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August 10, 2018

It was more than three minutes into Jimmy Kimmel's interview with Kanye West on Thursday's Kimmel Live before Kimmel brought up West's famously warm feelings for President Trump. Kimmel noted the strong, mixed reactions when West came out as a Trump supporter and asked if he thinks Trump is a good president. West tackled the first part, talking about choosing "love" over "fear" when he put on his MAGA hat.

"What it represented to me, it's not about policies — because I'm not a politician like that — but it represented overcoming fear and doing what you felt, no matter what anyone says," West said. "Liberals can't bully me, news can't bully me, the hip hop community, they can't bully me. Because at that point, if I'm afraid to be me, I'm no longer Ye." He added that he quite enjoys enraging people, then went on to discuss his views on slavery, being caught in a "simulation," and societal views on children, with a zinger: "We are too protective. We always don't want someone to get hurt — can you imagine me talking to my publicist before I said I'm going on TV again?"

West returned to love, and said society would be better if we treated everyone as our family, and Kimmel called that a "beautiful thought" then brought it back around to Trump. "In literal terms, there are families being torn apart at the border of this country ... as a result of what this president is doing," he said. "Whether we like his personality or not, his actions are really what matter. I mean, you so famously and powerfully said George Bush doesn't care about black people. It makes me wonder what makes you think Donald Trump does, or any people at all?" West sat silently in thought for a few seconds, Kimmel went to commercial, and they didn't discuss it again during the show. Watch below. Peter Weber

9:54 a.m.

As he gears up for a possible 2020 run, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) hasn't changed his mind: he still loves President Trump.

Booker in an interview with The Atlantic explained why he has continuously expressed love toward the president who he opposes on countless policy issues and who has attacked him publicly on Twitter. "My faith tradition is love your enemies," he said. "It's not complicated for me, if I aspire to be who I say I am. I am a Christian American." This is not the same thing as being "complicit in oppression" or "tolerant of hatred," Booker said.

The New Jersey senator also explained that he loves Trump voters. "Millions and millions of good Americans, good decent Americans, voted for Donald Trump," he said.

"If we become a party that is about what we're against, I don't think that's a winning strategy," Booker said more broadly about the Democratic Party. "I think if we give all of our energy—psychic, mental—toward Donald Trump, it makes him powerful." Besides, "there's common pain in this country," Booker observed, and if Democrats "make Donald Trump your central focus, then it's going to be much harder to get to a sense of common purpose."

Booker also decried the polarization of the country, pointing to his experience getting "pilloried on Twitter" for hugging the late Sen. John McCain after he was diagnosed with cancer. "We are heading toward a point in my lifetime where I haven't seen a level of tribalism like this," Booker said. Read the full interview at The Atlantic. Brendan Morrow

9:45 a.m.

Congress has just five days to reach an agreement with President Trump and stop the federal government from shutting down. And that's not even the only challenge.

Even if Republicans led by Trump reach an agreement with Democrats over border wall funding, GOP leaders worry there won't be enough Republicans in attendance to pass it. That's because many of the 40 House Republicans that Democrats unseated have left the Capitol, and likely for good, The New York Times reports.

Congress hasn't yet reached a budget agreement with Trump, who wants $5 billion to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Democrats won't concede more than $1.6 billion for border security. Jeopardizing budget talks further is the fact that Congress adjourned until Wednesday with no agreement in sight, and that Trump is scheduled for a 16-day visit to Mar-a-Lago as soon as the week ends, per Politico.

On top of that, ousted and retiring House Republicans are "don't want to show up anymore to vote," the Times writes. That's partly because newcomer Democrats have moved into their old offices, leaving them to work out of cubicles. It's also because they're simply "sick and tired of Washington," per the Times. So even if the two branches do somehow work out an agreement, "House Republican leaders do not know whether they will have the votes to pass it," the Times writes. Read more at The New York Times. Kathryn Krawczyk

9:14 a.m.

2018 was a year of "justice" for all, according to Merriam-Webster.

The dictionary company named "justice" its word of the year for 2018 after it saw a 74 percent spike in lookups compared to 2017. Merriam-Webster noted in its announcement that justice was at the center of a number of important conversations this year, from issues concerning racial justice and social justice to stories about the Department of Justice and conversations about Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. "For many reasons and for many meanings, one thing's for sure: justice has been on the minds of many people in 2018," Merriam-Webster says. The company's word of the year in 2017 was "feminism."

Merriam-Webster also listed 10 other words that saw notable spikes in lookups this year, all of which center around a key news story. One is "nationalism," which spiked 8,000 percent after President Trump in October declared himself a nationalist. Another is "pansexual," which spiked in April when singer Janelle Monáe identified herself as such in an interview.

