Not much big happening outside of Ukraine, but here goes:
- UN declares Crimea vote illegal (BBC) — Likely response from Putin: “Illegal, schmillegal.” The vote was nonbinding, and backed up by essentially nothing. But still, the UN took a stand, which is something.
- Congress Backs New Sanctions, Kiev Aid (WSJ) — The U.S. provides $1 billion in loan guarantees, while the IMF ponies up $14-18 billion.
- Health-care enrollment hits goal of 6 million (WashPost) — That’s the adjusted goal, mind you. But it hardly fits the GOP narrative of a total, bungled failure, does it?
- Obama meets pope on Vatican visit (The Guardian) — As far as I know, Russell Crowe’s new movie about Noah was not discussed. POTUS kept gushing, “It’s wonderful meeting you. It’s wonderful meeting you,” Obama began. “Thank you so much for receiving me.” Further proof of what a rock star this pope is.
- McMaster files for lieutenant governor (thestate.com) — Four years ago, he was the presumptive front-runner for governor — before scandal sympathy and the Tea Party boosted Nikki Haley past him. Can we go ahead and call him the front-runner for Gov Lite? I think so. In any case, if the governor doesn’t back him, she knows not what loyalty is. He’s been a good soldier for her ever since his crushing defeat at her hands.
- Obama formally outlines NSA reform (The Guardian) — Using the word “reform” loosely, of course. I read the explanation, and remain confused as to what POTUS wants to do now. What is described in this story doesn’t sound terribly useful, but perhaps I’m reading it wrong. By the way, in my quick overview of news sites, only The Guardian was giving this significant play.