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Acting Attorney General Orders Justice Dept. Not to Defend Refugee Ban
Sally Yates, the acting attorney general, wrote in a letter to department lawyers that she was concerned that the executive order might not be legal.
By Matt Apuzzo and Eric Lichtblau

Acting Attorney General Sally Q. Yates, a holdover from the Obama administration, ordered the Justice Department on Monday not to defend President Trump’s executive order on immigration in court.

“I am responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right,” Ms. Yates wrote in a letter to Justice Department lawyers. “At present, I am not convinced that the defense of the executive order is consistent with these responsibilities nor am I convinced that the executive order is lawful.”

The decision is largely symbolic — Mr. Trump’s nominee to be attorney general, Jeff Sessions, is likely to be confirmed soon — but it highlights the deep divide at the Justice Department and elsewhere in the government over Mr. Trump’s order.

Angelina Jolie: Refugee Policy Should Be Based on Facts, Not Fear
When we divide people beyond our borders, we divide ourselves.
By Angelina Jolie

This NYT editorial by Angelina is filled with facts about refugees. True things. Not, er, “alternative facts”. If you read it, you will find yourself armed and safe in any conversation you may find yourself in with anyone who thinks that by making sure that the most vulnerable of all humans are prevented from coming to the US, that the world is somehow made safer.

It won’t take you long to read. And it will make a difference.

Many Japanese Look for a Shift to Female Heirs to the Throne
As the governing party considers allowing Emperor Akihito to retire, many in the public believe the law should be permanently changed to admit women as heirs to the throne.
By Motoko Rich

“There are very few women in management, and changes take place very slowly… Like Queen Elizabeth in England, if Princess Aiko becomes the emperor, things may change in society.”

Netflix’s 3% (2016)

With the world in ruins, a gleaming offshore haven offers the only escape – for the 3% who can prove they’re worthy. 3% is Netflix’s first original Brazilian production.

Excited to share this illustration for today’s issue of the New York Times! I really loved working on this piece, and I was so honored to be invited to tackle such a sensitive topic.

As a proud black woman, with a proud asian background, I know that skin whitening can be such a normalized part of our culture- I’m glad to see a conversation open up about it, and beyond honored to be part of an article that truthfully explores it.

Thank you so much to the folks at NYT, and Rodrigo Honeywell for the opportunity.


With No Warning, House Republicans Vote to Gut Independent Ethics Office
The move by emboldened Republicans on the eve of a new Congress would strip power and independence from an investigative body and give lawmakers control over ethics inquiries.
By Eric Lipton


The move to effectively kill the Office of Congressional Ethics was not made public until late Monday, when Representative Robert W. Goodlatte, Republican of Virginia and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, announced that the House Republican Conference had approved the change. There was no advance notice or debate on the measure.

The surprising vote came on the eve of the start of a new session of Congress, where emboldened Republicans are ready to push an ambitious agenda on everything from health care to infrastructure, issues that will be the subject of intense lobbying from corporate interests. The House Republicans’ move would take away both power and independence from an investigative body, and give lawmakers more control over internal inquiries.

It also came on the eve of a historic shift in power in Washington, where Republicans control both houses of Congress and where a wealthy businessman with myriad potential conflicts of interest is preparing to move into the White House.


“This is huge,” said Mr. Morgan, who now defends lawmakers targeted in ethics investigations. “It effectively allows the committee to shut down any independent investigation into member misconduct.“