Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Iraq: “Refinery workers, eyewitnesses and an Iraqi Army officer reported the seizure of Iraq’s biggest oil refinery by Sunni extremists on Wednesday after army helicopter gunships failed to repel their attack.”
* White House: “President Barack Obama is still considering what to do about Iraq, but he told the top congressional leaders Wednesday that he doesn’t think he needs Congress’ permission to act…. The White House issued a readout of the meeting saying the president talked about possible increased security assistance to Iraq, but did not mention strikes.”
* Economy: “The Federal Reserve said Wednesday that economic growth had rebounded after a nasty winter even as it sharply cut its economic forecast for 2014 to reflect the unexpected contraction during the early months of the year.”
* In related news: “The taper is continuing, and interest rates are going to stay low for a while yet.”
* Much more on this tomorrow morning: “To fix America’s crumbling roads and bridges, Tennessee GOP Sen. Bob Corker says he’s willing to do what’s become unthinkable for most congressional Republicans: raise taxes.”
* NFL: “The United States Patent and Trademark Office has canceled the Washington Redskins trademark registration, calling the football team’s name ‘disparaging to Native Americans.’ … The ruling does not mean that the Redskins have to change the name of the team. It does affect whether the team and the NFL can make money from merchandising because it limits the team’s legal options when others use the logos and the name on T shirts, sweatshirts, beer glasses and license plate holders.”
* GM: “House lawmakers on Wednesday took General Motors to the woodshed for its slow vehicle recalls, accusing the company of looking the other way as people died in a string of accidents. Members of an Energy and Commerce subcommittee told GM CEO Mary Barra they are not satisfied the results of an internal investigation into an ignition switch flaw that can cause engines and airbags to disable. They said there are major holes in the company’s story.”
* Michigan: “The state of Michigan’s use of its rainy-day fund to contribute $195 million toward a Detroit bankruptcy settlement fund has caused one Wall Street credit rating agency to lower its outlook on state debt.”
* Haven’t heard from Al Gore in a while: “In the struggle to solve the climate crisis, a powerful, largely unnoticed shift is taking place.”
* And you wouldn’t like Dana Milbank when he’s angry – except in this case, in which you might very well like him when he’s angry.
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
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Wednesday's Mini-Report, 6.18.14