Today: Trumpcare Scorecard: 23 Million More Americans Without Insurance
Protests outside Congress on May 4, when House Republicans passed their healthcare bill. (NICHOLAS KAMM / AFP/Getty Images)
The numbers are out on the GOP healthcare plan, President Trump is meeting with NATO leaders, and Montana politics go Wild West. I’m Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.
Trumpcare Scorecard: 23 Million More Americans Without Insurance
House Republicans didn’t wait for the numbers to be crunched when they passed their bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act three weeks ago. Now, they’re getting crunched for the numbers: 23 million fewer people insured by 2026, with many others seeing higher deductibles and skimpier health coverage, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. What this means for the Senate Republicans’ discussions is unclear, given all the debate is taking place behind closed doors. Read the CBO’s full analysis here, and get our side-by-side comparison of the GOP plan versus Obamacare.
Still ‘Obsolete’? Trump Visits NATO in a Time of Terror
The fight against terrorism will be at the top of the list when President Trump meets with NATO leaders in Brussels today, as the investigation into the Manchester bombing widens. U.S. officials are hoping NATO will formally join the effort against Islamic State — and Trump is expected to push for allied countries to pay more for their mutual defense. Meanwhile, nine people in Britain and Libya were taken into custody, including two of the Manchester attacker’s brothers and his father, as investigators look for evidence of a larger network’s involvement.
Body-Slams and Ballots in Big Sky Country
Under normal circumstances, not much attention would be paid to today’s election for Montana’s lone House of Representatives seat. Voters have sent a Republican to Washington for two decades. But circumstances are not normal. More than $17 million has been spent on the contest, and President Trump (via robocall) and Vice President Pence have campaigned for front-runner Greg Gianforte. Then, last night, Gianforte was cited for misdemeanor assault after a reporter for the Guardian said the candidate body-slammed him.
A Survival Guide: The Big One’s Coming
Have we got your attention now? Seismologist Lucy Jones, whose presence on TV has comforted many a Californian after an earthquake, is trying to shake people out of their complacency. Her message now is not to talk so much about what scientists don’t know but to emphasize what they do: A major quake is coming and there’s a lot you can do to protect yourself. Here are some tips to prepare.
The Dollars-to-Doughnuts Tale of SoCal’s Pink Pastry Boxes
It’s called the “9-9-4” — the 9-by-9-by-4-inch pink cardboard box that is the perfect fit for a dozen doughnuts. If you live in Southern California, you know they’re inescapable, even if you are trying hard to watch your weight. But why are they almost always pink here? Reporter David Pierson tracked down the origin story, and it’s one of those only-in-L.A. tales involving Cambodian refugees, a highflying entrepreneur and simple economics.
L.A.’s Man Behind the Curtain
Billionaire Jerry Perenchio, who died at age 86, didn’t like the spotlight. He refused to be photographed, which meant The Times was forced to run a 1982 portrait of him for decades, much to his apparent amusement. Behind the scenes, he orchestrated spectacles like the 1971 Muhammad Ali-Joe Frazier fight and tennis’ “Battle of the Sexes,” backed films such as “Blade Runner” and “Driving Miss Daisy,” and turned Univision into a Spanish-language TV powerhouse. He donated tens of millions to charities and political causes, while living in a mansion once used as the fictional home of “The Beverly Hillbillies.”
— Actress Evan Rachel Wood reveals what classic TV show she would have liked to acted in, among other tidbits.
— “American Crime” actor Richard Cabral gives us the lowdown on Netflix’s “The Get Down.”
— Chapman University has awarded an honorary MBA to the mother of a quadriplegic student after she attended every class with him.
— A massive landslide that closed Highway 1 near Big Sur is part of a $1-billion problem for the state.
— In a lawsuit, two L.A. County sheriff’s deputies say they were framed for lying about a drug bust and that prosecutors knowingly withheld evidence.
— A brief history of the not-so-brief battle over the 710 Freeway extension, which may be coming to a close.
— Roger Boesche, an Occidental College professor whom President Obama cited as sparking his interest in politics, has died at age 69.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
— Don’t hate them because they’re beautiful: How the new “Baywatch” movie owns its dumbness and rises from the surf.
— Baby returns in a “Dirty Dancing” remake, but TV critic Lorraine Ali wonders if maybe Baby should have stayed in that corner.
— Thirty-one years later, Tom Cruise has a “Top Gun” sequel in the works. Here’s where the cast of the original is now.
— Meet the “grandma Nancy Drews” behind Netflix’s newest true-crime series “The Keepers.”
What do Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Cookie Monster, Grover and Yoda have in common? The man behind them all is puppeteer Frank Oz, who also has directed films such as “Little Shop of Horrors,” “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” and “Bowfinger.” Earlier this year, his first documentary, “Muppet Guys Talking — Secrets Behind the Show the Whole World Watched,” premiered. Today he turns 73.
— A Baltimore defense attorney is in legal trouble after allegedly trying to dissuade a rape victim from testifying by telling her she risked deportation by the Trump administration.
— Taiwan’s highest court paved the way for Asia’s first law allowing same-sex marriage.
— Salt Lake City police have found a stolen 700-pound statue of Mormon prophets Joseph Smith and Brigham Young.
— What was that unidentified object flying over South Korea’s border that prompted machine-gun fire? Officials think it was a group of large North Korean balloons.
— Whales are the largest animals on Earth. Now we know why they got so big.
— Records show that slaughterhouses and sawmills had better safety records than Tesla’s auto plant, but the company says it’s improving.
— The Transportation Security Administration has been testing a new screening procedure that more closely examines electronic devices in carry-on bags at LAX.
— Columnist Dylan Hernandez hopes the Dodgers aren’t messing up potential franchise cornerstone pitcher Julio Urias.
— The USC men’s basketball team won’t be losing some key players to the NBA draft. Does that make the Trojans a top-10 team?
— L.A. City Atty. Mike Feuer and LAPD Chief Charlie Beck write that Congress must not undermine California’s concealed weapons laws.
— America’s military is built to help defense contractors, not troops.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
— Journalist Walter Mears, one of the “boys on the bus,” looks at the similarities and key differences of Watergate versus Trump’s travails. (Associated Press)
— Some fact-checking on fact-checkers. (Poynter)
— Soap is threatening to mar the canvases of masterworks around the globe, and scientists are trying to find a way to stop the chemical reaction behind it. (ArtNet)
ONLY IN L.A.
Behind a pink storefront in Culver City, there’s a high-ceilinged space with Victorian couches and a one-eyed rescue dog who goes by the name of Fitzwilliam Waffles. Lining the walls are lots and lots of romance novels. The Ripped Bodice is billed as America’s sole romance-only bookstore and is run by two sisters who recommend only stories with a happy ending: “If you call it a romance and then one of the people dies at the end, you are a lying liar who lies.”
Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.