Wednesday Top News Executive Summary
Netanyahu perseveres, border crossings surge, Mueller-report countdown, FBI conduct, Medicare scam, and more.
NETANYAHU PERSEVERES: “Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to be headed toward a historic fifth term as Israel’s prime minister on Wednesday, with close-to-complete unofficial election results giving his right-wing Likud and other nationalist and religious parties a solid majority in parliament. The outcome affirmed Israel’s continued tilt to the right and further dimmed hopes of a negotiated solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Re-election will also give Netanyahu an important boost as he braces for the likelihood of criminal charges in a series of corruption scandals.” (Fox News)
BORDER CROSSINGS EXPECTEDLY SURGE: “U.S. officials encountered more than 103,000 undocumented immigrants crossing the country’s southwest border in March, Homeland Security officials said Tuesday,” reports NBC News. “The number makes last month a record for March for border crossings since 2007, when more than 115,000 immigrants were stopped at the border. The officials said crossings by families were at record highs. More than 53,000 people traveling as part of families were apprehended, up from just more than 36,000 in February.” Meanwhile, according to the Washington Examiner, “A northern Texas sheriff says his county has seen a big uptick in methamphetamine and heroin seizures since October, saying Mexican drug smugglers are using large groups of migrants to divert Border Patrol’s attention while they run narcotics over the border in nearby areas.”
DHS DEPUTY OUT: According to The Hill, “Claire Grady, acting deputy secretary at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), offered President Trump her resignation Tuesday,” which “comes after DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen announced Sunday she was leaving her post.” As critics of unconfirmed appointments have pointed out, the secretary role by law should have been filled by Grady unless her employment was terminated. Trump evidently got the memo, and Grady was invited to leave.
MUELLER-REPORT COUNTDOWN: “The long-awaited report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller should be released ‘within a week,’ according to Attorney General William Barr. Barr … said that the process to redact sensitive and classified information was going ‘very well,’ and he would be able to release the report according to the schedule he had previously suggested.” (The Daily Wire)
FBI UNDER THE MICROSCOPE: “Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday he is ‘reviewing the conduct’ of the FBI’s initial investigation into the Trump campaign in the summer of 2016. During a House Appropriations panel hearing, Barr also said he is open to reviewing criminal referrals from House Intelligence Committee ranking member Devin Nunes, R-Calif., targeting eight people tied to the origins of the Trump-Russia investigation.” (Washington Examiner)
MEDICARE SCAM: “The Justice Department announced charges on Tuesday against 24 individuals allegedly involved in a $1.2 billion Medicare scam. … All told, 130 medical-equipment companies involved in the scheme are said to have charged Medicare $1.7 billion, of which $900 million was paid out.” (National Review)
ANNALS OF SOCIALIZED HEALTH CARE: “Thousands of elderly people in Britain are left to go blind because of rationing of eye surgery in the National Health Service (NHS)… A survey by the Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCO) found tens of thousands of elderly people are left struggling to see because of an NHS cost-cutting drive that relies on them dying before they can qualify for cataract surgery. The survey has found that the NHS has ignored instructions to end cataract treatment rationing in defiance of official guidance two years ago.” (The Straits Times)
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION TAKES A HIT: “Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center has agreed to stop using race when considering applicants to its medical school, bowing to pressure as the Trump administration campaigns to curtail the use of affirmative action in education. The action is the first of its kind under Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and signals the approach her agency plans to take with other schools. … Last year, DeVos revoked Obama-era guidance that offered schools a road map on how they could legally consider race in the interest of promoting diversity.” (The Washington Post)
ANTI-VACCINATION FALLOUT: “A measles outbreak in Brooklyn, primarily among Orthodox Jewish children, prompted New York City on Tuesday to declare a public health emergency, requiring unvaccinated people in the affected areas to get the vaccine or face fines,” Reuters reports. “The Brooklyn outbreak has been traced to an unvaccinated child who became infected on a visit to Israel, which is also grappling with an outbreak, according to New York City’s Department of Health.” Unfortunately, the erroneous anti-vaccination campaign is a two-edged sword. It spreads diseases while also creating a vacuum for statists to fill with mandates.
NEW ZEALAND FIREARMS CRACKDOWN: “Lawmakers in New Zealand voted almost unanimously on Wednesday to change gun laws, less than a month after its worst peacetime mass shooting, in which 50 people were killed in attacks on two mosques in Christchurch. … The new curbs bar the circulation and use of most semi-automatic firearms, parts that convert firearms into semi-automatic firearms, magazines over a certain capacity, and some shotguns. … The bill grants an amnesty until Sept. 30 for people to surrender prohibited items.” (Reuters)
HUMOR: Nation’s progressives issue friendly reminder that if you don’t agree with them on everything, they will destroy you (The Babylon Bee)
POLICY: Top 10 anti-vaccine falsehoods and the truth about each (The Federalist)
POLICY: National School Lunch Program has morphed into massive, wasteful entitlement program (The Daily Signal)
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.