ESSENTIAL #1: “A TOAST TO THE STANDARD” YUVAL LEVIN, NATIONAL REVIEW
From the article: “Today brought the sad news that, as has been feared and rumored for months, The Weekly Standardis closing. The death of that other conservative magazine is a tragedy, pure and simple. And it’s compounded by the chilling, spiteful, and pernicious manner of its execution. John Podhoretz, who was among the Standard’s founders, recounts the details here, and what I have heard comports with his report.
The news is tragic not so much for the loss of a venue for conservative political opinion writing, or the loss of an outlet for clear-eyed political journalism. The Standardwas both of those things, and its demise would have been bad news even if they were all it did. But it is tragic news because the magazine did so much more.”
ESSENTIAL #2: “FEDERAL COURT RULES OBAMACARE UNCONSTITUTIONAL—BUT THE LAW STANDS FOR NOW” SARAH KLIFF, VOX
From the article: “A federal judge in Texas has ruled the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, finding that the law cannot stand now that Congress has rolled back the mandate that everyone carry health insurance or pay a fine.
The new ruling poses a significant threat to the Affordable Care Act’s most popular and most sweeping health insurance reforms. If affirmed at higher courts, it could roll back Obamacare’s ban on preexisting conditions. Insurers would once again be able to charge sick patients higher premiums.”
ESSENTIAL #3: “BUDGET HEAD MULVANEY PICKED AS TRUMP’S NEXT CHIEF OF STAFF” JONATHAN LEMIRE, JILL COLVIN AND CATHERINE LUCEY, ASSOCIATED PRESS
From the article: “President Donald Trump has picked budget director Mick Mulvaney to be his acting chief of staff, ending a chaotic search in which several top contenders took themselves out of the running for the job.”
ESSENTIAL #4: “IN FAREWELL, HATCH CALLS ON RELIGIOUS CONSERVATIVES TO FIND COMMON GROUND WITH LGBT COMMUNITY” EUGENE SCOTT, THE WASHINGTON POST
From the article: “Hatch called on his party members to find some common ground toward advocating for the best interests of those who prioritize religious liberty and those who fight for LGBT rights.
Hatch said Wednesday:
‘Nowhere is the pluralist approach more needed than in the fraught relationship between religious liberty and LGBTQ rights. . . . Religious liberty is a fundamental freedom. It deserve the very highest protection our country can provide. At the same time, it’s also important to account of other interests as well — especially those of our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. Pluralism shows us a better way. It shows us that protecting religious liberty and preserving the rights of LGBTQ individuals are not mutually exclusive. I believe we can find substantial common ground on these issues that will enable us to both safeguard the ability of religious individuals to live their faith and protect LGBTQ individuals from invidious discrimination.’”