Today's Headlines: Restive Russians, a GOP win for gays, skid row police shooting

Hello. I'm Davan Maharaj, the editor of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines you shouldn't miss today.


Riled-up Russians

A Russian poster could read like this "Wanted: Male, average height, short hair. Last seen wearing jeans and brown sweater." That's the description of someone police said shot and killed Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov. More than 20,000 marchers say they know who the real killers are, pointing fingers at the Kremlin. They  chanted: "We'll not forget. We'll not forgive." A banner read: "These bullets are for all of us!"

A warning or a stump speech?

It'll probably be a little of both Tuesday when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses Congress on the Iranian nuclear threat. He risks a rift with President Obama, but back home it's an element of his election campaign. One ad likens him to an earlier prime minister,  Levi Eshkol, who defied the U.S. in 1967 and attacked Arab forces menacing Israel.

GOP opens its tent to gays

Four decades after Harvey Milk became the first openly gay elected official in California, the state GOP establishment has its own first: formal recognition of the Log Cabin Republicans. A gay group, it had sought such status for 38 years. Emotions flowed. "The fringe does not control the party anymore, " one member said. "We truly are a big tent once again.”

Police shooting on skid row

It's all too familiar: confrontation, struggle, shouting, shots and a man dead from police gunfire. This time it was in L.A., captured on video: As police wrestle with a homeless man after a robbery call, one seems to shout, "Drop the gun"-- apparently believing an officer's weapon had been grabbed. The LAPD has struggled to police an expansive skid row. This could make it harder.

Seeing red and blue

Fights against federal overreach usually have a healthy tinge of Republican red, but support is building in the blue state of California for GOP efforts to change the No Child Left Behind law and its standardized testing. In this case, it may be the No Child law that has been left behind -- by California's far-reaching reforms, which often clash with the federal rules.

Scope for trouble

As its camera business tanked, Olympus Corp. made a big bet on medical equipment. It became a market leader in gastrointestinal endoscopes. Now a setback looms: One of its scopes, a hard-to-clean model, is linked to a "superbug" outbreak at hospitals, including UCLA, where two patients have died. Read how the company is coping with a potential corporate nightmare.


-Election preview: Voters will decide L.A. City Council, school board and community college races on Tuesday. Possible rain doesn't bode well for turnout.

-- Weekend winter storms bring welcome snow to the mountains and scattered rain to the lowlands. More is possible tonight.

-- George Skelton chews over a bill that would ban chaw in California's major league ballparks.

-- How travelers arriving from West Africa are monitored for signs of Ebola.


-- As Supreme Court justices take up the latest challenge to Obamacare, many state officials feel a sense of impending crisis. What if it's really struck down?

-- House Republican leaders try to deflect criticism over a near-cutoff of funds for Homeland Security, but it could happen again this week.

--  It's a dirty job, but somebody has to do it: A father-son duo and other volunteers handle cavernous work for the National Park Service.

-- Iranian travelers furious about flight delays have a new way to protest: sit-ins inside the planes.


-- Most United and Delta rewards members don't know about recent changes to the program; most of those who do aren't happy.

-- Stock spotlight: From Gold Rush to cruise missiles, Ducommun Inc. is still going strong after 166 years.


-- Weekend box office: The Will Smith romantic caper “Focus” opens at No.1, bumping “Fifty Shades of Grey” out of the top spot.

-- The L.A. Phil's production of Unsuk Chin's "Alice in Wonderland" proves exhilarating -- with a dark side.


-- In an un-San-Diego-like hurry, city leaders are scrambling to devise a plan for a new NFL stadium to avoid losing the Chargers to Carson.

-- Minnie Minoso, the “Cuban comet” who became the first black major league baseball player in Chicago when he joined the White Sox in 1951, dies at 92.


-- Surviving Iwo Jima: recollections of a Marine who was in the first wave 70 years ago.

 -- "Outside Man": The producer of those "Hangover" films has another role: dedicated prison-reform activist

-- In defense of media reporting on media, from a departing Nieman Lab writer.


Today we use this space to reflect on a USC Dornsife/L.A. Times poll on Californians' views of our state. The takeaway: Two different views are emerging. One is white, conservative and Republican; the other, new California is Asian, Latino, liberal and Democratic. "In many ways this is a snapshot of an emerging California colliding with a leaving California — not moving to Texas but leaving the planet," said a USC politics fellow.

Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.