<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Top Stories]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.comen-usMon, 23 Jan 2017 04:31:27 -0600Mon, 23 Jan 2017 04:31:27 -0600NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Reversing Campaign Pledge, Trump Won't Release Taxes: Aide]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 20:05:03 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/kellyanneeee.jpg

Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump, said Sunday the president would not be releasing his tax returns, reversing months of repeated campaign-trail promises to do so after an audit is completed, NBC News reported.

The comments were a response to a Whitehouse.gov petition with more than 200,000 signatures calling on Trump to release his tax returns.

Conway also added that Trump's returns are irrelevant. "They voted for him, and let me make this very clear: Most Americans are very focused on what their tax returns will look like while President Trump is in office, not what his look like," Conway said in an interview on ABC's "This Week."

Conway's statements are false — multiple polls showed a majority of Americans believe Trump should release his tax returns, including an ABC News/Washington Post survey out last week that found three-fourths of Americans believe he should release them.



Photo Credit: Carolyn KasterAP Photo]]>
<![CDATA[Images of Signs, Solidarity at Women's March on Chicago]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 15:00:27 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/PSX_20170121_164629+thumb.png An estimated 250,000 people joined the Women's March on Chicago, and photographer Brandon Garcia was there to capture some incredible moments. Want to share your photos? Email them to isee@nbcchicago.com.

Photo Credit: Brandon Garcia]]>
<![CDATA[Ethics Lawyers to Sue Trump Over Business Interests]]> Mon, 23 Jan 2017 00:40:33 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632207622.jpg

Heavy-hitting lawyers plan to sue President Donald Trump in federal court Monday, NBC News reported, over business interests that they say put him in violation of the Constitution by receiving payments from foreign governments. 

The nonprofit good-government group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, or CREW, will file the suit Monday morning in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, the organization said. 

The suit alleges that Trump violated the Constitution the moment he was sworn in as president on Friday because he had not divested his interests in the Trump Organization, which include leases held by foreign-government-owned entities in Trump Tower in New York, among other things. 

At issue is Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution — less tongue-twistingly known as the Emoluments Clause — which says "no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust ... shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State."



Photo Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Trump, Israeli PM Have ‘Very Warm’ Conversation]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 21:46:20 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/TrumpIsraeliPM.jpg

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had a "very warm" conversation with President Donald Trump on Sunday, NBC News reported. 

Netanyahu's office said the two leaders discussed Iran and the Palestinian peace process. However, they did not discuss Trump's campaign promise to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city of Jerusalem. 

"We are at the very beginning stages of even discussing this subject," White House spokesman Sean Spicer told NBC News.

In a statement, the White House said that peace between Israel and the Palestinians could be achieved only through direct negotiation.

Trump and Netanyahu agreed to a White House visit next month.



Photo Credit: Ronen Zvulun/Andrew Harnik/AP]]>
<![CDATA[Chicagoans Return Home From the Women's March on Washington]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 13:21:28 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632317218.png

After millions of people participated in Women's Marches around the world, some Chicagoans who joined the demonstration in the nation's capital returned home after a whirlwind trip. 

March to Action, a group founded by six Chicago women, raised $25,000 to fund more than 100 participants' trips to DC, an experience that many said they would never forget. 

"It was overwhelming, incredible, probably one of the best experiences of my life with regards to organizing of that magnitude," said Judith Rocha after returning to Chicago on Sunday. 

The group departed from Chicago on Friday evening in three buses headed for the Women's March on Washington. That demonstration drew approximately half a million people to the National Mall – more than double organizers' expectations. 

"We're going to harness the energy of what happened yesterday at this movement, the movement in Chicago, to fuel us moving forward as active citizens, active participants," said March to Action co-founder Karen Citow, adding that the group would be "supporting candidates that feel the same way that we do and also holding [Trump] and his administration accountable for what they're doing." 

Several other Chicago area residents traveled to DC for the march, including 13-year-old Cora Haworth, who was chosen as one of 30 national teen ambassadors for the event. 

"I think that 50 years from now, these grandchildren of mine will be talking about doing the march," her grandmother Debbie Haworth said. "We can make a difference if we stick together."

