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An organizer carries a clipboard with petitions for a ballot initiative to enshrine abortion into the Arizona state constitution during a small rally led by Women's March Tucson after Arizona's Supreme Court revived a law dating to 1864 that bans abortion in virtually all instances, in Tucson, Arizona, U.S. April 9, 2024.

REUTERS/Rebecca Noble

On Wednesday, Arizona Republicans blocked attempts by Democrats to repeal an 1864 total abortion ban that the state’s supreme court reinstated on Tuesday. The court’s move means the state must revert to the 123-year-old law making abortions almost entirely illegal except when it is necessary to save a pregnant person’s life.

That ruling came a week after a pro-choice group obtained enough signatures to put an amendment to enshrine abortion rights in the state’s constitution on the ballot in November – all but ensuring that abortion, a major motivating issue for Democratic voters, will play a big role in how the swing state votes later this year.

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photo of total solar eclipse

The moon blotted out the sun across much of North America on Monday, but it did not put politics entirely out of mind.

Conservatives on both sides of the border used the occasion to compare their champion to the moon, blotting out the incumbent sun, while incumbents merely marveled at the moment.

In the United States, Donald Trump released an odd ad on his Truth Social network in which his face blotted out the sun. In Canada, Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre just posted a photo of the moment, but one of his MPs posted an image showing a smiling Poilievre eclipsing Trudeau.

Meanwhile, Fox News issued a warning that the eclipse might make it easier for migrants to cross into the United States.

Justin Trudeau posted a video of himself taking in the sight from the roof of his office while Joe Biden posted a safety warning, a subtle reminder, perhaps, of the time, in 2017, when Trump gazed directly into an eclipse, which is said to be unwise.

Riley Moore, State Treasurer of West Virginia.


Toronto-Dominion Bank, Citigroup, the Northern Trust Company, and HSBC face regulatory trouble in West Virginia after State Treasurer Riley Moore added the four banks to the state’s naughty list this week.

Moore wants the banks to change environmental, social, and governance policies that he says discriminate against fossil fuel companies, and if they won’t, they will not be allowed to provide banking services to the state.

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Annie Gugliotta

On Monday — the day that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters that Canada is interested in joining the AUKUS defense alliance — documents were released at a public inquiry that showed that Canada’s intelligence agency believes China “clandestinely and deceptively interfered in both the 2019 and 2021 general elections.”

Also on Monday, as Chinese ships carried out exercises in disputed waters in the South China Sea, the US, UK, and Australia announced that they were talking to Japan about inviting that country to participate in Pillar II of the security pact.

China’s growing military and political belligerence is rattling other countries, and they are responding by drawing together in a way that would have been out of the question a decade ago.

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Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visits the offices of artificial intelligence tech company ScaleAI in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on April 7, 2024.

REUTERS/Evan Buhler
On Monday Justin Trudeau announced nearly CA$2.4 billion to boost Canada's artificial intelligence sector, a policy that may bear more than a passing similarity to the AI policy Joe Biden announced last month.
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A pile of money sitting on top of a table.

Photo by PiggyBank on Unsplash

It looks like neither Joe Biden nor Justin Trudeau can count on lower interest rates to give them the economic or political boosts they need.

In the United States, hopes for a rate cut were dimmed when Wednesday’s consumer price index numbers dropped. The index was up 3.5% in March compared to last year, higher than February and higher than expected, which means the Federal Reserve is unlikely to cut rates in the US anytime soon.

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Bottles of blueberry and strawberry maple syrup displayed at a maple syrup farm in Mount Albert, Ontario, Canada, on March 05, 2022.


Maple syrup connoisseurs on both sides of the border take note: Canada’s strategic maple syrup reserve has reached a 16-year low.

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People take cover from gunfire near the National Palace, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti March 21, 2024.

REUTERS/Ralph Tedy Erol

Both the US and Canadian governments are facing challenges getting their citizens out of Haiti, and neither country seems to be making any headway toward a plan to reduce the chaos and violence in the Caribbean country.

The airport in Port-au-Prince has been closed since March 4, when heavily armed gangs attacked. The attack was repelled, but international carriers stopped providing service — leaving many foreigners stranded and fearful as gangs control the streets.

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