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You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose government and corporate abuses of power. This month, Democracy Now! is celebrating our 23rd birthday. For over two decades, we've produced our daily news hour without ads, government funding or corporate underwriting. How is this possible? Only with your support. Right now, in honor of Democracy Now!'s birthday, every donation we receive will be doubled by a generous supporter. This means if you give $30 today, Democracy Now! will get $60 to support our daily news hour. Please do your part. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else. Thank you! -Amy Goodman
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Senator Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump soared to commanding victories in the New Hampshire primaries Tuesday. On the Democratic side, Sanders beat former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by a margin of 60 to 38 percent. Eight years ago, Clinton won New Hampshire, defeating Senator Barack Obama. When polling first began in New Hampshire, Clinton was projected to win by as much as 50 percent. On Tuesday, Sanders beat Clinton in nearly every demographic area except for senior citizens. According to exit polls, 55 percent of women—including 70 percent of women under 30—backed the Vermont senator. Overall, Sanders won 83 percent of the under-30 vote. Sanders has become the first Jewish candidate to ever win a major presidential primary. He gave his victory speech in Concord, New Hampshire.
Sen. Bernie Sanders: “Together, we have sent a message that will echo from Wall Street to Washington, from Maine to California. And that is that the government of our great country belongs to all of the people and not just a handful of wealthy campaign contributors and their super PACs.”
On the Republican side, Donald Trump won 35 percent of the vote. Ohio Governor John Kasich placed a surprising second with 15 percent, followed by Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Chris Christie. Trump delivered his victory speech in Manchester.
Donald Trump: “First of all, congratulations to Bernie. In all fairness, we have to congratulate him. We may not like it. But I heard parts of Bernie’s speech. He wants to give away our country, folks. He wants to give away. We’re not going to let it happen.”
In a blow to the Obama administration’s efforts to combat climate change, the Supreme Court has temporarily blocked regulations to limit emissions from coal-fired power plants. The stay comes as an appeals court considers a challenge to the rules brought by corporations and 29 states. The Supreme Court’s decision to halt the rules is reportedly unprecedented—the court has never before agreed to block a regulation before it’s been reviewed by a federal appeals court. The move indicates the Supreme Court is likely to overturn the regulations in the future. The decision could imperil the Paris climate accords, since the coal plant rules formed a key part of the U.S. commitment to cut emissions.
In news from Syria, ISIL has claimed responsibility for a car bomb attack in the capital Damascus, marking the first time it’s claimed an attack inside the Syrian capital. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said eight police officers were killed and about 20 wounded in the explosion, which hit a police officers’ club.
Pro-Kurdish activists rallied outside The New York Times and marched to CNN Tuesday to protest the lack of media coverage of what they say was a massacre of Kurdish people by government forces in Turkey. Turkey says it carried out a military operation against people it identified as militants with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK. Initial state media reports put the death toll at 60, although that number was later retracted. The local governorate said 10 people were killed. But pro-Kurdish lawmakers have accused Turkish forces of massacring dozens of wounded civilians. Protesters rallied here in New York City.
Elif Genc: “My name is Elif Genc. I’m from the HDK NYC, and so that’s the Peoples’ Democratic Congress. And the reason that we’re here today is because we’re just trying to bring awareness to a horrific massacre that occurred over the weekend in Turkey. They’re actually just opening fire and just openly killing, with like reckless abandon, just children, women—it doesn’t matter who. But there should definitely just be some awareness on the part of the international community that Turkey is—put pressure on Turkey to stop this, because if there was—I mean, there are American weapons companies that are selling weapons to the Turkish army to kill these people, to begin with.”
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will not testify before today’s congressional hearing on children poisoned by lead in Flint’s water supply. Snyder said he could not testify before the House committee hearing because he had to give a budget presentation to the state Legislature. The water contamination in Flint began when an unelected emergency managed appointed by Governor Snyder switched the city’s water supply to the corrosive Flint River. On Tuesday, Todd Flood, a special counsel investigating the crisis for the attorney general, said it could potentially lead to criminal charges, including involuntary manslaughter. Flood has donated $3,000 to Governor Snyder’s past campaigns. Flint Mayor Karen Weaver has laid out a $55 million plan to replace the city’s lead water service pipes within a year. Governor Snyder is expected to seek $195 million to address the Flint water crisis in his budget request today.
