HC Wake-Up Call: NY's Trump Foundation Investigation, Dems Want To Postpone Kavanaugh Nom, & Deadly New Climate Proposal

Good morning Her Campus! With a break-neck news cycle, there is no possible way for you to stay on top of every story that comes across your feeds—we’re all only human, after all.

But, life comes at you fast. So grab a cup of coffee and settle in for this quick and dirty guide to stories you might’ve been sleeping on (like, literally. It’s early.)

Michael Cohen Subpoenaed In NY's Trump Foundation Investigation

Just a day after President Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to tax fraud and other charges, he was served with a subpoena by investigators for the state of New York as part of their probe into the Trump Foundation. Officials are trying to determine whether Trump or his charity violated state law or lied about their tax liability. The president allegedly "illegally tapped his Trump Foundation to settle legal disputes, help his campaign for president and pay for personal and business expenses, which included spending $10,000 on a 6-foot (1.8-meter) portrait of himself," The Associated Press reported. The suit against him is seeking $2.8 million in restitution, among other penalties. 

The subpoena was issued to Cohen because he has "information of interest to both state and federal prosecutors," his attorney said on CNN's Cuomo Prime Time

If New York's tax department finds evidence of criminal activity, state Attorney General Barbara Underwood could take over the case and pursue criminal charges — along with the release of Trump's tax returns, the AP reported. Trump wouldn't be able to pardon anyone charged with a state crime related to the investigation, either. 

Dems Want To Halt Brett Kavanaugh's Nomination Because Of The Cohen News

Senate Democrats have been vocal about their disdain for Trump's Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and after Cohen pleaded guilty to eight criminal counts on Tuesday, they're really pushing back. First, on the Senate floor, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said, "In my view, the Senate Judiciary Committee should immediately pause the consideration of the Kavanaugh nomination."

Then, on Wednesday, Senator Mazie Hirono (Dem-Hawaii) announced that she was canceling her scheduled meeting with Kavanaugh because of Trump being implicated in a hush money scheme with Cohen, The Hill reported. "I am canceling, I will be canceling, my appointment with Judge Kavanaugh because I choose not to extend a courtesy to this president who is an un-indicted co-conspirator ... of meeting with his nominee," she said when speaking to reporters. Hirono added that Kavanaugh is simply "a nominee who is being nominated because the president expects him to protect [Trump]."

Senator Richard Blumenthal (Dem-Connecticut) was also outspoken about even considering Kavanaugh. "The President of the United States has been implicated in a criminal plot to violate campaign finance laws & influence the outcome of an election. Under no circumstances should we be considering his nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court in just one week," he tweeted. "Kavanaugh hearing must be immediately postponed so Judiciary Committee can continue vital investigation of Trump campaign criminality & obstruction of justice."

Other prominent Democratic senators, such as Cory Booker, issued similar calls for a delay in the nomination of Kavanaugh. Before Cohen pleaded guilty, Dems had been primarily concerned with the lack of transparency from his time as the staff secretary in the George W. Bush administration, CNN reported

Republicans aren't buying any of it, though. This was made clear after Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley issued a statement through a spokesperson: "Justice Breyer's confirmation occurred when President Clinton's records had been subpoenaed by a grand jury. Obviously, we are nowhere close to that situation today. Calls to delay the hearing are just the latest tactic from opponents who decided to vote 'no' weeks ago and are frantically looking for anything that sticks. The hearing will begin as planned on September 4." 

Plus, Senate Republicans don't need the support of the Democrats. They can confirm Kavanaugh without a single Dem vote. 

The EPA's Report About Its Own Climate Plan Showed That Thousands Could Die

On Tuesday, the Trump administration released details about the Environmental Protection Agency's upcoming climate plan, which will replace the one that President Obama implemented. A major talking point for Trump during his campaign was his promise to roll back the Clean Power Plan, and he began doing so just two months after taking office when he signed an executive order to demolish emissions rules for power plants, methane leak limits, and more policies that Obama implemented to curb climate change. There's also, of course, Trump's withdrawal of the United States from the Paris climate accord. 

However, Trump can't just get rid of the CPP — he's still required by law to regulate carbon dioxide — so the EPA's new plan, dubbed the Affordable Clean Energy proposal, will serve as a regulator on greenhouse gas limitations. It may come at a cost, though. The administration's own analysis revealed that the plan "could lead to as many as 1,400 premature deaths per annual by 2030, up to 15,000 new cases of upper respiratory problems, a rise in bronchitis, and tens of thousands of missed school days," The New York Times reported. The new rules would also reverse all of the expected health gains — prevention of deaths, and reduction of the number of missed school days — from Obama's Clean Power Plan. 

For the most part, the Affordable Clean Energy proposal prioritizes the coal industry. "We love clean, beautiful West Virginia coal," Trump said at a West Virginia rally on Tuesday. "And you know, that’s indestructible stuff. In times of war, in times of conflict, you can blow up those windmills, they fall down real quick. You can blow up pipelines, they go like this," he said as he made a hand gesture. "You can do a lot of things to those solar panels, but you know what you can’t hurt? Coal." 

What to look for...

Twilight and Veronica Mars on a screen near you, since both are coming back in different ways.