Cronkite News Digest for Friday, June 21

Here is your Cronkite News lineup for Friday, June 21.

If not linked below, stories promised for today, along with photos and links to multimedia elements, will post to our client site at


Supreme Court upholds gun ban on domestic abusers, defies usual ideological split on Second Amendment rights

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 8-1 on Friday to uphold a ban on gun possession by domestic abusers – a ruling that came as a huge relief to victims’ advocates in Arizona and across the nation. “When an individual poses a clear threat of physical violence to another, the threatening individual may be disarmed,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote. The near-unanimous ruling to affirm limitations on Second Amendment rights defied the court’s usual ideological split.

Slug: BC-CNS-Court Upholds Gun Ban. 675 words. By Sahara Sajjadi

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Arizona hits record low unemployment, but Biden hasn’t seen political payoff from job growth, workers

WASHINGTON –As President Joe Biden tries to shore up support among working class Arizona voters in the critical swing state, voters aren’t inclined to give him credit for low unemployment.  And thousands of manufacturing jobs – promised under the CHIPS Act – are on hold.

Slug: BC-CSN-Jobs Biden Arizona. 870 words. By Grey Gartin.

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Democrats spend big hoping to snag two of Arizona’s congressional seats

WASHINGTON – The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee plans to spend $2.8 million on ads targeting two potentially vulnerable members of Congress, Reps. David Schweikert and Juan Ciscomani. Democrats view abortion as pivotal to success in Arizona, where the state’s high court revived an 1864 law that enforced a near-total ban The Legislature repealed that ban but the issue remains top of mind for many voters.

Slug: BC-CSN-Congress DCCC. 820 words. By Alex Cunningham.

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Ousted House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s quest for vengeance faces test in Rep. Eli Crane’s primary

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Eli Crane got $900,000 worth of support from Kevin McCarthy when he won his Arizona congressional seat in 2022. Less than a year later, he was one of eight hardline Republicans who ousted McCarthy from the speakership. Now McCarthy is out for revenge. Using his vast war chest and web of affiliated PACs, the deposed Californian is trying to knock Crane out in the Republican primary July 30, backing a challenger Crane’s camp has denounced as a “puppet.”

Slug: BC-CNS-Crane McCarthy Revenge. 1,000 words. By Alex Cunningham.

Photos available.

Biden announces protection for immigrant spouses of U.S. citizens, their children, but Trump’s policies threaten to take it away

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden Tuesday announced easier opportunities to a path to citizenship for some migrants. Immigrant advocates and DACA recipients say there’s still much work to be done, especially on the verge of another Trump presidency that threatens it all.

Slug: BC-CNS-Undocumented Spouses Protection. 1,100 words. By Benjamin Adelberg.

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Kamala Harris to campaign for reproductive rights in Phoenix on 2-year anniversary of Dobbs v. Jackson

WASHINGTON – Vice President Kamala Harris will mark the two-year anniversary of the Supreme Court ruling striking down Roe v. Wade Monday in Phoenix, at a campaign event focused on abortion rights. Arizona has been a battleground for reproductive rights, and Democrats see it as a wedge issue to drive up turnout and lure independents and even some Republicans. 

Slug: BC-CNS-VP Abortion Phoenix. 440 words. By Morgan Kubasko.

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Tempe Juneteenth celebration combines art activism with reflections on social justice, racial equality

TEMPE – Downtown Tempe came alive with vibrant cultural celebrations as the city hosted its third annual Juneteenth Block Party Saturday. Organized by Downtown Tempe Authority, the theme for this year’s block party was Freedom of Expression. It combined history and education with immersive artistic experiences to showcase how art and activism come together to reflect on social justice and racial equality.

Slug: BC-CNS-Juneteenth Art. 600 words. By Stella Subasic.

11 photos, video available.

Joe Biden campaign tries to win Arizona seniors with bingo as Donald Trump campaign focuses on Black, Hispanic voters

PHOENIX – A cheer of “Bingo!” was quickly followed by groans of disappointment and hearty laughter as a group of older adults played Biden Bingo on Thursday morning. The event was part of a new Joe Biden campaign tactic that aims to mobilize senior voters through bingo rounds, pickleball tournaments, ice cream socials and intergenerational chats. Seniors for Biden-Harris is one of the latest attempts from the Biden campaign to target specific demographics. This month, Republican Donald Trump launched Latino Americans for Trump and Black Americans for Trump. This targeted campaign strategy has blown up in the past decade or so, according to Stella Rouse, a professor in the School of Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University.

Slug: BC-CNS-Small Scale Campaign. 710 words. By Lauren De Young.

Photos, video available.

