Quote of the day.
“It’s some change in a Senate committed to no change. So that’s important.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on a Senate agreement to make small changes in filibuster rules.
(New York Times)
1. White House working around Capitol Hill on gun measures.
The White House has decided to circumvent Capitol Hill as it concentrates its gun-control efforts on speeches and other public appearances by President Obama and Vice President Biden outside of Washington, according to officials with knowledge of the plans.
2. Kerry calls for a less militaristic foreign policy.
Sen. John F. Kerry pledged Thursday that as secretary of State he would de-emphasize the military role "thrust upon us" by Sept. 11, saying "we cannot afford a diplomacy that is defined by troops or drones or confrontation."
(Los Angeles Times)
3. S.E.C. pick is ex-prosecutor, in signal to Wall Street.
The White House delivered a strong message to Wall Street on Thursday, taking the unusual step of choosing two former prosecutors as top financial regulators.
(New York Times)
4. John McCain in immigration spotlight.
After Latino voters ditched Romney and the Republican Party at the polls in November, and with President Barack Obama and Democrats pushing immigration reform, McCain is one of a bipartisan group of eight senators talking behind closed doors on an immigration deal that could give the nation’s 11 million illegal immigrants more leeway than many conservative hard-liners are ready to accept.
5. Pentagon to move ‘expeditiously’ to lift ban on women in combat roles.
The Pentagon will move “expeditiously” to integrate women into the military’s combat units, Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta vowed Thursday, arguing that the inclusion of female troops would make the country and its fighting force stronger.
6. American adoptions from abroad at their lowest level in years.
The number of foreign children adopted by Americans has plunged to its lowest level in more than a decade as some countries have cut back on adoptions to the United States and others have struggled to meet stricter standards intended to combat corruption and child trafficking, government officials said Thursday.
(New York Times)
7. Rallies mark anniversary of Egypt uprising.
Egyptians have returned to the streets to mark the second anniversary of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak, the former president. Hundreds took to the capital''s now iconic Tahrir Square on Friday morning, where youths protesting against the government clashed with Cairo police.
8. North Korea threatens to attack South Korea.
North Korea has threatened to attack South Korea if Seoul joins a new round of tightened U.N. sanctions, as Washington unveils more of its own economic restrictions following Pyongyang''s rocket launch last month.
9. French-backed Mali forces push towards rebel-held Gao.
French-backed government forces advanced into northern Mali on Friday towards the Islamist rebel stronghold of Gao, recapturing the town of Hombori, as they followed up on relentless French air strikes against the rebels.
10. Canada faces ‘moment of reckoning.’
Canadians are facing a moment of reckoning with the end of hunger strikes by two First Nations figureheads and a renewed sense of empowerment among the country’s aboriginal peoples, the head of the Assembly of First Nations said Thursday.