Today’s Headlines: Roe vs. Wade will be overturned, a purported leaked Supreme Court draft suggests
By Elvia Limón, Laura Blasey and Amy Hubbard
Hello, it’s Tuesday, May 3, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:
The Supreme Court is set to strike down abortion rights, Politico says
The Supreme Court is ready to overturn Roe vs. Wade and allow states to outlaw abortion, according to a purported draft opinion that was leaked to Politico. It is highly unusual for the high court to overturn a landmark decision and equally extraordinary, or perhaps more so, for a draft opinion to leak out in advance of its final release.
The Los Angeles Times could not authenticate the purported draft. Sometimes draft rulings can be revised in the final months as justices weigh in during the writing process. According to Politico, Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote a draft in February that says the abortion ruling was “egregiously wrong” and should be overturned completely.
In response, Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders announced Monday night they will ask voters in November to place permanent protections for the procedure in the California Constitution.
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- In a decision that could reverberate across other Jan. 6 legal cases, a federal judge has rejected a Republican National Committee lawsuit seeking to block a campaign vendor from providing records to the House committee investigating the 2021 Capitol riot.
- Vice President Kamala Harris tested negative for the coronavirus, six days after she tested positive, and has been cleared to return to the White House.
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The Los Angeles D.A.’s office is at war with itself
Deep-seated discord over Los Angeles Dist. Atty. George Gascón and his reforms has complicated day-to-day operations within the nation’s largest prosecutor’s office.
The office has been roiled by a campaign to recall Gascón that is eagerly supported by most who work there, lawsuits from employees who allege they’ve been punished for objecting to his policies and a level of distrust that has people on both sides of the feud watching what they say and who they say it to.
In interviews, more than a dozen prosecutors and defense attorneys agreed that the bad blood pitting Gascón and his inner circle against hundreds of prosecutors they command is at best a distraction and at worst a serious disruption.
Refusing to leave Kharkiv’s worst-hit neighborhood
From the very first moments of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Kharkiv has been a target, its name almost at the top of the list of cities wronged in this war. And if Kharkiv is the target, Saltivka is the bull’s-eye.
Saltivka sits on Kharkiv’s northeast flank, the area closest to Russian troops deployed only a few miles away. Designed as a bedroom district, it housed anywhere from 500,000 to 800,000 people at its height, more than one-third of the city’s population.
For those who remain, the constant back-and-forth between the Russian army and the Ukrainian artillery hidden among the brutalist Soviet-era high-rise towers has forced upon them a mostly subterranean existence, whose complications go well beyond bedding down in a shelter. Everyday life — tasks such as cooking, showering — now resembles a macabre, never-ending camping trip that an artillery round could end at any moment.
More on Ukraine
- As battered, sun-starved Ukrainians trickled out from the ruins of the port city of Mariupol, Russian forces pressed new bombing runs in the east and south of the country. U.S. officials warned that Moscow will attempt to annex larger chunks of the territory it occupies.
- Israel lashed out at Russia over “unforgivable” comments by its foreign minister about Nazism and antisemitism, including claims that Hitler was Jewish and that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s Jewish origins do not mean his country can’t harbor Nazi elements.
Unprecedented water cuts will require sacrifices for Southern California
In less than a month, residents in large portions of Southern California will be under unprecedented water restrictions due to a worsening drought that has severely limited water supplies. But behind that is a big cut in water use needed to avoid even more serious measures. Can we do it? Here’s what we know:
Currently, the average potable water use across the MWD’s service area — including residential, commercial and industrial water use — amounts to 125 gallons per person per day. But those in targeted areas will need to use 80 gallons per day — or a 35% drop — to hit savings numbers.
Officials expect yellow and brown lawns due to less water. There are exceptions to the new rules, however. Those exceptions are meant to protect the region’s trees, which provide valuable shade and help stave off dangerous heat health effects.
California’s population keeps falling, led by coastal losses
California’s population continued to decline after falling for the first time on record during the COVID-19 pandemic — but that loss is showing signs of slowing, new demographic data indicate.
The state’s population declined by 117,552 between Jan. 1, 2021, and Jan. 1, 2022, bringing the estimated total population to 39,185,605, according to data released by the state Department of Finance.
A growing number of families have moved inland over the last few years, data show, but the migratory shift grew even more pronounced as the barriers to moving dropped for many in large cities, spurred by a newfound ability to work remotely.
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PHOTO OF THE DAY
The pace of homicides in L.A. in 2022 now surpasses last year, which saw a 15-year high. While the figures indicate the dramatic escalation in violence the city experienced in 2020 and 2021 may be leveling off, they show violent deaths are still occurring far more frequently than a few years ago, experts said.
Guess founder sues Lisa Bloom, claiming the prominent attorney extorted him. The complaint alleges Bloom knew Paul Marciano had not raped an aspiring model but threatened to file suit against him anyway.
‘Intensive cleanup’ underway after a truck crash spills 2,000 gallons of asphalt binder in a forest. Forest officials said they were worried that the spill damaged the environment, but added that “knowing more about the substance reassures us the spread of liquid material in the river is minimal.”
More ducks are targeted at Costa Mesa’s TeWinkle Park, police say. Less than two weeks after four ducks were found shot and killed at Costa Mesa’s TeWinkle Park, more injured birds have been discovered with similar injuries and taken to a local wildlife rescue center.
