Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Afghanistan: “Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Saturday committed to pushing reforms after his picks for attorney general and interior minister won long-sought Cabinet confirmation, while U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry pleaded with the government’s power-sharing leaders to bury their ‘factional divisions’ for the good of the country.”
* Speaking of our peripatetic chief diplomat: “Secretary of State John Kerry attended a memorial ceremony in Hiroshima on Monday for victims of the American atomic bombing 71 years ago, becoming the highest-ranking United States administration official to visit the site of one of the most destructive acts of World War II.”
* Torture: “CIA Director John Brennan told NBC News in an exclusive interview that his agency will not engage in harsh ‘enhanced interrogation’ practices, including waterboarding, which critics call torture – even if ordered to by a future president.”
* Good for him: “Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed two anti-discrimination executive orders related to the rights of transgender people on Thursday, contrasting recent high-profile laws in other states that been criticized for discriminating against the LGBT community.”
* Fascinating research: “For poor Americans, the place they call home can be a matter of life or death.”
* The labor force participation rate is climbing, which doesn’t do Republican talking points any favors.
* Discouraging changes to the federal Election Assistance Commission: “For years, Republicans in statehouses have been trying to block voting rights. Now, the federal agency whose mandate is to make voting easier is also being hijacked by Republican ideologues.”
* An outside-the-box idea related to Merrick Garland’s Supreme Court nomination: “It is in full accord with traditional notions of waiver to say that the Senate, having been given a reasonable opportunity to provide advice and consent to the president with respect to the nomination of Garland, and having failed to do so, can fairly be deemed to have waived its right.”
* Springsteen isn’t the only performer committed to social action: “Canadian rocker Bryan Adams is canceling a performance this week in Mississippi, citing the state’s new law that allows religious groups and some private businesses to refuse service to gay couples.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
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Monday's Mini-Report, 4.11.16