Extremely cold temperatures and frigid winter conditions are gripping large portions of the United States, threatening long power outages and disrupting travel operations. Also in the news: What went down in President Joe Biden’s one-hour meeting about the debt ceiling with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and how to get your Beyoncé tickets.

🙋🏼‍♀️ I’m Nicole Fallert, Daily Briefing author. Happy Groundhog Day! How often is Punxsutawney Phil right?

Now, here we go with Thursday’s headlines.

340K without power amid frigid temperatures in Texas

Texans in more than 340,000 homes and businesses without power braced for near-freezing temperatures Wednesday and more than 2,300 flights were canceled amid an unrelenting blast of treacherous, icy conditions and brutal cold that has left at least six dead. The winter weather system swept from Minnesota deep into Texas. Wrecks on slippery roads have been reported in Texas, Arkansas and other states across the region all week. The weather service said “the epic ice storm should come to a close on Thursday,” and states across the Southern Plains to the Mid-South remain under various storm warnings and advisories. Read more

Family, friends gather for Tyre Nichols’ funeral; VP Kamala Harris speaks

Family and friends of Tyre Nichols were joined by Vice President Kamala Harris and the Rev. Al Sharpton for the funeral of the 29-year-old father and avid skateboarder in Memphis on Wednesday. Harris spoke briefly during the service at the Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, acknowledging Nichols’ family. She called his death, which came three days after he was beaten by Memphis police officers who have since been fired and charged with second-degree murder, a “violent act” that “was not in the interest of keeping the public safe.” Read more

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