The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Brexit Campaigns Suspended as UK Mourns Slain MP

    Britain saw its first assassination of a sitting politician in 26 years yesterday when Labour MP Jo Cox was fatally shot and stabbed in her West Yorkshire constituency. Police have arrested a suspect and are investigating possible mental illness as well as political motivations: Witnesses reported that he shouted “Britain First,” the name of a far-right political party, before killing Cox. Britain has been in the midst of a heated debate over next week’s EU referendum, and both Leave and Remain sides have suspended campaigning out of respect.

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    US Diplomats’ ‘Dissent Cable’ Urges Airstrikes Against Assad

    There’s dissent in the ranks. More than 50 State Department officials involved with policy in Syria have sent a memo asking President Obama to consider using military strikes to force Bashar Assad’s regime to negotiate. While the U.S. has limited its involvement to campaigns against ISIS, the cable warned that unless decisive action is taken to end Syria’s five-year civil war, the humanitarian challenges could become insurmountable. While the number of signatures on this dissent cable is highly unusual, Obama hasn’t shown any signs of changing course.

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    Bernie Sanders Closes Campaign With Not-Quite-Concession

    The tone is changing. In an online speech Thursday night to wrap up his primary season, the Vermont senator said he’ll bring his masses of delegates to the convention in Philadelphia next month, but he no longer talked about defeating Hillary Clinton for the nomination. Instead, he reinforced the need to beat Donald Trump. Sanders’ grassroots appeal surprised the political establishment with its vehemence, and many wonder if the groundswell of progressive support could still transform the Democratic party, steering it further left even under Clinton’s leadership.

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    HSBC Agrees to $1.6 Billion Settlement Over Subprime Loans

    The land of opportunity turned out to be a bust. HSBC, the largest bank in Europe, attempted a U.S. expansion with the acquisition of Household International in 2003 — but it retreated from the market after a series of losses. Now the London-based bank has agreed to the biggest settlement a bank’s ever paid to shareholders, $1.6 billion, in a class-action suit over misleading statements made by Household executives. Lawyers for the plaintiffs say they’re “delighted,” though the settlement still needs to get court approval.

  5. Former Auschwitz Guard Sentenced to Five Years, Meatloaf Collapses During Concert

    94-year-old former guard at Auschwitz Reinhold Hanning sentenced to five years. (BBC)

    Meatloaf collapses on stage during Edmonton, Canada concert. (CBC)

    Doctors Without Borders protests EU migration policy by refusing funds. (BBC)

    EgyptAir flight cockpit voice recorder found, apparently damaged. (CNN)

    Thai police fail to arrest sect leader after devotees block them. (Time)

    Feeling presidential after a week of briefings? Prove it with the PDB quiz. (OZY)


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    Robot Makes a Run for It in Russia

    Who forgot to close the door? A machine at a Perm-based research lab made a break for it after an engineer at Promobot forgot to shut the gate. The wayward bot — designed to roam, engage with humans and promote products — dashed a short distance into the street, where its battery promptly died, causing a traffic jam. Police were called to direct traffic around the runaway until someone wheeled it back to captivity. It remains to be seen if this was the start of the robot revolution.

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    Indian Lion Sentenced to Life in Captivity for Killing 3

    The law roared back. A male Asiatic lion in India’s Gujarat state was sentenced to life behind bars after forensic evidence showed it had eaten three people. Two more female lions were tied to the deaths and are being assessed for whether they can be released. There’s been an increase in the big cats attacking humans in the area, which experts partially attribute to a recent heat wave. The government had rounded up 17 lions in all, and the rest will rejoin India’s endangered wild lion population.

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    Long Work Hours Harm Women’s Health, Not Men’s

    Go home, already. A new Ohio State University study of more than 12,000 people showed that the risks of diabetes, cancer and heart disease start to rise when women top 40 hours of work per week — and they triple for those who work more than 60. But hard-working men do not encounter the same health risks. The study authors speculate that this is because women face higher stress levels than men after they leave the office, as they bear a disproportionate burden from housework and child care.

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    Lin-Manuel Miranda Will Exit ‘Hamilton’ This Summer

    The founding father is leaving the stage. Miranda’s been starring in the hit musical he penned since its debut in January 2015, but he’s announced that his final performance will be July 9. He’ll leave the role to longtime understudy Javier Muñoz, who’ll hit the Richard Rodgers Theatre stage on July 11. Before original cast members depart, the multi-Tony-winning show will be filmed, and Miranda fans needn’t fret: The Manhattan native is promising to make encores, and the show is also adding productions in Chicago and London.

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    Cavaliers Force Game 7 Against Warriors

    They’re going the distance. Another otherworldly performance from LeBron James (41 points, 8 rebounds, 11 assists, 4 steals, 3 blocks) drove the thrilling NBA Finals to a winner-take-all Game 7. At one point in Cleveland’s 115-101 win, James scored 18 straight points for the home team. Golden State let its emotions show, as Stephen Curry was ejected after he reacted to a foul by hitting a fan with his mouthguard, and his wife, Ayesha, tweeted that the NBA rigged the game. Sunday’s series finale takes place in Oakland.