Ben Smith, BuzzFeed: Could reporters stop letting [Donald Trump] lie to their faces about the most important policy call of the last 20 years? Trump did not oppose the invasion of Iraq. Further, there's no evidence that he's ever been a "dove" -- and a great deal that he's been an impulsive supporter of military intervention around the world. We know this because BuzzFeed News' intrepid Andrew Kaczynski unearthed an audio recording of him saying he supported it. You can listen to it above. The audio quality is clear. In the recording, made on Sept. 11, 2002, when it mattered, Howard Stern asked Trump whether he supported the invasion. His answer: "Yeah, I guess so." On the war's first day, he called it a "tremendous success from a military standpoint." read more
Ted Cruz bowed out of the Republican presidential race Tuesday following a crushing loss to Donald Trump in Indiana. "We left it all on the field in Indiana. We gave it everything we've got but the voters chose another path," Cruz said. "So with a heavy heart but with boundless optimism for the long-term future of our nation, we are suspending our campaign." On the Republican side, Bernie Sanders was projected to win Indiana 53% to 47% with 62% reporting.
A legal challenge to the $15-an-hour minimum wage increase, enacted last month in Seattle, was rejected by the Supreme Court Monday. The International Franchise Association appealed the lower court's decision to uphold Seattle's 2014 minimum wage law. The business group challenged the law because it wanted franchisees such as McDonald's to be treated the same as small businesses, which were given three years to comply with the $15-an-hour requirement. Working Washington, the group that spearheaded the campaign to pass Seattle's wage law, said, "The poverty wage fast food industry's worst fear is coming true -- Seattle's $15 wage law is working and the economy is thriving. The big business lobby has thrown everything they got at Seattle workers -- but they keep on losing, and the economy continues to boom. Today's ruling is another another win for workers and people of Seattle and another defeat for McDonald's and friends."
With just hours to go before the polls close in the critical state of Indiana, Texas Senator Ted Cruz delivered an extended monologue on live TV calling rival GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump a "pathological liar" and a "narcissist." It's an odd and telling display from someone who spent most of last year cozying up to Trump. Cruz delivers the sort of blunt, personal criticism that you don't often see on the campaign trail, and he frames it as a moment of total honesty. "I'm going to do something I haven't done for the entire campaign ... I'm going to tell you what I really think of Donald Trump," Cruz says as he winds up. read more
Officials are searching for a person who shot and killed an infamous 25-year-old male grizzly bear nicknamed Scarface. The bear was shot in November 2015 on a trail north of Gardiner, Montana, in the Gallatin National Forest. Grizzly bears have been listed as an endangered species, since 1975 although the government is currently considering delisting grizzlies. Because of its recognizable scar on the right side of its face, Scarface was often photographed by tourists and media. The bear once weighed 600 pounds but was half that weight when last captured in 2015. Likely the lost pounds were due to old age. Fewer than five percent of males bears born in Greater Yellowstone survive 25 years. read more
With no proof, Donald Trump has suggested that Ted Cruz's father was connected to President John F. Kennedy's assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. Trump brought up a story that appeared in the tabloid National Enquirer during an interview with Fox News. The Enquirer published a photo claiming to show Rafael Cruz with Oswald. "His father was with Lee Harvey Oswald prior to Oswald's being -- you know, shot. I mean, the whole thing is ridiculous," Trump said on Tuesday. "I mean, what was he doing -- what was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death? Before the shooting?" The Cruz campaign called the story garbage. "Trump is detached from reality and his false, cheap, meaningless comments every day indicate his desperation to get attention and willingness to say anything to do so," the campaign said. read more
Joshua Marshall, TPM: [T]o the extent that the Democratic nomination process is "rigged," the rigging has been a huge advantage to Bernie Sanders. As I've noted, that's mainly because of caucuses. It drives me crazy, candidly, when Sanders claims on the stump that where voter turnout has been highest, he's done best. That's not remotely true. Indeed, where it's been lowest, he's done best. Almost entirely because of caucuses, which are really the most effective voter suppression method in politics today. And now here's a good visualization of this fact. read more
New York Times: Last month, during a routine review of New Jersey's finances, one could sense the alarm. The state's wealthiest resident had reportedly "shifted his personal and business domicile to another state," Frank W. Haines III, New Jersey's legislative budget and finance officer, told a State Senate committee. If the news were true, New Jersey would lose so much in tax revenue that "we may be facing an unusual degree of income tax forecast risk," Haines said. The New Jersey resident (unnamed by Haines) is the hedge-fund billionaire David Tepper. In December, Tepper declared himself a resident of Florida after living for over 20 years in New Jersey. He later moved the official headquarters of his hedge fund, Appaloosa Management, to Miami.
