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Trump administration removes endangered species protections for gray wolves

Plus: Biden will make appearance in Minnesota Friday; judge orders company not to deploy agents near Minnesota polls; hackers stole $2.3 million from Wisconsin Republican Party; and more.

grey wolf
Gray wolf
Wolves de-listed. KSTP reports:Trump administration officials on Thursday stripped Endangered Species Act protections for gray wolves in most of the U.S., ending longstanding federal safeguards and putting states in charge of overseeing the predators. … The U.S. Department of Interior announcement just days ahead of the Nov. 3 election could lead to the resumption of wolf hunts in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin — a crucial battleground in the campaign between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden. … It’s the latest in a series of administration actions on the environment that appeal to key blocs of rural voters in the race’s final days, including steps to allow more mining in Minnesota and logging in Alaska.”

Same day Trump will be here. The Forum News Service’s Dana Ferguson reports (via the Brainerd Dispatch):Former Vice President Joe Biden is set to make a trip to Minnesota Friday, just days ahead of the Nov. 3 general election and on the same day and hours before President Donald Trump is set to stump in southeast Minnesota. … The Democratic presidential hopeful will visit St. Paul on Friday afternoon, Oct. 30, for a drive-in event with supporters, Biden’s campaign said on Thursday, Oct. 29. It’s the former vice president’s second visit to Minnesota this campaign cycle. He visited Hermantown and Duluth last month.”

Atlas shunned. WCCO reports: “A decision from the U.S. District Court District of Minnesota has barred Atlas Aegis from deploying armed agents at Minnesota polling locations. … U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Brasel’s decision Thursday orders the company, [Atlas Aegis chairman Anthony] Caudle and other defendants not to deploy, or threaten to deploy, agents within 2,500 feet of Minnesota polling places during early in-person voting and on Election Day. The decision also orders the defendants from ‘intimidating, threatening, or coercing voters in connection with voting activities in Minnesota.’ The order takes effect immediately.”

Ouch.  The AP’s Scott Bauer reports (via MPR):Hackers stole $2.3 million from the Wisconsin Republican Party’s account that was being used to help reelect President Donald Trump in the key battleground state, the party’s chairman told The Associated Press on Thursday. … Hitt said the hackers were able to manipulate invoices from four vendors who were being paid to send out direct mail for Trump’s reelection efforts and to provide pro-Trump material such as hats that could be handed out to supporters. Invoices were altered so when the party paid them, the money went to the hackers instead of the vendors, Hitt said.”

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In other news…

More campaign events:Tiffany Trump will campaign Saturday in St. Paul” [Rochester Post Bulletin]

Pretty sad it’s even necessary:$10 device could save Black motorists’ lives, says Philando Castile’s mom” [Star Tribune]

Makes sense:Carleton College cancels winter sports due to COVID-19” [KSTP]