Today’s edition of quick hits.
* Immigration policy: “The Biden administration announced new policies at the southern border on Thursday, effective immediately, that will bar more immigrants from Cuba, Haiti and Nicaragua from crossing the border to claim asylum while increasing the number of legal pathways for those migrants to apply for asylum from their home countries.”
* An important ruling out of South Carolina: “The South Carolina Supreme Court struck down Thursday a ban on abortion after cardiac activity is detected — typically around six weeks — ruling the restriction violates the state constitution’s right to privacy. The 3-2 decision comes nearly two years after Republican Gov. Henry McMaster signed the measure into law.”
* For tens of millions of workers, this is a very significant development: “The Federal Trade Commission on Thursday issued a plan to ban noncompete clauses, a proposal that would allow workers to take jobs with rival companies or start competing businesses but raises the prospect of legal opposition from companies that say the practice has a legitimate purpose.”
* Quite an admission: “A top Walgreens executive on Thursday acknowledged the company may have overblown concerns about thefts in their stores after shrinkage stabilized over the last year. ... ‘Maybe we cried too much last year,’ [the company’s chief financial officer, James Kehoe] said.”
* All is not well in Florida: “Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration is asking state universities across Florida to report information about critical race theory and diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, drawing criticism from faculty union leaders who view the inquiry as an attempt to silence them. The request asks for a ‘comprehensive list of all staff, programs and campus activities’ and funding assigned to those topics.”
* On a related note, some university professors in Florida are canceling courses or modifying lesson plans, fearing political punishments from the Republican administration.
* An update on the special counsel: “Special counsel Jack Smith has received a trove of new documents from local election officials in Wisconsin and Nevada who were subpoenaed as part of the ongoing criminal investigation by the Justice Department into efforts to overturn the 2020 election. The documents were handed by officials in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, and Clark County, Nevada, in response to Smith’s subpoena. They include communications with lawyers working on former President Donald Trump’s behalf.”
* Best wishes for a speedy recovery: “Senator Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, who is part of Democrats’ razor-thin edge in the chamber and represents a swing state that has played an outsize role in the past two presidential elections, said on Thursday that he had prostate cancer but expected to make a full recovery.”
* I’m not the only one hoping the current iteration of C-SPAN remains: “Loud booing. Animated conversations in the aisles of the House chamber. Sleeping children. Lawmakers scrolling on their phones. The typical live stream from the U.S. House is focused on the dais and the desks from which members of each party address the chamber. But this week brought an unusual amount of drama as the American public watched lawmakers struggle to select a new speaker. And that’s largely thanks to C-SPAN. The House Radio-TV Gallery told The Washington Post that C-SPAN was given permission in advance of the voting for its cameras to visually roam across the chamber. But once a speaker is confirmed, C-SPAN will go back to its normal procedure.”
See you tomorrow.