Supreme Court agrees to hear appeal from baker who invoked the First Amendment in refusing to make a cake for a gay couple’s wedding, and allows Trump administration to go ahead with parts of travel ban from six mostly Muslim countries pending a fall review. TSA reportedly considering making airline passengers remove books and papers from their carry-on bags for security checkpoint inspection. FOX News interviews the Trumps: criticism for softball questions reminiscent of state media to President Trump in one, and in another Ivanka Trump, special advisor to the President, says “I try to stay out of politics.’’ Owner of the National Enquirer, a Trump friend for decades, said to be considering bid to take over financially struggling Time, Inc. magazines. CNN memo imposes strict in-house approval policy for online reporting involving Russia after retracting story. And the White House press secretary restricts public access to briefing by banning cameras – again. -Dru Menaker, Chief Operating Officer


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Supreme Court to Take Case on Baker Who Refused to Sell Wedding Cake to Gay Couple
Lower courts had ruled that Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, had violated Colorado’s public accommodations law, which prohibits refusing service to customers based on factors such as race, sex, marital status or sexual orientation. The Supreme Court said it will consider next term whether the Denver baker unlawfully discriminated against a gay couple by refusing to sell them a wedding cake.

Supreme Court Allows Limited Version of Trump’s Travel Ban to Take Effect, Will Consider Case in Fall
The action means that the administration may impose a 90-day ban on travelers from Libya, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen and a 120-day ban on all refugees entering the United States, with the exceptions noted by the court. The court made an important exception: it said the ban “may not be enforced against foreign nationals who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.”

TSA Considers Forcing Airline Passengers to Remove Books From Carry-ons
The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) is reportedly testing new safety procedures that could require airline passengers to remove books from their carry-on bags when going through security lines, raising privacy concerns. The ACLU urged the TSA to train its agents in the privacy concerns surrounding examining passengers’ books and papers and proposed the agents allow passengers to wrap their books and papers in another material, like a sleeve, to protect their contents.

Ivanka Trump Says She Tries to Stay Out of Politics
In an interview with “Fox and Friends”, Senior White House adviser Ivanka Trump said she tries to “leave the politics to other people and really lean into the issues that I care deeply about.” However, Trump stepped away from roles at the Trump Organization and running her eponymous lifestyle brand to take the unpaid role in the administration, and has focused on several policy issues, including paid family leave.

The National Enquirer’s Fervor for Trump
The magazine made its first political endorsement ever, of Trump, last spring. Cover headlines promised, “Donald Trump’s Revenge on Hillary & her Puppets” and “Top Secret Plan Inside: How Trump Will Win Debate!” The publication trashed Trump’s rivals, running a dubious cover story on Ted Cruz. Pecker and Trump have been friends for decades—their professional and personal lives have intersected in myriad ways—and Pecker acknowledges that his tabloids’ coverage of Trump has a personal dimension. Pecker is now considering expanding his business: he may bid to take over the financially strapped magazines of Time, Inc.

CNN Imposing New Rules on Russia Stories
The new restrictions come after CNN retracted a story that connected Anthony Scaramucci, a prominent ally of President Trump, to a Russian investment fund managed by a Kremlin-controlled bank.The retracted story had claimed that Senate investigators were looking at the activities of the $10 billion Russian investment fund in connection to Scaramucci, who served on the executive committee of Trump’s transition team.

Sean Spicer banned TV cameras. Again. So we annotated his briefing. Again.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer barred television cameras from a media briefing on Friday and prohibited live audio broadcasts, marking the third time this week that spokesmen for President Trump have imposed such restrictions. The Fix has annotated a transcript of the session, since it could not be seen on TV.

STAT urges Kentucky Appeals Court to Uphold Order Unsealing OxyContin Records
STAT urged the Kentucky Court of Appeals to uphold a judge’s decision to unseal records filed in a lawsuit over the marketing of the painkiller OxyContin, arguing that state law clearly allows for public access to the documents. The state alleged Purdue Pharma falsely promoted the potent opioid as less addictive than other medications, leading to widespread abuse of OxyContin and accompanying drug-related crime. The STAT brief also argues there is intense public interest in the case that justifies the release of the records.

Why the Case for Transparency Must Be Made Anew
The Trump administration’s penchant for secrecy is not a media issue; it is a democracy issue. And that makes it the weak spot in Trump’s otherwise successful jihad against American journalism. Journalists may regard the case for transparency in government as self-evident, but it should be made anew. The Trump era provides an opportunity to go back to first principles and remind the public why the freedom of the press is enshrined in the First Amendment.


Liu Xiaobo: Jailed Chinese dissident has terminal cancer *PEN Case List
Liu Xiaobo, a key leader in the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989, and human rights campaigner was jailed in 2009 on subversion charges for calling for greater democracy. In the past month, Mr. Liu has been moved from prison to hospital after being diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. His transfer to hospital by no means guarantees his friends and family will be able to visit.

Hundreds Have Gone Missing in Eastern Ukraine’s Dirty War
Stanislav Aseev, a 27-year-old undercover journalist, has joined the hundreds of people — or possibly several thousand — who are missing or held as prisoners of war in eastern Ukraine. Although front-line hostilities have reached a simmering deadlock, a dirty war persists in the wider, lawless region. Brutal and vile treatment of prisoners, indefinite detention and the use of solitary confinement are common to both sides. But abuses occur on a greater scale in breakaway territory, where even the young are vulnerable.

Liberal Berlin Mosque to Stay Open Despite Fatwa From Egypt
The founder of a new liberal mosque in Berlin that allows men and women to pray side by side has vowed to press on with her project even though the institution has been issued a fatwa from Egypt and attacked by religious authorities in Turkey within a week of its opening. Housed in the side-building of a Protestant church, the mosque is open to Sunni, Shia, Alevi, Sufi and other interpretations of Islam but rejects visitors wearing the burqa or the niqab, which founder Ateş has describes as a “political statement”.

British Parliament Hit by Cyberattack, Affecting Email Access
The British Parliament was the target of a cyberattack that left many legislators unable to connect to their email, as remote access to accounts was disabled as a security measure. According to The Times, the stolen data revealed the private login details of 1,000 British members of Parliament and parliamentary staff, 7,000 police employees and more than 1,000 Foreign Office officials.

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