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Good evening. Here’s the latest.
1. The White House is welcoming about 300 guests, including convicted felons, for a “First Step Act Celebration.”
The party pushes public focus to the rare piece of bipartisan legislation President Trump had passed last year, an overhaul of criminal justice.
Advocates for the program said they were hoping that officials would publicly address questions about funding. The law passed in December asked for $75 million a year for five years, but Mr. Trump’s budget gives it only $14 million for 2019.
We also looked at how the Trump era is shaping the next generation of voters.
2. Trump administration security clearances are under new scrutiny.
A memo released by the Democratic staff of the House Oversight Committee revealed the account of a whistle-blower working inside the White House: that senior Trump administration officials had granted security clearances to at least 25 individuals, including two current senior White House officials, whose applications had been denied by career employees.
No names were divulged, but The Times reported in February that President Trump had personally ordered his chief of staff to grant a clearance last year to his son-in-law and adviser, Jared Kushner, pictured above with Ivanka Trump at the Munich Security Conference that month.
3. The National Rifle Association is urging Congress not to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, a 1994 law that assists victims of domestic and sexual violence. The House is set to vote on a renewal this week.
The gun lobby’s objection: a new provision that closes the so-called boyfriend loophole that it sees as too broad. It would block gun purchases and gun ownership for those convicted of abusing, assaulting or stalking a dating partner, or those subject to a court restraining order.
The N.R.A. faces significant obstacles, including a wave of freshman Democrats who favor gun restrictions and an accumulation of data underscoring the dangers women face from intimate partners.
Separately, research shows that in shooting deaths, the size of the bullet matters.
4. Looking at U.S. elections:
Chicago is on the eve of a momentous day. The two candidates in the mayoral runoff are Lori Lightfoot and Toni Preckwinkle. Whoever wins, the city will become the largest in the U.S. to elect an African-American woman as its mayor.
Pete Buttigieg, 37, the mayor of South Bend, Ind., announced that his campaign had raised more than $7 million in the first quarter of 2019 — a haul that probably puts him in the upper half of the sprawling 2020 Democratic primary race.
And former Vice President Joe Biden is on defense over his close physical interactions with women over the years. Read our profile of Lucy Flores, a former Nevada state assemblywoman who said Mr. Biden had unnerved her by kissing her on the head during a campaign rally in 2014.
5. Internationally, there were surprises all over.
In Turkey, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, for the first time in his long and increasingly authoritarian tenure, appears to be suffering major defeats. Vote counts have his party’s candidates losing in Sunday’s mayoral races in Turkey’s political center, Ankara, and its business center and biggest city, Istanbul — a political earthquake.
In Ukraine, a television comic trounced the political elite in the first round of the presidential election. Volodymyr Zelensky, famous for playing a schoolteacher accidentally vaulted into the presidency, will face the second-place finisher — as of now, the incumbent, Petro Poroshenko — on April 21.
And in Algeria, the ailing president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, agreed to step down after 20 years in power, yielding to weeks of mass demonstrations demanding his ouster.
6. Brexit again? Yes.
British lawmakers failed in yet another attempt to come up with an alternative to Prime Minister Theresa May’s plan. It was a dispiriting process all around. Above, Mrs. May listened as the so-called Brexit minister, Stephen Barclay, addressed lawmakers.
Whether there’s any way to keep Britain from simply crashing out of the European Union on April 12 is not clear.
But for the business world, Brexit has effectively already happened. Global banks and other financial services companies have been shifting thousands of jobs and more than $1 trillion in assets to European cities, and Japanese automakers have scrapped plans to expand in Britain.
7. In other business news:
Burger King is looking beyond beef. With the Impossible Whopper, the chain is bringing a plant-based patty pioneered by a start-up right into the mainstream.
And (we’re putting this second because it’s more fun to look at a photo of a hamburger) Saudi Aramco, the kingdom’s oil giant, revealed itself to be probably the world’s most profitable company — by far. Its books show that it generated $111.1 billion last year, far more than Apple or Amazon.
The transparency is part of Aramco’s move to borrow billions of dollars toward the purchase of a Saudi petrochemical company from the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund. The fund’s chairman is Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
8. The Los Angeles neighborhood of Crenshaw poured out its heart after its champion, Nipsey Hussle, was killed in a shooting on Sunday outside his clothing store.
So did the celebrities and politicians who admired the rapper and activist, a Los Angeles fixture since the mid-2000s.
“You were a real one to your people and to the rest of us,” Drake wrote on Instagram. “I’m only doing this here cause I want the world to know I saw you as a man of respect and a don.”
The authorities have not identified a suspect or motive in the shooting, which injured two others.
9. The N.C.A.A. women’s Final Four was set tonight. Baylor cruised past Iowa, 85-53, above, for the chance to play Oregon, and Notre Dame easily handled Stanford, 84-68, for a shot at Connecticut.
And there’s a real possibility of a sizzling finale in the men’s Final Four next weekend, when it’s Auburn vs. Virginia and Texas Tech vs. Michigan State.
10. Finally, The Times doesn’t do April Fools’ jokes.
But we collected some of our favorite literary hoaxes, including “Naked Came the Stranger” (1969), which proved just how blindly people read tales involving explicit sex.
And we culled 15 of the strangest stories that ever appeared in our pages, including a preponderance of dutifully reported but head-spinning stories from long ago about ghosts, poltergeists and sea serpents.
Have a whimsical evening.
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