Top News Stories for Today

World’s top news stories for today from Washingtonian post (March 30, 2016)

Myanmar’s civilian head of state swears in

Myanmar’s civilian head of state swears inMyanmar has sworn in its first civilian head of state in more than five decades.

Seventy-year-old Htin Kyaw took the oath of office Tuesday during a brief ceremony before a joint session of parliament, pledging loyalty “to the republic of the union of Myanmar.” The country’s two vice presidents, Myint Swe and Henry Van Tio, took the oath alongside Htin Kyaw.

Htin Kyaw’s swearing in formally marks the end of total or partial military rule in Myanmar dating back to 1962.  He succeeds Thein Sein, a former general who took power in 2011 when the junta turned over control to a quasi-civilian government and pushed through sweeping political and economic reforms. VOA



A Taiwan Company to buy Japan’s Sharp

A Taiwan Company to buy Japan’s Sharp ( years of stalled and failed negotiations, the boards of Foxconn Technology Group and Sharp Corp. agreed Wednesday to a majority takeover of Japan’s Sharp by Taiwan electronics assembly giant Foxconn.

The 103-year-old Sharp makes a wide array of consumer electronics for the Japanese market, but is mostly known outside Japan for its TVs and smartphone displays. Foxconn will spend about $3.5 billion for a 66 percent stake in debt-laden Sharp, a drop from the $5.5 billion it was expected to pay as recently as a few weeks ago. When completed, it will be the largest ever foreign takeover of a Japanese consumer electronics firm. The New York Times



Sen. Mark Kirk meets SCOTUS nominee

Sen. Mark Kirk meets SCOTUS nomineeOn Tuesday, Sen. Mark Kirk (Ill.) became the first Republican senator to meet with Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland. Kirk called Garland a “brilliant” legal mind, and said he was “one of the most eminent jurists in the country.

“The Republicans who are blocking the nomination until after the presidential election and won’t meet with Garland are “too closed-minded,” Kirk said, and “by leading by example, I’m showing what a rational, responsible guy would do that really wants the constitutional process to go forward.” Kirk faces a potentially tough re-election fight against Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D) this fall. Politico



US Presidential election

US Presidential election newsTrump on GOP: When asked about the pledge he made early in the race to support the eventual Republican nominee, frontrunner Donald Trump told Anderson Cooper during Tuesday’s CNN Republican Town Hall “a lot has changed since then,” and he is backing away from the pledge. “We’ll see who it is,” he added. When Ted Cruz was asked the same question earlier in the town hall, he sounded reluctant to support Trump, and Trump said he doesn’t “want him to do something he’s not comfortable with.” Trump also said he doesn’t “need” Cruz to back him up, and only wants “the people’s support.” Later, Trump claimed he’s been “treated very unfairly” by the Republican National Committee and “the establishment,” but he’s “not looking to hurt anyone. I love the Republican Party.” CNN

Trump stands by campaign manager: Following the news that Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was charged with misdemeanor battery over allegations that he grabbed now-ex Breitbart News reporter Michelle Fields at a Trump press conference earlier this month, Trump himself has doubled down on his defense of his staffer’s actions. “I think he was very, very seriously maligned,” Trump said to reporters, adding that he “[doesn’t] discard people.” Trump also cast doubt on Fields’ allegations, questioning the legitimacy of a photo she tweeted of the bruises she allegedly incurred from the incident. “How do you know those bruises weren’t there before?” he said. Lewandowski maintained in a statement Tuesday that he is “absolutely innocent of this charge.” The Hill

Latest polls: A new U.S. political survey shows Republican voters continue to favor billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump for the party’s presidential nomination by a wide margin over his two remaining challengers, while the Democratic contest between former secretary of state Hillary Clinton and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has narrowed. VOA

US Supreme Court tie on public employee fees

Why Supreme Court need 9 membersThe Supreme Court was divided 4-4 on Tuesday over a rule that requires around half of the nation’s public employees to pay a “fair share fee” toward their union. Because of the recent death of Antonin Scalia, whose vote would have served as a tiebreaker, the split decision preserved the lower court’s rule:

The “fair share fee” will remain in place. The Supreme Court’s decision is a victory for union officials, who had reason to fear a conservative court striking down the required fees. Prior to Scalia’s death, an oral argument in December made it appear that the mandatory dues would be struck down. The Los Angeles Times

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