- Today's comic by Matt Bors is Prism complex:
- Voters in Virginia head to the polls today to select candidates in several statewide and local primaries. Democrats are picking nominees for lieutenant governor (state Sen. Ralph Northam and former White House technology chief Aneesh Chopra are vying for the job) and attorney general (state Sen. Mark Herring and attorney Justin Fairfax are the candidates). Terry McAuliffe is uncontested for the gubernatorial nomination. Republicans, meanwhile, selected their standard bearers at a convention last month.
There are also a number of contested races for Virginia's House of Delegates. Of greatest interest to Kossacks is the fight in the 63rd District, where Air Force vet Evandra Thompson is trying to unseat Delegate Rosalyn Dance in the Democratic primary; Dance's penchant for siding with Republicans on key legislation has provided the fuel for Thompson's bid. On the GOP side, five incumbents, including state House Speaker Bill Howell, face challenges from conservatives who are unhappy with their support of a recent transportation overhaul bill.
Polls close at 7 PM ET, and we'll be liveblogging the results at Daily Kos Elections. Please feel free to post your predictions for any of these races in comments! - David Nir
- Six months ago Friday, the Newtown slaughter happened:
There were 26 of them in all—26 victims, which meant 26 families left adrift, grasping for a way to continue on. Some found it in church, returning to the pews every Wednesday and Sunday with a Sandy Hook Bible group, lighting 26 candles each time they went. Others found it in the spiritual medium that contacted victims’ families on Facebook, offering to facilitate a private seance and “connect them with the other side.” Some started nonprofit foundations in their child’s name or escaped back into jobs in Manhattan or ordered wine by the case or planted 26 trees or considered moving out of state or installed blackout curtains for privacy. One mother took a job sorting corporate donations to the Newtown community fund, organizing 26,000 bottles of “Sandy Hook Green” nail polish and 2,600 wool blankets, because the magnitude of the donations helped reaffirm the magnitude of her loss.
- Nature's own tank: Raindrops are to mosquitoes what falling VW Beetles would be to humans. Yet incredibly--maddeningly—mosquitoes survive rainstorms all the time. How?
- Redford stars in ad to pressure Obama on climate change action. The Natural Resources Defense Council will air an ad on television, on-line and in social media outlets with actor-director Robert Redford urging President Obama to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants:
“Climate change is happening fast,” Redford says in the ad, which will run on both broadcast and cable stations in Washington. “We’ve got to stop making the problem worse, and that means reducing carbon pollution from its biggest source, coal-fired power plants. The good news is that President Obama has pledged to act. I just hope the President has the courage of his convictions.”
- Here's George Wallace's hand-edited segregation speech in the school-house door.
- Federal prisoner pens letter thanking the NRA. Gary W. Bornman is serving time in the "supermax" prison in Florence, Colorado. He recently wrote to the National Rifle Association:
As a lifelong career criminal, although I no longer enjoy the right to keep and bear arms, I'd like to take a moment to express my appreciation to the National Rifle Association for nonetheless protecting my ability to easily obtain them through its opposition to universal background checks.
Upon release in a few years from my current federal sentence on bank robbery and weapons charges, I fully anticipate being able to stop at a gun show on my way home to Connecticut—where new laws have made it nearly impossible for a felon to readily purchase guns or ammunition—in order to buy some with which to resume my criminal activities.
And so, a heartfelt thank you to the NRA and all those members of Congress voting with them. I, along with tens of thousands of other criminals, couldn't do what we do without you.
- Duke Law Prof. Jedediah Purdy explains his arrest in Raleigh:
Because North Carolina refused the Obamacare Medicaid expansion, I ended up in handcuffs in the Wake County Detention Center. That was my trigger, anyway. Statistically, next year more than two thousand people in the state will die who would have lived if North Carolina had accepted federal money to give health insurance to low-income families. (That's our share of an estimated 19,000 preventable deaths nationwide in the 14 states that have rejected the expansion.) Because the state legislature was doing that in my name, I decided I needed to stand in front of it, at least until they took me away.
- Cocky guy sends woman unsolicited dick pic, woman sends it to his mom.
- Ötzi, the Iceman, had a brain injury:
Reconstruction of Ötzi the Iceman
Two dark coloured areas at the back of the Iceman's cerebrum had first been mentioned back in 2007 during a discussion about the fracture to his skull. Scientists surmised from a CAT scan of his brain that he had received a blow to the forehead during his deadly attack that caused his brain to knock against the back of his head, creating dark spots from the bruising. Till now, this hypothesis had been left unexplored.
- Democrats court New Jersey's new GOP senator for background check vote.
- On today's Kagro in the Morning show, it's all about the NSA story again. And once again, Greg Dworkin and Armando pitch in on the discussion. Greg did bring us the top non-NSA story of the day, though, that being the Justice Department's Plan B reversal, plus some new and longer-term polling data on approval/disapproval of surveillance activity. From there on, though, it's all NSA, and another expansive discussion of the discussion (which might possibly constitute meta-data), including looks at the much-maligned takes of Jennifer Rubin and David Brooks.