An estimated 250,000 people joined the Women’s March on Chicago, about half the attendance of the Washington event, which was the largest across the country and one of more than 600 marches around the world.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Conway: White House Gave ‘Alternative Facts’ on Crowd Size]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:26:35 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/conwayfeuerherdINB.jpg

Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump, said the White House press secretary gave "alternative facts" when he inaccurately described the inauguration crowd as "the largest ever" during his first appearance before the press this weekend.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer gathered the press to deliver a five-minute statement Saturday in which he issued multiple falsehoods, including declaring erroneously that "this was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe," NBC News reported.

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Asked on "Meet the Press" why Spicer used his first appearance before the press to dispute a minimal issue like the inauguration crowd size, and why he used falsehoods to do so, Conway pushed back.

 "You're saying it's a falsehood and Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that," she told NBC's Chuck Todd.



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA['Despicable': Ex-CIA Boss Rips Trump Speech at Memorial]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:40:35 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/trumpattheciafeuerherd.jpg

Donald Trump traveled to CIA headquarters Saturday to offer reassurance to the workforce after he spent weeks criticizing American intelligence, but his unscripted, self-referential remarks before a wall of stars memorializing fallen officers are drawing criticism, including a pointed denunciation from the agency's recently departed director, NBC News reported.

"Former CIA Director Brennan is deeply saddened and angered at Donald Trump's despicable display of self-aggrandizement in front of CIA's Memorial Wall of Agency heroes," Nick Shapiro, a former aide to John Brennan at CIA, told NBC News' Andrea Mitchell.

Brennan, Shapiro said, believes Trump "should be ashamed of himself."



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[250K Estimated at Women's March on Chicago]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:18:23 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/ashhar+march+pic+1.jpg

Hundreds of thousands of people flocked to Chicago to join the Women's March Saturday, one day after the inauguration of President Donald Trump.

Attendance for the Chicago event more than tripled initial expectations, organizers said, to the point where city streets were so flooded, the march itself was canceled. 

At least 75,000 were expected to be part of the event, organizers said early Saturday. But that number grew to roughly 250,000 as groups descended on the rally site at Columbus and Jackson. 

The event was said to be the largest women's march outside of the March on Washington, organizers said. 

Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications and Chicago police said organizers transitioned the march into a rally as the city's Grant Park reached capacity.

Still, some demonstrators were seen moving down city streets despite organizers canceling the planned march to Federal Plaza.

Michigan Avenue was closed from Congress Parkway to Randolph Street throughout the rally, officials said. Columbus Drive, Jackson and Van Buren were also closed for demonstrators to exit.

Speakers took to the stage around 10 a.m., sharing their rallying cries as crowds took over Michigan Street, State Street and even Wabash. The rally was met with unseasonably warm temperatures and sunny skies during what is traditionally one of the coldest months in the city. 

The event began with musical performances at 9:15 a.m., followed by dozens of speakers including aldermen, activists and more. Members from the cast of "Hamilton" serenaded the massive, yet peaceful group with their rendition of "Let It Be." 

The rally was scheduled to continue until 12:30 p.m. By 1 p.m., authorities said crowds had begun dispersing, roads were reopening and the event had remained "peaceful."

The Chicago rally and march was one of many around the country and the world being held in conjunction with the Women’s March on Washington.

"This march is just one moment in time but it’s a moment that will hopefully ignite a powerful message," said Donna Miller with Planned Parenthood. "Women are taking action and will continue to take action."

The marches nationwide drew hundreds of thousands of people on Saturday, one day after President Donald Trump's inauguration. 

The group noted it was not an anti-Trump event, but that many marchers were marching for political reasons. 

"The incoming administration and president have promised an assault on women’s rights, we are prepared to fight back," said organizer Ann Scholhamer.



Photo Credit: Ash-har Quraishi
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<![CDATA[Chicagoans Join the Women's March on Washington]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 19:15:15 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632317598.png

As an estimated 250,000 people gathered for the Women’s March on Chicago Saturday, some Chicagoans chose to join the crowd more than twice that size in the nation’s capital.

"I want to express our concerns about the future, we don't want to go backward,” said Sue Ann Rosen, who traveled from suburban Skokie to join the Women’s March on Washington.

