Morning Reads

Good morning! It’s World Cancer Day. “Not beyond us” is the slogan and you can learn more here.

On this date in 1913, civil rights activist Rosa Parks was born in Tuskegee, Alabama. And in 1974, 19-year-old Patty Hearst, granddaughter of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst, was kidnapped from her Berkeley apartment by members of the Symbionese Liberation Army. Two months later, Hearst would claim in an audiotape that she had joined the SLA and was assuming the nom-de-guerre “Tania.”

Stat of the day: more than 9,800 — The estimated number of additional deaths that would occur annually in the US if the Supreme Court were to strike down Obamacare subsidies in states that didn’t set up their own exchanges, according to a legal brief from the American Public Health Association.

Boxed into a corner –> Politico’s Jennifer Haberkorn and Manu Raju report that some Republicans are anxious about what will happen if they get their wish and the Court rules against Obamacare in King v. Burwell. “If they simply ‘fix’ Obamacare, they’ll anger their right wing,” write Haberkorn and Raju. But “if they do nothing, they invite blame for making health care unaffordable for millions of Americans — including some of their own constituents.” AND: At The Week, political scientist Scott Lemieux writes that the lawsuit “is based on the most obtuse of premises,” and explains why the latest legal justification offered by two of the challenge’s architects is “blatantly dishonest.”

With friends like these… –> Scott Shane reports for the NYT that Zacarias Moussaoui, a former operative for Al Qaeda, testified from the federal supermax prison in Colorado that “prominent members of Saudi Arabia’s royal family [were] major donors to the terrorist network in the late 1990s and claimed that he discussed a plan to shoot down Air Force One with a Stinger missile with a staff member at the Saudi Embassy in Washington.”

Blocked –> Senate Democrats blocked a Homeland Security spending bill on Tuesday because it contained amendments that would roll back Obama’s executive order on immigration. Tamar Hallerman, Sarah Chacko and Jennifer Scholtes report for Roll Call that there is no obvious Plan B for funding the agency — and that the GOP is playing a tough political hand, threatening domestic security in a fight over executive power.

Free-dumb –> TPM’s Dylan Matthews looks at how the anti-vaccine movement became “the improbable first litmus test for 2016 Republican presidential aspirants.” AND: Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), pushed the envelope on Monday by recounting his longstanding opposition to signs requiring employees of restaurants to wash their hands after using the restroom. ALSO: It appears that damage control on this issue involves getting a shot yourself. Sarah Ferris reports for The Hill that, “after 24 hours of intense media coverage for his vaccination comments, [Rand] Paul received a Hepatitis A booster from the Capitol physician’s office — and invited a New York Times reporter along to watch.”

First, the good news –> Efforts to combat deforestation have been a notable success story in the campaign to tackle global warming, according to John Upton at Climate Central. The bad news is that while agricultural activity now poses a greater threat to the environment, UN climate negotiators still “focus heavily on forest protections” and “ignore similar opportunities to reform farming.”

An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind –> Jordan is executing a number of Islamic extremists in retaliation for the Islamic State’s slaying of a captured Jordanian pilot this week. According to AFP, Mohammed Momani, the government’s information minister, promised the public that “Jordan’s response will be earth-shattering.”

Giving “High Plains” new meaning –> Late last year, the Justice Department announced that its new approach respecting local marijuana laws would also apply to American Indian tribes. HuffPo’s Carly Schwartz reports that over 100 Indian communities have expressed interest in cultivating the product, and says that, “as more states legalize marijuana for both medical and recreational purposes, the burgeoning industry may provide an economic boon for tribes across the country.” ALSO: Michael Pollan writes in The New Yorker that “research into psychedelics, shut down for decades, is now yielding exciting results.” Studies are being conducted looking at the use of these drugs to treat cancer patients’ anxiety and alcohol addiction — and more clinical trials are in the works.

Too cool for the Kochs –> Rand Paul is all about freedom, and what could be more oppressive than business attire? Kenneth Vogel and Tarini Parti report for Politico that “some of the most influential players in big-money conservative politics” were put off when Paul showed up at the recent weekend conference of the Koch donor network “wearing a boxy blue blazer, faded jeans and cowboy boots.” The laidback style, along with some heterodox views on public policy, “hint at a potentially more serious challenge for Paul — securing the backing of enough big-money donors to be competitive in a crowded Republican primary.”

Accountability –> A NYPD officer is being charged with assault for “stomping on the head” of a suspect while he was lying on the ground in handcuffs. The man had been stopped because police suspected he had a marijuana cigarette, but no drugs were found on or around his person. The incident was caught on cellphone video. Raw Story‘s David Ferguson reports that 36-year-old Joel Edouard “is the third police officer to be indicted in the last 90 days on charges of police brutality.”

Three parents –> The British House of Commons approved “a law that sets the stage for the United Kingdom to be the first country in the world to allow a pioneering in vitro fertilization technique using DNA from three people.” According to CNN’s Laura Smith-Spark, “the technique could prevent mitochondrial diseases but also raises significant ethical issues.”

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