TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: July 17

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

In the news: Israel, Hamas cease fire deal; U.S. imposes new sanctions on Russia; Ted Cruz tackling immigration; Dems using Hobby Lobby in election year; and this week's TIME

  • U.S. imposes new sanctions against Russia [TIME]
  • ” President Vladimir Putin on Thursday lamented the latest round of U.S. sanctions against Russia, saying they will stalemate bilateral relations and hurt not only Russian but also American businesses.” [AP]
  • Israel, Hamas agree to short cease-fire deal after Israeli strike kills 4 Palestinian boys [TIME]
  • Obama likely to seek additional time for nuclear negotiations with Iran [NYT]
  • “Texas Sen. Ted Cruz plans to take a hard-line stand that could rile up conservatives just as lawmakers — including two from his home state — are struggling to address the growing humanitarian crisis along the southern border.” [Politico]
  • President Obama to unveil infrastructure funding initiative [The Hill]
  • Democrats latch on to Hobby Lobby in election year push [TIME]
  • University at Buffalo paid $275,000 for Hillary Clinton speech [Washington Post]
  • South Carolina Republican says Hispanic immigrants are a lost cause for GOP [National Journal]
  • D.C. marijuana decriminalization law takes effect [USA Today]

What’s prettier in print

A NOTE TO READERS

Thanks again for your feedback on our new subscriber Q&A offering.(In case you missed it, you can read the details here.)

We will start our first #AskTIME subscriber Q&A this Friday, July 16, at 1 p.m., with political correspondent Jay Newton-Small and I answering your questions.

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-Michael Scherer, DC Bureau Chief

TIME Immigration

The Border Crisis Is Shifting Americans’ Views on Immigration

Immigrants Processed At The McAllen Border Patrol Station in McAllen, Texas
Immigrants who have been caught crossing the border illegally are housed inside the McAllen Border Patrol Station in McAllen, Texas where they are processed on July 15, 2014 in McAllen, Texas. Pool—Getty Images

Particularly among Republicans, according to a new Pew Survey

America’s attitudes towards immigrants had begun shifting positively early this year, but have taken a turn amidst a wave of unaccompanied minors crossing the United States’ southern border. Over 50,000 unaccompanied youth have crossed the border into the U.S. illegally over the past nine months, often fleeing violence and poverty in Central American countries. And the majority of American adults are in favor of accelerating the children’s deportations, even if that means removing children that may be eligible for asylum, according to a new study.

Around 53 percent of American adults want the government to speed up the process of removing children who illegally enter the country, regardless of whether they qualify for asylum, according to a new Pew Research Center report. Only 38 percent support the current policy, which allows children to stay in the U.S. with designated guardians while they await legal hearings.

In response to the border crossings, President Obama has declared the influx a humanitarian crisis and has proposed legislation that would accelerate the removal process for immigrant kids. Yet only 28 percent of the public agrees with Obama’s handling of the issue, while about 56 percent disapprove, per Pew.

The situation has taken a toll on how Americans view immigration as a whole. Back in February, 73 percent of Americans, including 64 percent of Republicans, supported a pathway to citizenship. Now, 68 percent of Americans, and about 54 percent of Republicans, support providing legal status to those who entered the country illegally. There’s been a slight drop among Democrats, too — about 81 percent of Democrats favored a path to citizenship in February, while now that’s down to 77 percent.

Deborah Lauter, the Anti-Defamation League’s civil rights director, says there’s also been a rise in anti-immigrant rhetoric during the the border crisis.

“We’re definitely seeing a large uptick in anti-immigrant rhetoric since children have been coming in from Central America,” Lauter says. “This humanitarian crisis is really providing fodder for it.”

Pew’s study was conducted between July 8 and 14 and surveyed 1,805 American adults.

 

TIME russia

U.S. Imposes New Sanctions Against Russia

President Barack Obama speaks about foreign policy and escalating sanctions against Russia in response to the crisis in Ukraine in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington DC, on July 16, 2014.
President Barack Obama speaks about foreign policy and escalating sanctions against Russia in response to the crisis in Ukraine in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington DC, on July 16, 2014. Charles Dharapak—AP

The Obama Administration announced new sanctions against firms in Russia’s energy, financial, and defense sectors Wednesday in response to Russia’s continued support for Ukrainian separatists.