Former Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis has announced the launch of a new grassroots movement to bring together progressive groups and parties with the goal of democratizing Europe. Varoufakis, known for his stance against German-backed austerity in Greece, made the announcement Tuesday night in Berlin.
Yanis Varoufakis: “The only alternative is to try something we’ve never tried before—a political movement that starts everywhere in Europe at once, cross-border, independently of political—prior political party affiliations, that has one simple objective: to get Europeans around a metaphorical table, digital table, in forums like this one tonight, to discuss, as Europeans, their common problems and what we want our common solutions to these common problems to be.”
In Mexico, a journalist who was kidnapped from her home in Veracruz Monday has been found dead in the neighboring state of Puebla. Anabel Flores Salazar covered crime for the newspaper El Sol de Orizaba. She had a baby and a four-year-old son. Her death came as the journalism advocacy group Article 19 released a report saying at least 23 journalists have disappeared in Mexico in the past 12 years, the highest number anywhere in the world. Article 19 said there are indications of possible complicity by authorities in the recent death of Anabel Flores Salazar.
U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has acknowledged for the first time government agencies might use a range of home devices connected to the Internet in order to conduct spying. Clapper’s comments relate to the so-called Internet of Things, an array of web-connected devices, from kids’ toys to smart TVs and remotely operated thermostats. In testimony submitted to the Senate, Clapper said “widespread vulnerabilities” in the devices represent “new opportunities for our own intelligence services.”
The City Council in Ferguson, Missouri has voted to approve the broad terms of an agreement with the Justice Department to address rampant discrimination in the police and court system. But the council also sought a series of changes, including an additional six months to make the reforms, and an exemption for outside agencies if police work is outsourced. A Justice Department official called the vote an “unfortunate outcome” that “creates an unnecessary delay.” A Justice Department probe following the police shooting of Michael Brown found police and courts in Ferguson routinely engaged in a pattern and practice of discrimination against African Americans.
Tuesday’s council vote came the same day a St. Louis County jury acquitted local activist and pastor Reverend Osagyefo Sekou of failing to comply with police during protests over Michael Brown’s death. Sekou says he knelt in prayer in front of police as they advanced on peaceful protesters.
Both sides have presented their closing arguments in the manslaughter trial of New York City police officer Peter Liang for the fatal shooting of unarmed African American Akai Gurley. A jury will now consider the fate of Liang, who shot Gurley in the darkened stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project. Officer Liang said he was startled by a noise and flinched, accidentally firing his gun. But Assistant District Attorney Joseph Alexis said the shooting was no accident.
Joseph Alexis: “The gun did not just go off. This officer took his finger off of the frame of the gun, if it was ever there. He put his finger onto the trigger. He pointed the gun directly in the direction where the sound was. And he fired. And he shot. And the shot that he fired hit off the wall. It’s no accident that it hit off the wall steps away from where Akai Gurley stood. It’s no accident that that bullet then ripped through his heart and landed in his liver and killed him.”
A Black Lives Matter activist has shot himself to death at the entrance to the Ohio Statehouse. MarShawn McCarrel was 23 years old. He organized against the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson and worked to aid the homeless, after he himself was homeless for three months. His last post on Twitter said he wanted to “let the record show” that he urinated on the Statehouse “before I left.”
An actor and designer who follows the Sikh religion and was barred from boarding a flight for refusing to remove his turban says the airline, Aeroméxico, has apologized and issued a directive to staff on religious sensitivity. The move follows an outcry after Waris Ahluwalia was prevented from flying to the United States from Mexico. Ahluwalia said he blames U.S. transportation authorities, not the airline.
Waris Ahluwalia: “No part of me is angry at the Aeroméxico gate agents. They didn’t know. Right? This is an issue that they weren’t—they didn’t know how to deal with it. This is a flight that goes back to America, so it comes under the jurisdiction of the TSA. The TSA needs to make clearer guidelines for foreign airports on how to deal with Sikh travelers, as well as any traveler that has religious articles of faith.”
And in the Vermont capital Montpelier, community members shut down an eminent domain proceeding Tuesday that would have helped pave the way for a gas pipeline—by breaking into song.
Protesters, singing: “Officer, my dear, all the people here are telling you to leave these folks alone. There’s no need to take their land and home. Officer, my dear, all the people here.”
The protesters kept singing, and the hearing was adjourned, stalling efforts by Vermont Gas to seize land from Claire Broughton, a 77-year-old resident of Monkton, Vermont. Protesters say the pipeline would fuel global warming by carrying gas extracted through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.