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1/ The White House warned that the country is at “serious risk” of a nationwide ban on abortion after Mitch McConnell called such a ban “possible” if the leaked Supreme Court opinion overturning Roe v. Wade became final and Republicans gain control in Washington. McConnell suggested that if the draft represented the final ruling, lawmakers “not only at the state level but at the federal level” could codify abortion bans. Chuck Schumer, meanwhile, moved to advance a bill that would codify access to abortion into federal law. The effort, however, seems destined to fail because Democrats would need at least 60 votes to overcome a Republican filibuster. (NPR / USA Today / New York Times / ABC News / Washington Post)
2/ Justice Clarence Thomas – whose wife sent 21 text messages to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows imploring him to take steps to overturn the 2020 election – said he’s worried about declining respect for the Supreme Court. Thomas said the judiciary is threatened if people are unwilling to “live with outcomes we don’t agree with.” He then referred to reproductive-rights protests stemming from the leaked draft Supreme Court opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade as “unfortunate events” and “bodes ill for a free society.” Thomas added that the Supreme Court can’t be “bullied into giving you just the outcomes you want.” (Washington Post / NPR)
3/ Biden signed a bipartisan measure to streamline the process of supplying Ukraine with the military equipment to fight off Russia’s invasion. The measure, updates the World War II-era “lend-lease” program used to help U.S. allies defeat Nazi Germany, will cut some red tape but doesn’t include additional funding. Separately, Biden has asked Congress for $33 billion in aid to Ukraine. Putin, meanwhile, hailed his country’s army for “fighting for the Motherland.” (Associated Press / Washington Post / Bloomberg / New York Times)
4/ Biden announced that 20 internet companies agreed to provide discounted high-speed service to low-income consumers. Under the Affordable Connectivity Program, an estimated 48 million Americans would qualify for high-speed internet plans that cost no more than $30 a month (or $75 a month on Tribal lands). (NPR / ABC News / Associated Press)
5/ U.S. stock indexes fell to a 13-month low amid high inflation, rising interest rates, and concerns about the Federal Reserve’s ability to avoid a recession. Economists estimate that there’s a 28% probability of a recession sometime in the next 12 months – up from 18% in January. The U.S. economy, meanwhile, added 428,000 jobs and the unemployment rate remained at 3.6%. (New York Times / Wall Street Journal / Bloomberg / NBC News)
poll/ 66% of Americans say Roe v. Wade should not be completely struck down. 59% said they would support legislation to establish a nationwide right to abortion, including 81% of Democrats, 65% of independents, and 30% of Republicans. (CNN)
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