Global economic concerns, midterm elections and rising tensions in Ukraine | Hot off the Wire podcast

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Concerns over the economy have been ongoing since the start of the pandemic. And it doesn’t look like things will get better in the near future.

On Thursday, the International Monetary Fund lowered its projections for global economic growth in 2023. Kristalina Georgieva, managing director of the IMF, said the Russian invasion of Ukraine has dramatically changed the organization’s outlook on the economy. 

That news came a day after OPEC+, an alliance of oil-exporting countries, decided to sharply cut production to support sagging oil prices. The move could further drive gas prices up after they had steadily declined, although they have been creeping back up recently.

In related news, California Gov. Gavin Newsom relaxed refinery rules in an effort to ease soaring gas prices in the state with the highest price per gallon in the nation.

We’re a month away from the midterm elections and there are warnings about efforts from Russia and China to influence outcomes. Herschel Walker, the former NFL star turned Republican Senate candidate from Georgia, denied a report he paid for an ex-girlfriend’s abortion.

Former President Donald Trump is suing CNN over its coverage centering on the phrase “The Big Lie.” His legal team also petitioned the Supreme Court to intervene in the case involving classified documents taken from his Florida home.

In other Supreme Court news, a new justice was seated and the high court began hearing arguments in the new term.

In other national news, President Joe Biden took a step to decriminalize marijuana. The move came during a week in which he visited Puerto Rico and Florida following hurricanes that slammed the two locations.

In international news, there were multiple developments regarding Russia’s war in Ukraine. President Vladimir Putin signed laws that brought four regions of Ukraine into Russia. The U.S. is sending more military aid to Ukraine while President Biden raised concerns over nuclear war. Meanwhile, two Russians trying to avoid military service arrived on a remote Alaskan island seeking asylum. 

And finally, in health and science news, Western states are dealing with drought, there are concerns over “best by” labels leading consumers to waste food, and older Americans are being reminded to get flu shots. 

— Compiled and narrated by Terry Lipshetz from Associated Press reports