News Wrap: New York City declares public health emergency over measles outbreak

JUDY WOODRUFF: Attorney General William Barr says he will be able to release some of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia report within a week. He made clear that part of it, maybe a large part, will be blanked out. Democrats at a congressional hearing questioned Barr about the conclusions he reached last month from Mueller’s nearly 400-page report.
Looking ahead, Barr said he would again rely on his own discretion to make as much of the report public as he is able. We will have highlights of Barr’s testimony right after the news summary. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin acknowledged today that White House lawyers had been in touch with his department following House Democrats’ request for six years of President Trump’s tax returns.
Mnuchin told a House panel he has not personally spoken with the president about the matter, and plans to — quote — “follow the law” with respect to the Democrats’ request. Mr. Trump has repeatedly said that he is under audit, and is unable to release his returns. New York City has declared a public health emergency, in an effort to combat a growing measles outbreak.
City health officials say there have been 285 confirmed measles cases in Brooklyn and Queens since September. Most were members of the Orthodox Jewish community. Mayor Bill de Blasio said that they have also ordered mandatory measles vaccinations for unvaccinated residents in the affected areas who may have been exposed to the virus. BILL DE BLASIO (D), Mayor of New York: The only way to stop this outbreak is to ensure that those who have not been vaccinated get the vaccine.
It’s crucial for people to understand that the measles vaccine works. It is safe. It is effective. It is time-tested. JUDY WOODRUFF: Residents who defy the new vaccination order could be fined $1,000. President Trump insisted today that he is not looking to reinstate the policy of child separation at the U.S. southern border. Mr. Trump said his predecessor is to blame for separating migrant children from their families. He spoke during a meeting with the visiting Egyptian president.
DONALD TRUMP, President of the United States: President Obama had child separation. Take a look. The press knows it. You know it. We all know it. I didn’t have — I’m the one that stopped it. President Obama had child separation. Now, I will tell you something.
Once you don’t have it, that’s why you see many more people coming. JUDY WOODRUFF: More than 2,700 children were separated from their parents at the Mexican border under the Trump administration’s zero tolerance policy, before it was reversed last year. Child separations did occur under the Obama administration, but on a much less frequent basis, and primarily in cases of child endangerment.
President Trump also dismissed claims that he is cleaning house at the Department of Homeland Security, after its secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen, announced her resignation on Sunday. The U.S. State Department has barred 16 Saudis from entering the U.S. because of their role in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The list includes a former close adviser to the Saudi crown prince believed to have led the hit squad that killed Khashoggi in the Saudi Consulate in Turkey in October.
But it doesn’t name Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman himself. The individuals’ families are also now banned from U.S. entry. In Israel, the national election that has been under way all this day is still too close to call, with both sides claiming victory tonight. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud Party is neck and neck with former military chief Benny Gantz’s centrist opposition Blue and White Party. We will have an on-the-ground report from Tel Aviv later in the program.
Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May is trying to persuade European Union leaders to delay Brexit once again, on the eve of their emergency summit in Brussels. May met with Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin, and then she traveled on to Paris for talks with French President Emmanuel Macron.
Meanwhile, in Luxembourg, the E.U.’s chief Brexit negotiator insisted that progress must be made in the British Parliament if Brexit is delayed once more. MICHEL BARNIER, European Union Chief Brexit Negotiator (through translator): This extension needs to be useful.
It needs to be useful to give more time, if needed, to make a success of the political process that I have talked about, to succeed in building this majority. JUDY WOODRUFF: The 27 E.U. member states will decide tomorrow whether or not to approve another extension to delay Brexit. If it is not approved, Britain will leave the E.U. without a deal on Friday.
We will take a look at what’s at stake a little later in the program. Back in this country, 16 parents in the college admissions bribery scandal are now facing a new money laundering charge. They include actress Lori Loughlin, who federal prosecutors had already indicted last month on mail fraud.
She is accused of paying $500,000 to get her two daughters into the University of Southern California as members of the crew team. California Congressman Eric Swalwell has become the latest Democrat to enter the 20 presidential race.
The 38-year-old four-term representative has been an outspoken critic of President Trump during the Russia probe. Swalwell says that his campaign will focus on gun control in the wake of last year’s mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida.
Stocks fell on Wall Street today, led by losses in the industrial sector. The Dow Jones industrial average shed 190 points to close at 26150. The Nasdaq fell 44 points, and the S&P 500 slipped 17. And the Virginia Cavaliers are basking in their first NCAA men’s college basketball championship title.
The streets of Charlottesville erupted last night after the University of Virginia beat out Texas Tech 85-77 in overtime. It was an epic comeback in a year after Virginia became the first number one seed to ever lose to a number 16 team in the first round.
We will have more on their championship win at the end of our program. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: the attorney general faces tough questions from Congress about the Mueller report; Israelis decide their future, as they head to the polls to choose their next prime minister; civil rights advocates and tech representatives testify on the dramatic rise of hate speech through social media; and much more.