‘The Fox News impeachment’ / ‘Really troubling’ / Deplorables of the Year / Behind the quiz

‘The Fox News impeachment.’ CNN’s Oliver Darcy says House Republicans have unanimously given Fox viewers “an early Christmas gift—an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden” …
 Journalism watchdog Margaret Sullivan: “The reality-based press is covering this like a big legitimate story, though it really is a vile piece of partisan politics.”
 Historian Heather Cox Richardson: A top Republican “has a financial history that looks a great deal like that of which he accuses the Bidens.”
 Kal Penn on The Daily Show: Biden’s only crime is having a messed-up son.”
 David Lurie at Public Notice: Biden’s “the most underrated president in decades.”

Not your call. In a win for Mayor Johnson, the Chicago City Council’s killed a push for a public referendum on whether Chicago should remain a “sanctuary city” for migrants.
 The TRiiBE unpacks the designation’s long history of “tensions between Chicago’s Black and Latinx communities.”
 The head of the Illinois NAACP has issued one of those non-apology apologies—“to anyone who may have been hurt or offended”—for likening migrants to “savages” and rapists.
 Columnist Eric Zorn dismisses her laughable suggestion that video of her remarks was an AI creation: “Welcome to the excuse of the future.”

Illinois’ gun law lives. The Supreme Court’s passed up the chance to block the state’s ban on high-power semiautomatic weapons—like the one that rained death on Highland Park’s 2022 Fourth of July parade.
 In another disappointment for pro-gun folk, Naperville’s municipal ban on AR-15s and similar weapons also survives.
 The Texas-based group Mothers for Democracy marks the 11-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary mass shooting with a “devastating” ad demanding gun control.

‘Really troubling.’ The Lever: Billionaires—including one from Chicago—are bankrolling luxury travel for federal judges.
 Injustice Watch: Unsealed records reveal new details about an Illinois appellate judge’s alleged role in a decades-old fraud scheme.

‘At long last, justice.’ After 42 years behind bars, two cousins who served the longest wrongful conviction sentence in Illinois history are free.
 Los Angeles Times columnist Michael Hiltzik: The retail lobby has admitted that its most eye-catching and widely publicized statistic about organized shoplifting is a lie.

‘I’ve already been writing columns about the Israel-Hamas war … not bothering to turn them into the paper because doing so causes such a quivering bolus of alarm, hand-wringing and nit-picking that it’s hardly worth it.’ Columnist Neil Steinberg addresses a reader’s concern that the Sun-Times’ new nonprofit status will keep it from taking strong stands.
 Israel and the U.S. agree that combat operations will continue for months.

‘Commissioners clamped down on ComEd’s ridiculous proposal.’ A Tribune editorial praises the Illinois Commerce Commission for rejecting a $1.5 billion rate hike.
 The ICC also rejected Peoples Gas’ proposal to resume a controversial and expensive pipeline replacement project.

Paid leave mandated. The Cook County Board’s approved a new rule applying to workers in all the county’s suburbs—including airline employees, but excepting state and federal employees and students working for their college.
 The 135-year-old Heartland Alliance is shutting its division operating affordable housing residences in Chicago and Wisconsin.

‘A traffic-destroying nightmare.’ That’s how news publishers see Google’s emerging AI search tool, according to The Wall Street Journal.
 Mother Jones and The Center for Investigative Reporting (creator of the Reveal podcast) are merging.

‘It’s all part of Congress’ new dairy campaign: Got … anything that’ll distract people from our incompetence? Stephen Colbert mocks a do-nothing U.S. House’s decision to send the Senate a bill allowing whole milk to be served in public school lunches.

Deplorables of the Year. The Bulwark’s Charlie Sykes—notably, a veteran conservative Milwaukee radio host—rounds up the worst of the worst, with a couple of notable exceptions.

Animals in the news.
 Chicago’s no-kill animal shelter PAWS Chicago’s holiday adopt-a-thon runs through the weekend.

Shopping counsel. Consumer Reports recommends …
 … and the best free streaming video services.
 Speaking of which: Comcast subscribers can swap Xfinity Flex streaming devices for newer models, free.

Behind the quiz.
The University of Missouri Reynolds Journalism Institute grilled quizmaster and past Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions winner Fritz Holznagel about how he devises each week’s test of your news acumen.
 Careful readers will catch an allusion to your Chicago Public Square columnist—who scored a deplorable 5/8 out on the latest news quiz …
 … and also to Square supporters at the Advocate or better level—people who get early access to the quiz.

What you missed. Here’s a sample of some of the news that made it to the ever-updating Square Facebook page during yesterday’s hiatus:
 Substack email columnists rebel: “Substackers Against Nazis.”
 The Guardian eviscerates McDonald’s spinoff, CosMc’s: “Lonely, gray and … actively colonized by corporations.”

Don’t forget to vote. Your ballot in the Chicago Reader’s Best of Chicago awards awaits—and Chicago Public Square hopes for your support in the Best Email Newsletter and Best Independent Website or Blog categories.
 Thanks. Walter Fyk and Mike Weiland made this edition better.

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