What We’re Following
The Doctor Is In: President Trump nominated Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson, the White House physician, as the new secretary of veterans affairs after firing the agency’s former head, David Shulkin, on Wednesday. Jackson’s 12 years in his position have earned him bipartisan support, but he lacks administrative experience, making him an unorthodox choice to take over one of the U.S. government’s largest bureaucratic systems. As he is a current Navy admiral, his nomination also revitalizes the debate over the dual-officeholding ban, which prohibits active-duty officers from holding various “civil offices.” Here’s what’s at stake for the 9 million veterans under his potential care.
Russian Relations: Russia expelled 60 U.S. diplomats and ordered the closing of the American consulate in St. Petersburg in retaliation for the international community’s expulsion of Russian diplomats. Meanwhile, in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation, questions swirl around “Person A,” the former Russian intelligence officer said to have been in contact with Trump advisers during the 2016 campaign. Natasha Bertrand went in search of answers.
Crises of Faith: On Wednesday, thousands of protesters marched from eastern Paris to the home of Mireille Knoll, a Holocaust survivor who was murdered last Friday in what officials are calling an anti-Semitic attack. The French government has a strict policy of secularism, and has received criticism for its leniency toward anti-Semitism. While the Jewish community feels as if France is not doing enough, many Muslims find the government’s attempt to create a new, moderate French Islam both overbearing and patronizing.