Senior administration officials said Wednesday that Russia has continued to violate Ukraine’s “sovereignty and territorial integrity” after its annexation of the Crimean peninsula earlier this year, precipitating the sanctions after months of warnings. The new sanctions, the first so-called “sectoral sanctions” used by the U.S. against Russia hit two banks, Gazprombank OAO and VEB, and two Russian energy firms, OAO Novatek and Rosneft, limiting their access to the United States’ capital markets.

Also sanctioned by the U.S. Wednesday are the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic, as well as the top general in Russia’s FSB security service, reportedly a leading separatist supporter within the FSB. Eight state-owned defense and technology firms dealing in arms or related material sector in Russia are also included.

“These sanctions are significant, but they are also targeted,” President Barack Obama said Wednesday, adding that they are designed to limit spillover effects on U.S. and European interests. “We live in a complex world and at a challenging time.”

Administration officials said the sanctions would “only further exacerbate Russia’s economic problems,” adding that sanctions already in place are responsible for slowing the growth of that country’s economy. They also warned that the U.S. has the ability to expand sanctions if Russia continues its “inappropriate behavior.” The officials added that “there is an off-ramp here for Russia” if they move swiftly to close the border between Russia and Eastern Ukraine as well as back off supporting the separatists fighting the Ukrainian government.

However, Edward Chow, a senior fellow and energy expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, says these new sanctions weren’t designed to dramatically reduce Russia’s rate of growth. “Russia was already forecast to have near-zero economic growth this year, before the Ukraine crisis which it created,” said Chow. “Most economists were forecasting negative growth this year before these latest sanctions were announced.”

Even if the overall Russian economy isn’t slowed by these sanctions, though, the firms targeted will certainly feel the hurt.

“I think the actions taken by Treasury today will limit the sources from which Rosneft can get financing and thus raise the cost of capital for the firm, making it more difficult and more costly to do business,” said Jason Bordoff, Professor of Professional Practice in International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. “It does not prohibit U.S. firms from doing business with Rosneft or bar Russian energy supplies from flowing into the global market, but it is the next step in a gradually escalating series of measures the Administration can take to ratchet up the economic pressure on Moscow, while seeking to minimize the collateral damage to the US and its allies who have close economic ties to Russia.”

European Union officials imposed their own increased sanctions against Russia separately on Wednesday.

With reporting by Alex Rogers/Washington

TIME Israel

Israel, Hamas Agree to Temporary Humanitarian Cease-Fire in Gaza

Sister of a Palestinian boy from Baker family, whom medics said was killed along with three other children from same family by a shell fired by Israeli naval gunboat, mourns during their funeral in Gaza City
The sister (C) of a Palestinian boy from the Baker family, whom medics said was killed along with three other children from the same family by a shell fired by an Israeli naval gunboat, mourns during their funeral in Gaza City July 16, 2014. Mohammed Salem—Reuters

Israel and Hamas have reportedly accepted plea for a five-hour "humanitarian pause" to fighting in Gaza brokered by the United Nations.

Updated July 16, 7:40 p.m. ET

Hamas agreed to accept a humanitarian cease-fire for a five-hour period on Thursday, as requested by the United Nations. “The group agrees to a ceasefire for five hours,” starting from 10:00 am (0700 GMT) Thursday, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zukhri said in a statement to Agence France-Presse. Hamas’ agreement comes after Israel already approved the deal, which United Nations Special Coordinator Robert Serry called a “humanitarian pause.”

Serry asked for the “pause” in the region on an Israeli television station on Wednesday evening so that humanitarian aid can be delivered to Gaza.

A spokesperson at the United Nations told TIME the cease-fire is a temporary cease-fire which would not prejudice larger efforts to bring a cease-fire to the region.

The request for a temporary cease-fire comes after the militant group Hamas on Tuesday declined an Egyptian effort to call a longer-lasting truce.

At least 200 Palestinians and one Israeli have died since this latest bout of fighting began 9 days ago, CBS News reports. A rocket attack in Gaza City Wednesday reportedly killed four young boys playing on the beach, the New York Times reports. UN officials say at least 75% of the Palestinian casualties have been civilians.

During a statement on foreign policy Wednesday, U.S. President Barack Obama said that Israel has a right to defend itself from rocket attacks, noting he is proud that the “Iron Dome” system the U.S. helped fund is working. But he added the U.S. is working to pursue a long-term cease-fire in the region.

“The Israeli people and Palestinians deserve to live in peace,” Obama said.

TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: July 16

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

In the News: Palestinian death toll rises, Israel vows to strengthen Hamas attacks—US in a tough position; Hillary Clinton gets 2016 questions on Jon Stewart; NYT uncovers GM silence on fatal crashes

  • Israel’s vow to strengthen attacks against Hamas puts U.S. in tough position [Washington Post]
  • Palestinian death toll rises [WSJ]
  • House passes Highway bill: “The bill is likely to become law only because the Senate and the White House are out of other options. No one is particularly happy about it. It doesn’t solve any long-term problems, and in less than a year it will put lawmakers right back where they have been.” [National Journal]
  • Compromise disrupts the daily vitriol in Washington, D.C. [TIME]
  • “Democratic candidates in most of the races that will decide control of the United States Senate raised more than their Republican opponents during the three months ending in June and entered the summer with bulging bank accounts, according to campaign finance reports filed Tuesday.” [NYT]
  • Hillary Clinton gives Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart no clues on 2016 [TIME]
  • 5 questions about John Boehner’s lawsuit against Barack Obama [Politico]
  • Will Boehner find friendly court? [The Hill]
  • Jose Antonio Vargas freed after detention in Texas [CNN]
  • Honduran child migrants leave home because of violence and poverty [Washington Post]
  • The TSA’s insane instagram feed: “Every once in a while, reports of the contraband passengers attempt to smuggle past the Transportation Security Administration manage to infest the Internet almost as thoroughly as their 3D scanners invade your being. TSA airport inspectors have found cannonballs and eels and rocket launchers.” [The Daily Beast]
  • Documents show General Motors kept silent on fatal crashes [NYT]
  • “Martin O’Malley says that deporting the children detained at the border would be sending them to “certain death” — but he also urged the White House not to send them to a facility in his own state.” [Politico]
  • Talking openly about Obama and race [The New Yorker]

 

 

TIME Education

More Than 60 Colleges Attend Dartmouth’s Sexual Assault Summit

Administrators face pressure to end the mishandling of assault investigations and put effective prevention measures in place

Dartmouth College President Philip Hanlon wants parents of women on his campus to know that the school is working to address the issue of sexual assault. During a hour-long conversation on New Hampshire Public Radio Tuesday, Hanlon said the school is “open” and “upfront.” “You should not be worried if a campus is talking about [sexual assault],” Hanlon said. “You should be worried if a campus is not talking about it.”

And Dartmouth is certainly talking about it. The school is hosting nearly 300 representatives from over 60 colleges, national experts, and government officials for a four day summit on preventing campus sexual assault, just days after a Congressional survey found that 41% of colleges polled have not investigated a sexual assault on their campuses in the past five years.

The Department of Education also launched investigations into 55 schools across the country this year, including Dartmouth, for allegedly mishandling of incidents involving an assault. This week’s summit is an opportunity for school and government officials to discuss best practices for addressing the issue, with representatives from Duke University, Rice University, Pomona College and Georgetown University on hand to discuss interactions between students and school administrators.

Hanlon said Tuesday that Dartmouth intends to position itself as a national leader in the effort to combat sexual assault on campus. He’s been in office for one year and named the issue one of his top priorities. In June, the college implemented a new policy for handling reports of sexual assault that requires outside investigators to look into complaints The policy also requires mandatory expulsion for some perpetrators of assault.

“As a nation we will reach a tipping point where nonconsensual sexual encounters on our college campuses are a thing of the past,” U.S. Representative Ann McLane Kuster (D-NH) said Sunday at an opening session of the summit. Research has shown that one in five college women will become a victim of an attempted or actual sexual assault while on campus. A TIME cover story from May detailed the crisis, which has been called an epidemic, and also examined the efforts to curb the trend.

On Monday, representatives from the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice addressed the summit attendees affirming the federal government’s commitment to keeping student’s safe. “Every student needs to be safe,” said Catherine Lhamon of the Department of Education’s office of Civil Rights. Attendees have also been actively engaged on Twitter where conversations around the absence of males, student voices, and the need for more collaboration proliferated.

https://twitter.com/DartmouthChange/status/488760727008989184 https://twitter.com/DancingGrapes/status/488716002776322049

TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: July 15

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

In the News: Israel accepts Egypt peace plan, Hamas balks; Gov. Bobby Jindal talks 2016; Lawmakers campaign for Senate candidates in West Virginia; and Obama on the road

  • Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal explains his path to victory in 2016 [TIME]
  • Todd Akin considers political future [Politico]
  • Iran outlines nuclear deal; accepts limit [NYT]
  • Stalled in Washington, Obama hits the road [WSJ]
  • Yesterday….Obama “encouraged” by Egypt cease-fire plan [The Hill]
  • This morning….”Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday threatened to escalate Israel’s operations in Gaza after Hamas balked at an Egyptian proposal for a cease-fire, saying it had not been consulted on its terms.” [Washington Post]
  • “Two Texas lawmakers announced legislation Monday to speed removals of tens of thousands of Central American kids from the U.S.-Mexico border, as Washington groped for a solution to the mounting crisis.” [AP]
  • Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Paul Ryan campaign in West Virginia Senate race [TIME]
  • The Rand Paul pile on: “If you had any doubts about how seriously some Republicans are taking the notion of a Rand Paul presidency, look at how far they’re going to shut down his views on foreign policy.” [Politico]
  • Jeb Bush aims to boost Scott Brown in New Hampshire [Washington Post]
  • Did the GOP just take a big leap forward in data? [National Journal]
  • Did “Bridgegate” spoil Gov. Chris Christie’s 2016 plans? [Vanity Fair]
  • The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is saving the GOP establishment at the ballot box [TIME]
  • Merkel resists sundering U.S. ties over spying affair [Bloomberg]
  • The full-time scandal of part-time America [WSJ]

A NOTE TO READERS:

First, a thank you. Since we redesigned TIME.com, the active and devoted community of commenters on Morning Must Reads has carried on the discussion just as we hoped you would.

Second, a proposal. We have heard feedback from many of you asking for TIME reporters and editors to weigh in more in the comment threads. We want to give you something even better: Direct access to our reporters and editors.

Once a week, we will schedule a time for a conversation between TIME readers and TIME reporters or editors. We will solicit questions on Facebook and Twitter via the hashtag #askTIME and then answer the questions in a post on TIME.com while keeping an eye out for your follow up questions on social media or in the comments.

We want to provide this as a service to our most loyal readers who want more access to what we see and hear and what we know about how the world is working. As such, the Q&A sessions will appear behind the paywall like magazine features.

Though many of you already subscribe and therefore will have immediate access to this new feature, we hope this encourages the rest of you to join. The cost is $30 a year for 52 issues and everything we publish on TIME.com. You can choose to receive the magazine digitally. That works out to 8 cents a day.

We are hoping to have our first Subscriber Q&A this week. What would be the best time of day? Day of the week? Whom would you like to talk with?

Though the exchange will be open to all subscribers, our hope is that the Morning Must Reads crew contributes heavily and helps shape what this becomes. Let us know what you think in the comments here, and thanks again.

Michael Scherer

Washington Bureau Chief

TIME Iran

Iranian Sanctions Have Cost U.S. Economy Up to $175 Billion, Study Says

From left: Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif meets with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during talks between the foreign ministers of the six powers negotiating with Tehran on its nuclear program, in Vienna, on July 13, 2014.
From left: Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif meets with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during talks between the foreign ministers of the six powers negotiating with Tehran on its nuclear program, in Vienna, on July 13, 2014. Jim Bourg—AFP/Getty Images

National Iranian-American Council (NIAC) report finds tens of billions of potential export revenue lost

U.S. sanctions against Iran don’t just hurt the Islamic Republic, they also have an impact on the U.S. economy—to the tune of as much as $175.3 billion since 1995, according to a new study.

Western powers have been sanctioning Iran since the mid-1990s over its sponsorship of terrorism and, lately, its pursuit of nuclear power and possibly weapons. The restrictions on trade and exports have had a “crippling” effect on the Iranian economy, according to Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.

But according to the National Iranian-American Council (NIAC) report, the impact has also been felt on those handing out the sanctions — particularly the U.S. The report found the U.S. had lost between $134.7 and 175 billion in potential export revenue since 1995, after examining decades of bilateral trade patterns between Iran and its 25 largest trading partners, plus Mexico, due to its high level of trade with the U.S.

The report also finds an average of between 51,000 and 66,000 lost job opportunities in the U.S. every year since 1995. Texas and California are likely the biggest losers in terms of lost employment, the study found. Among European nations, Germany was the biggest potential loser, with between $23.1 and $73 billion in missed economic opportunities.

The study comes as Western powers are working to reach a deal with Iran that could reduce sanctions in exchange for a scaling back of its nuclear program. Its authors said the Obama administration should consider the true cost of sanctions during talks in Vienna.

“The arguments in favor of sanctions, or against a deal that entails sanctions relief, are debatable. But any debate over whether to exchange sanctions relief for limitations to Iran’s nuclear program would be incomplete at best and misleading at worst if it does not address the cost of this policy,” the report reads.

