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Trumped Called Off Iranian Strikes Due to Civilian Deaths

By JON PARTON & MEGAN MINEIRO

In a Twitter blast Friday morning, President Donald Trump said he called off military strikes against Iran because the 150 estimated civilian deaths would not be a proportionate response to a U.S. surveillance drone being shot down.

US Has No Defense Secretary as Global Crises Mount

Missouri Denies License for Only Abortion Clinic

By JOE HARRIS

Missouri officially denied Planned Parenthood’s license on Friday, but a St. Louis judge kept a preliminary injunction in place allowing the state’s only remaining abortion clinic to stay open for now.

Supreme Court Backs Immigrant Unaware of Illegal Status

By JACK RODGERS

Undocumented immigrants are barred from possessing guns, but how about an immigrant who doesn’t appreciate that flunking out of school on a student visa made his status illegal?

Justices Nix Murder Rap Over Racial Jury Strikes

By MEGAN MINEIRO

With a 7-2 vote Friday, the Supreme Court vacated a death-penalty conviction in a case where a Mississippi prosecutor had a track record of eliminating black jurors.

Panel Advances 17 Judicial Nominees for Full Senate Vote

By TIM RYAN

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday advanced the nominations of 17 of President Donald Trump’s judicial nominees, including a Ninth Circuit pick who faced questions about his ties to California.

Ninth Circuit Declines Stay for Trump's Title X Abortion Gag Rule

By NICHOLAS IOVINO

The Ninth Circuit allowed the Trump administration’s so-called “abortion gag rule” for Title X-funded health clinics to take effect Thursday, a move critics say will limit low-income women’s access to reproductive health care.

Trump’s Emergency Wall Funding Focus of Ninth Circuit Battle

By HELEN CHRISTOPHI
A Customs and Border Control agent patrols the U.S. side of a razor-wire-covered border wall along the Mexico east of Nogales, Ariz., on March 2, 2019. A border activist charged with helping a pair of migrants with water, food and lodging is set to go on trial in U.S. court in Arizona. Defendant Scott Daniel Warren has argued that his spiritual values compel him to help all people in distress. The trial is began May 29, 2019, in Tucson, with the 36-year-old Warren charged with harboring migrants and conspiring to transport and harbor two Mexican men found with him who were in the U.S. illegally. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

The Ninth Circuit on Thursday did not indicate whether it would freeze a court-ordered block on $1 billion in funding the Trump administration allegedly misappropriated to build a wall on the U.S.- Mexico border, torpedoing arguments from both sides of the aisle.

Republicans Dig for Distractions at Hearing on Mueller Report

By BRANDI BUCHMAN
Carrie Cordero, general counsel for the Center for New American Security, testifies Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee.

Facing a chorus of expert testimony about the the danger in the government’s head-in-the-sand approach to Russian election meddling, House Republicans were rebuffed at every turn Thursday as they raged about conspiracy theories and border security.

Officials examine a decomposing whale that washed ashore in Port Ludlow, Washington in late May. (AP photo/Mario Rivera)

Enormous Die-Off of Gray Whales on West Coast

So many gray whales are dying off the United States’ West Coast that scientists and volunteers dealing with the putrid carcasses have an urgent request for coastal residents: Lend us your private beaches so these ocean giants can rot in peace.

OPINION

Welcome to My Hacienda

By ROBERT KAHN

I’m glad that Mexicans come to the United States. I wish we had more of them. I like them. I find them honest, cheerful, hard-working boon companions, amiable and patriotic. I don’t know what I — or you — would do without them.

Supreme Court Paves Route to Sue Over Cemetery Law

By JACK RODGERS

Town officials who traipsed on a Pennsylvania woman’s land, hunting for unmarked graves, could be on the hook for federal damages, the Supreme Court ruled Friday.

Sprint Lawyer: DOJ Deal 'Imminent' on T-Mobile Merger

By ADAM KLASFELD

Antitrust regulators are close to settling charges over the $26.5 billion merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, a lawyer said Friday, as four more states prepare to join a related challenge.

Cal State University Blasted for $1.5 Billion Bankroll

By NICK CAHILL

On the backs of tuition hikes and taxpayers, the California State University system has recovered nicely from the Great Recession. Gone are semesters of mandatory teacher furloughs, staff cuts and campus demonstrations during the late 2000s that often resulted in students getting arrested for protesting tuition fees and raises for administrators.

Experts Explain Fight Between Free Speech, Tech

By NATHAN SOLIS

A tech giant’s influence on free speech, a defamation lawsuit against a Twitter cow and Donald Trump’s Twitter account were at the center of the First Amendment Roundup hosted by the Los Angeles County Bar Association on Thursday.

Judge to Appoint Special Prosecutor in Smollett Case

By LISA KLEIN

An Illinois judge ruled Friday that he will appoint a special prosecutor to investigative how the Cook County state’s attorney handled the criminal case of “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, who was accused of staging a hate crime.

More College-Educated Women Than Men in US Workforce

By BIANCA BRUNO

For the first time, college-educated women outnumber college-educated men in the U.S. workforce, according to a Pew research study released Thursday.

