The Scoop: WMNF’s daily digest of news headlines for Thursday, June 22nd, 2023

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The Scoop: WMNF Daily News Digest

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Trump trial

Former President Trump’s criminal trial for keeping government secrets at his Florida estate now has a starting date — August 14th. This week on WMNF’s Tuesday Café, Stetson University College of Law professor Louis Virelli said that an early trial has its advantages but that it might be delayed. You can watch this full interview here.

Senators to set up legislation for SCOTUS reform

New reporting from investigative news outlet ProPublica has Senators Dick Durbin and Sheldon Whitehouse threatening to step up legislation on Supreme Court ethics reform. ProPublica documents how Samuel Alito failed to declare gifts received from conservative billionaire Paul Singer, and did not recuse himself when Singer had cases presented before the court. The news outlet has already detailed the close relationship between Justice Clarence Thomas, and billionaire Harlan Crow.

The gifts included a round trip flight on a private plane to Alaska for a luxury fishing trip hosted by another rightwing businessman. Alito described the fishing lodge in Alaska as “comfortable but rustic”, serving “homestyle fare”. However, ProPublica reports “chefs served multi-course meals of Alaskan king crab legs and Kobe filet. And, on the last night, a member of Alito’s group bragged that they were drinking wine that cost “$1,000 a bottle” according to a fishing guide. Senator Whitehouse said “The highest court in the land should not have the lowest ethical standards”, vowing that when the Senate returns after the July 4th recess, the judiciary committee will proceed with Supreme Court ethics legislation.

Hillsborough school board approves proclamations supporting Pride, Juneteenth

Hillsborough County Schools took a bold stance in declaring two proclamations promoting diversity yesterday. It comes on the heels of new Florida laws clamping down on diversity and inclusion.

Rent in Florida cities reaches record highs

Three Florida cities are among the most expensive cities to rent in.

A new analysis by Clever Real Estate finds Tampa residents are typically spending over $1,200 a month on rent, which is a 40% increase from 2009 when renters paid $876 a month on average.

Jaime Seale, who is a reports writer for Clever Real Estate, said inflation and population growth are some of the factors that have contributed to this spike for Tampa and other cities observed in the study.

An analysis by the U.S. Census Bureau this year found Hillsborough County has gained close to 29,000 residents between 2020 and 2022, making it one of the fastest-growing counties in the country.

Information from the Florida Public Radio network, News Service of Florida, and Associated Press was used in this report.

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