Monday, March 6, 2017

Blue-footed Boobies Know (and Monday Evening Briefing)

Your Monday Evening Briefing
Good evening. Here’s the latest.

Stephen Crowley/The New York Times
1. President Trump revised his travel ban, removing Iraq but leaving six other predominantly Muslim nations on a list of those barred from entering the U.S. He also scrapped a provision that explicitly protected religious minorities.
“Unregulated, unvetted travel is not a universal privilege, especially when national security is at stake,” said John Kelly, the Homeland Security secretary, above right.
Here’s who is barred and who is not.

Joe Raedle/Getty Images
2. House Republicans unveiled their long-awaited plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
The proposal would scrap a system of tax credits aimed at the poor for one that would be most generous to the elderly.
The bill’s unveiling sets the stage for a bitter and consequential debate over the possible dismantling of the most significant health care law in a half-century.

Drew Angerer for The New York Times
3. Mr. Trump’s assertion that former President Obama tapped his phone has consumed the White House, the F.B.I., the Justice Department and the worldwide news media. It is a conspiracy theory that was born on talk radio.
The F.B.I. director, James Comey, asked the Justice Department to rebut the assertion as false, but the department has not done so.
Here are some basics about surveillance — including that the power to order domestic wiretaps resides with federal judges, after applications from the Justice Department.

Al Drago/The New York Times
4. The Supreme Court announced it would not hear a major case on transgender rights.
The justices vacated an appeals court decision upholding the right of a transgender boy, Gavin Grimm, above, to use the boys’ bathroom at his Virginia high school.
They sent the case back for further consideration in light of the Trump administration’s policy on the issue.
Separately, the court ruled that jury deliberations need not remain secret when evidence emerges that they were marred by racial or ethnic bias.

Ilana Panich-Linsman/Reuters
5. The White House made an offer to Planned Parenthood: Stop providing abortions and you can keep federal funding.
The group — which does not use its federal funds for abortions — refused.
“Offering money to Planned Parenthood to abandon our patients and our values is not a deal that we will ever accept,” the group’s executive vice president said.

Franck Robichon/European Pressphoto Agency
6. Japan is on heightened alert over North Korea’s capabilities, weighing whether Pyongyang’s launch of four ballistic missiles could be testing a “saturation attack” meant to overwhelm missile defenses.
Above, an antimissile battery in Tokyo.
Today’s episode of “The Daily” podcast discusses U.S. efforts to disrupt North Korea’s missile program, as well as Mr. Trump’s accusation against Mr. Obama.

Ryan David Brown for The New York Times
7. Here’s the reality about illegal immigrants in the United States.
Of an estimated 11 million, many labor in farm fields, atop half-built towers and in restaurant kitchens. Others swell classrooms, detention centers and immigration courts. About 60 percent have been in the country for at least a decade. Many now live in fear of immediate deportation.
“I am in limbo,” one woman said. “I am afraid I will go out and never come back.”

Damon Winter/The New York Times
8. An Airbnb listing offered luxury, great views of Midtown New York and tight security. Oh, and some notable neighbors: the Trumps.
In other Airbnb news, we have this strange tale of a low-energy intruder hanging out in a high-tech home.

Chang W. Lee/The New York Times
9. The World Baseball Classic opened in Seoul. Israel beat South Korea 2-1.
Many of the world’s best players are sitting it out because of scheduling challenges, but the Major League Baseball commissioner, Rob Manfred, said that the tournament would go on.
John Smoltz, the announcer and former pitcher, said the U.S. was overdue for its first title.

David Goldman/Associated Press
10. Do you leave your vacation car rental to the last minute?
Tips such as avoiding airports and planning toll payments can help keep you from getting nickel-and-dimed with industry fees.

Tui De Roy/Minden Pictures
11. Finally, it’s mating season for the blue-footed booby, a one-of-a-kind bird found on the Galápagos Islands.
These celebrated, beloved residents of the archipelago perform a highly ritualized courtship display, complete with an elaborate dance that shows off the relative blue-ness of their feet.

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