Feb 11, 2019

Virginia lawmaker walks back plan to impeach Justin Fairfax

Virginia State Capitol in Richmond. Photo: Tracy A. Woodward/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Virginia Del. Patrick Hope (D) walked back his plan to introduce articles of impeachment against Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, who faces two accusations of sexual assault, on Monday.

The big picture: Hope said he had received "an enormous amount of sincere and thoughtful feedback which has led to additional conversations that need to take place before anything is filed. The AP notes that Virginia's statehouse, which is also contending with blackface scandals involving Gov. Ralph Northam and Attorney General Mark Herring, has "little sign of broad appetite for impeachment, with lawmakers set to finish this year’s session by the month’s end." Fairfax has repeatedly denied the assault allegations, labeling them as a "smear" and questioning their public timing.

Go deeper: Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam: "I'm not going anywhere"

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Stocks fall 4% as sell-off worsens

A trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Stocks fell more than 4% on Thursday, extending the market’s worst week since the financial crisis in 2008 following a spike in coronavirus cases around the world.

The big picture: All three indices closed in correction territory on Thursday, down over 10% from their recent record-highs amid a global market rout.

Coronavirus updates: California monitors 8,400 potential cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

Watchdog opens probe into VA secretary over handling of sexual assault claim

VA Secretary Robert Wilkie on Fox Business Network’s "The Evening Edit" on Jan. 7. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

The Department of Veterans Affairs Inspector General Michael Missal said Thursday he had opened an investigation into VA Secretary Robert Wilkie after lawmakers demanded an inquiry into his handling of a sexual misconduct report, the Washington Post reports.

Context: Wilkie allegedly "worked to discredit" the credibility of Democratic aide and veteran Andrea Goldstein after she reported last fall "that a man groped and propositioned her in the main lobby of the agency's D.C. Medical Center," a senior VA official told the Post.