The report’s authors said they didn’t wish to cast opinions on U.S. foreign policy, or evaluate whether the sanctions were “worth the cost or not.”

“[The study] only seeks to ensure that the cost of sanctions is recognized as America approaches the moment when it must decide whether to exchange the sanctions for nuclear concessions or continue the economic warfare,” the report reads.

TIME Fast Food

Pizza Hut Is Now Selling Giant Cookies Cut Like Pizza

Pizza Hut's Cookie Pizza
Pizza Hut's Cookie Pizza Pizza Hut/Yum!

A new dessert item

Pizza Hut’s menu just got a little sweeter. The pizza chain will begin delivering giant chocolate chip cookies sliced up like their famous pies on Monday.

Pizza Hut teased the new menu item on its Facebook page Sunday night.

The cookie, formally named the “Ultimate Hershey’s Chocolate Chip Cookie” will cost $4.99 with a pizza and $5.99 alone, the Chicago Tribune reports, and serves about 8. On Wenesday, 10% of each cookie’s sale will go to the World Food Programme during a nation-wide “bake sale.”

“Millennials tell us it’s what they want,” Carrie Walsh, chief marketing officer at Pizza Hut, told USA Today of the new pizza cookie. “They like to cap off a great pizza with a great dessert.”

TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: July 14

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

In the News: IRS to rubber-stamp charities; Israel strikes down drone; Citibank to pay $7 billion; push coming on highway trust fund; and Bowe Bergdahl returns to active duty

  • IRS to rubber-stamp tax-exempt status for most charities after scandal [TIME]
  • Citigroup and U.S. reach $7 billion mortgage settlement [NYT]
  • Governors divided on how to handle border crisis [TIME]
  • “Israel’s military said it shot down a drone along the country’s southern coast on Monday, marking the first time Palestinian militants have used such an aircraft in their weeklong confrontation with Israel.” [WSJ]
  • “President Obama and other top administration officials will pressure Congress to strike a deal on the Highway Trust Fund in a series of events this week, looking to coerce a deal before the financing for road, bridge, and mass-transit projects is exhausted next month.” [The Hill]
  • Germany claims 4th World Cup title [Sports Illustrated]
  • Morning long reads: Middle school cheating scandal raises questions about No Child Left Behind [New Yorker]
  • Sen. Rand Paul: Rick Perry is dead wrong [Politico Magazine]
  • Rick Perry slams Rand Paul: let the 2016 GOP presidential race begin [CS Monitor]
  • Bowe Bergdahl to return to active duty [NYT]
  • “The House and Senate this week will take up several long-awaited legislative items, though they will do so amid the circus atmosphere surrounding the House GOP’s buildup to a vote later this month on suing President Obama over his executive actions.” [National Journal]
  • Smell test may detect early stages of Alzheimer’s disease [CBS News]
  • “The Pope—known for extemporaneous remarks that at times simultaneously delight and confound his followers—addressed the lingering questions of sexual abuse in the church, saying about ‘2 percent’ of the church’s clergy are pedophiles and pledged to ‘confront it with the severity it demands.'” [Slate]
  • Mike Huckabee’s private plane habit [Politico]

 

A NOTE TO READERS:

First, a thank you. Since we redesigned TIME.com, the active and devoted community of commenters on Morning Must Reads has carried on the discussion just as we hoped you would.

Second, a proposal. We have heard feedback from many of you asking for TIME reporters and editors to weigh in more in the comment threads. We want to give you something even better: Direct access to our reporters and editors.

Once a week, we will schedule a time for a conversation between TIME readers and TIME reporters or editors. We will solicit questions on Facebook and Twitter via the hashtag #askTIME and then answer the questions in a post on TIME.com while keeping an eye out for your follow up questions on social media or in the comments.

We want to provide this as a service to our most loyal readers who want more access to what we see and hear and what we know about how the world is working. As such, the Q&A sessions will appear behind the paywall like magazine features.

Though many of you already subscribe and therefore will have immediate access to this new feature, we hope this encourages the rest of you to join. The cost is $30 a year for 52 issues and everything we publish on TIME.com. You can choose to receive the magazine digitally. That works out to 8 cents a day.

We are hoping to have our first Subscriber Q&A this week. What would be the best time of day? Day of the week? Whom would you like to talk with?

Though the exchange will be open to all subscribers, our hope is that the Morning Must Reads crew contributes heavily and helps shape what this becomes. Let us know what you think in the comments here, and thanks again.

Michael Scherer

Washington Bureau Chief

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