The iOpener: Portman Breaks with Trump Over Otto Warmbier; Trial Begins in Death of Girl; Cavs Win

U.S. Sen. Rob Portman speaks at an event in Cleveland in 2016.
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman speaks at an event in Cleveland in 2016. [Nick Castele / ideastream]
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Good morning iOpeners on this Friday, March 1, 2019.

First, news, but read on because we have your responses to a question we asked you during Morning Edition on Thursday about whether you found the testimony of President Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen credible and a new question today about what the Cleveland Clinic is calling an "epidemic" of violence against its staff

Cuyahoga County prosecutors say four-year-old Aniya Day Garrett suffered a “long, prolonged death” at the hand of the two people accused of abusing and killing her.  Opening arguments were made in the trial of Aniya’s mother, Sierra Day, and her mother’s boyfriend, Deonte Lewis.  The death of the girl prompted reforms at the county’s child welfare office. 

Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman has broken with President Trump on whether North Korea's leader knew about the mistreatment that led to the death of American citizen Otto Warmbier, saying the United States cannot be “naïve” about what North Korea did to the college student and the brutal nature of its regime.  Portman’s comments on the Senate floor came shortly after Trump said he believed Kim Jong Un when the dictator told him he did not know about the mistreatment of Warmbier. 

Akron’s high schools are launching specialized curricula next year to better prepare students for careers. Superintendent David James said in his State of the Schools address he wants to connect the community to the classroom. He also announced the re-establishment of a disciplinary committee to address student behavior.  The move comes after several reports of fights at Akron schools, including one that resulted in the arrest of six students.  

The Cavs overcame a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter to beat the New York Knicks, 125-118.  Kevin Love scored 26 points.

The Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Philadelphia Flyers in overtime, 4-3.  Seth Jones scored 4:27 into the extra period.

Weather Forecast: Increasingly cloudy today, high 35.  Tonight, mostly cloudy, low 25.  A chance of snow over the weekend.  Saturday, mostly cloudy, high 35.  Sunday, a 50 percent chance of snow, with one to two inches of accumulation possible.  High 30. 

Now, iOpeners, onto the question of the day: We want to follow up from Cleveland Clinic's State of the Clinic report, CEO Tom Mihaljevic said that the clinic confiscated 30,000 weapons at its facilities as part of what they have described as an epidemic of violence. Are you a doctor, nurse or other medical professional who has experienced this uptick in violence? We’d like to share your story, get in touch via our listener contribution line (216) 916-6476.

On Thursday, we asked you if you thought former Trump attorney Michael Cohen's testimony before the House Oversight Committee Wednesday was credible, and you called and commented on Facebook.

Mimi in Shaker Heights was "stunned by the sweeping amounts of criminality that Cohen reported about Trump's behavior, and the most frightening part that seems overlooked is that Cohen said he feared that Trump would not lose office peacefully in 2020 if he loses the election".  Stacy from Cleveland Heights voted for Bernie Sanders, but she said that she is worried about the amount of money being spent on the Mueller investigation. 

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