Three generations of the Haworth family traveled from Chicago to DC via an overnight bus ride, with 13-year-old Cora leading the charge. [[411429795, C]]

"Even though they’re still young, they can still come out and they can still march,” said Cora, who was chosen as one of the 30 national teen ambassadors for the event. “There’s still going to be many other rallies for many other things in the future,” she added.

"I think that 50 years from now, these grandchildren of mine will be talking about doing the march,” her grandmother Debbie Haworth said. “We can make a difference if we stick together." 

The National Mall turned into a sea of half a million people – double organizers’ expectations – waving homemade signs, and many wearing pink hats and hoping the Trump administration hears their voices. [[411409145, C]]

"We need to come together and focus on solving the issues peacefully like we are now,” said Liam Gallagher, who drove with his family from Munster, Indiana, to be a part of the gathering closest to the White House.

Also in attendance was former Wheaton College professor Larycia Hawkins, who parted ways with the Christian school in Feb. 2016.

"It doesn't make a difference to the Trump administration, it makes a difference to all of us to be here in solidarity, what I call embodied solidarity, with one another," said Hawkins, who now teaches at the University of Virginia.

The Women’s March on Washington was the largest event of its kind across the country, and one of more than 600 marches around the world.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[How Women Upstaged President Trump]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 19:33:21 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_17021729412593.jpg

For President Trump, the inauguration should have been his Super Bowl – the kind of spectacle everybody talks about at work all day Monday and beyond.

But for once Trump, the self-styled showman who upended media and politics to become chief executive, got upstaged. The Women's March on Saturday, a day after the inauguration, gave the world a far bigger and better show. 

The event packed all the elements of a yuge spectacular: epic scale (a cast of hundreds of thousands spread across the globe); family drama (emotional moments shared by multiple generations); humor (creative signs and chants, the cleverest of which can't be repeated here); colorful costumes (most prominently those pink hats); celebrities (Scarlett Johansson, among many others); songs (Alicia Keys sang “Girl on Fire”); and high stakes (the future of women's rights).

It marked a by turns defiant, raucous and joyful display of force by masses angry about Trump's taped vulgar comments declaring his carte blanche to accost women and fearful of life under his leadership.

As comedian Aziz Ansari put it on "Saturday Night Live," a program Trump went from hosting to regularly decrying: “Yesterday, Trump was inaugurated. Today, an entire gender protested against him. Wow."

The New York Times reported three times as many people participated in the main march in Washington than attended Trump's inauguration. The rookie president, though, wasn't only behind in the in-person audience category. In another sense, the marchers, all performers of a sort for the day, outnumbered him on the world stage.

That seemed to unnerve the now officially powerful Trump, who vastly exaggerated inauguration attendance Saturday and scapegoated journalists for using photographic evidence to show Obama attracted a far larger crowd to the National Mall eight years ago. Meanwhile, Trump’s spokesman, Sean Spicer, made the demonstrably erroneous claim that his boss commanded the "largest audience ever to witness an inauguration – period – both in person and around the globe."

On Sunday morning, Trump tweeted that his inauguration ratings were bigger than President Obama’s 2013 numbers (true, though Trump’s viewership tally landed well below that of Obama’s history-making 2009 festivities). The new president said he watched march coverage and suggested something that he could not possibly know: that the protesters hadn’t cast ballots: “Why didn't these people vote?”

He later posted a tweet that most would recognize as presidential: “Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don't always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views.”

Still, the overall tone Trump set in his first weekend as star of the biggest reality show of them all echoed his attention-at-all-costs campaigning style.

The point of Trump's sore-winner act remains unclear. The inauguration, despite a lack of major performers (Toby Keith, Sam Moore and the Rockettes were among the bigger names), offered some memorable moments.

The limited dancing prowess Trump exhibited while shuffling to "My Way" with his wife, Melania, actually helped humanize him. The stylish new first lady showed signs of becoming a fashion leader (unlike his counselor, Kellyanne Conway, whose Paddington Bear-like outfit inspired mocking memes).

