In these times of elections, climate chaos and COVID-19, independent news is more important than ever. You turn to Democracy Now! because you trust that when we're reporting on the pandemic or the uprisings against police brutality—or the climate crisis—our coverage is not brought to you by the fossil fuel, insurance or weapons industries or Big Pharma. We count on YOU to make our work possible. Today, a generous supporter will DOUBLE your new monthly donation to Democracy Now!, meaning your gift will go twice as far. This is a challenging time for us all, but if you're able to make a monthly donation and provide us with support we can rely on all year, please do so today. Stay safe, and thank you so much.
We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.
Please do your part today.
A triple suicide bombing and gun attack targeting Turkey’s main airport in Istanbul has killed 41 people and left 239 other injured. Authorities said three attackers arrived at the airport’s international terminal by taxi and blew themselves up after opening fire. The airport is the 11th busiest in the world. A witness described the attack.
Osman Uçar: “I was getting my three suitcases wrapped while I heard the blast. The police told us to lie down. The wrapping machine’s steel case protected us from getting caught in the crossfire. They were shooting at the police, and the police were shooting at them. Someone next to us got shot. Then we saw the bomb in the X-ray explode. Everybody around it died in that blast. I got up and looked through the window to see the shooting.”
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the initial probe pointed to the self-proclaimed Islamic State. We’ll have more on the attack after headlines.
One day after handing down the most significant victory for abortion access in a generation, the Supreme Court has dealt another victory for reproductive rights. The court rejected attempts by Mississippi and Wisconsin to revive anti-choice measures requiring abortion doctors to hold admitting privileges at local hospitals. The law in Mississippi had threatened to close the state’s only remaining abortion clinic. The court’s decision came after the justices struck down Texas’ admitting privileges requirement and another provision requiring abortion clinics to meet the standards of hospital-style surgery centers. We’ll have more on the significance of the decisions with Stephanie Toti, the attorney who argued the landmark Texas abortion case before the Supreme Court, later in the broadcast.
In Britain, Parliament members with the opposition Labour Party have passed a no-confidence motion against leader Jeremy Corbyn. The vote against Corbyn was 172 to 40. Corbyn has faced a coup within his own party following Britain’s vote to exit the European Union. But Corbyn’s supporters say his rivals are using the Brexit vote as a pretext to oust him over his left-leaning stances. Tuesday’s no-confidence vote against Corbyn is not binding, but Labour leaders are expected to mount a bid to replace him.
On the U.S. campaign trail, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump touted Britain’s vote to leave the EU as he called for a rejection of so-called free trade deals. Trump likened the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal to rape, saying it was “done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country, just a continuing rape of our country. That’s what it is.” Speaking earlier in the day in Monessen, Pennsylvania, Trump vowed to withdraw from the TPP.
Donald Trump: “I want you to imagine how much better our future can be if we declare independence from the elites who led us from one financial and foreign policy disaster to another. Our friends in Britain recently voted to take back control of their economy, politics and borders.”
Donald Trump attacked Democratic rival Hillary Clinton for her shifting stance on the TPP, which she ultimately opposed amid a wave of popular protest. Critics say the TPP will boost corporate power at the expense of health and environmental regulations. But the committee drafting the Democratic Party’s platform voted not to oppose the trade deal. In an op-ed in The New York Times, Bernie Sanders urged Democrats to oppose the TPP as part of a broader progressive agenda to defeat Donald Trump. Invoking the Brexit vote, Sanders wrote, “The notion that Donald Trump could benefit from the same forces that gave the Leave proponents a majority in Britain should sound an alarm for the Democratic Party in the United States.” Sanders’ warning comes as a new poll finds 71 percent of Americans believe the economy is “rigged.”
Here in New York, progressive favorite Zephyr Teachout has won the Democratic primary for New York’s 19th Congressional District. Teachout has focused her message on tackling inequality, taking on Wall Street and combating political corruption. She and Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders had endorsed each other in their respective campaigns. In 2014, she mounted a grassroots primary campaign to challenge New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, winning more than a third of the vote.
Senate Democrats have blocked a bill providing funding to combat the mosquito-borne Zika virus, after Republicans loaded it with measures to block funding for Planned Parenthood, take money away from Obamacare, roll back parts of the Clean Water Act and allow the Confederate flag to fly at veterans’ cemeteries. Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren tweeted, “I didn’t think the GOP could write 1 bill to hurt women, vets, Obamacare, PP, AND clean water all at once—but they did it. #Zika.” Tuesday’s vote ensures there will be no legislation to address the crisis this month while Congress is in recess.
Meanwhile, House Democrats continued their protest calling for gun control in the wake of the Orlando massacre that killed 49 people at an LGBT nightclub. Less than a week after lawmakers staged a sit-in to call for a vote on gun reform, six Democrats stood and demanded recognition during a procedural session Tuesday. The lawmakers, including New York Congressmember Eliot Engel, shouted as Republican Congressmember Andy Harris gaveled the session to a close.
Rep. Andy Harris: “Pursuant to section 3(b) of House Resolution 797, the House stands adjourned until 9 a.m. on Friday, July 1, 2016.”
Democrats have attempted to force a vote on a measure to prevent people on the no-fly list from purchasing guns, a step criticized by civil liberties groups who say the list is biased and sweeps up innocent people.
House Republicans have released an 800-page report into the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. While the report criticizes the Obama administration’s actions leading up to the attack, it does not appear to contain any new revelations that could threaten the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton, who was secretary of state at the time of the attack. On the campaign trail in Denver, Colorado, Tuesday, Clinton blasted the report as a waste of resources.
Hillary Clinton: “I understand that after more than two years and $7 million spent by the Benghazi committee out of taxpayer funds, it had to today report it had found nothing, nothing to contradict the conclusions of the independent accountability board or the conclusions of the prior multiple earlier investigations carried out on a bipartisan basis in the Congress. So while this unfortunately took on a partisan tinge, I want us to stay focused on what I’ve always wanted us to stay focused on, and that is the important work of diplomacy and development.”
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has criticized the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. He spoke during a visit to the region, where he met with Palestinian and Israeli leaders.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: “The closure of Gaza suffocates its people, stifles its economy and impedes reconstruction efforts. It is a collective punishment for which there must be accountability.”
California voters will decide in November whether to legalize recreational marijuana. Secretary of State Alex Padilla said proponents of legalization have submitted more than enough signatures to get the issue on the ballot. If the initiative passes, one in six Americans would live in a state where selling marijuana is legal.
And as California reels from scorching heat and deadly wildfires, the city of Oakland has taken a step against the fossil fuel industry, a main driver of climate change. On Monday, Oakland city officials voted unanimously to ban the transport and storage of large shipments of coal, quashing plans for what would have been the largest coal shipment facility on the West Coast. The facility in West Oakland would have sent coal from the western United States abroad to China and other markets. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said in a statement, “Oaklanders know that it’s a false choice to say we have to pick between jobs and this community’s health and safety. We can, and we will, do both.”