Today’s edition of quick hits.
* Last night at the White House: “[President Joe] Biden, speaking to reporters at the White House tonight, offered one of his most pointed criticisms of the Israeli government since Hamas’ Oct. 7 terrorist attack, characterizing the country’s military operations in the Gaza Strip as ‘over the top.’ He added that his administration was working to secure a pause in the fighting.”
* In related news: “Palestinians in Rafah, the packed city on Gaza’s southern border, were terrified Friday of an impending Israeli ground assault — which the United States and aid groups have warned risks ‘disaster.’ More than half of the enclave’s 2.3 million people have sought shelter in Rafah, crowding tents in refugee camps stalked by growing hunger, disease and more recently fear that there will be nowhere to escape if troops enter the city.”
* Will U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon take this as seriously as she should? “The special counsel prosecuting Donald Trump has asked the judge in the Mar-a-Lago classified documents case to reconsider an order the government argues could identify more than two dozen witnesses and threaten their safety and testimony.”
* On the Korean Peninsula: “North Korean leader Kim Jong Un restated he has no desire for diplomacy with South Korea and that the North would annihilate its rival if provoked, state media said Friday, in the latest of his belligerent statements that are raising tensions in the region.”
* The pushback: “Democrats on Friday defended President Joe Biden and rebuked the special counsel who investigated Biden’s handling of classified documents as a Republican prosecutor with a political agenda. ... Vice President Kamala Harris on Friday told reporters at a gun violence prevention event in Washington that the report was ‘inaccurate and inappropriate.’”
* It’s amazing to see just how little some members of Congress care about their own stature, reputation, and credibility: “Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-N.Y., is calling on Attorney General Merrick Garland to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove President Joe Biden from office after special counsel Robert Hur’s report said that while the president should not be prosecuted for mishandling classified documents, he does suffer from a poor memory.”
* The latest good news on inflation: “The prices consumers pay in the marketplace rose at an even slower pace than originally reported, according to closely watched revisions the government released Friday. Updates to the consumer price index showed that the broad basket of goods and services measured increased 0.2% on the month, less than the originally reported 0.3%, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics said.”
* Interesting case: “Michael Mann, a prominent climate scientist, won his long-standing legal battle against two right-wing bloggers who claimed that he manipulated data in his research and compared him to convicted child molester Jerry Sandusky, a major victory for the outspoken researcher.”
Have a safe weekend.