Milkweed Gardens Key to Preserving Monarch Butterflies

By MARTIN MACIAS JR.

Cities will grow exponentially in decades to come, and while wildlife conservation has seldom factored into city planning, a pair of studies found Thursday that urban centers can play a key role in the preservation of the monarch butterfly.

Genetically Modified Salmon Coming Soon to US Tables

This Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017 photo provided by Darlene Burgess shows a monarch butterfly at Point Pelee National Park in Canada. A large population of already vulnerable monarch butterflies are stuck in Canada and in the Northeast. They are late on their migration south _ they should be in Texas at this time _ because unusually warm weather delayed their flight and now winds and other factors aren't making it easy or maybe even possible to go south before the coming frost. (Darlene Burgess via AP)

Read the Nightly Brief

Bank of England Backs Facebook Cryptocurrency

By CAIN BURDEAU

The governor of the Bank of England is backing Facebook’s new cryptocurrency, the Libra, saying it could unlock billions of dollars in new financing and spur development in Great Britain and beyond.

Split Wisconsin High Court Upholds Lame-Duck Laws

By JOE KELLY

In a 4-3 decision along party lines, the Wisconsin Supreme Court on Friday upheld the GOP-controlled Legislature’s lame-duck laws limiting the powers of the new Democratic governor and attorney general.

Roy Moore Eyes New Senate Run After 2017 Loss

By DANIEL JACKSON

Speaking Thursday afternoon in Montgomery, former judge Roy Moore, twice removed from the Alabama Supreme Court, announced that he will once again run in 2020 for a seat in the U.S. Senate after losing a special election two years ago when several women accused him of decades-old sexual misconduct.

Judge Says US Has No Duty to Correct Misleading Info

By NICHOLAS IOVINO

The government has no duty to correct inaccurate or misleading information, including in a report that allegedly overstates the threat posed by Muslim immigrants, a federal judge said in court Thursday.

WaPo Wins Fight to See Federal Opioid Data

By KEVIN KOENINGER
OxyContin pills arranged for a 2013 photo at a pharmacy in Montpelier, Vt. Oklahoma's attorney general announced a settlement on March 26, 2019, with Purdue Pharma, one of the drug manufacturers named in a state lawsuit that accuses them of fueling the opioid epidemic. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

Siding with the Washington Post, a Sixth Circuit panel ruled Thursday that the Drug Enforcement Agency cannot file court records about the distribution of prescription opioids under seal.

Walmart Settles Brazil Corruption Case for $138M

By BRANDI BUCHMAN
People walk in and out of a Walmart store in Dallas in 2016. (Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press)

Walmart has agreed to fork over roughly $138 million in criminal penalties to settle claims by the Justice Department that one of its subsidiaries in Brazil paid a “sorceress” over $500,000 in bribes to make permitting problems go away.

Oregon Governor Sends Police to Find GOP Senators

By JON PARTON

Democratic Oregon Gov. Kate Brown authorized state police on Thursday to bring back Republican lawmakers after they fled the Capitol to block a vote on a climate bill that is set to lower the state’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Witness at Navy SEAL Trial: I Killed Victim Out of Mercy

ASSOCIATED PRESS

A witness called to testify against a fellow Navy SEAL charged with murder has admitted that he killed the victim — a wounded Islamic State fighter — in an act of mercy, a bombshell that didn’t deter the military from its case.

More Top News

Briefings

LAW

Gasoline prices at Shell in Denver

Changes to Fuel Standards Debated in House Hearing

JACK RODGERS

California Vaccination Mandate Advances Amid Opposition

MATTHEW RENDA
Vaccine

Despite scores of people travelling from all over California to express strident opposition to a bill designed to tighten vaccination requirements, the California Assembly Health Committee advanced Senate Bill 276 on Thursday.

Supremes Nix North Carolina Tax on Out-of-Stater's Trust

TIM RYAN
The Supreme Court is seen in Washington as the justices prepare to hand down decisions, Monday, June 17, 2019.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The Supreme Court was unanimous Friday in finding it would violate due process for North Carolina to tax a trust set up in New York for the benefit of a woman living in North Carolina.

Court Frees Friend of Assange Detained in Ecuador

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Swedish programmer Ola Bini leaves jail after his Habeas Corpus request was accepted by a court, on the condition that he appear periodically before a judge in Quito, Ecuador, Thursday, June 20, 2019. The Swedish programmer close to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had been held in jail for more than two months on suspicion of hacking. (AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)

A court in Ecuador freed a Swedish programmer close to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Thursday after more than two months in jail on suspicion of hacking.

UK Police Nab 44 on Historic Child Sex Abuse Charges

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Police in northern England say they have arrested 44 people in connection with allegations of child sex abuse between 1995 and 2002.

NATIONAL

Roger Stone, former campaign adviser for President Donald Trump, waves Tuesday as he arrives at federal court in Washington for a hearing. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Feds Say Roger Stone Social Media Posts Violated Gag Order

MEGAN MINEIRO

Democrats Critical of Military Presence in Border Crisis

MEGAN MINEIRO
Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost testifies Thursday before the House Committee on Homeland Security.

