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Morning Reads: Marco Rubio Changed the World of Dark Money

A roundup of some of the stories we're reading at BillMoyers.com HQ...

Morning Reads: Rubio's Dark Money Legacy

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) walks on stage with his family at a primary night rally on March 15, 2016 in Miami, Florida. Rubio announced he was suspending his campaign after losing his home state to Republican rival Donald Trump. (Photo by Angel Valentin/Getty Images)

Milwaukee meeting –> The three remaining Republican candidates will appear at a CNN-sponsored town hall meeting in Wisconsin tonight. Starting time: 8 p.m, ET.

Marco money –> Shane Goldmacher at Politico: “Marco Rubio’s campaign is dead. His secret-money legacy lives on. Nobody knows who funded the nonprofit group that spent more than $10 million on TV ads boosting Rubio, and untold more on mailers and research. And, unless those donors out themselves, nobody ever will. No presidential candidate fighting for their party’s nomination has ever benefited from as much undisclosed cash, and watchdogs worry the pro-Rubio group’s unchecked activity serves as a dangerous precedent that will soon become common practice.”

No bullets and ballots –> “The Secret Service says people attending the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this July will not be allowed to carry guns. The statement comes in response to a petition that calls for allowing open carry of guns inside Quicken Loans Arena, the host venue. The petition has amassed more than 43,000 signatures as of Monday morning,” Jordan Fabian reports for The Hill.

Taking the temperature –> Slate’s Eric Holthaus showed up at that March 19 Trump rally in Tucson, Arizona, to find out how supporters of the candidate — who usually tends to deny climate change science — feel about the issue. Perhaps surprisingly, many, though not all, were concerned — though a good number also assumed it was too late to do anything about it. Holthaus writes: “The responses I encountered, even the more scientifically grounded ones, all seemed to reflect some element of the Trumpish mindset… the notion that, even if Trump says now that climate change is a hoax, he’ll come around and fix everything eventually because he’s a smart guy who Gets Things Done.”

No nukes? –> Bernie Sanders’ climate plan includes a gradual shutdown of America’s nuclear power plants. That’s a controversial issue among greens: while some oppose nuclear as a dangerous fuel, producing toxic, potentially deadly waste, others argue that a transition from fossil fuels can’t happen fast enough without relying on nuclear. At Grist, Ben Adler weighs the pros and cons of Sanders’ approach.

Meanwhile, Bobby Magill writes at Climate Central, “If a new electric power plant is built in the U.S. these days, chances are it’s renewable — either wind or solar. That’s the gist of a report the U.S. Department of Energy released this week showing that, together, wind and solar accounted for nearly two-thirds of all new electric power plants built in 2015. It’s a trend expected to continue through 2016, even with low natural gas prices likely to keep utilities building plenty of gas-fired power plants, too.”

Honest Hillary –> Former New York Times editor Jill Abramson at The Guardian: “As an editor I’ve launched investigations into her business dealings, her fundraising, her foundation and her marriage. As a reporter my stories stretch back to Whitewater. I’m not a favorite in Hillaryland. That makes what I want to say next surprising. Hillary Clinton is fundamentally honest and trustworthy.”

Dear Charles –> Noting that Charles Koch recently wrote a Washington Post op-ed highlighting what he described as common ground with Bernie Sanders, liberal donor Jonathan Soros, son of George, has written his own public letter to Koch via CNN: “The sad truth is that our politics is as much divided between insiders and outsiders as it is between left and right. Those with money and relationships, like you and me, are on the inside, while everyday Americans find themselves increasingly left out. It’s refreshing to see you acknowledge this.” But,  Soros adds, “Your solution to these problems is to dismantle the government altogether. You view the state as the enemy, a tyrant that curtails liberty, and believe that we would be better off without most of it. I have always found your position to be fundamentally at odds with the founding principles of our democracy.”

And as quickly as it started… –> … It’s over. “Apple has declared victory in its battle against the FBI, after the government announced it had found a way into the San Bernardino killer’s iPhone that did not require the manufacturer’s help,” Alex Hern writes for The Guardian. But the broader issue, Apple customers’ privacy, remains unresolved, setting the stage for Round 2.

Plenty of blame to go around –> At The Intercept, novelist Jim Lewis writes, “It wasn’t some Klan newsletter that first brought Trump to our attention: It was Time and Esquire and Spy. The Westboro Baptist Church didn’t give him his own TV show: NBC did. And his boasts and lies weren’t posted on Breitbart, they were published by Random House. He was created by people who learned from Andy Warhol, not Jerry Falwell, who knew him from galas at the Met, not fundraisers at Karl Rove’s house, and his original audience was presented to him by Condé Nast, not Guns & Ammo.”

Morning Reads was written by John Light and edited by Michael Winship. See a story that you think should be included in Morning Reads? Tell us in the comments!


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