Here’s what you need to know:
A push for vast executive power
• President Trump’s claim on Monday that he has “the absolute right” to pardon himself for any crime was the latest in a series of moves asserting his control over federal law enforcement. No president has ever pardoned himself, and it’s unclear if Mr. Trump could legitimately do so.
The idea that presidents, by virtue of their unique constitutional powers, are above the law has surfaced before. Richard Nixon famously claimed after Watergate, “When the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.” But assertions by Mr. Trump’s team that obstruction-of-justice statutes do not apply to him carry new twists. Read more from one of our Washington correspondents.
Also on Monday, prosecutors accused Mr. Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, of trying to tamper with witnesses in his tax and money laundering case. The prosecutors, who work for the special counsel, Robert Mueller, called for Mr. Manafort’s bail to be revoked or revised.
• For nearly a year, Mr. Trump’s aides denied that the president had been behind a misleading statement, released in his son’s name, about a meeting at Trump Tower with a Kremlin-connected lawyer. But in a confidential memo to the special counsel, Mr. Trump’s lawyers acknowledged that the president had, in fact, dictated the statement.
It’s Election Day
• Eight states are voting today, the busiest day of the year so far for primaries. Here’s what to watch for.
Much of the focus is on California, where the top two finishers in today’s nonpartisan primary will face off in November. That poses a problem for the Democrats, who have so many candidates competing that Republicans might capture both slots. We have 30 journalists across the state who will be providing updates.
• Latinos make up nearly 40 percent of California’s population. In the past, low turnout limited their impact at the polls, but there are signs that’s changing this year.
A ruling on cake case, but not on free speech
• The Supreme Court ruled on Monday in favor of a Colorado baker who had refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple, but it left open the larger question of whether a business can discriminate against gay men and lesbians based on First Amendment rights.
Writing for the majority in the 7-to-2 decision, Justice Anthony Kennedy said the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s original ruling against the baker, Jack Phillips, had been infected by religious animus.
The justices passed on an opportunity to either bolster the right to same-sex marriage or explain how far the government can go in regulating businesses run on religious principles.
• The court also turned away a request from the Justice Department to discipline lawyers with the American Civil Liberties Union for assisting an undocumented teenager to obtain an abortion.
No White House perch for the Eagles
• President Trump called off today’s White House celebration for the Philadelphia Eagles after nearly all of the players and coaches of the Super Bowl-winning team said they would boycott the visit.
The dispute centered on the president’s repeated demands that N.F.L. players stand during the national anthem at games.
• Separately, Melania Trump made her first public appearance in over three weeks on Monday. She was recently treated for a benign kidney condition.
Pushing a right-wing message in Europe
• Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary has become a right-wing hero, making blunt attacks on liberal democracy.
His allies have extended his influence beyond the country’s borders, investing in media outlets in Macedonia and Slovenia, where the hard-liner who finished first in elections on Sunday had Mr. Orban’s support.
• As they gather strength across Europe, populist parties are proving adept at manipulating the news media to spread their messages and attack mainstream parties. Our correspondent reports on the trend from Slovenia.
“The Daily”: Part 2 of “Charm City”
• A policing idea transplanted to Baltimore from New York City created a generation of young men with criminal records.
• Howard Schultz, the outspoken executive chairman of Starbucks, will retire at the end of the month. He’s frequently mentioned as a possible Democratic presidential candidate, but few business executives have gone on to become president.
• Sorry, Apple’s not sorry. At the company’s annual developer conference, executives danced around the recent tech backlash, our columnist writes. Here’s a rundown of the software features that were announced on Monday.
• Speaking of tech backlash, Facebook faced new criticism from lawmakers and regulators after it was revealed that it had given dozens of hardware manufacturers access to its user data.
Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.
• Gift ideas for your graduate.
• A guide to getting your first apartment.
• Recipe of the day: For a light, flavorful meal, dress pan-seared fish and asparagus in aioli.
• A tragic milestone
Fifty years after Robert F. Kennedy’s death, friends, aides and journalists recall the senator’s last campaign in California, his assassination in Los Angeles and what came next for the city.
• Please, warden, just a pinch?
Some scientists want to track the health effects of salt by controlling amounts given to volunteers in prison.
• Caps have Cup in sight
The Washington Capitals are one win away from their first N.H.L. championship, after routing the Vegas Golden Knights, 6-2. They could win the Stanley Cup on Thursday.
• Best of late-night TV
Stephen Colbert reacted to President Trump’s suggestion that he might pardon himself: “Huh. Is it too late to get that king back?”
• Quotation of the day
“We overthrew control by a monarchy, and the Constitution signals in multiple places that the president is subject to law.”
— Peter Shane, a law professor at Ohio State University and the co-author of a casebook on the separation of powers.
• The Times, in other words
• What we’re reading
Julie Bloom, an editor on our National desk, recommends this piece from The New York Review of Books: “A smart, thoughtful look at Ron Chernow’s biography of Ulysses S. Grant and his personal essays. ‘He has variously been considered a military icon who won a total victory; a presidential model for overcoming his own considerable flaws and a tragic weakness for scoundrels to achieve fame and glory; a literary phenomenon who crafted the most famous deathbed writing in American letters; and a celebrity who was a paragon of humility and modesty.’ ”
Seventy-five years ago this week, the Zoot Suit riots shook Los Angeles.
American servicemen attacked Mexican-Americans, black men and others who had embraced flamboyantly draped suits, padded at the shoulder and pegged at the ankle. Known first as “killer dillers,” zoot suits had become an expression of pride in minority communities.
The military barred personnel from leaving their barracks, and the City Council voted to ban zoot suits.
A Times report that week traced the suit’s origins to Gainesville, Ga. In the years after, it came to be seen as a symbol of pride, swagger and resistance. The bandleader Cab Calloway once called it “the only totally and truly American civilian suit.”
“Zoot Suit” also became the title of a play and movie, based on the true story of a group of Latino youths unjustly convicted of murder.
Last year, we sent a photographer to shoot portraits of Angelenos at a staging of the play. Many had donned zoot suits or ’40s-style dresses.
“When I wear a zoot suit I feel empowered, kind of like it’s a suit of armor,” said Luis Guerrero, then 25. “It’s not only honoring those in the past, but it makes you look sharp.”
Karen Zraick wrote today’s Back Story.
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