The Presidential Daily Brief

Important

  1. House Democrats Impeach Trump

    In a solidly partisan vote, with all Republicans opposing, the House of Representatives passed two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump yesterday. The charge of abuse of power passed 230-197, opposed by two Democrats, while the charge of obstruction of Congress passed 229-198. Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said there was "incontrovertible evidence" that Trump pressured Ukraine to smear a political rival. "The danger persists," Schiff said. "Our democracy is at peril."

    What now? At next month's Senate trial, where the president is sure to be acquitted, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts will preside, likely cementing his legacy, OZY columnist Susan Del Percio writes.

  2. India Suspends Mobile Networks Amid Citizenship Law Protests

    Demonstrators in cities across India are defying bans on public assembly to protest last week's citizenship law that's seen as anti-Muslim. Eminent historian Ramachandra Guha and left-wing politicians were among the thousands of activists detained in New Delhi and Bengaluru. Besides banning public gatherings, authorities have suspended mobile phone networks and limited transportation to curb the protests, which killed six people last week.

    Are there other signs of trouble? Yes. Pakistan notified the U.N. that India has set up missile launchers in disputed Kashmir — calling it a prelude to an attack.

  3. health care flag and stethoscope shutterstock 601099952

    Obamacare's Individual Mandate Ruled Unconstitutional

    The Affordable Care Act received what might be a death blow yesterday. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that its individual mandate, which requires all Americans be insured or face a penalty, is unconstitutional. The suit, brought by Republican-led states, argued that without a penalty — which was nullified by Congress in 2017 — the act is unlawful under federal taxation rules and loses the basis on which the Supreme Court upheld it in 2012.

    Does that mean Obamacare is finished? The ruling further weakens the law, but California is appealing the case to the Supreme Court.

    OZY sees Chief Justice John Roberts at the center of it all.

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    Philippine Clan Leaders Found Guilty of 57 Murders

    A decade after the Maguindanao massacre on the southern Philippines island of Mindanao, a court found leaders of the powerful Ampatuan political dynasty guilty in the killings. Supporters of rival gubernatorial candidate Esmael Mangudadatu and 32 journalists were ambushed and shot or hacked to death in the country's worst case of election violence. Three brothers at the head of the Ampatuan clan were given life sentences without parole.

    Who else was implicated? There were about 100 accused, most of whom were acquitted today, while more than 40 were convicted. Another 80 suspects remain at large.

    OZY profiles the Filipino-American artist saving an ancient Philippine script.

  5. Also Important...

    The record temperature for Australia was broken again yesterday, hitting a nationwide average high of 107.4 degrees Fahrenheit (41.9 C) as New South Wales declared an emergency amid raging bushfires. A newspaper investigation has found that hedge funds eavesdropped on Bank of England press conferences, helping clients make millions with a few seconds' advantage on trades. And police in San Antonio, Texas, are searching for five suspects who shot up a shopping mall, injuring four.

    #OZYFact: Forensic expert DK Satpathy once performed 815 autopsies in a single night. Read more on OZY.

    How do we look? You may have noticed changes to your news briefing from OZY. The same great summary of headlines from around the globe, with a new, sleeker design. Let us know what you think by replying to this email.

Intriguing

  1. Can Gucci Save Mongolia?

    Luxury shopping is a more stable bet than the boom-and-bust cycles of Mongolia's mining sector. Brands like Rolex, Versace, Burberry and Gucci have set up stores within the past year, while malls are booming. For rich mainland Chinese, it’s a welcome pivot, OZY reports. Hong Kong has been the region's magnet for Western-style consumption sprees, but as the island grows more restive, Mongolia is keen to pick up the slack.

    Is it ready? Seemingly. The government is touting Ulaanbaatar as a glittering destination for Chinese shoppers while offering free Mandarin classes for Mongolian tourism workers.

  2. Shutterstock 1099824407

    Instagram Says It'll Squelch Vape Promotions

    On Wednesday the platform announced that while its rules already prohibited ads for e-cigarettes and tobacco, it will now crack down on paid promotions and influencers' branded posts featuring vaping. The move comes after the British Advertising Standards Authority yesterday banned four vape companies from Instagram for breaching ad rules with promotional posts featuring celebs like singer Lily Allen and actor Rami Malek. Parent company Facebook insists the timing was coincidental.

    What other ads might be next? The company says those for alcohol and diet supplements will also get their own "special restrictions."

    OZY considers whether e-cigarettes are living on borrowed time.

  3. Trump Plan Allows States to Import Drugs From Canada

    The Trump administration proposed a rule Wednesday that would allow states, wholesalers, manufacturers and pharmacies to import prescription medication from Canada. It's a switch for Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who last year called the idea a "gimmick." A pharma industry group described it as a "dangerous importation scheme" that would endanger patients, but President Trump has long pushed for the plan, which is popular with suburban voters.

    What does Canada think? It's unclear if U.S. officials have discussed the proposal with their Canadian counterparts, who have previously warned such a plan could lead to drug shortages north of the border.

  4. Spike Milligan with a knife in his head wielded by Eric Sykes is also being threatened by Kenny Lynch who is wearing a grotesque monster's hand.

    Pioneering Black Entertainer Kenny Lynch Dies at 81

    The British singer and actor, who toured with the Beatles in the 1960s and scored a Top 10 hit with his version of "Up on the Roof," died Wednesday, according to a statement from his daughters. Lynch was also known for variety show appearances and the 1970 comedy Carry On Loving. One of the first Black pop stars to break into the U.K.’s entertainment industry, Lynch "wasn't interested in his 'place' in pop culture," tweeted radio host Danny Baker: "He was there."

    How is he being remembered? Boy George joined scores of celebrities posting condolences, saying Lynch was an "absolutely huge part of my 70s life."

    OZY explores how Black female gamers are claiming their space.


  5. Mesut Ozil Deleted From Chinese Video Games

    Even his avatar isn't welcome. The Arsenal midfielder was removed Wednesday from China's versions of Pro Evolution Soccer 2020 and FIFA Online after he spoke out against the detention of more than 1 million Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang province. Özil also accused Beijing of burning Qurans and forcing Muslim women to marry Chinese men. NetEase, which publishes PES 2020 in China, said the German soccer star had hurt fans' feelings and "violated the sport's spirit of love and peace."

    Has Özil found any support? Not among his peers. Both Arsenal management and fellow Muslim players have distanced themselves from his comments.