Quote of the day.
"What is the Republican leadership afraid of? Are they afraid a bipartisan majority of this House will vote to follow the will of the American people and change our Afghanistan policy?" - Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA), after the House Rules Committee refused to allow a floor vote on an amendment he co-sponsored with Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) for a faster withdrawal of troops.
1. First big NATO protest rolls out Friday.
The first major demonstration of the NATO summit weekend descends on Daley Plaza today, promising to gather thousands of people protesting government economic policies they believe benefit wealthy corporate interests at the expense of working people around the planet.
2. Evidence released in Trayvon Martin death.
The cache of forensic evidence, autopsy reports, documents, audio tapes and police reports also paints a murky portrait of a fight between two people that left a teenager dead, a man facing life in prison, and a community shaken.
(Miami Herald/McClatchy Newspapers)
3. Alabama governor urges changes to latest immigration law.
Gov. Robert Bentley of Alabama called a special legislative session on Thursday and urged lawmakers to consider changes to the state’s far-reaching immigration enforcement law, less than a day after legislators voted to keep most of that law intact.
(New York Times)
4. Early political spats suggest nothing off-limits.
The early border skirmishes of Campaign 2012 are reviving questions about one candidate''s former pastor and shining a spotlight on the other's high school hijinks.
5. Obama hopes summit meetings can quiet overseas questions.
Eager to avoid any setbacks that would distract the president’s attention from the U.S. economy in an election year, the Obama administration hopes to use a pair of summits with foreign leaders this weekend to develop some consensus around an international response to both the European debt crisis and the war in Afghanistan.
6. Obama to announce Africa farm plan to relieve poverty.
President Barack Obama will announce an alliance Friday with nearly 50 companies to boost productivity among small farmers in Africa with the goal of lifting 50 million people out of poverty.
7. Obama will meet with NATO to ponder Afghanistan’s future.
Among the issues still to be decided: how fast to pull out U.S. and allied combat forces, how many troops of any kind to leave behind and who’ll pay the Afghan security forces after 2014.
8. Southern Europe fears summer of violence.
Authorities are warning that rage could tip over into serious unrest and are concerned at the knock-on effect on tourism.
9. U.S. envoy to Israel says nation is ready on Iran.
The American ambassador to Israel said this week that not only was America willing to use military force to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons, but that preparations had already been made for a possible attack.
(New York Times)
10. U.S. firms eye Myanmar, sanctions suspended.
The suspension of U.S. sanctions barring investment in Myanmar in response to political reforms in the poor southeast Asian state gives a green light to U.S. firms queuing to scout for business in one of the last frontier markets.