A deadline passed at midnight Tuesday for Mississippi officials to appeal a federal court ruling that found the state's law banning adoption by same-sex couples was unconstitutional. By failing to continue defending the law, it is effectively dead. "Mississippi was the last state in the nation that prohibited adoption by gay couples, so in all 50 states, gay couples are allowed to adopt kids, as it should be," said Roberta Kaplan, lead lawyer in the case. "As far as the state is concerned, gay couples and their kids can't be treated differently than anyone else."
This past weekend the elite tech-centric festival Further Future took place on 49 acres of Native American land outside of Las Vegas. Like the infamous Burning Man festival, it attracts leader in the technology industry. But while Burning Man goers pride themselves on roughing it, Further Future attendees sleep in luxury trailers or luxury domes with wooden floors. Many opt for "entourage concierge" which gives you a lifestyle manager and assistant who promises that no request is ever unattainable. "This is a high percentage of San Francisco entrepreneurs, and they tend to be winners. It's a curated, self-selected group of adults who have jobs," Alphabet executive chairman Eric Schmidt said. "You can tell by the percentage of trailers." The Guardian's Nellie Bowles reports on the event and her sticker shock after paying $7 for half a mango. read more
U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter said Tuesday that an American service member had been killed in Iraq, as the U.S. military stepped up its role helping Christian and Kurdish militias battling ISIS near the terror group's stronghold in Mosul. "It is a combat death, of course. And a very sad loss," Carter said in Stuttgart, Germany, where he was meeting NATO allies. The U.S. military's latest casualty in Iraq came "in the neighborhood of Erbil," the capital of Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region, according to Carter. read more
Stephanie Coontz: Nostalgia is never random. We cherry-pick the past, highlighting what we like and leaving out the things we don't, even if they were closely intertwined. So when [Donald] Trump says let's "make America great again" and [Hillary] Clinton says let's make it "whole again," they neglect to mention how much the prosperity of the postwar era depended on a system of regulation and taxation that neither of them shows any inclination to reinstate. In that era, fully 30% of the workforce was unionized, compared with 11% today. Public spending on transportation and water infrastructure was three times higher than today. The airline, trucking, rail and banking industries were tightly regulated. Corporate taxes were twice as high in relation to national income, with top-earning individuals facing much higher tax rates than today. read more
The Army's top general told cadets at an ROTC celebration that they must be prepared to fight "little green men," setting off a buzz among UFO enthusiasts. But the Army Times reports that the extraterrestrial-sounding phrase refers to foreign troops or paramilitary forces who dress in green attire instead of traditional military gear. "You'll be dealing with terrorists, you'll be dealing with hybrid armies, you'll be dealing with little green men, you'll be dealing with tribes, you're going to be dealing with it all, and you're going to be dealing with it simultaneously," Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said in an April 21 speech to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the ROTC program at Norwich University. The comments cause a stir on websites that traffic in alien speculation such as Ground Zero. According to one YouTube site: "His words are meant to prepare those man for what is coming next ... and you will not believe what he said ... trust me!" read more
In one of the most improbable championships in sport, a 5,000-to-1 underdog has won the English Premier League in soccer. Leiceister City won the title Monday night when Tottenham drew 2-2 at Chelsea, making it impossible for them to catch Leicester City with two games to play. The victory costs bookmakers an estimated $14 million. Anyone who bet £100 pounds won £500,000 ($730,000).
While Donald Trump's campaign rhetoric on China grows more incendiary, a column in China Daily may shed some light on how China's government views Trump's rise in the GOP race. "What is at stake?" asks China Daily columnist Mike Bastin. "Is it Trump's often nonsensical and barmy rhetorical rants? Or, is it yet again the phony, money-centric system of democracy that defines the United States? The answer is the latter." The column describes Trump as a symbol of the inequality in America. "The presidential race, and Trump's presence in particular, also highlights the gross unfairness of wealth distribution across the U.S. ... Trump relies on one thing and one thing only: financial fortune (most of which was inherited from his late father). Not that Trump is the only one. All the presidential front-runners rely on huge amounts of money without which any hopes of power would be a pipe dream." read more