It's the Midday News Wrap, our weekly roundtable on the week's major local, national and international developments, with a rotating panel of journalists and commentators.
We're approaching the 100-Day mark in the Trump administration: Republicans hold the House, the Senate and the White House, and yet -- while the Senate did approve Supreme Court justice Neil Gorsuch --President Trump has had little to show for as far as legislative victories are concerned. What’s next on the president’s agenda? Another attempt to repeal and replace the ACA? Or perhaps he’ll move his long-promised tax reform agenda to the front burner, although we’re still waiting to see a tax reform proposal of any kind.
Bill O’Reilly has lost his job, but Fox has helped leaven the pain of that loss for him with a $25 million dollar check, despite more than a dozen complaints that he is an indecent creep. Even creeps have contracts, it appears.
And in Georgia, a young filmmaker came within 2 points of an outright victory for a seat in Congress. An untested Democrat, Jon Ossoff, got 48% of the vote in a field of 18 mostly Republican candidates, just short of what he needed to win without a runoff. Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel got less than 20%. They’ll face each other head-to-head in June. Polls today have them tied.
Speaking of elections, the French are set to begin voting this Sunday in their presidential election. There are 11 candidates in that race, four of whom are polling close to each other.
And in the UK, Prime Minister Theresa May, who is preparing the British exit from the EU, has called for a national election in June -- three years ahead of schedule.
In Turkey, voters seem to have narrowly approved President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s bid to consolidate his power. President Trump quickly congratulated the Turkish leader, but critics have called the vote an erosion of democracy.
Arkansas, amid protests and court rulings, last night, carried out its first execution in more than a decade.
Here in Baltimore, Wednesday was the second anniversary of the death of Freddie Gray.
And Dallas Dance, Baltimore’s charismatic school superintendent still in the first year of a four-year contract, announced, surprisingly, that he will retire at the end of June.
Joining Tom on the News Wrap panel today:
Dr. Zeynep Tufekci is contributing opinion writer at the New York Times and author of the new book Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protests. She joins Tom on the line from Chapel Hill, where she is an associate professor at the University of North Carolina.
Kamau High joins us in Studio A. He is managing editor of the Afro-American Newspaper, based here in Baltimore, and a former reporter and digital producer in New York City for the Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, among others.
Michael Fletcher is also here today. He is a senior writer at ESPN’s The Undefeated. He was for many years a national economics reporter and a White House reporter for The Washington Post, and before THAT, he was a reporter for many years at The Baltimore Sun.