3. The Senate passed the G.O.P. tax bill in record time, and we got a behind-the-scenes look at the frantic efforts. (Above at the podium: Senator Orrin Hatch, chairman of the finance committee.)
When Republican leaders learned that a nonpartisan analysis showed the bill would increase the deficit by $1 trillion, they needed a game plan. So they went on the offensive.
What else made it into the bill, besides tax cuts, and how could the measure reshape American society? We discuss the implications on our “The Daily” podcast.
Meanwhile, Republicans are also trying to pass a two-week stopgap measure to avoid a government shutdown.
4. The Supreme Court has allowed the third version of the Trump administration’s travel ban to go into effect while legal challenges against it continue.
The decision is a victory for the White House after its mixed success before the court over the summer.
For now, most citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea will be barred from entering the U.S., along with some groups of people from Venezuela. Above, a protest against the ban in New York earlier this year.
5. Ali Abdullah Saleh, above, who ruled Yemen for three decades until 2012, was reportedly killed amid fierce battles in the capital, Sana.
He was just one of the strongmen whose rule was challenged during the Arab Spring. After he was forced from office, he remained a powerful political player, aligning himself with the Houthi rebels who have been fighting a Saudi-led coalition. Here is our full obituary.
Separately, there are new questions about Saudi Arabia’s claim that it shot down a missile fired by the Houthis last month.
6. The International Olympic Committee is set to announce how it is punishing Russia for systematic doping, one of the most ambitious schemes in sports history.
Many people outside Russia seem to believe that barring the Russians entirely from the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, is fair and necessary.
But our columnist says the committee has a long record of timidity and slow decision-making, “especially when dealing with powerful nations that use sports to show off their strength.” Stay tuned. Above, the Russian team at Sochi.
7. One unexpected outcome of the presidential election: Droves of women are entering electoral politics across the U.S., including Wendy Gooditis, above, who won a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates in November.
Many candidates say they were angered by the election and energized by the Women’s March in Washington. (And even more driven after the deluge of sexual misconduct claims.)
“We have never seen anything like what we have seen over the last 12 months,” said the president of Emily’s List, a national group devoted to electing female candidates.
8. Facebook unveiled a new messaging app aimed at kids 13 and under, igniting a furious debate about the steady creep of technology into family life.
Here’s how it works: An adult with a Facebook account must set up the app for his or her child. The adult creates the profile and chooses which friends and relatives the child can connect with.
The company says the aim is to provide a more controlled environment for the kind of chatting that’s already commonplace among families.
9. It’s a complicated social life for the South African dwarf mongoose, which is perhaps best known as the cousin of the beloved meerkat.
When a dwarf mongoose takes up with a new group, it struggles to fit in, not contributing much at first. But after a few months of adjustment, it does just as well as the others, researchers found.
You can see some up close in the video embedded in our article.
10. Finally, may we present our critics’ lists of the 10 best TV shows of 2017.
Ten is too few, and our critics had to make some difficult calls. Among those that survived the cut: “American Vandal,” above.
Have a great night.
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