Morning Must Reads: April 16

Mark Wilson—Getty Images The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

In the news: Nearly 300 people are missing after a South Korean passenger ferry sinks; Ukraine and separatist forces flex their muscles; China's gross domestic product growth slips in first quarter; Conservatives ask Republican leaders for ObamaCare replacement package by August

  • Ukrainian government forces and separatist pro-Russian militia staged rival shows of force in eastern Ukraine on Wednesday amid escalating rhetoric on the eve of crucial four-power talks in Geneva on the former Soviet country’s future.” [Reuters]
    • Here’s What the CIA Director Was Really Doing in Kiev [Daily Beast]
    • There’s a sense of unreality inside the Beltway as news networks broadcast images of armed, masked men carrying out military operations in the worst standoff between Russia and the West since the end of the Cold War.” [Politico]
  • “China’s gross domestic product growth slipped in the first quarter to its slowest level in 18 months as the world’s second-largest economy continued to downshift.” [WSJ]
  • Three people have died and 293 remain unaccounted for after a South Korean passenger ferry slowly sank Wednesday off the country’s southern coast…” [WashPost]
  • “Michael R. Bloomberg, making his first major political investment since leaving office, plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence, an organization he hopes can eventually outmuscle the National Rifle Association.” [NYT]
  • “Top House conservatives are pressuring Republican leaders to bring an ObamaCare replacement bill to a vote by the August recess…party leaders have given no indication when they might present a plan or what form it will take.” [Hill]
  • Texas Twins Campaign, But They Aren’t Sure For What [NYT]
  • How the President Got to ‘I Do’ on Same-Sex Marriage [NYT Mag]
  • The Grisly Reality Behind Soaring Lime Prices [National Journal]
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