Skimm for August 3rd
Skimm'd after a lobster bake.
"Draft Biden" — The name of a super PAC that wants Vice President Joe Biden to drop the 'Vice.' A report over the weekend fueled rumors that he could throw his hat into the 2016 circus.
Today, President Obama is announcing rules he hopes will make global warming his B.
In 2012, the EPA drafted some rules around greenhouse gas emissions. This is the final, harsher, version of that plan. The goal? Fight global warming and make renewable energy happen. Power plants will have to do things like make big-time cuts to emissions and swap coal and natural gas for wind and solar power. Not everyone is clapping. Some in the energy industry say this is going to be way too expensive to implement and it might lead to higher energy bills for Americans. And some Republicans are not on board, saying these rules aren't practical and will hurt the economy.
If these rules jump the legal showdown to come, they could set an example on a global scale. And it just so happens that there's a UN climate change conference coming up later this year. Obama's also hoping this will add a green notch to his legacy.
Defending territory here. Yesterday, the US authorized using airstrikes to defend its Syrian rebel friends. In case you missed it, Syria's dealing with a few minor problems (think: ISIS and a civil war). The US has sent military advisors (hint: not combat troops) to arm and train some Syrian rebels in the fight against ISIS. And now the US is saying 'we got your back' -- meaning using air power against Syrian President Assad's regime. Reminder: The US has has trained these rebels to fight ISIS, not Assad. But some worry that if Syrian government forces challenge the US-supported rebels, it would put the US in direct conflict with Assad. And President Obama has tried really, really hard not to get involved at all in Syria's civil war.
Too soon in California. Over the weekend, more than 20 blazes broke out across the state. Dozens of buildings, including homes, have burned down, and thousands of evacuations have been ordered. One firefighter's been killed while fighting the blaze. A fire west of Sacramento covered more than 50,000 acres. That's a lot of football fields. And another fire north of SF charred an area bigger than the city itself. Remember how Cali's been going through an epic drought? That's not helping. Gov. Jerry Brown said that the drought, plus lightning strikes, has "turned much of the state into a tinderbox." Great.
Memphis, TN. Over the weekend, a police officer was shot and killed there during a traffic stop. The officer was shot multiple times by a person in the car he pulled over. Investigators later found marijuana in the car. After fleeing the scene, the driver of the car later turned himself in and was released without charge. But the passenger -- who is believed to be the shooter -- is still on the loose. Yesterday, police named him as a suspect, and there's a manhunt for him.
Can we restructure this debt, or...? That's what Puerto Rico is now hoping to do. Over the weekend, the island defaulted on a $58 million payment to investors. It's Puerto Rico's first default. It's also one the biggest for the US since Detroit went broke. But it's not exactly a shock. Earlier this summer, Puerto Rico's gov. gave everybody the heads up that, oh by the way, the island had $72 billion in debt that was "not payable." Meanwhile, a top Puerto Rican official said last week that the island's government only has enough cash on hand to get it through November. PS -- here's your Skimm of the Puerto Rican debt crisis.
What'd you really have for breakfast? It looks like many runners who won Olympic and world championship medals between 2001 and 2012 had some help. Hint: they were reportedly doping. Two news outlets got their hands on blood tests from the IAAF, which deals with all things international sports. The tests apparently show that a third of the medals were won by athletes who got their dope on. The IAAF reportedly defended itself, saying there was "no evidence" it didn't do a serious job with testing. Cycling's history of doping (cough, Lance, cough) is old news. But these blood test results reportedly show that running's just as bad. You can't blame it on the bike shorts.
Jericho: Cecil the lion's brother from another mother. There were rumors over the weekend that Jericho had also been killed by hunters in Zimbabwe. Yesterday, researchers studying the lion said 'au contraire:' Jericho is alive and well.
Idea. How about you and a friend go to St. Barths for three days? Spa treatments and airfare too. Enter here. You're welcome.
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