Big. Foot? / Destination: Illinois / ‘Boeing bought Washington’

Big. Foot? Snow’s bearing down on Chicago, with a winter storm warning watch warning posted for early Friday …
 … aaaaaaand then it gets cold.
 Does your car have all the right stuff for this weather?
 The Conversation: Blizzards are inescapable—but their destruction isn’t.
 Wednesday morning’s strong winds drew surfers to Evanston’s Lake Michigan shoreline.
 The leader of Chicago’s government initiative to make streets welcoming for drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists calls 2023 an “incredible year for cycling.”

Destination: Chicago. With that storm bearing down on the region, the Tribune reports that hundreds of migrants who recently arrived in the city have been sheltering in warming buses—and haven’t showered for days.
 Seeking money for housing, the migrant family of a 5-year-old who got sick and died at a Pilsen shelter has launched a GoFundMe campaign and shared a touching photo montage of his life.
 Block Club: The Chicago Housing Authority owns more than 130 acres of vacant buildings and land—the equivalent of 10 city blocks.

Destination: Illinois. The Illinois Department of Public Health reports that in 2022, the year the Supreme Court overturned the right to abortion, the number of abortions performed here on out-of-state patients jumped by about 49%.
 See the numbers here.

 Jimmy Kimmel on Donald Trump’s refusal to join those two: “There’s nobody fun left to watch. It’s like a box of Lucky Charms without the marshmallows.”
 USA Today columnist Rex Huppke: “While Haley was mopping the floor with Awkward Ron … the former president, on Fox News, said the one thing likely to matter in the 2024 presidential election.”
 Ex-N.J. Gov. Chris Christie bowed out of the Republican race yesterday—ostensibly to give Nikki Haley a shot at snatching the nomination from Trump …
 … but, shortly after, Christie was accidentally caught on a hot mike saying, “She’s gonna get smoked. … She’s not up to this.”
 A bomb threat at the home of the judge presiding over Trump’s civil fraud trial delayed today’s closing arguments.
 Trump’s niece, Mary, delights in counting off “THREE embarrassing Donald losses” Wednesday.
 Columnist Eric Zorn’s not particularly bugged by Trump’s failure to sign Illinois’ loyalty pledge: “He’s such a congenital liar I wouldn’t trust any McCarthy-era pledge he might sign.”
 The Onion serves up a quiz: “Who Said It, Donald Trump Or Hitler?

‘Elon Musk just suspended me from Twitter.’ But Texas Observer reporter Steven Monacelli, one of several liberal voices silenced on Twitter X, says he’s not going anywhere.
 Popular Information: Musk’s using his megaphone to promote misleading claims about voting and to push for severe restrictions on who gets a ballot.

‘We are shocked.’ The National Rifle Association’s lawyer aims to distance the organization from a secret recording in which the NRA’s treasurer can be heard plotting to conceal extravagant expenses incurred by scandal-scarred ex-NRA leader Wayne LaPierre.
 The TSA reports finding a record number of guns at airport checkpoints last year—93% of them loaded.

‘Boeing bought Washington.’ The Lever reports: Before that door plug blew out of a Boeing 737 Max 9 jet last week, the company and its parts supplier spent years lobbying to “reduce safety regulations, pressure federal officials, and boost production.”
 Nice Idea While It Lasted Dept.: An engineer created a website to let fliers know if their upcoming flight was scheduled on one of those planes … but then demand blew past the site’s data quota.

‘There’s a deeper issue here about how much longer NPR … will accept sponsorship money from oil companies.’ The network’s public editor explores “jarring juxtapositions between ads and news stories.”

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