Mar 12, 2018

Cubans go to polls in first step toward post-Castro future

Cuban voters line up outside a polling station in Santa Clara. Photo by YAMIL LAGE/AFP/Getty Images.

Nearly 7 million Cubans, or 78.5% of eligible voters, participated in one-party parliamentary elections Sunday that will ultimately help choose the nation's next president, reports Telesur. Those elected to the 605 member National Assembly will vote April 16 to choose a new Council of State, a 31-member executive body headed by the president.

  • Why it matters: Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel is widely expected to be named president, marking the first time in six decades that someone not named Castro will rule Cuba.
  • But, but, but: Sunday's one-party elections indicate the Communist government will remain firmly in power for the foreseeable future, especially as Raúl Castro continues to serve as secretary of the party. Even as the island's economy flounders under the weight of international sanctions, Diaz-Canel is expected to carry out the same agenda Cuba has followed for the past 60 years.

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Mark Meadows considers new White House press secretary

Photos: Alyssa Farah, Defense Department; Stephanie Grisham, Alex Wong/Getty Images; Kayleigh McEnany, Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has privately discussed bringing on Pentagon spokesperson Alyssa Farah or Trump campaign spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany as a new White House press secretary, two sources familiar with the talks tell Axios.

Why it matters: Meadows' start on Tuesday as Trump's new chief presents a chance to overhaul a press shop that's kept a low profile since President Trump ended the tradition of daily press secretary briefings.

CNN: Fauci advises all states issue stay-at-home orders

Dr. Anthony Fauci listens to President Trump speak during a briefing on April 1. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci recommended on Thursday that all states across the U.S. implement stay-at-home orders, at a CNN town hall.

Why it matters: The recommendation stands in contrast to President Trump's calls for "flexibility." Nearly 4o states have issued stay-at-home orders to promote social distancing as a way to combat the novel coronavirus — but the orders vary in strictness and duration.

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