Some folks, on both sides of the political aisle, likely found something comforting and elegant in the pageantry and tradition surrounding the peaceful transfer of power, even amid Trump's speech, with its jarring "American carnage" declaration.

His strong words, like his attempts to steal back the show from the marchers (and just perhaps deflect attention from the major challenges facing his administration), defy presidential precedent.

But it's not unprecedented behavior for Trump.

After Arnold Schwarzenegger debuted Jan. 2 as the new ringmaster of "Celebrity Apprentice," then-President-Elect Trump taunted his successor via Twitter.

"Wow, the ratings are in and Arnold Schwarzenegger got 'swamped' (or destroyed) by comparison to the ratings machine, DJT," read tweet, written in the third-person with Trump referring to himself by his initials.

This weekend, President Donald J. Trump got swamped, if not in the ratings, then in the race for notice that appears to drive him. The throngs from around the world who marched grabbed the spotlight and beat him at his own game.

Jere Hester is Director of News Products and Projects at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is also the author of "Raising a Beatle Baby: How John, Paul, George and Ringo Helped us Come Together as a Family." Follow him on Twitter.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[DC Metrorail Trips for Women's March Top One Million]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:42:44 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/DC+metro+train+front.jpg

Metrorail set a record, carrying the second most number of trips in its history on the day of the Women’s March in Washington, Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017.

Metro said 1,001,613 entries were recorded into the rail system. News4’s Adam Tuss said the busiest Metrorail day was Jan. 20, 2009, the first inauguration of President Barack Obama, where 1.12 million trips were taken.

“We can all feel proud of providing safe, reliable service for large numbers of riders over two consecutive days on a world stage,” said Metro General Manager/CEO Paul Wiedefeld. “This success is especially impressive given the monumental challenge of sustaining such an operation over back-to-back days, along with the logistical challenges that come from national special security events.”

Tuss reported Saturday was only the second time Metrorail has surpassed 900,000 trips.

Metro said over the two days of the presidential inauguration and Women‘s March, trains, buses, and paratransit served over 2 million passenger trips. Metrorail trains provided 1.6 million trips over the two days.

Roughly 600,000 Metrorail trips were recorded on Friday, Jan. 20, 2017.



Photo Credit: NBC4 Washington]]>
<![CDATA[1 Dead in Hit-and-Run on Bishop Ford]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 10:40:33 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/dolton+i94+hit+and+run+122.png

One person is dead after a hit-and-run crash on the Bishop Ford Freeway early Sunday, according to police.

The crash began as a two-car accident in the outbound lanes of I-94 near 156th Street in south suburban Dolton around 4:20 a.m., according to Illinois State Police. 

The driver of one of the cars involved began to exit their car in the left lane, authorities said. As the driver exited, a third car did not see the accident and struck the rear of the vehicle, according to police. 

That driver was then ejected from the car and was struck and killed by a fourth vehicle, a red semi-truck, officials said. The Cook County Medical Examiner's office could not immediately confirm the fatality. 

No further information on the gender or identity of the victim was immediately available. 

The red semi fled the scene, according to ISP, who continue to search for the driver. 

All outbound lanes of I-94 in the area remained closed as of 9 a.m., according to police. 



Photo Credit: Captured News]]>
<![CDATA[Could Trump Shut Down an Investigation if He Wanted?]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 18:27:07 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_17013713721598-Trump-head.jpg

The FBI is conducting a counterintelligence investigation into Russia's efforts to manipulate public opinion in the United States presidential election, examining how the operation was paid for and whether any Americans were involved, current and former U.S. officials told NBC News.

Former intelligence officials told NBC News that President Donald Trump would technically have the authority to order an end to the investigation — which the CIA, NSA and Treasury Department are also participating in — given that the intelligence agencies report directly to him.

Officials have not said whether the investigation has unearthed any evidence of wrongdoing by Trump aides or any other Americans. Trump spokesman Sean Spicer said on the "Today" show that the president would let the investigation go wherever it leads. And it would be politically disastrous for Trump to end the probe, the former intelligence officials said.

"I remember the last president who ordered a stop to an investigation and it cost him his presidency," said Raymond Batvinis, a former FBI counter intelligence agent who teaches national security at George Washington University, speaking of Richard Nixon and Watergate.



