Biden-Bibi Feud Escalates

Your unbiased daily news brief

Good morning and happy Tuesday. Canada's maple syrup reserve -- yes, it is a real thing -- has hit a 16-year low with just 7M pounds on hand (it was 103M in 2020). Climate change and poor harvests are to blame, among other issues. But officials say there is no threat to supplies and production is already bouncing back. Have a great day!

In Today’s Brief

  • Puerto Rico: Dengue epidemic

  • South Korea: Doctor strike grows

  • RFK Jr. VP decision today

  • Boeing: CEO to step down

  • Sean Combs: Feds raid homes

... and more

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Top Tips

1) Resolution retribution

The strained relationship between President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has frayed further.

  • What happened: The United Nations Security Council passed a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza after the U.S. abstained. Israel then canceled a planned delegation trip to Washington, surprising the White House.

  • The context: The U.S. has continually urged Israel against launching a ground offensive in Rafah, where over 1M Palestinians are sheltering. Israel insists it must enter the city to destroy Hamas' last stronghold. The disagreement has sparked a growing rift, with the UN resolution the latest flashpoint.

  • Big picture: The White House said its support for Israel has not changed and accused Netanyahu of creating the perception of disconnect. The resolution is non-binding and only calls for a halt to fighting during Ramadan, which ends April 9. It also calls for all hostages to be released.

2) Post-Dobbs

Self-managed abortions surged after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

  • New study: Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin and elsewhere found 28K more abortion pills were provided in the six months after Dobbs v. Jackson returned abortion laws to the states. The study found the self-managed cases largely offset decreases in abortions through the health care system.

  • More details: A self-managed abortion is when medication is used to terminate a pregnancy without the assistance of a doctor or nurse. Patients can source the pills themselves, allowing patients in states with abortion bans to still have access.

  • Big picture: The Supreme Court will hear arguments today in a case that could curtail access to abortion pills nationwide. At issue is whether actions taken by the FDA to make a commonly-used drug more accessible violated the law; the justices also have to determine if states have standing in the case.

3) Trump card

Former President Donald Trump got some much-needed legal relief.

  • What happened: A New York appeals court reduced Trump's required bond to challenge his civil business fraud verdict. Trump needs to put up $175M in the next 10 days for his appeal to proceed instead of close to $500M.

  • Timely ruling: The bond was cut hours before Trump faced a deadline to pay the original bond or risk having assets seized by New York Attorney General Leticia James. Trump said he could not come up with the initial $450M fine, but can handle the updated bond with cash on hand. 

  • Big picture: Trump no longer has to worry about his in-state real estate holdings being seized. And the reduced check, coupled with his anticipated $3B windfall when his social media app goes public today, means he will have more funds for his presidential campaign. That said, Trump also suffered a setback yesterday when his New York state hush money trial was scheduled for April 15.

Quick Tips

U.S. News

  • Puerto Rico has declared a dengue epidemic. The U.S. territory has seen almost half of last year's cases of the mosquito-borne virus already this year; the majority have been in the capital city of San Juan (More

  • Close to 60% of Americans never or rarely attend church services, according to a new Gallup survey. Members of the Mormon Church are most observant, with about 67% attending regularly (More)

  • The U.S. and UK sanctioned a Chinese company and two individuals for alleged hacking activities. The hackers are accused of cyber-espionage in both countries; the activities were traced back to the Chinese government (More)

World News

  • Medical professors in South Korea will cut their practice hours to support the country's ongoing doctor strike. Trainee doctors have been picketing for over a month to protest a government plan to boost medical school admissions, impacting services at hospitals (More)

  • Opposition candidate Bassirou Diomaye Faye appears to have won Senegal's presidential election. Faye's top opponent has conceded; Faye, 44, will be Africa's youngest elected head of state (More)

  • The UK High Court will decide whether Wikileaks founder Julian Assange can appeal his extradition today. If Assange loses, he may finally be sent to the U.S. to face espionage charges (More)

Campaign News

  • Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is expected to announce his vice presidential pick today. Donor and lawyer Nicole Shanahan is believed to be a top contender (More)

  • Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin endorsed Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks for the state's Democratic Senate nomination. The seat has become competitive with former Republican Gov. Larry Hogan in the race (More)

  • An Ohio man who admitted making death threats tied to election denialism was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison. Joshua Russell left menacing voicemails for Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs in 2020 (More)

Business & Markets

  • Major indexes closed down yesterday. The Dow Jones was down over 150 points (Dow -0.41%, Nasdaq -0.27%, S&P 500 -0.31%).

  • Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun will step down at the end of the year. His exit is part of a wide-ranging management shakeup at the embattled aerospace company amid a run of high-profile safety incidents (More)

  • Chick-fil-A is changing its policy of only serving antibiotic-free chicken. The fast food chain will begin using chicken containing antibiotics that are not important to human medicine later this year due to supply chain issues (More)

Entertainment & Sports

  • Federal agents raided Sean "Diddy" Combs' Los Angeles and Miami homes. The rapper and producer is under investigation for sex trafficking; the warrants were out of Manhattan federal court (More)

  • Shohei Ohtani said he has never bet on sports and alleged his former interpreter stole money to pay illegal gambling debts. The Los Angeles Dodgers star read a statement to reporters but did not take questions (More)

  • The final three Euro 2024 qualifiers will be determined today. The winners of the Wales-Poland, Ukraine-Iceland and Georgia-Greece matches will advance to the continental men’s soccer tournament (More)

Quick Hitters

  • Funny Stuff: A baby's family tried to sing to him at his first birthday party. And Teddy was just not having it.

  • Be Safe: Chrysler has recalled about 335K vehicles across multiple models. The cars all have various airbag-related defects.

  • Go Deep: Elon Musk wants make X an everything app like WeChat in China. But early indications suggest he will have a hard time achieving that goal.

  • New Hobby: Looking for a new pastime that can also be relaxing? Here is everything you need to know about planning your first fishing trip.

  • Throw Back: Instant cameras are becoming trendy again. Here's how you can find film to fire up your old Polaroid machine.

  • OPTIMIZE ME: Researchers “found convincing evidence that higher intake of ultra-processed foods was associated with 50% increased risk of cardiovascular disease-related death, a 48% to 53% higher risk of anxiety and common mental disorders, and a 12% greater risk of type 2 diabetes”

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Looking Ahead …

President Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida are expected to agree to a joint military command headquarters in Japan during a White House summit next month. The proposed changes would be the most significant to the alliance in decades.

Question of the Day

Do you prefer maple syrup to other syrups?

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Yesterday's results:

What is your preferred way to get drinking water?

  • I filter my tap water (61%)

  • Straight from the tap (16%)

  • Bottled water (16%)

  • Other (7%)