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Morning Reads: Trump and Clinton Trounce Opponents in New York; State Struggles With Polling Place Chaos

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

Morning Reads: Trump and Clinton Trounce Opponents in New York

A man with his son votes at Public School 22 on April 19, 2016 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

New York primary –> Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton won by big margins last night. While both were projected to win, the margin of victory, particularly on the Democratic side, was a surprise. Clinton won New York City, the suburbs to the north, and the state’s other urban centers while Sanders carried the rest. Trump won the Republican vote in every single county except one: his own Manhattan.

The Washington Post’s Philip Bump writes that Clinton “won by undercutting Bernie Sanders’s campaign both in delegates and in rhetoric.” Jim Newell wonders at Slate whether Democrats will now unite around Clinton, noting that it seems the logical choice given her delegate lead — but not, necessarily, given her poll numbers: “Right at the moment that Sanders is struggling to make a necessary dig into Clinton’s pledged-delegate lead, his national numbers are looking better than ever.”

Meanwhile, at The New Republic Brian Beutler contemplates the Republican side: “No matter how the Republican presidential primary unfolds from here, all the factions of the #NeverTrump movement — the party operatives attacking him; the conservative opinion leaders holding the line against him; the Republican delegates loyal to Ted Cruz after the first ballot at the party’s July convention — face severe conundrums.”

Nightmare at the polls –> Last night was New York’s first relevant primary in decades, and the polling places and voter registry rolls were a mess. Brigid Bergin reported for New York City’s public radio station WNYC that 126,000 Democrats had disappeared from the rolls in Brooklyn, a borough of roughly 2.5 million. The New York State Attorney General’s office received more than 700 calls reporting problems at polling places — that’s four times more than were reported in the 2012 general election. New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer said he would audit the city’s board of elections.

And Sanders supporters were frustrated by New York’s system of closed primaries: Independents as well as voters registered with the populist Working Families Party — which has a strong following in New York, and endorsed Sanders — were unable to participate in the Democratic primary.

We’re on a streak! –> For the eleventh month in a row, temperatures broke records, Andrea Thompson writes at Climate Central: “Not only was March 2016 handily the warmest March on record, according to data released Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, but the year to date has also been record warm.”

9/11 blowback –> “A bill opposed by the Obama administration that would expose Saudi Arabia to legal jeopardy for any role in the Sept. 11 attacks appeared to gain momentum on Tuesday when the senator holding it up said he would be open to supporting it,” Mark Mazzetti and Jennifer Steinhauer report for The New York Times. “Obama administration officials have been vigorously lobbying against the Sept. 11 bill, which has broad bipartisan support, arguing that Americans overseas could be put in legal jeopardy if other nations were to retaliate and strip them of immunity in foreign courts.” Obama is visiting Riyadh this week.

Fidel’s farewell –> AP: “Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro delivered a valedictory speech Tuesday to the Communist Party that he put in power a half-century ago, telling party members he is nearing the end of his life and exhorting them to help his ideas survive. ‘I’ll be 90 years old soon,’ Castro said in his most extensive public appearance in years. ‘Soon I’ll be like all the others. The time will come for all of us.’

“… Castro spoke as the government announced that his brother Raul will retain the Cuban Communist Party’s highest post alongside his hardline second-in-command. That announcement and Fidel Castro’s speech together delivered a resounding message that the island’s revolutionary generation will remain in control even as its members age and die, relations with the U.S. are normalized, and popular dissatisfaction grows over the country’s economic performance.”

Challenges to NC law work their way through courts –> Josh Gerstein at Politico: “A federal appeals court handed a victory Tuesday to a transgender boy in his closely-watched quest to use the boys’ bathroom at a Virginia public school. The 2-1 decision from the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a district court judge’s ruling last year denying relief to the student, Gavin Grimm, now a high school junior in Gloucester County, Va. Because the 4th Circuit includes North Carolina, the ruling could have an impact on that state’s recently passed law banning local ordinances guaranteeing bathroom access sought by transgender individuals.”

Death by Cruz –> Long Island House Republican Peter King seems to share the attitude of Republicans in his home state, where Ted Cruz won a measly 14.5 percent of the vote and no delegates. King, yesterday: “I hate Ted Cruz, and I think I’ll take cyanide if he ever got the nomination.” And Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards told a Hillary Clinton rally on Monday, “A woman voting for Ted Cruz is like a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders.”

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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