Maddow Blog | Wednesday’s Mini-Report, 5.15.24

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Today’s edition of quick hits.

* The latest from Slovakia: “The populist prime minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico, was ‘fighting for his life’ Wednesday after he was shot multiple times in an ‘attempted assassination,’ his party’s officials said. Slovak Defense Minister Robert Kaliňák told reporters that doctors were continuing to operate into the evening and Fico’s condition was extremely serious.”

* Just north of Gaza: “The U.S. has begun moving a floating dock system for the delivery of critical humanitarian aid into the waters off the Gaza Strip and expects the system to be installed over the next 24 hours, three U.S. officials said. ... Once it is in place, the officials said delivery of food and other aid could begin in the first 24 to 48 hours after installation.”

* Progress on inflation: “The consumer price index, the most-watched inflation measurement put out by the U.S. government, declined slightly to 3.4% on a 12-month basis in April as price growth in the economy remained elevated. Compared with March, prices climbed 0.3%, with rent and gasoline contributing 70% of the monthly increase, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That was down from the 0.4% increase seen from February to March.”

* Republicans might’ve waited too long to do the right thing: “Just 18 months ago, White House and Pentagon officials debated whether Russia’s forces in Ukraine might collapse and be pushed out of the country entirely. Now, after months of slow Russian ground advances and technological leaps in countering American-provided arms, the Biden administration is increasingly concerned that President Vladimir V. Putin is gathering enough momentum to change the trajectory of the war, and perhaps reverse his once-bleak prospects.”

* The Biden administration’s China tariffs aren’t quite the same as the Trump administration’s China tariffs: “Mr. Biden’s trade war differs from Mr. Trump’s in important ways. Mr. Trump was trying to bring back a broad swath of factory jobs outsourced to China. Mr. Biden is seeking to increase production and jobs in a select group of emerging high-tech industries — including clean energy sectors, like electric vehicles, that Mr. Trump shows little interest in cultivating.”

* Sen. Bob Menendez’s bribery trial: “Opening statements were set to begin on Wednesday afternoon in the corruption trial of Senator Robert Menendez, a powerful New Jersey Democrat accused of selling out his public office and his country in pursuit of lucrative bribes. The case has already dealt a near-lethal blow to Mr. Menendez’s four-decade political career. But a jury of a dozen citizens sworn in earlier Wednesday will now begin formally weighing his fate under intense scrutiny.”

* The FAA bill: “The House on Wednesday passed legislation to reauthorize federal aviation programs and improve air travel at a time of intense passenger woes and dysfunction in the system, sending the bill to President Biden, who was expected to sign it into law. The House approved the bill 387 to 26, days after the Senate passed it on a vote of 88 to 4.”

* The Texas Tribune published a fascinating report on a woman who ran for school board on a far-right platform, won, got to work, and came to realize that her conspiracy theories weren’t true: “The pervasive indoctrination she had railed against simply did not exist. Children were not being sexualized, and she could find no examples of critical race theory, an advanced academic concept that examines systemic racism. She’d examined curriculum related to social-emotional learning, which has come under attack by Christian conservatives who say it encourages children to question gender roles and prioritizes feelings over biblical teachings. Instead, [Courtney Gore] found the materials taught children ‘how to be a good friend, a good human.’”

See you tomorrow.

This article was originally published on MSNBC.com