10 things you need to know today: May 18, 2014

California Chrome gallops away with a win in the 139th Preakness Stakes

California Chrome gallops away with a win in the 139th Preakness Stakes Molly Riley / Getty Images

The Week

California Chrome wins the Preakness, Julian Castro is expected to join the Obama administration, and more

1. California Chrome wins Preakness
California Chrome galloped away with an impressive win in the 139th Preakness Stakes Saturday. The horse, which won the Kentucky Derby earlier this month, needs only to win the Belmont Stakes next month to become the first Triple Crown winner since 1978. [The Washington Post,Sports Illustrated]

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2. Julian Castro expected to be next HUD secretary
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, one of the Democratic Party’s brightest young stars, will reportedly be tapped as the next Housing and Urban Development secretary. The telegenic young mayor delivered the keynote address at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, and his name is often floated as a possible VP or presidential candidate. The White House has yet to confirm the appointment. [Politico]

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3. Switzerland votes on world’s highest minimum wage
Swiss voters head to the polls Sunday to vote on whether to create the world’s highest minimum wage. If approved, Switzerland would have a minimum wage of 22 Swiss francs — or roughly $24.65 — per hour. Preliminary reports suggested the measure did not have enough support to pass. [NBCUSA Today]

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4. At least 16 arrested in deadly Turkish mine collapse
Turkish authorities have arrested at least 16 people in connection with the mining disaster that left 301 workers dead last week, according to multiple reports. Those arrested include Ramazan Dogru, the mine’s general manager, and operations manager Akin Celik. Initial reports said only 16 people were detained, though a local governor has since said the tally is up to 19. [BBC]

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5. Libya imposes no-fly zone after deadly clashes
The Libyan army imposed a no-fly zone over the city of Benghazi in response to deadly clashes that have roiled the city over the weekend. Fighting that began Friday between Islamist forces and a paramilitary group led by a rogue general, Khalifa Haftar, left at least 70 dead and wounded another 141, the government said Sunday. In a statement, the government accused Haftar of waging a military campaign to “pursue personal gains or turn against the state legitimacy.” [Al Jazeera Associated Press]

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6. North Korea reports ‘serious’ building collapse
In a strikingly unusual apology, North Korea’s state-run news on Saturday reported a ‘serious accident’ that caused a 23-story apartment building in Pyongyang to collapse. The Korean Central News Agency blamed “irresponsible supervision and control” and “sloppy building” for the accident, but did not give a tally on the number of people who were injured or killed. Though the building was still under construction, it is believed to have housed as many as 92 families. [The New York TimesCNN]

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7. Head of Syria’s air defense killed
The head of Syria’s air defense forces was killed Saturday in a clash with rebel forces, according to an unnamed Syrian official. The commander, Lt. Gen. Hussein Ishaq, was killed when rebel fighters attacked an air base near the capital, Damascus. He is one of only a few high-ranking government officers to be killed in the nation’s three-year-old civil war. [Associated Press]

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8. Former ‘First Dog’ Miss Beazley has died
Miss Beazley, former President George W. Bush’s iconic Scottish terrier, has died, the family announced Saturday. The dog was 10 years old, and was put to sleep after battling cancer. Miss Beazley is perhaps best remembered for starring in a White House video, A Very Beasley Christmas, that followed the pup around 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue during the holiday. [Associated Press]

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9. Paul McCartney cancels more concerts due to illness
One day after abruptly canceling a concert in Tokyo, Paul McCartney nixed another one on Sunday, as well as a make-up event planned for Monday. The former Beatle contracted a nasty virus over the weekend and said his doctors would not let him go on stage. “I am very sorry to all my fans as I was greatly looking forward to the concert,” he said in a statement, “but the situation is out of my hands.” [U.S. News & World ReportRolling Stone]

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10. NBA Conference Finals begin today
The NBA’s penultimate playoff round begins Sunday when the defending champion Miami Heat head to Indiana to take on the Pacers in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Western Conference Finals get underway Monday when the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs host the Oklahoma City Thunder. [ESPN]

4 comments

  1. 1. California Chrome wins Preakness

    I hear its questionable whether California Chrome will run in the Belmont Stakes if he’s not allowed to wear the nasal strips he has worn in his last six victories w/o objection. They are the same kind of strips you see advertised for humans to help stop snoring. One of his owners is threatening to pull him out of the race if he’s not allowed to wear them – partly out of pure superstition now. I would love to see him win the Triple Crown, though. I remember being at the rail when Seattle Slew came down the stretch to win it in 1977. I will never forget the magnificent spectacle of the big shiny black stallion, with the jockey in his bright yellow colors on top, rumbling down the stretch like a building thunder. But what was most vivid was the fact that Seattle Slew and his rider were in such bright, clear, technicolor, while all the other horses and riders were a sepia colored blur behind them. That was because Slew led all the way and never once got any mud kicked on him. I wore my bright yellow “Seattle Slew” T-shirt for decades thereafter. I still have it somewhere.

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  2. Another horse-race and a building in North Korea collapses.
    I think I’ll take a short nap, then start the day over…

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