At a hearing where the chief of U.S. Border Patrol defended the need for military involvement in addressing the immigration crisis, members of Congress pushed back Thursday on that partnership’s mounting costs and still unseen payoff.

250 Children Jailed in Misery at Texas Border

Veterinarian: Bulldog Swallowed 19 Baby Pacifiers

ASSOCIATED PRESS

A Boston veterinary hospital got quite a surprise recently when a family brought in their bulldog after he stopped eating.

Claims of Shoddy Review for Desert Water Line Advance

MARTIN MACIAS JR.

A federal judge indicated Thursday he will advance conservation groups’ claims that a proposed 43-mile groundwater pipeline in a Southern California desert was approved abruptly and without proper environmental review by a federal agency.

NRA Marches Oliver North to Court on ‘Failed Coup’

ADAM KLASFELD

Long before he stepped down as National Rifle Association chief, Oliver North cemented his reputation for overthrowing governments in the Iran-Contra scandal. Now the NRA has taken the retired U.S. marine to court over another “failed coup attempt,” saying North conspired with a PR firm to topple the gun group’s leadership.

Tornadoes Return to Wreak Havoc Across South & East

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Tornadoes

Storms were blamed for two deaths and left hundreds of thousands of people without power across the southern United States and as far north as New Jersey.

INTERNATIONAL

In this Oct. 24, 2018, photo released by the U.S. Air Force, members of the 7th Reconnaissance Squadron prepare to launch an RQ-4 Global Hawk at Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy. Iran's Revolutionary Guard shot down a U.S. RQ-4 Global Hawk on Thursday, June 20, 2019, amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Washington over its collapsing nuclear deal with world powers, American and Iranian officials said, though they disputed the circumstances of the incident. (Staff Sgt. Ramon A. Adelan/U.S. Air Force via AP)

Global Airlines Reroute Flights Due to Mideast Tensions

ASSOCIATED PRESS

EU Rules Out Reopening Brexit Deal With May Successor

ASSOCIATED PRESS
FILE - In this two photo file combo image, Jeremy Hunt, left, and Boris Johnson, right, who are the final two contenders for leadership of the Conservative Party, Thursday June 20, 2019. Following elimination votes Britain's Conservative Party members will vote for the final two contenders with the winner due to replace Prime Minister Theresa May as party leader and prime minister. (AP Photo FILE/Matt Dunham, Frank Augstein)

The European Union insisted Friday that it will not reopen the Brexit withdrawal agreement with the U.K. government whoever succeeds Theresa May as British prime minister.

Hong Kong Protests Flare Anew After Demands Unmet

ASSOCIATED PRESS
A taxi creeps through a crowd of protesters near government offices in Hong Kong on Friday. (AP photo/Kin Cheung)

Several hundred protesters, mainly students, gathered Friday outside Hong Kong government offices, some blocking traffic on a major thoroughfare and others occupying the lobby of a government tax office.

Study: Lethal Plastic Trash Now Common in Greece's Whales

ASSOCIATED PRESS
This undated handout photo provided on Friday, June 21, 2019 by the Pelagos Cetacean Research Institute shows researchers Alexandros Frantzis and Voula Alexiadou lying on a tennis court next to the plastic stomach contents of a dead sperm whale found on the Aegean Sea island of Mykonos. The collection includes a Greek souvlaki restaurant bag, Turkish trash bags and biscuit packaging. A study of whales and dolphins that have washed up dead in Greece over a 20-year period has found alarmingly high levels of plastic trash _ mostly bags _ in the animals’ stomachs, which can condemn them to a slow and painful death. (Pelagos Cetacean Research Institute via AP)

A study of whales and dolphins that have washed up dead in Greece over a 20-year period has found alarmingly high levels of plastic trash — mostly bags — in the animals’ stomachs, which can condemn them to a slow and painful death.

UK Study Shows Seal Singing 'Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star'

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Researchers in Scotland say gray seals can copy the sounds of human words and songs including “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.”

In Brief

Walt Girdner was born in central Iowa in 1922, one of five children. His father took a job as a Christian minister in Alameda after the family moved to California in 1925. Growing up during the Great Depression, Walt worked double shifts at a cannery to make money for college. He attended Stanford where he put together a string of letters and wins, running the quarter and half-mile. An invitation to join the U.S. Olympic team was negated by World War II and cancellation of the games. During the war, he disembarked in Normandy, fought in the infantry and marched into Germany .

As a young man, he developed an interest in imagery, first through drawing then through the developing technology of photography. Although he left the church where his mother and father were pastors, he kept a lifelong faith in the power and mystery of the natural environment, seeing in its beauty an overriding and everlasting spiritual force. His subjects focused on people and their settings. Farmers, flower sellers, youth were recurring themes.

He traveled in large part to find new images and capture them, in France at first, then the rest of Europe and later Africa and Mexico. Towards the end of his life, Walt focused on images in nature, including letters and numbers that emerged through abalone shells, beach tableaus and patterns in the sand.  He had faith that imagery was a powerful way to communicate and believed young people were much better at interpreting the language of imagery, gifted with imaginations more agile and unencumbered.