Obama: Tax Avoidance Is ‘A Big, Global Problem.’ The president said companies that move their headquarters overseas in order to avoid U.S. taxes “renounce their citizenship, but get all of the rewards of being an American company.” He pointed to the recent Panama Papers leak to illustrate his point: “A lot of it is legal, that is exactly the problem.” (Renae Merle, The Washington Post)
Governor Approves Religious-Freedom Bill. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed a controversial religious-freedom bill into law, saying that it was meant to protect the rights of people with “deeply held religious beliefs.” The Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act will allow people to deny services or goods for the “celebration or recognition of any marriage, based upon or in a manner consistent with a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction.” (Sam R. Hall and Geoff Pender, The Clarion-Ledger)
Alabama Governor to Face Impeachment. Lawmakers in Alabama moved to introduce articles of impeachment against Governor Robert Bentley after it was alleged that he had an affair with an aide. Bentley fired back, saying there were “no grounds for impeachment” and calling the move “political grandstanding.” (Joshua Berlinger, Kevin Conlon, and Ralph Ellis, CNN)
Iceland’s Leader Throws in the Towel. A government official announced that Iceland’s prime minister, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, submitted his resignation two days after leaked documents, known as the Panama Papers, alleged that he and his wife hid millions of dollars of investments in an offshore account. Several other world leaders were also identified in the leaks. (Steven Erlanger and Stephen Castle, The New York Times)
Tomorrow in One Paragraph. Hillary Clinton will be fundraising and campaigning in New York. Bernie Sanders is in Philadelphia. Donald Trump will rally voters in New York. And John Kasich will break from campaigning to deliver the annual State of the State in Ohio.
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“You’re supposed to hit your opponent over the head with a chair, but you’re supposed to pretend to hide the chair you are about to hit him with from the view of the referee. Trump is willing to be maximally crazy, when it comes to the more extreme positions of the G.O.P., but he can’t remember, or perhaps never learned, the minimally sane-sounding speech acts that the referees want you first to attach to the craziness.” The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik on exposing the GOP’s strategy for dealing with abortion and gun-regulation.
Chief Executive or Chief Ideologue? Despite his reputation as a wonk, Bernie Sanders struggled to answer coherently when he was asked specific policy questions in a meeting with the editorial board of the New York Daily News. (David Graham, The Atlantic)