Photo Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci]]>
<![CDATA[Attack on Transgender Woman Caught on Facebook Live]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 14:30:12 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Man+Attacks+Transgender+Woman+_22240557.jpg

Philadelphia Police have arrested a 25-year old homeless man accused of attacking a transgender woman while yelling anti-gay slurs in an assault captured on Facebook Live.

Ryannah Quigley, 23, of Seattle, Washington, told NBC10 she was attending the Creating Change conference in Philadelphia. Quigley said she was walking along the 1300 block of Filbert Street in Center City at 4:40 p.m. Friday with two of her friends when an unidentified man began staring at her. She greeted the man, but he continued to stare at her.

"I said, 'Is there a reason why you're staring at me up and down?' And he stopped and turned and looked and he said, 'Whatever bro.' So that's when I said, 'Please don't call me bro,'" Quigley said.

Quigley said the man then started shouting at her and yelling anti-gay slurs.

"He just kept telling me, 'You're a f-----,' and 'You're going to hell.' Then he kept saying, 'You'll never be a real woman,'" Quigley said.

Quigley told NBC10 she then took out her phone and began recording the encounter on Facebook Live. That’s when she says the man threw a bag of food at her and then punched her in the face before running away.

She reported the incident to Philadelphia Police. On Sunday morning, officers saw a man standing in the Frankford Terminal, wearing the same clothes that the suspect in the Facebook Live attack had on. He was arrested and will be charged for the assault, police said.

Quigley said she suffered cuts and a bruise but is doing okay. Quigley told NBC10 she’s been the victim of violence before. She was attacked by a group of people a few years ago.

"Often times we are not believed," Quigley said. "We are often looked at as the problem. Because as trans women people assume that, 'Oh, you must have been hitting on him.'"

Quigley's friend Keyonna Fowler witnessed the incident and said the suspects comments were "horrible."

"Just because a trans woman speaks to you does not mean that she wants you," Fowler said.

Quigley said the video of the attack was later taken down by Facebook administrators who claimed it violated their terms of service. Quigley also claimed she was blocked from accessing her Facebook account. Her friends and supporters have posted updates on her recovery to her page for her.

"Transgender individuals, they are people," Quigley said. "They are living and they will continue to be here."



Photo Credit: Philadelphia Police ]]>
<![CDATA[George H.W. Bush Breathing on His Own in Texas Hospital ]]> Mon, 23 Jan 2017 04:07:13 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1943442.jpg

A spokesperson for George H.W. Bush said the health of the former president and former first lady Barbara Bush is improving.

In a statement on Sunday afternoon, Jim McGrath said the President could be moved out of the Intensive Care Unit of Houston Methodist Hospital "in the next day or two."

Even better news for former first lady Barbara Bush. Mrs. Bush could have been discharged Sunday, but decided to remain in the hospital for another night to finish her recovery and stay close to her husband. 

The two became hospitalized last week, missing the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump.



Photo Credit: Joe Mitchell/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Trump Official Blasts Media, Madonna in Response to Marches]]> Sun, 22 Jan 2017 14:19:28 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/214*120/AP17021755160983_opt.jpg

A Trump administration official responded to the women's marches yesterday after Press Secretary Sean Spicer ignored shouted questions about the matter on Saturday, NBC News reported.

The comment from the Trump administration official said it was a "shame" that the March for Life next Friday "will not get anywhere near the same amount of coverage that this march got—and those pro-life members were NOT welcome at the Women’s March."

"The organizers noted that their platform is pro-choice and they revoked partnership status’ from pro-life groups," the comment continued.

The comment also called out Madonna, one of many celebrities to speak at marches across the country, for telling crowds that she had "thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House."

The administration official's comment does not include the rest of Madonna's comment, which continued: "But I know that this won't change anything. We cannot fall into despair." Instead, Madonna called for a "revolution of love."

"Comments like [Madonna's] are absolutely unacceptable and had they been said about President Obama, the mainstream media would be in an uproar," the official continued. "The Trump administration welcomes a robust discussion regarding the critical issues facing America’s women and families."

