What We’re Following
The Explosion in Russia: At least nine people were killed and 20 others were wounded in an explosion on a metro train in St. Petersburg today. Early reports said there were two explosions, but authorities later announced they had safely defused the second bomb. The blast is being investigated as a terrorist attack, but no one has claimed responsibility yet. The story is still developing; here’s what we know.
Sisi’s Visit: President Trump expressed his support for Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi during his first visit to the White House today. Sisi runs an oppressive regime, and Trump’s embrace of him has been criticized—yet he’s far from being the first U.S. president to overlook human-rights abuses in supporting a stable ally. But just how valuable is the U.S.–Egyptian alliance? A Middle East policy expert writes that both sides are bound to be disappointed.
The Supreme Court: Senate Democrats announced today that they’ve gathered enough votes to block the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s Supreme Court pick, with a filibuster. This sets the stage for Republicans to take what’s known as the “nuclear option”: using a simple-majority vote to rewrite the Senate’s rules and confirm Gorsuch in spite of the opposition. On the current Court, Justice Clarence Thomas recently raised questions about the police practice of civil forfeiture—and a new Justice Department report backs up his concerns that the cash seizures don’t work as they should.