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EU Knockout Forces Macron's Hand

Your unbiased daily news brief

Good morning and happy Monday. In case you missed it: A contestant on The Price is Right delivered a near-perfect bid at the end of Friday's episode to secure a rare double win in the game show's famed Showcase Showdown. Have a great day!

In Today’s Brief

  • Alex Jones: Liquidation request

  • South Korea: Anti-North Korea broadcasts

  • Trump: Probation officer interview

  • Apple: All eyes on AI

  • Dick Van Dyke: Makes history

... and more

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Top Tips

1) French toasted

President Emmanuel Macron has dissolved France's parliament after his party was routed in the European Union election.

  • Big setback: Exit polls indicate the far-right National Rally party dominated France's EU parliamentary contest. RN is expected to finish with over 30% of the country's EU vote, doubling the share of Macron's Renaissance party. The results led RN President Jordan Bardella to demand a snap election.

  • The response: To the surprise of many, Macron heeded Bardella's call and dissolved the National Assembly. France will now hold parliamentary elections on June 30 and July 7, just two years after the 2022 elections (France typically forms a new parliament every five years). "I have decided to give you back the choice of your parliamentary future by voting," Macron said in a national address.

  • Big picture: Macron's decision does not jeopardize his office -- his term runs through 2027 -- but it could eventually render him effectively powerless. Governing has been difficult since Renaissance lost its parliamentary majority in 2022; it could become impossible if RN gains control of the National Assembly. France is now ground zero for the projected rise of center- and far-right parties in the EU Parliament.

2) Road block

critical highway in Wyoming has collapsed.

  • What happened: A section of the Teton Pass road is completely gone and other parts suffered significant damage after a massive landslide on Saturday. No casualties were reported; the road had been closed since Thursday after officials determined danger was imminent. The road began to crack on Friday.

  • The impact: Detours are adding at least an additional hour of travel time on the highway, which connects Jackson, a popular tourism destination, to communities across the state line in Idaho as well as Grand Teton National Park. The Teton Pass is critical for commuters and tourism as well as commerce and medical services.

  • Big picture: Wyoming's Department of Transportation has concluded the fallen portion of the road "catastrophically failed." There is no indication how long it will take to repair the road; officials are still assessing the damage and forming plans. 

3) Gantz out

Israel's coalition government saw a significant exit a day after four hostages were rescued in a Gaza raid.

  • Yesterday's news: Benny Gantz, a centrist politician, followed through on his threat to resign from Israel's government and leave Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's war cabinet. "Netanyahu is preventing us from progressing towards a true victory," he said, calling for the prime minister to set a date for fresh elections despite Netanyahu's appeal for him to stay aboard.

  • On Saturday: Israeli Defense Forces carried out an operation at a Gaza camp, rescuing four hostages held by Hamas in two locations. All four had been kidnapped at the Nova musical festival when the war began with Hamas' Oct. 7 attack last year. There are 116 hostages still believed to be in the enclave. Gaza officials said over 200 Palestinians were killedand over 400 injured in the operation; Hamas also claimed several hostages were killed. The IDF said it had no proof of the latter charge.

  • Big picture: Gantz's resignation is a political blow to Netanyahu; while Netanyahu's coalition maintains a majority in the Knesset, Israel's parliament, the departure of Gantz and his National Unity members weakens the prime minister's standing. Gantz is the top threat to unseat Netanyahu as PM whenever Israel next holds an election. In the meantime, controversial far-right politician Itamar Ben-Gvir is now demanding Gantz's spot in the war cabinet.

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Quick Tips

U.S. News

  • Infowars host Alex Jones asked a federal judge to convert his bankruptcy into a Chapter 7 liquidation. The move would force the conspiracy theorist to sell his assets; he faces $1.5B in penalties from defamation lawsuits brought by the parents of victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre (More)

  • Former NASA astronaut William Anders died at 90 in a plane crash in Washington state. He took the iconic "Earthrise" photo during the Apollo 8 mission and was one of the first three people to orbit the moon; Anders later served as the Ambassador to Norway (More)

  • No criminal charges will be filed following a probe into Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders' office. Legislators in the state called for an audit into a $19K lectern purchase; a prosecutor found there was no evidence to prove a crime (More)

World News

  • South Korea will resume anti-North Korea loudspeaker broadcasts in border areas. The move is retaliation after Kim Jong Un's regime floated garbage-filled balloons over the DMZ; the countries previously exchanged fire with no casualties over the broadcasts (More)

  • Sudan could soon have over 10M internally displaced people, according to the United Nations. Civil war has engulfed the country for over a year; an additional 2M people have fled into neighboring countries (More)

  • Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen is "shaken" but otherwise OK after being attacked in public. A Polish man was arrested for hitting her in a Copenhagen square; officials do not believe the incident was politically motivated (More)

Campaign News

  • Former President Donald Trump will be interviewed by a probation officer today following his hush money trial conviction. The interview will be virtual; it is part of the pre-sentencing report that could determine whether Trump faces jail time (More)

  • President Joe Biden's allies have launched a super PAC to attract young voters. Won't PAC Down is expected to spend up to $25M before Election Day and has hired Hollywood talent to create pro-Biden content (More)

  • Tennessee Sen. Bill Hagerty has emerged as a contender to be Trump's running mate. The lawmaker previously served as Ambassador to Japan under the former president and has attended recent campaign fundraisers (More)

Business & Markets

  • Major indexes closed down on Friday. A strong May jobs report was another signal Federal Reserve interest rate cuts will likely remain on hold (Dow -0.22%, Nasdaq -0.23%, S&P 500 -0.11%).

  • Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference starts today. CEO Tim Cook will deliver a keynote address; the tech giant is expected to launch generative artificial intelligence offerings at the event (More)

  • Kia has recalled over 460K cars due to fire risk. Telluride SUVs made in 2020-24 may have their front power seat motor overheat due to a defect; owners are instructed to park the vehicles outdoors and away from structures until the hazard is addressed (More)

Entertainment & Sports

  • Dick Van Dyke became the oldest Daytime Emmy Award winner at 98 for his Days of Our Lives guest performance. General Hospital led all programs with four awards and was named Outstanding Daytime Drama Series (More)

  • Iga Swiatek beat Jasmine Paolini in straight sets to win the French Open women's title for the fourth time. It is her fifth major tennis tournament crown; Carlos Alcaraz defeated Alexander Zverev in five sets to win the men's singles championship (More)

  • The White House will hold a Juneteenth concert today on the South Lawn. Patti LaBelle and Gladys Knight are among the scheduled musical acts; the U.S. Marine Band will also perform (More)

Quick Hitters

  • Fun Stuff: Idaho had a beaver problem when people began building homes in new parts of the state after World War II. The solution? Drop them elsewhere via parachute.

  • Stay Cool: Summer is here, and so too is the heat. Ensure you avoid the missteps that can lead to heat stroke and dangerous situations.

  • Take Note: There are over 300 winegrowing areas across over 30 U.S. states. Here are the top wine regions in the country to consider for a visit.

  • Chow Down: Once you have a good bottle of wine, you may want to pear it with a nice steak. Here are some key tips to know as grilling season begins.

  • Life Hack: Back to the sun. Protect your skin by knowing everything there is to know about properly applying and using sunscreen.

  • 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 …

Formula 1 race cars will see a significant overhaul starting in 2026. New technology will make them safer, smaller andmore sustainable, among other changes.

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