Today’s Headlines: Biden visits California to talk climate and raise cash

President Biden talks with California Gov. Gavin Newsom as they sit on a bench
President Biden talks with California Gov. Gavin Newsom as they visit the Lucy Evans Baylands Nature Interpretive Center in Palo Alto, Monday.
(Susan Walsh / Associated Press)

Hello, it’s Tuesday, June 20, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:


Biden announces funding to combat climate change, raises campaign money

On his first trip to California since announcing his reelection campaign, President Biden announced $600 million in federal funding to fight the effects of climate change after touring a Northern California nature reserve with Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The financial commitment from the president is expected to only enhance Biden’s strong political support in California and among Americans concerned about the environment, two constituencies critical to the president’s bid for a second term.


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Bused from Texas to L.A.: 20 hours on the road

More than 21,600 migrants have been transported across the country from Texas, under a plan hastily instituted by Gov. Greg Abbott last year. Forty-two arrived in Los Angeles last week.

Use of the bathroom on the bus was restricted. Passengers asked the driver to stop so they could use a bathroom at a gas station or fast-food restaurant. But they were told they couldn’t stop until they’d left Texas, one of the migrants said.

McAllen, where the trip originated, is near the southern tip of the Lone Star State, more than 11 hours from the border with New Mexico.


Vets must fight a bureaucratic war to get promised VA housing

Los Angeles has more homeless veterans than any city in America, according to a 2022 federal report, with nearly 4,000 men and women who served their country bedding down in homeless shelters, in old cars and RVs, under freeway underpasses.

The fight to build supportive housing on the verdant, 388-acre West L.A. Department of Veterans Affairs campus has spanned 12 years, two lawsuits and two acts of Congress. By 2022, the VA was supposed to have provided 770 housing units; so far, it has provided only 233.

Getting into one of those precious few units requires homeless veterans to run a months-long gantlet of paperwork and office visits that would test anyone’s resolve.

Gun violence rocks nation over the holiday weekend

Shootings across California and elsewhere made for a violent Father’s Day and Juneteenth weekend, with at least a dozen killed in seven states.


But the incidents — though senseless and heartbreaking — were not necessarily a sign of any specific spike in crime, experts said, noting that homicides are down from last year and even more from the steep spike nationwide in 2020.


Natasha Hundreds performs at the queer-owned Beach Garden Social Club.
(Dania Maxwell / Los Angeles Times)

Dating as far back as ancient Greek theater, drag is a legendary form of entertainment that’s touched nearly every corner of the world. Major U.S. cities have been host to drag performances for more than a century — beginning with underground ballrooms in the mid-19th century and evolving into everything from bingo to dance nights. More often than not these were evening events.

Drag brunches flipped that model by bringing the art form to daytime audiences. In 2001, the now-nationwide Hamburger Mary’s franchise introduced the concept to Southern California.


Alice Chandler, first female Orange County sheriff’s deputy, dies at 94. The cowgirl, who held her badge from 1949 through 1951, also worked as a dog breeder, cattle herder, Christian missionary and caregiver during a well-traveled life.

For women ex-prisoners, food insecurity can trigger a catastrophe. Activists want more aid. Women exiting California’s prison system without access to adequate food can spiral into poverty and recidivism. Activists and lawmakers are pushing for more generous benefits and less red tape.


Could the Fourth of July trigger a summer COVID-19 surge? What L.A. County data show. There are hopeful signs in Los Angeles County that this summer will not be the harbinger of an increase in coronavirus cases, as has happened in each of the last three years.

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Record inflation has hit even Lebanon’s garbage. ‘Trash just isn’t like it used to be.’ One person’s trash is definitely another person’s treasure in Lebanon, but record inflation and the tanking economy have made finding it a lot harder.

Mexican resort where two Californians died ignored gas leak problems, employees say. Current and former employees also said managers disabled carbon monoxide detectors so alarms would not disturb guests.

Titanic tourist submarine disappears on trip to see wreck in North Atlantic. A search-and-rescue mission is underway after a submersible used for tourist expeditions to view the wreck of the Titanic went missing in the North Atlantic.


The 40 best songs of 2023 so far. It’s been a spectacular half-year for regional Mexican acts, “Fast Car” and Taylor Swift.


Six showrunners on blowing the pitch, the WGA strike and Meryl Streep and Harrison Ford. Craig Mazin, Bill Lawrence, Janine Nabers, Liz Tigelaar, Ramy Youssef and John Hoffman sound off about the industry, taking credit and “worry management.”

A queer trailblazer, L.A.’s mighty Sylvester is finally getting his due. “Disco Heat: The Fantasy Years 1977-1981,” a new Sylvester anthology released last week by Real Gone Music, offers a glimpse of his music from the Fantasy Records years, the period when he recorded the disco hits that made him a star.


This is why your strawberries were so meh this season until now. A wild and wet winter wreaked havoc on the fruit that is usually the star of the spring season.

California artists, chefs find creative ways to confront destructive ‘superbloom’ of wild mustard. Seemingly everywhere in California this year following an unusually wet winter, wild black mustard is highly flammable — and useful in pursuits from dyeing fabric to making salad.


‘Enough is enough.’ Too much soccer is aggravating MLS players and coaches. CONCACAF Champions League, Nations League and Gold Cup tournaments have created congested schedules and hardships for MLS players and teams.

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Talk about ‘American carnage’ — Walt Nauta is the latest casualty of Donald Trump’s malicious selfishness. Beyond the civil and criminal allegations of misconduct, perhaps the single most compelling argument for Trump’s unfitness for the presidency is his cruelty,

The L.A. Zoo’s plan to house mountain lions and grizzlies shouldn’t mean wrecking the view. Zoos need to build and renovate. But the focus should be on animal welfare and conservation.


Hikers take in the views from a picnic bench atop Echo Mountain.
(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

It’s only logical. The longest day of the year — the summer solstice — is also the greatest opportunity for a picnic. More daylight. A likelihood of mild temperatures. And most schools are done for the term.


Jaws premiered on June 20, 1975. This advertisement for the movie ran in print opening weekend. To celebrate the movie’s 40th anniversary in 2015, Los Angeles Times staffers unearthed the paper’s original review: We hated the movie.

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