This is what the news should sound like. The biggest stories of our time, told by the best journalists in the world. Hosted by Michael Barbaro. Twenty minutes a day, five days a week, ready by 6 a.m.
The $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Plan
The Senate is preparing to vote on another stimulus bill — the third of the pandemic.
The bill has the hallmarks of a classic stimulus package: money to help individual Americans, and aid to local and state governments. It also contains provisions that would usher in long-term structural changes that have been pushed for many years by Democrats.
Today, we explore the contours of the Biden administration’s stimulus bill and look at the competing arguments.
Texas After the Storm
Even as the cold has lifted and the ice has melted in Texas, the true depth of the devastation left by the state’s winter storm can be difficult to see.
Today, we look at the aftermath through the eyes of Iris Cantu, Suzanne Mitchell and Tumaini Criss — three women who, after the destruction of their homes, are reckoning with how they are going to move forward with their lives.
The Sunday Read: ‘Sigrid Johnson Was Black. A DNA Test Said She Wasn’t’
It all started when Sigrid E. Johnson was 62. She got a call from an old friend, asking her to participate in a study about DNA ancestry tests and ethnic identity. She agreed.
Ms. Johnson thought she knew what the outcome would be. When she was 16, her mother told her that she had been adopted as an infant. Her biological mother was an Italian woman from South Philadelphia, and her father was a Black man.
The results, however, told a different story.
Today on The Sunday Read, what the growth in DNA testing, with its surprises and imperfections, means for people’s sense of identity.
Odessa, Part 1: The School Year Begins
Odessa is a four-part audio documentary series about one West Texas high school reopening during the pandemic — and the teachers, students and nurses affected in the process.
For the past six months, The New York Times has documented students’ return to class at Odessa High School from afar through Google hangouts, audio diaries, phone calls and FaceTime tours. And as the country continues to debate how best to reopen schools, Odessa is the story of what happened in a school district that was among those that went first.
Fate, Domestic Terrorism and the Nomination of Merrick Garland
Five years ago, Judge Merrick B. Garland became a high-profile casualty of Washington’s political dysfunction. President Barack Obama selected him to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, but Senate Republicans blocked his nomination. In the process, Mr. Garland became known for the job he didn’t get.
Now, after being nominated by the Biden administration to become the next attorney general, Mr. Garland is finding professional qualifications under scrutiny once again. In light of the attack on the Capitol, we explore how his career leading investigations into domestic terrorism prepared him for his Senate confirmation hearing.
When Covid Hit Nursing Homes, Part 2: ‘They’re Not Giving Us an Ending’
When the pandemic was bearing down on New York last March, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration issued a directive that allowed Covid-19 patients to be discharged into nursing homes in a bid to free up hospital beds for the sickest patients. It was a decision that had the potential to cost thousands of lives.
Today, in the second part of our look at New York nursing homes, we explore the effects of the decisions made by the Cuomo administration and the crisis now facing his leadership.
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