Hundreds of thousands of women and men poured into the nation's capital Saturday for a march aimed at showing Donald Trump they won't be silent over the next four years.

The Washington, D.C., event was the largest of more than 600 "sister marches" planned across the country and around the world. Organizers estimated 3 million people would march worldwide, and city centers across the U.S. were flooded with people in rallies that lasted for hours.

President Trump responded to the march on Twitter Sunday morning, accusing the marchers of not voting and adding more criticism to the celebrities who attended. 

"Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn't these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly," Trump wrote. 

About an hour and a half later, Trump responded with another tweet, writing, "Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don't always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views."

The marchers brandished signs with messages such as "Women won't back down" and "Less fear more love" and decried Trump's stand on such issues as abortion, health care, diversity and climate change.

The rallies were a peaceful counterpoint to the window-smashing unrest that unfolded on Friday when self-described anarchists tried to disrupt the inauguration. Police used pepper spray and stun grenades against demonstrators. More than 200 people were arrested. 

But the Women's March on Washington didn't yield a single arrest, according to D.C. Homeland Security Director Christopher Geldart.

While the march organizers' "mission and vision" statement never mentions Trump and stresses broad themes, including the message that "women's rights are human rights," the unifying factor among those turning out appeared to be a loathing for the new president and dismay that so much of the country voted for him.

The administration official's full reaction is below:

It's a shame that the March for Life, which estimates the same number of marchers in DC (650,000 in 2013) and will be happening next Friday, will not get anywhere near the same amount of coverage that this march got — and those pro-life members were NOT welcome at the Women’s March. The organizers noted that their platform is pro-choice and they revoked partnership status’ from pro-life groups.

Madonna, who was one of the celebrities headlining the march, was quoted saying “Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House” — comments like these are absolutely unacceptable and had they been said about President Obama, the mainstream media would be in an uproar.

The Trump administration welcomes a robust discussion regarding the critical issues facing America’s women and families.



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Analysis: How Russia Plans to Trump US as Superpower]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:54:17 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Putin.jpg

This week, Moscow hosted a summit of divided Palestinian factions that yielded a fresh unity agreement. And on Sunday, Russian diplomats will again unite prominent Syrian rebel groups and regime negotiators in Kazakhstan for a peace summit.

Promoting Russia's status as a major global power is part of Putin's push to compensate for domestic failures, Alexey Malashenko, a Russia analyst with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace's Moscow Center, told NBC News.

Russia's ambitions may get another boost following Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday.

"I think the common thread is [Putin] positioning in view of a deal with Trump," said said Mattia Toaldo, a Middle East analyst at the European Council on Foreign Relations. "The interesting thing is that in most cases, Russia is in the driving seat and Trump will simply react."



Photo Credit: Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP]]>
<![CDATA[Sen. Duckworth Delivers Impassioned Speech at Women's March]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 17:09:44 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Duckworth+Addresses+Women%27s+March+on+Washington.png

Illinois Sen. Tammy Duckworth delivered a passionate speech at the Women’s March on Washington, telling the massive crowd that she “didn’t shed blood… to have the Constitution trampled on.”

A combat Army veteran, Duckworth lost both legs co-piloting a helicopter in Iraq in 2004. She handily defeated former Sen. Mark Kirk, a Republican, in the 2016 election to reclaim former President Barack Obama’s Senate seat for the Democrats.

“This is about our country,” Duckworth said Saturday, “I didn’t shed blood to defend this nation – I didn’t give up literally parts of my body — to have the Constitution trampled on.”

“I did not serve, along with the men and women in our armed forces,” she continued, “to have them roll back our rights.” 

Duckworth, who said she brought her 2-year-old daughter to the march, made specific mention of the Americans with Disabilities Act because “without the ADA, I would not be here today.”

She also encouraged the crowd of approximately 500,000 people to stay involved and active in the political process.

“This is what it’s about – it’s about you going home after today and standing up and fighting in your communities,” she said. “Don’t take what you do today and don’t let it end. Take it home, run for office yourselves. Get out there,” she added.

The rally in Washington was the largest of more than 600 "sister marches" planned around the world - including the Women's March on Chicago that drew an estimated 250,000 people. 



