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World & Nation

Newsletter: As Sanders surges, Biden places his bet

Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Vice President Joe Biden.
(Paul Sancya, Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press)

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ victory in the Nevada primary leaves Joe Biden looking to South Carolina to get back in the race.

TOP STORIES

As Sanders Surges, Biden Places His Bet

Former Vice President Joe Biden, leaving Las Vegas behind, is placing all his chips on South Carolina as his best — and perhaps last — chance to reverse a string of losses in early-voting states and mount a serious challenge to Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Biden appears to have come in a distant second in Saturday’s Nevada caucuses, walloped by Sanders. The Vermont senator won more than twice as much of the vote, solidifying his position as the front-runner in the contest.

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In South Carolina, the electorate for the first time this primary season will feature a black majority, testing support for the candidates among a key segment of the Democratic base. Saturday’s primary also marks the final single-state contest before the race dramatically widens to 14 states, including California, which vote on March 3, Super Tuesday.

More Politics

— President Trump arrived in India today and spoke before a crowd of more than 100,000 at a cricket stadium. The city of Ahmedabad had built a wall to hide slum dwellings during his visit.

— Trump’s national security advisor, in an exchange that touched on a perennial sore point for the president, said he had no knowledge of intelligence agency warnings that Russia is trying once again to help Trump by interfering in the 2020 campaign.

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— Trump has a lot riding on a precarious agreement with Taliban militants to end America’s longest war. But the process, which began over the weekend, is fraught with obstacles that could lengthen the conflict rather than conclude it.

Following the Money

With the L.A. County district attorney’s race heading toward the March 3 primary, the ideological split between Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey and her two challengers is starkly represented by the people and organizations pumping $4.3 million into the race through contributions to outside committees.

A Times analysis of public records found that nearly all of the $2.2 million in contributions to outside committees benefiting Lacey has come from law enforcement unions, while three-quarters of the $2.1 million spent to bolster George Gascón’s candidacy was given by a pair of Northern California benefactors. The records also show public defender Rachel Rossi has generated little in the way of financial support.

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Know Before You Go

The list of changes facing Los Angeles residents when they go to vote in the March 3 primary is long: L.A. ballots have been fully redesigned; thousands of neighborhood polling places are gone, replaced by fewer regional voting centers, some of which are now open; and once there, millions of Angelenos will use new touch-screen devices approved by state officials just weeks ago.

Voters across the county had their first experiences with the new process over the weekend. In some cases, there were hiccups. But officials say they’re hoping the major kinds are out in a system that took a decade to build.

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OUR MUST-READS FROM THE WEEKEND

Michael R. Bloomberg’s presidential campaign has recruited more than 500 people at a rate of $2,500 a month to text friends and post on social media. But it’s not being picky in whom they choose.

— Trump has flipped the 9th Circuit. The court has suddenly shifted to the right, with an even more pronounced tilt expected in the years ahead.

— The deaths of Pop Smoke and other hip-hop stars has fans across L.A. in mourning and feeling existential.

— French writer Gabriel Matzneff operated openly as a pedophile for decades. He may finally face justice.

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— Can the Los Angeles County Museum of Art afford its massive redesign? A look at the numbers.

— Before that French Laundry, there was Sally Schmitt’s French Laundry.

FROM THE ARCHIVES

This is the city: Los Angeles, Calif. And this is the TV show: “Dragnet.” When Jack Webb relaunched the series in 1967, the LAPD was facing accusations of mistreatment and police brutality, especially in the aftermath of the 1965 riots. Many felt the show was good PR. “The department considers ‘Dragnet’ as an accurate reflection of its methods and morals, ideals and goals,” according to a Times story at the time. “It recognizes Webb’s production as completely honest in concept and about 99% truthful in execution.”

Feb. 24, 1967: On the set of “Dragnet,” actor Jack Webb, left, who plays Sgt. Joe Friday, Los Angeles police Sgt. Dan Cook and associate producer Bob Cinader take a break.
Feb. 24, 1967: On the set of “Dragnet,” actor Jack Webb, left, who plays Sgt. Joe Friday, Los Angeles police Sgt. Dan Cook and associate producer Bob Cinader take a break.
(Harry Chase / Los Angeles Times)
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CALIFORNIA

— Twenty thousand mourners will fill downtown Los Angeles’ Staples Center today to celebrate the lives of Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, who were killed alongside seven others in a helicopter crash. Here’s how to watch if you don’t have a required ticket.

— Voters will see only one statewide proposition on the March 3 primary ballot. This Proposition 13 is a proposal to borrow money for the state’s schools.

Costa Mesa has received a temporary restraining order that blocks state and federal agencies from using a facility as a quarantine site for coronavirus patients.

Mike Hughes, the self-made engineer who billed himself as the “world’s greatest daredevil,” was killed outside Barstow during a launch of a homemade rocket gone wrong, his publicist said.

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HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

Auschwitz‑Birkenau Memorial officials are criticizing Amazon for showing fictional atrocities taking place in Nazi death camps in its new Prime series “Hunters.”

Myriam Gurba, the novelist and Long Beach high school teacher who led the backlash against the novel “American Dirt,” has been placed on administrative leave and was escorted from her school.

— For Universal’s “The Invisible Man,” star Elisabeth Moss and writer-director Leigh Whannell modernized the classic movie monster with a female-forward and tech-centric storyline.

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Lizzo was named entertainer of the year and “Just Mercy” won best motion picture, best actor and best supporting actor at the NAACP Image Awards.

NATION-WORLD

South Korea reported another large jump in new virus cases Monday. The 161 new cases bring South Korea’s total to 763, and two more deaths raise its toll to seven. China also Monday reported 409 new cases, raising the mainland’s total to 77,150. Meanwhile, authorities in Italy are scrambling to contain rapidly rising numbers of new coronavirus infections, the largest amount outside Asia.

— A man was struck and killed by a Mardi Gras float during a raucous weekend street parade in New Orleans, becoming the second person killed along a parade route in just days during this year’s Carnival season.

— WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is due to appear in a London court today to begin his battle against extradition to the U.S. on espionage charges.

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— In Mexico’s Guerrero state, the slaughter of 10 band members reflects a legacy of violence.

BUSINESS

Customer surveys have taken over the world. Not everyone rates them a 10.

— The Hydro Flask started out at farmers markets. Here’s how it became such a hot item.

SPORTS

— Boxer Tyson Fury won the WBC heavyweight championship belt over the weekend. Columnist Arash Markazi explains how it caps one of the great comeback stories in sports history.

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— Forty years after the “Miracle on Ice,” the U.S. victory over the Soviet Union in hockey still has a lot of meaning to players and fans.

OPINION

— The complete list of L.A. Times endorsements in the March 3 California primary.

— U.S. hospitals are unprepared for the spread of coronavirus. The leader of a healthcare think tank and former Harvard professor explains what they should do.

WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING

Amelia Earhart’s lost poems: Searching for them is a study in fragments. (Literary Hub)

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Who should decide what books are allowed in prison? (NPR)

ONLY IN CALIFORNIA

Once facing demolition, Palm Desert’s Miles C. Bates house has officially been saved. The Midcentury gem has a wave-like roof, thus giving it the name the Wave House. But over the years, some additions had made it a gem in the rough. All it took was a community movement called “Save the Wave,” a circus-like auction and a painstaking restoration to unlock its former glory.

Comments or ideas? Email us at headlines@latimes.com.


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