Kathy Boudin, a radical imprisoned in a fatal heist, dies at 78. The former Weather Underground radical, who served more than two decades behind bars for her role in a fatal 1981 armored truck robbery and spent the latter part of her life helping people who had been imprisoned, died of cancer surrounded by family.
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Special grand jury to be seated in Trump election investigation in Georgia. Potential grand jurors were scheduled to arrive in Atlanta this week as part of the investigation into whether former President Trump and others illegally tried to influence the 2020 election in Georgia. They could be seated for up to a year as they make recommendations to the district attorney, who then decides whether to seek an indictment.
Muslims mark Eid al-Fitr with joy and concern around the world. Many are still determined to enjoy the Eid amid the easing of coronavirus restrictions in their countries. For others, the festivities are dampened by conflict and economic hardship.
U.S. pediatricians’ group moves to abandon ‘race-based’ medicine. The influential academy has begun purging outdated advice. It is committing to scrutinizing its “entire catalogue,” including guidelines, educational materials, textbooks and newsletter articles, said Dr. Joseph Wright, lead author of the new policy and chief health equity officer at the University of Maryland’s medical system.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
Celebrities interpret a Gilded Age of glamour at the Met Gala. The celebration of American design was themed to gilded glamour, sprouting classic black tuxedoes for many of the men and lots of dresses in black and white for the women. Others paid literal homage to New York City and still more shimmered in metallic golds and silver.
Kardashians defeat Blac Chyna in a defamation trial. After a 10-day trial in Los Angeles, jurors determined the celebrity family did not defame Chyna and the panel declined to award any damages to her.
A documentary takes an unsparing look at the Astroworld disaster. Charlie Minn’s “Concert Crush” reconstructs how rapper Travis Scott’s Astroworld concert left 10 attendees dead and went down as one of Houston’s darkest days. The film relies on phone footage and interviews with survivors, with Live Nation alleging that the film might influence a jury in several lawsuits in advance.
HBO’s new go-to director used to feel ‘replaceable.’ Not anymore. After pursuing an acting career that landed her roles in films such as “Posse” and “A Low Down Dirty Shame,” Salli Richardson-Whitfield switched gears and is now making her mark on TV as a producer and director of major prestige projects, including “Winning Time” and “The Gilded Age.”
Amazon workers in New York City reject a union. Warehouse workers rejected a union bid Monday, dealing a blow to organizers who last month pulled off the first successful U.S. organizing effort in the retail giant’s history. The failed bid comes after workers at a different Staten Island facility voted in favor of unionizing.
Facebook is exiting the podcast business after a year. Facebook announced various audio efforts last April during a hot market for podcasting and audio in general. But the company’s interest has waned, with plans to remove them altogether from the social-media service starting June 3.
The Los Angeles Kings won the first game of their first-round Stanley Cup playoffs series against the Edmonton Oilers. A key to determining the winner of this series will be winning the matchups at center, columnist Helene Elliott writes.
Here’s why football is all sunshine again for Rams’ Troy Hill after a Cleveland detour. Hill, reacquired by the Rams in a draft day trade, has no regrets about his decision to cash in and play for the Browns on a two-year deal that included $4.5 million in guarantees. But Hill, 30, is ecstatic about rejoining the team with who he established himself.
WNBA to honor Brittney Griner with a decal on teams’ floors. The All-Star center remains in Russia after being detained following her arrival at a Moscow airport on Feb. 17. Russian authorities said a search of her luggage revealed vape cartridges that allegedly contained oil derived from cannabis, which could carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. She has a hearing set for May 19.
Greyhound racing is nearing its end in the U.S. after a long slide. Since it reached its peak in the 1980s, increased concerns about how the dogs are treated along with an explosion of gambling options have nearly killed a sport that gained widespread appeal about a century ago.
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How heat pumps can help save Ukrainians from Putin and the rest of us from climate change. The U.S. should provide efficient, electrically powered heat pumps to Europe to help defend Ukraine.
ONLY IN L.A.
It’s not an ADU, or accessory dwelling unit. It’s a soundproof backyard studio, designed and permitted as a recreation room. But architect John Bertram’s backyard building has the same oasis feel of some of the ADUs that have grown popular in California. Bertram was looking for a complement to his small but classic Richard Neutra-designed residence, so he created a 144-square-foot room sunk in a garden. Read more and see more cool photos.
FROM THE ARCHIVES
On this day in 1920, the Negro National League of baseball held its first game. Andrew “Rube” Foster, a former player, forged the league in an era of Jim Crow laws and segregationist sentiment. “Featuring teams in Chicago, Cincinnati, Dayton, Detroit, Indianapolis, Kansas City and St. Louis, the NNL adopted the slogan, ‘We Are the Ship, All Else the Sea’ as a pledge to set its own course,” according to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Players who rose to fame in the league included Satchel Paige, snapped by a Times photographer at a 1943 game, above.
Paige’s career spanned 38 years. More than 20 years after he began playing in the NNL, he signed with the (team formerly known as the) Cleveland Indians, at age 42. In an article in a 1943 edition, The Times referred to Paige as “one of those rare athletes whose prowess and popularity never seem to wane.”
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