"Lodestar" was also a notable lookup after the word was used in a damaging New York Times op-ed written by an anonymous member of the Trump administration, with some readers taking it as a clue pointing to Vice President Mike Pence, who often uses the word in speeches.

Additionally, "epiphany" spiked when the band BTS used it in a song; "feckless" spiked after comedian Samantha Bee used it in a vulgar monologue about Ivanka Trump; "laurel" spiked as people everywhere debated whether an audio recording was of a person saying "laurel" or "yanny"; "pissant" spiked when a radio DJ used the word to describe Tom Brady's daughter; and "respect," "maverick," and "excelsior" spiked after the deaths of Aretha Franklin, John McCain, and Stan Lee respectively. Read more at Merriam-Webster. Brendan Morrow

8:36 a.m.

A second actress has accused actor Geoffrey Rush of sexual harassment.

Yael Stone, who plays Lorna Morello on Orange is the New Black, accused Rush of misconduct in an interview with The New York Times Sunday. When they both starred in the play The Diary of a Madman in 2010 and 2011, Stone says Rush "danced naked in front of her in their dressing room, used a mirror to watch her while she showered, and sent her occasionally erotic text messages." At the time, Stone was 25 and Rush was 59. Three people who worked with Stone on the play backed up her story, as did several friends and family members.

Rush denied Stone's allegations, saying they are "incorrect" and "in some instances have been taken completely out of context." He characterized the situation as Stone being "upset on occasion by the spirited enthusiasm I generally bring to my work."

Because of Australia's strict defamation laws, Stone told the Times she was terrified to come forward and only did so because a law firm has agreed to represent her pro bono. Rush was previously accused of sexual harassment by an actress he worked with on a play in 2015 and 2016. Eryn Jean Norvill told The Daily Telegraph in 2017 that Rush touched her without her consent and sent her inappropriate text messages; she wasn't originally named in the story, which has since been removed from the publication's website. Rush denied that allegation and sued The Daily Telegraph for defamation. A decision in that case has not yet been reached.

Stone told the Times she is "not looking for punishment" by coming forward but that she hopes "to change my industry and to work toward healing and growth." Brendan Morrow

7:29 a.m.

With great Spider-Man movies comes great box office returns.

Sony's Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse topped the box office this weekend with a solid $35 million debut, per Box Office Mojo. This was slightly below projections that pegged it closer to $42 million, but still a fine start for the animated flick, which critics have hailed as one of the best movies ever to feature Marvel's iconic web-slinger.

Sony hopes the movie will attract crowds during the lucrative holiday season, but it will face some tough competition. The 2018 holiday season is among the most competitive in years, with Mary Poppins Returns, Bumblebee, and Aquaman all opening shortly before Christmas.

Clint Eastwood's The Mule also performed well this weekend with a $17 million haul. That's a stronger start than Eastwood's last film, The 15:17 to Paris, although not as strong as Sully's $35 million debut. The film should be able to appeal to those looking for more adult-oriented fare over the holiday break; per The Hollywood Reporter, more than half its audience this weekend was over 50.

On the other hand, Universal Pictures' Mortal Engines' opening was a disaster. The fantasy film based on the popular young adult novel had an embarrassing debut of just $7 million, coming in fifth place behind movies that have been out for well over a month, like The Grinch. Mortal Engines reportedly cost more than $100 million to make, and it's expected to lose the studio about that much, per Deadline. When all is said and done, it may end up being the very biggest box office bomb of 2018. Brendan Morrow

2:09 a.m.

Nearly 21 percent of high school seniors say they vaped within the past 30 days, up from 11 percent one year ago, a new survey out Monday says.

The Monitoring the Future survey has been in existence for 44 years, asking teenagers whether they use drugs, drink alcohol, or smoke, and this was the most dramatic spike in its history. The survey is funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and its director, Nora Volkow, said the report is "very worrisome. We are very concerned about the increase in vaping."

Vapors from e-cigarettes contain high levels of nicotine, and doctors fret about how this affects brains that are still developing. The survey also found that more teens now believe that they are simply breathing in flavors when they vape, not understanding that they are indeed inhaling nicotine. Catherine Garcia

1:32 a.m.

The winner of the 2018 Miss Universe pageant is Miss Philippines Catriona Gray.

The 24-year-old was crowned the winner Sunday night in Bangkok. She defeated 93 other contestants, including first runner-up Miss South Africa Tamaryn Green and second runner-up Miss Venezuela Sthefany Gutierrez. This was the first year that the selection committee was comprised solely of women.

Born in Australia, Gray entered her first pageant at age five, and studied music at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Catherine Garcia

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