Photo Credit: Sen. Duckworth]]>
<![CDATA['We Shall Over-Comb': The Best Signs of the Women's March]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 15:55:12 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/overcombfeuerherd.jpg

Protesters attitudes toward President Trump were on display on handmade signs at women's marches around the globe Saturday. 

Many of the signs were playful and whimsical, but conveyed a protest message. 

One of them showed recently-deceased actress Carrie Fisher dressed as her Star Wars character Princess Leia with the title, "RESISTER." 

Another Instagram photo captioned with #womensmarch showed a sign that poked fun at Trump's speech. "Trump has the best misogyny, it's very big misogyny. Sad!" the sign reads.  

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In Washington, where crowds are expected to reach 500,000 people, one marcher held a sign that read, "we shall over-comb," with a drawing of Trump's notorious hairstyle. 

A girl at the march held a sign that read, "girl's just want to have fundamental human rights." 

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Photo Credit: Riya Bhattacharjee
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<![CDATA[#WhyIMarch: Demonstrators Reveal Reasons for Women's March]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:19:52 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/womens+march+chi+pic.jpg

With crowds more than doubling expectations for the Women's March on Chicago Saturday, the city quickly transformed into a sea of pink. 

Demonstrators proudly proclaimed their diversity, carrying signs and rallying near the city's Grant Park. 

Organizers noted that the event, which was held the day after President Donald Trump's inauguration, was not an anti-Trump event, but that some demonstrators would likely be there for political reasons. 

"The incoming administration and president have promised an assault on women’s rights, we are prepared to fight back," said organizer Ann Scholhamer.

Still, as women and men from varying backgrounds flooded city streets, it became clear there were many reasons marchers came for the event. 

The Chicago rally is one of many around the country and the world being held in conjunction with the Women’s March on Washington.

"This march is just one moment in time but it’s a moment that will hopefully ignite a powerful message," said Donna Miller with Planned Parenthood. "Women are taking action and will continue to take action."

The marches nationwide are expected to draw hundreds of thousands of people on Saturday.

[[411411595, C]]



Photo Credit: Emily Florez
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<![CDATA[Photos: The Women's March on Chicago]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 21:27:21 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/womens+march+ashhar2+sized.jpg Thousands of people descended on the city to join the Women's March on Chicago following the inauguration of President Donald Trump. Want to share your photos? Email them to isee@nbcchicago.com.]]> <![CDATA[From Antarctica to Europe: Women's Marches Around the World]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 16:01:20 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/London_England_1_March1.jpg From Antarctica to the Netherlands, global marches and rallies for women's right were held around the world in solidarity with the hundreds of thousands of people gathered for the Women's March in Washington, as well as the 600 "sister marches" held across the United States, on Jan. 21, 2017. See the photos.

Photo Credit: Dan KitwoodGetty Images]]>
<![CDATA[White House Slams Coverage of Inaugural Crowd Size]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 20:21:04 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/182*120/spicer-slams-size-inauguration.jpg

The new White House press secretary used his first press briefing to launch a furious tirade against media coverage of President Donald Trump's inauguration, calling it "shameful and wrong" for focusing on the fact that it was noticeably smaller than Barack Obama's in 2009.

Sean Spicer harangued the media for not taking the administration's point of view on how to cover Trump's inauguration, and claimed that the National Mall was full during the president's oath of office when photographs from multiple vantage points showed that it wasn't. 

"This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe," Spicer said. "These attempts to lessen the enthusiasm of the inauguration are shameful and wrong."

There is no evidence to suggest it was the largest ever, by Spicer's own admission that "no one had numbers" for official crowd size estimates, and Nielsen released data Saturday saying about 7 million fewer people watched Trump’s inauguration than Obama’s first in 2009. Ronald Reagan's 1981 inauguration remains the most-watched in American history, with 41.8 million viewers.

Spicer took no questions at the briefing, which came hours after Trump told CIA officials at Langley that the media was inventing a feud between him and the intelligence community, despite suggesting the intel community leaked information to the press and comparing it to something that would be done in Nazi Germany. Trump also said the crowd "looked like a million, million and a half people" to him.

