‘Start Here’: Giuliani, Harris, stock surge. What you need to know to start your day.


It’s Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. Here’s what you need to start your day:

1. Rudy Giuliani walks back statements on Trump’s involvement in Moscow project

Over the weekend, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, made a number of media appearances in which he disputed a BuzzFeed News report that claimed Trump told his former fixer, Michael Cohen, to lie to Congress about negotiations to develop a Trump Tower in Moscow.

The special counsel issued a rare public statement that disputed parts of the story.

Now, ABC News’ Kyra Phillips says Giuliani is walking back comments he’s made about the timeline of a tower project in Moscow.

“My recent statements about discussions during the 2016 campaign between Michael Cohen and then-candidate Donald Trump about a potential Trump Moscow ‘project’ were hypothetical and not based on conversations I had with the President,” Giuliani said in a statement to ABC News. “My comments did not represent the actual timing or circumstances of any such discussions.”

Giuliani had told ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos in December that Trump was having conversations about the project with Cohen up until approximately November 2016.

2. Congress returns to Washington to address shutdown

Today, the partial government shutdown, the longest in U.S. history, enters Day 32.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he’ll bring to a vote this week legislation that could end the shutdown, while providing $5.7 billion for Trump’s border wall along with temporary protections for DACA recipients.

The plan, which he called a “common sense compromise,” was proposed by the president on Saturday.

ABC News Chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl explains that while Democrats have largely rejected the president’s plan, there’s still a pathway to end the shutdown.

3. Kamala Harris jumps into 2020 presidential race

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., announced her 2020 presidential bid on “Good Morning America” on Monday after months of speculation.

“This is a moment in time that I feel a sense of responsibility to stand up and fight for the best of who we are,” she said on “GMA.”

Harris, 54, is the fourth woman to enter the race, but will she be able to stand out in a crowded field of Democrats?

“I think Harris is a pretty strong potential candidate,” FiveThirtyEight’s Perry Bacon Jr. tells us. “I could see her winning the whole thing. She could also not win a single primary. I just don’t think we have any idea right now.”

4. Stock market posts best January in decades

The stock market has rebounded from a sluggish December to post its best January in 30 years.

As the markets re-open after the MLK holiday, ABC News Chief Business and Economics Correspondent Rebecca Jarvis says the actions of the Federal Reserve have helped shaped much of its performance so far this year.

5. Israel claims responsibility for airstrikes on Iranian targets in Syria

Israel confirmed on Monday that it launched a series of airstrikes on Iranian military targets in Syria after a rocket attack.

“We have started striking Iranian Quds targets in Syrian territory,” Israel’s military said on Twitter. “We warn the Syrian Armed Forces against attempting to harm Israeli forces or territory.”

The statement marked a shift in Israeli policy from rarely commenting on its military activity.

ABC News’ Jordana Miller joins us from Jerusalem and breaks down the security situation.

Other news:

‘I’m ready to die’: A 27-year-old Colorado man, who wrote in social media posts he was a virgin and constantly rejected by women, is arrested after threatening online to kill “as many girls as I see.”

‘Until America tells the truth about itself, we are not going to heal’: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez talks to Ta-Nehisi Coates about Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy and what it means moving forward.

‘The majority of the National Transportation Safety Board’s employees are currently furloughed and will not be able to respond to major accidents’: The NTSB plans to investigate a plane crash in Ohio that killed two men after the government shutdown ends.

From our partners at FiveThirtyEight:

How to make sure your recycling gets recycled: You think you’re saving the planet, but you’re actually just adding to the landfill.

Last ‘Nightline’:

The deadly risks women and their babies face at childbirth in the U.S.: Despite advances in medicine, childbirth remains an area fraught with potential danger, as documented in this month’s issue of National Geographic.

Behind the scenes of ‘The Bachelor’ with its first ‘virgin bachelor’: But host Chris Harrison says Colton Underwood “is a sexual personality.”

On this day in history:

Jan. 22, 2015 — Tom Brady is investigated for deflated footballs.

The must-see photo:

A composite photo shows all the phases of super blood wolf moon total lunar eclipse as viewed from Panama City. (photo credit: Luis Acosta/AFP/Getty Images)

For more great photos from around the world CLICK HERE.

Socially acceptable:

Watch as the only total lunar eclipse to occur in 2019 dazzles the skies over Taos, New Mexico.

All right, you’re off and running. You can always get the latest news on ABCNews.com and on the ABC News app. Details on how to subscribe to the “Start Here” podcast are below.

See you tomorrow.

“Start Here” is the flagship daily news podcast from ABC News — a straightforward look at the day’s top stories in 20 minutes. Listen for free every weekday on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, or the ABC News app. On Amazon Echo, ask Alexa to “Play ‘Start Here'” or add the “Start Here” skill to your Flash Briefing. Follow @StartHereABC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for exclusive content, show updates and more.

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