I'm Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief and publisher of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.
A Last Chance to Deny Trump
Republican presidential candidate and Ohio Gov. John Kasich is 0-24 in primaries and caucuses so far, so he seems an unlikely character to stand in the way of Donald Trump's march to the nomination. But if the Manhattan business mogul is to be denied, it may come down to Ohio — none of the other upcoming contests is close.
Tough Questions for Clinton
Hillary Clinton's status as the Democratic front-runner faces new challenges during a debate with Bernie Sanders that often delves into her vulnerabilities over Wall Street, emails, Benghazi and more.
Diabetes: 'The Storm Is Coming'
For decades, we had been warned that diabetes was becoming a serious problem. Now a new UCLA study offers a stark look at just how out of control the disease is. Just over half of California adults have either diabetes or pre-diabetes, researchers found. "This study is a barometer that’s telling us that the storm is coming," said Harold Goldstein, head of the California Center for Public Health Advocacy.
Farewell to Nancy Reagan
Former first lady Nancy Reagan will be buried at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley Friday after two days of thousands of people paying their respects. Follow live coverage and reaction with Times staffers.
-- The California Coastal Commission, which is facing continued protests, on Thursday appointed a temporary replacement for the top executive it fired last month.
-- An attorney for the family of a suicidal man who was shot to death by the LAPD last year says the officers, whom he compared to the "Keystone Cops," should face criminal charges.
-- The idea seems to make sense, George Skelton writes: Scrap Gov. Jerry Brown’s troubled bullet train project and pour the money into water development. But the coalition forming to oppose the idea might surprise you.
-- A wave of Puerto Ricans fleeing the island’s economic collapse is transforming the Florida electorate.
-- In a personal manifesto, the suspect in the shooting of an Idaho pastor wrote that he was trying to call attention to alien invaders.
-- After a 39-hour filibuster by Democrats, Republicans in the Missouri Senate approved a bill that opponents say could allow businesses to deny services to gay and lesbian couples.
-- The U.S. military is questioning an Islamic State militant who allegedly helped lead the group’s effort to acquire chemical weapons.
-- As the Zika virus spreads across Latin America, stirring fears of birth defects, the demand for abortions is increasing in countries where they are hard to obtain legally.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
-- Rebecca Keegan looked back at what she learned about gender and compassion during her conversation last year with the Wachowski siblings. At that time, Lana Wachowski, the elder sibling, had come out publicly as transgender. This week, the younger sibling, then known as Andy Wachowski, said she was also transgender and named Lilly.
-- Everyone loves J.K Rowling, right? Turns out the "Harry Potter" author has angered some Native Americans with her latest work, which some are saying appropriates their traditions.
-- Conventional wisdom says a sinking stock market can indicate that a recession is coming. One UCLA economist offers a contrarian view — that it can cause a recession.
-- Unconventional real estate developer Mike Harrah may team up with insiders to bid on the bankrupt parent company of the Orange County Register.
-- USC earns its third straight win over UCLA in the Pac-12 tournament, and Bill Plaschke says the final stake pounded into the UCLA season was a profound one.
-- The Los Angeles Rams move to Plan B in this season of NFL free agency after losing two key players from their secondary.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- When Tom Wheeler was named chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, commentator John Oliver didn’t hold back. Oliver said appointing the former lobbyist to head the FCC was “the equivalent of needing a babysitter and hiring a dingo.” Two years later, Wheeler is set to testify in front of a Republican panel looking into the controversial "net neutrality" vote that required Internet service providers to treat all legal content equally. He told The Verge: “My heart has always been with the insurgents, not the incumbents. And nobody stopped to really look at that — they just wanted to make this judgment.”
-- The dean of the UC Berkeley law school is taking an indefinite leave of absence. The move was announced Wednesday by school officials after a former assistant sued Sujit Choudhry for sexual harassment, alleging unwanted kissing, hugging and caressing, the Chronicle of Higher Education reported. Initially, Berkeley Chancellor and Provost Claude Steele told the Daily Californian that he had seriously considered terminating Choudhry but did not because “it would ruin the dean’s career.” Before announcing the leave, Steele had said he believed a “combination of disciplinary actions” would be enough to “produce necessary changes in his behavior.”
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
The video shows a classic Southern California tableau: a vintage red Cadillac convertible and George Martin behind the wheel. The man who produced the Beatles was on his way to Beach Boy Brian Wilson's house to talk music. "Everybody gravitated here," Martin said in a 1997 visit filmed by the BBC. "If you wanted to make records, generally speaking, Los Angeles was the place to come to." Watch to find out what Wilson thought of Martin's own mix of "God Only Knows." Martin died Tuesday at the age of 90.
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