San Francisco Chronicle

NEWS OF THE DAY

From Across the Na­tion

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1 Lof­gren loses bid: Bay Area Rep. Zoe Lof­gren lost her bid to be­come the Democrats’ top-rank­ing mem­ber of the House Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee, as col­leagues in her party cau­cus went in­stead with a New York con­gress­man with more se­nior­ity. Lof­gren, D-San Jose, an­nounced her in­ten­tion to be­come the Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee’s rank­ing mi­nor­i­ty­party mem­ber af­ter Rep. John Cony­ers, the Michi­gan Demo­crat who had held the spot, was forced to re­sign in re­sponse to al­le­ga­tions he had sex­u­ally ha­rassed staffers. In an­nounc­ing her bid last month, Lof­gren said her pri­or­i­ties in­cluded “re­form­ing our bro­ken im­mi­gra­tion sys­tem, pro­tect­ing vot­ing rights and civil rights (and) shield­ing Dream­ers from de­por­ta­tion,” re­fer­ring to un­doc­u­mented im­mi­grants who ar­rived in this coun­try be­fore they were 16 years old. How­ever, her fel­low Democrats this week se­lected Rep. Jer­rold Nadler for the post. Nadler was elected to the House in New York City in 1992, two years be­fore Lof­gren won elec­tion from the South Bay. Rank­ing com­mit­tee jobs typ­i­cally, though not al­ways, go to mem­bers with greater se­nior­ity. Nadler de­feated Lof­gren in a vote of their fel­low House Democrats by a tally of 118 to 72.

2 Con­fed­er­ate

stat­ues: Crews re­moved two Con­fed­er­ate stat­ues from Mem­phis parks af­ter the city sold them to a pri­vate en­tity. The City Coun­cil voted unan­i­mously this week to sell two parks where Con­fed­er­ate stat­ues were lo­cated and crews be­gan work­ing right away to re­move stat­ues of Gen. Nathan Bed­ford For­rest and Con­fed­er­ate Pres­i­dent Jef­fer­son Davis.

3 Health care en­roll­ment: The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion said Thurs­day that 8.8 mil­lion peo­ple had signed up for health in­sur­ance through the fed­eral mar­ket­place, only slightly lower than last year’s num­bers when the open en­roll­ment pe­riod was twice as long and heav­ily ad­ver­tised. The num­bers es­sen­tially de­fied Pres­i­dent Trump’s as­ser­tion that “Oba­macare is im­plod­ing” and could re-en­er­gize the ef­forts by both par­ties for and against Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s sig­na­ture do­mes­tic achieve­ment. The level ex­ceeds what ex­perts thought was pos­si­ble af­ter an­other year of po­lit­i­cal bat­tles over the Af­ford­able Care Act, not to men­tion mar­ket prob­lems like ris­ing pre­mi­ums and in­surer ex­its. 4 Proxy bap­tisms: A Utah re­searcher who has spent two decades mon­i­tor­ing the church’s mas­sive ge­nealog­i­cal data­base says Mor­mons are posthu­mously bap­tiz­ing Holo­caust vic­tims as well as grand­par­ents of pub­lic fig­ures de­spite church rules in­tended to re­strict the cer­e­monies to a mem­ber’s an­ces­tors. Eric Hawkins, a spokesman for The Church of Je­sus Christ of Lat­ter-day Saints, said bap­tisms that vi­o­late church pol­icy will be in­val­i­dated. Proxy bap­tisms are tied to a core church teach­ing that fam­i­lies spend eter­nity to­gether. Un­der church teach­ings, the de­ceased have a choice in the af­ter­life to ac­cept or re­ject the of­fer of bap­tism.

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