Welcome to The WonkLine, a daily 9:30 a.m. roundup of the latest public policy news. This is what we’re reading. Tell us what you found in the comments section below. You can also follow The Wonk Room on Twitter.
President Obama has signaled that he is serious about military spending cuts by choosing Leon Panetta as his next defense secretary.
A U.S. official said yesterday that Libya’s opposition group, the Transitional National Council “is a political body which is worthy of our support” — a move opening the way for closer ties but not necessarily recognition as the country’s legitimate government.
Nearly 200 Baath Party members in southern Syria resigned yesterday after the government sent tanks to put down pro-democracy demonstrators in the city of Deraa.
Indiana’s state legislature yesterday approved a bill that “will create the nation’s broadest private school voucher system.”
A new study finds that good schools may be hiding big achievement gaps: “the low achievement of minority and low-income students in high-achieving schools is often masked by the education world’s focus on averages.”
“The proportion of schools failing to make adequate yearly progress under the No Child Left Behind Act last school year rose to 38 percent, up 5 percentage points from the year before,” according to a new report.
Cadet Katie Miller, who resigned from West Point Academy last year to protest “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” policy, has been denied admittance upon reapplying.
The AFA’s Bryan Fischer took to a local FOX affiliate to attack Glee for “glamorizing” homosexuality and promoting its “psychological and physical risks.”
GLAAD is urging the Atlanta Braves and Major League Baseball to discipline Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell for hurling anti-gay slurs at some fans.
An Ohio federal judge held that gay state workers can claim unconstitutional discrimination if they are denied a promotion because of their sexual orientation.
Virginia Tech gets fined for failing to follow a law requiring it to notify it’s students after a crime occurs immediately after the VT shootings. Cooch is outraged . . . at the federal government for doing its job.
And the prize for most absurd headline of the morning goes to: “Justice Breyer Enters Birther Debate”
“The death toll from severe storms that punished five Southern U.S. states has jumped to 178 after Alabama sharply raised its tally of lives lost.
“Exxon says it earned nearly $11 billion in the first quarter, a performance that will likely land it in the center of the national debate over high gasoline prices.”
“Beginning next month, motorists on Iowa highways will notice more of those huge trucks – which can be as long as 180 feet and weigh almost 400,000 pounds – hauling turbine parts as Iowa’s wind industry goes through another growth spurt.”
“House Republican leaders are zeroing in on the package of massive spending cuts and reforms they plan to attach to next month’s vote to raise the debt limit,” the Huffington Post reports.
“Funds for refinancing home mortgages were much more available in predominantly white sections of major U.S. cities than in minority areas after the recent housing crash,” according to a new study.
Today, the giant insurer AIG — which was rescued by the government during the height of the financial crisis — “will file the first of what could be a series of lawsuits against Wall Street firms, contending that it was the victim of fraud.”
A new report shows that “Immigration authorities are failing to screen unaccompanied Mexican children who cross the border illegally to determine if they are victims of domestic abuse or human trafficking.”
Austin police chief Art Acevedo spoke out against Arizona’s immigration enforcement law, saying, “We need comprehensive immigration reform once and for all so we can get back to keeping our communities safe.”
A handful of college students are staging a sit-in at Florida state Senate President Mike Haridopolos’ waiting room trying to get him to promise to oppose the Arizona immigration copycat law.
Republicans continue to be challenged by their constituents about cutting Medicare, but they are trying to dismiss the town hall unrest as being orchestrated and “manufactured.”
Rep. Allen West (R-FL) told a town hall audience yesterday that “if you support Medicare the way it is now, you can kiss the United State of America goodbye.”
The Indiana Legislature has voted to strip the 28 Planned Parenthood clinics there from receiving $4 million in federal aid.