It's the latest bump in a rocky relationship between the Trump team and the national press corps, but the first to take place in the White House press briefing room. And it came as hundreds of thousands of demonstrators filled the streets in Washington and many cities both in America and abroad, all aimed at showing Trump that they will not be silent during his time in office. 

Spicer did not comment on the Women's March on Washington and it's "sister marches" other than to stipulate there are no official estimates about crowd sizes at the rallies. 

Trump had promised an "unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout" for his inauguration, but various planning groups predicted between 700,000 and 900,000 people would attend the swearing-in and parade. Obama drew an estimated 1.8 million people to the National Mall in 2009, though The Washington Post later questioned whether it was too high.

Spicer claimed that spaces on the national mall with a total capacity of 720,000 were full. He also said that images were distorted by protective plastic lawn coverings, and incorrectly claimed they had never been used before — they were used during the 2013 inauguration as well.

The turf covering Spicer referred to has been used in multiple events on the Mall, a National Park Service representative confirmed in a statement. It was not in use in 2009, before restoration began in 2011.

Spicer did not provide any pictorial evidence backing up his claim that the inaugural crowd was the largest ever, though ahead of the briefing, TV screens on either side of the podium showed pictures from behind the president. There were large crowds in the foreground, while the Washington Monument, where crowds appeared to be sparse in other shots, was far in the distance.

D.C. Metro released ridership numbers for 11 a.m. on the most recent inauguration days showing a marked drop in rides between Obama's 2009 inaugural (513,000) and Trump's (193,000).

Crowd sizes are notoriously hard to estimate, and the National Park Service has not offered official estimates since it was threatened with a defamation lawsuit by organizers of the Million Man March in 1995.

Spicer also singled out a reporter's tweet that said a bust of Martin Luther King Jr. was missing from the Oval Office. It was incorrect — the bust is still in the office — and the reporter corrected the report and apologized.

Spicer called that tweet "irresponsible and reckless." But less than 24 hours before, Spicer tweeted that he accepted the reporter's apology. 

Hillary Clinton's former campaign spokesman, Brian Fallon, tweeted that Spicer was "a failure in this job on his first full day" for not refusing to lie to the press.

Ari Fleischer, the press secretarty for George W. Bush, noted on Twitter that it was the kind of statement "you're told to make by the President," who you know is watching. 

"So, while press is stunned & can't believe it, Sean is getting praised by his boss & co-workers now. MSM is from Venus. WH is from Mars," he said. 



Photo Credit: AP/Inaugural Ceremonies Commission/Getty
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<![CDATA[Dwyane Wade Apologizes to Bulls Fans After Loss]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 13:43:47 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632251218.png

The Chicago Bulls may have made the final score of their 102-93 loss to the Atlanta Hawks more respectable with a late comeback, but after the team trailed by 30 or more points at various times in the contest, one of their biggest stars took to Twitter to apologize to fans.

That star is guard Dwyane Wade, who went 2-for-10 from the field and scored only four points in 20 minutes of action. With the team still clinging to a playoff berth, the effort seems to have gotten Wade’s attention, and he apologized to fans for the poor display: 

The Bulls, whose record stands at 21-23 on the season, are tied for eighth place in the Eastern Conference, but that doesn’t mean things are going well for them.

They’ve lost four of their last six games, including defeats to the lowly New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks, and Friday’s game was simply more of the same as they trailed by more than 30 points early in the second quarter.

In his postgame comments to the media, Wade said that the entire team has “been tired of this” when discussing their play, and Jimmy Butler said that the Bulls are playing “terrible” basketball right now.

Unfortunately for the Bulls, things won’t get any easier, as they have a tough west coast road trip coming up at the beginning of February.

They’ll travel to play against Oklahoma City, Houston, and Golden State on that journey, and they’ll also have to go up against old head coach Tom Thibodeau and the Minnesota Timberwolves before they finally make it back to the United Center.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Chicago Women's March Second Largest in Country]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 12:57:25 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000021722272_1200x675_859800643890.jpg At least 75,000 were expected to be part of the march, organizers said. But estimated numbers grew to roughly 250,000 as groups descended on the rally site at Columbus and Jackson, they revealed. ]]>