director of communications in the White House Office of Public Liaison, a position in which she worked on outreach to various constituency groups. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement that Manigault Newman was resigning to pursue other opportunities effective Jan. 20. She had been a contestant on Trump’s reality TV show “The Apprentice.”

Kentucky

Lawmaker accused of assault kills himself

A Republican lawmaker in Kentucky facing sexual assault allegations has died by suicide. Bullitt County Sheriff Donnie Tinnell said Rep. Dan Johnson shot himself on a bridge in Mount Washington, Ky. Johnson was elected to the legislature in 2016. He had told reporters the accusations were “totally false.”

News services