Newsletter: Today: On Memorial Day, Politics as Unusual. The Zika Detectives.

I’m Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.


Even on a Holiday, It’s Politics as Unusual

This Memorial Day weekend saw Donald Trump hit it off at a biker rally in D.C., but the billionaire businessman is having trouble getting the full-throated support of ... business. Bernie Sanders campaigned in the Central Valley, one of the most Republican parts of the state, while a few Hollywood stars drove around an RV in support of him. And with our June 7 primary just over a week away, Hillary Clinton needs only 73 more delegates to clinch the nomination but really needs a victory in California to move on.


More From the Campaign Trail

-- Sanders moves toward a fight over Israel, forcing Clinton to navigate a splintered party.

-- California’s Latino Republicans see the ghost of Proposition 187 in Trump’s campaign.

-- Libertarians hope that voter frustration with Trump and Clinton will create a “perfect storm.”


On the Road With the Zika Detectives

There’s still a lot we don’t know about Zika, the virus linked with microcephaly and other serious neurological damage in newborns. Why are only some babies whose mothers were infected during pregnancy affected? How high is the risk? Is exposure more dangerous in certain trimesters? That’s why the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sent researchers to Brazil earlier this year. Join reporter Alexandra Zavis and photographer Katie Falkenberg on the road with one team as they try to find answers.

Where’s the Accountability Over Exide?

In Flint, Mich., state prosecutors have filed criminal charges over lead-tainted municipal water. In Aliso Canyon, numerous government investigations are examining the natural gas leak that sickened nearby residents. And in Vernon, where pollution from an Exide battery recycling plant has created lead contamination? Almost nothing has been done to hold government employees accountable for allowing the plant to operate illegally for decades.


A Question of Timing on a New HIV Treatment

More than a decade ago, researchers at Gilead Sciences thought they had a breakthrough: a new version of the company’s key HIV medicine that was less toxic to kidneys and bones. But in 2004, executives stopped the research, then later resumed it in 2010. Why? That question has stirred criticism among patients and caregivers, and prompted a lawsuit.

Why Housing Vouchers Are ‘No Golden Ticket’

Federal rent vouchers are meant to get people off the street. For at least 2,200 homeless people in L.A. County, though, having such a subsidy doesn’t help when there’s no place to use it. In the last two years, rents have soared well above the baseline caps: $1,150 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,500 for a two-bedroom unit. Now, the city and county are trying to give landlords incentives to take the vouchers. Read on to see why it’s a difficult proposition.



-- These heartfelt messages left for California’s war dead remind us about the true reason behind Memorial Day.

-- A quiet day of remembrance at Riverside National Cemetery, one of the largest in the country.

-- “Such ignorance and animosity”: A Vietnam War veterans memorial in Venice was vandalized last week.


-- “It’s just me and the horse”: How mustangs help hurting vets heal.


-- Spending by special interest groups to influence state legislative races has reached record levels: more than $24 million and rising.

-- Where is she? The mystery of missing Pearl Pinson deepens, as law enforcement calls off a search in a remote area of Northern California.


-- Good news: Scientists say trees and other foliage have regrown, despite the drought.

-- Politics in Little Saigon turns nasty in the race for the Orange County Board of Supervisors.


-- Several hundred are feared dead in Mediterranean shipwrecks as a new surge of migrants comes from Africa.


-- “We can’t go on like this”: Shortages and economic crisis make Venezuela a nation of lines.

-- The Supreme Court is being asked to take up a bankruptcy dispute involving the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City.

-- In Iraq, pro-government forces begin to storm Fallujah as they seek to retake the city from Islamic State.



-- TV review: History’s new version of “Roots” grippingly conveys history in a tale of family devotion and perseverance.

-- First Belle, now Alice: How screenwriter and headbanger Linda Woolverton is remaking Disney heroines for a feminist age.

-- “X-Men: Apocalypse” and “Alice Through the Looking Glass” make for a lackluster Memorial Day weekend at the box office.

-- San Francisco Opera presents a new “Carmen” that breaks down barriers.



-- Someone is going to get rich selling cameras for virtual reality. But who?

-- From China to Mozambique to Boston to L.A.: How Eva Ho of technology fund Susa Ventures made it.



-- Rookie Alexander Rossi wins the Indy 500. Here is how the race unfolded.

-- The San Jose Sharks will meet the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first game of the Stanley Cup finals tonight. Helene Elliott previews the series.


-- Confederate flags have no place flying over national cemeteries.


-- Whitewater? Vince Foster? For Trump, it’s back to the ‘90s.

-- First person: Why I hate Waze and other navigation apps.


-- The “Fat Leonard” scandal is shaking the upper echelons of the U.S. Navy. (Washington Post)


-- Is there a safe way for zoos to exist? Readers debate. (CBC)

-- LitRPG: Yes, there are now novels based in the worlds of online role-playing games. (The Verge)


The sign at the intersection of McCadden Place and Waring Avenue read: “Did you call 911 last March 17? You saved my life. Please call me.” Columnist Steve Lopez wasn’t the only one who wondered what the story behind it was. And then he discovered what happened with the man who suffered a heart attack and the Good Samaritans who came to his aid in Hollywood that day.


Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.