In the Nicest Place in America Community Thrives

COLUMBIANA, Ohio -- The thing about a city earning a title such as the "nicest place in America" is that outsiders often assume the people who live there don't have to work at being nice.

Well, anyone in this lovely city that straddles both the Mahoning and Columbiana Counties would say you do have to work at it. But like anything worthwhile in this world (including warmth, generosity, common courtesy and the selfless notion of paying it forward), it starts to come more easily with time.

It also helps that Columbiana has a deep sense of community, which means it is deeply committed to its success. People here are involved in the church, civic groups and the general betterment of the city.

It's not because it is a small city or because it oozes the type of charm Hallmark aims to capture in its Christmas movies. It's because everyone in town has a hand, large or small, in the community's health and well-being.

Spend less than five minutes with City Manager Lance Willard and you'll know exactly what I mean. Just before the annual Christmas parade, ask for his rundown on why his city earned the status of "nicest place" from Reader's Digest, and you'll get a pretty vivid picture.

Spend an additional five minutes with Willard and you'll find out why this city of 6,200 is prospering economically, growing in population and expanding its charming Main Street with innovative retail opportunities such as pop-ups and shared retail spaces. Its success has attracted the attention of nearby Rust Belt towns looking to replicate.

"I've had other communities call us -- Salem, Lisbon, East Liverpool, Leetonia, Warren, Zanesville -- and they're saying, 'Hey, what are you guys doing up there?'" Willard said of the string of neighboring cities and towns looking for guidance on economic development including how to procure grants for new infrastructure and attract small businesses.

His answer? "I just send them a zip file of what we've been doing."

None of Columbiana's success has come at the expense of the soul of the city -- it has only made it nicer.

"If I could point to one place that embodies who the people of Columbiana are, I would point to Crown Productions at the Main Street Theater, where they showcase theater productions that feature only actors w

Read more: http://electionnewschannel.com/top-news/127218-in-the-nicest-place-in-america-community-thrives

Romney Breaks With GOP Colleagues ‘No Evidence’ Of Ukrainian Meddling

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The Utah senator dismissed conspiracy theories that Ukraine interfered in the 2016 election, calling out Russia as the culprit.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) distanced himself from some of his GOP colleagues on Tuesday, stating that there was no sign of Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 election.

“I saw no evidence from our intelligence community, nor from the representatives today for the Department of State, that there is any evidence of any kind of that suggests that Ukraine interfered in our elections,” he told reporters on Capitol Hill. “We have ample evidence that Russia interfered in our elections.”

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"We have ample evidence that Russia interfered in our elections."

Sen. Mitt Romney says he won't comment on any GOP colleagues voicing debunked theory on 2016 election meddling, but adds, "We have to adhere to the facts as presented to us by our Intelligence Community."

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Romey’s statement follows testimony from Under Secretary for Political Affairs David Hale, the third-highest ranking State Department official. Hale told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that Russian meddling was not a “hoax,” and that he knows of no evidence implicating Ukraine.

The remarks are a stark contrast to those of Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who on Monday told NBC News that there was no “question that elected officials in Ukraine had a favorite in the election,” promoting a debunked conspiracy theory.

“Every elected official in the Ukraine was for Hillary Clinton,” the Senate Intelligence Committee chair said. “Is that very different than the Russians being for Donald Trump?”

The comments echoed Sen. Jo

Read more: http://electionnewschannel.com/top-news/127202-romney-breaks-with-gop-colleagues-no-evidence-of-ukrainian-meddling

Serious misconduct by Donald Trump takes center stage at hearing

The House Judiciary Committee is moving swiftly to weigh findings by fellow lawmakers that President Donald Trump misused the power of his office for personal political gain and then obstructed Congress' investigation as possible grounds for impeachment.

Responsible for drafting articles of impeachment, the Judiciary Committee prepared Wednesday morning for its first hearing since the release of a 300-page report by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee that found “serious misconduct” by the president.

The report did not render a judgment on whether Trump’s actions stemming from a July 25 phone call with Ukraine's president rose to the constitutional level of “high crimes and misdemeanors" warranting impeachment. That is for the full House to decide. But its findings involving Trump's efforts to seek foreign intervention in the American election process provide the basis for a House vote on impeachment and a Senate trial carrying the penalty of removal from office.

"The evidence that we have found is really quite overwhelming that the president used the power of his office to secure political favors and abuse the trust American people put in him and jeopardize our security,” Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told The Associated Press.

“It was a difficult decision to go down this road, because it's so consequential for the country," Schiff said. But “the president was the author of his own impeachment inquiry by repeatedly seeking foreign help in his election campaigns."

Schiff added: “Americans need to understand that this president is putting his personal political interests above theirs. And that it's endangering the country."

The session Wednesday with legal scholars will delve into possible impeachable offenses, but the real focus will be on the panel, led by Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and made up of a sometimes boisterous, sharply partisan division of lawmakers.

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Kamala Harris Dropping Out Of Presidential Race

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The California senator struggled to gain traction in recent months.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is dropping her presidential bid. She informed her staff on Tuesday.

Harris held a call with her team in Iowa on Tuesday, saying that she had made the decision because of financial struggles experienced by the campaign.

“I don’t think anyone on my team was expecting this,” said one staffer, who said they were completely shocked by the news. 

Harris will be going to New York City and Baltimore to inform staff there, and she intends to travel to the four early states where she has a campaign presence to be with her team there as well this week.

On Tuesday afternoon, Harris emailed her supporters that she was withdrawing from the presidential race: 

My campaign for president simply doesn’t have the financial resources we need to continue.

I’m not a billionaire. I can’t fund my own campaign. And as the campaign has gone on, it’s become harder and harder to raise the money we need to compete.

In good faith, I can’t tell you, my supporters and volunteers, that I have a path forward if I don’t believe I do.

So, to you my supporters, it is with deep regret ― but also with deep gratitude ― that I am suspending my campaign today.

The news came just as a super PAC reserved airtime in Iowa for an ad blitz, set to begin on Tuesday, meant to bolster the candidate. (It quickly cancelled the spots after Harris’ announcement.) Harris’ team had been upfront about its financial issues and had cut staff in New Hampshire in order to double down on the caucus state. 

Presidential hopeful and former Vice President Joe Biden, speaking to reporters after a town hall in Iowa, said he was disappointed the California senator had been forced out of the contest. 

“She’s a first-rate candidate and a real competitor and I have mixed emotions about it because she is really a solid, solid person and loaded with talent,” he said. 

Harris entered the race as a top-tier candidate, drawing more than 20,000 people to a kickoff rally in Oakland. She f

Read more: http://electionnewschannel.com/top-news/127147-kamala-harris-dropping-out-of-presidential-race

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