With 1864 abortion ban repealed, Arizona doctors don’t need emergency licenses in California and none have signed up

WASHINGTON – Weeks after the Arizona Supreme Court revived a near-total abortion ban adopted decades before statehood, Democrats in California sprung into action. Through the end of November, Arizona doctors can get temporary licenses to perform abortions in California for Arizona patients. Arizona abortion providers and abortion rights advocates voiced appreciation for the neighborly gesture. But so far no Arizona doctors have signed up, California officials say. The urgency subsided when the Arizona Legislature repealed the 1864 ban, which carried two to five years in prison for anyone who helped terminate a pregnancy, and for any woman who got an abortion unless her life was in danger.

Slug: BC-CNS-Abortion California. 590 words. By Morgan Kubasko.

File photo available.

Arizona Legislature adjourns just in time to prevent repealed 1864 abortion ban from taking effect

WASHINGTON – Arizonans nearly found themselves back in the 1800s. A Civil War-era abortion ban repealed in May would have become enforceable on Sept. 26 – temporarily – if the Legislature didn’t adjourn in time.New laws take effect 90 days after the legislative session. Through that quirk, unless lawmakers adjourned by June 28 the ban they had just repealed would be the law of the land, if only for a few days. As a budget deadlock persisted, the specter grew that lawmakers would miss the deadline. Then, in a weekend push, they completed their work on Saturday night.

Slug: BC-CNS-Abortion Ban Quirk. 650 words. By Sahara Sajjadi.

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Bill aims to ease teacher shortage at tribal schools by granting federal pensions to educators

WASHINGTON – Teachers have been in short supply across Arizona. Nowhere is that felt more than at schools run by Native American tribes. Arizona has 34 such schools, plus 20 others operated by the Bureau of Indian Education, or BIE. Most of the tribally controlled schools are in remote parts of the state, far from towns or metropolitan areas. That makes finding teachers tough, and the pay and benefits tribes can offer – often less than other schools – makes it even more challenging.

Slug: BC-CNS-Tribal Teacher Shortage. 680 words. By Alexander MacDonald.

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How police in Texas lost a bullet tied to the shooting death of a baby

A new investigation by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at Arizona State University and The Texas Observer reveals San Antonio police lost a bullet after logging it in as evidence in the shooting death of an 8-month-old baby. The SAPD has a history of problems with evidence handling, the report found.

Slug: BC-CNS-Missing Bullet. 1,886 words. By Xavier Brathwaite | Howard Center for Investigative Journalism.

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Family, legacy and leadership: Nate Tibbetts makes mark in WNBA debut season with Phoenix Mercury

PHOENIX – Many criticized the Phoenix Mercury for hiring Nate Tibbetts, who had no prior experience coaching in the WNBA. However, the South Dakota native is building a “family atmosphere” thanks to inspiration from his family, coaches and players.

Slug: Sports-Mercury Coach Tibbetts. 1,760 words. By Joshua Heron.

3 photos available.

Tempe’s Grass Clippings Rolling Hills shines new light on golf with nighttime play

TEMPE – Darkness had always limited play on Arizona’s golf courses until Grass Clippings took on the challenge. Tired of halting rounds early due to course rules, the founders of the clothing brand united to enable play into the night for all interested golfers. For the past six months in Tempe, golfers have enjoyed playing under the lights until 1 a.m. at Grass Clippings Rolling Hills, the state’s first fully lit 18-hole golf course.

Slug: Sports-Grass Clippings Nighttime Golf. 800 words. By Jack Reeves.

6 photos available.

WNBA’s soaring popularity fueling fashion frenzy ahead of All-Star weekend in Phoenix

PHOENIX – The WNBA’s growing popularity has led to increased attention on players’ fashion choices, both on and off the court, with designers and brands collaborating with athletes to showcase their personal styles.

Slug: Sports-WNBA Fashion. 920 words. By Anne-Marie Iemmolo.

6 photos available

Pop fly and shut-eye: This fake baseball podcast is a cure for insomnia

PHOENIX – It’s the bottom of the ninth. The Cadillac Cars are hoping to hold their lead against the Manistee Eagles, and the crowd is buzzing as the late-game drama unfolds. If you’re still listening to the dulcet tones of play-by-play voice Wally McCarthy in the ninth inning, he’ll be disappointed. He wants you to be sleeping. That’s the objective of Northwoods Sleep Baseball Radio, a podcast designed for fans seeking a little shut-eye.

Slug: Sports-Sleep Baseball Podcast. 800 words. By Aya Abdeen.

Photo available.

Phoenix Mercury’s Diana Taurasi reveals secret battle with eczema, teams up to raise awareness

PHOENIX – Before Diana Taurasi walked onto the court in the 2009 WNBA Finals, she elected to wear an arm sleeve. The world saw her rally the Phoenix Mercury back from a 2-1 series deficit to beat the Indiana Fever 3-2, average 20.4 points en route to her first finals MVP, and hoist the capped trophy, looking at it with great adoration. But the world couldn’t see what was underneath her arm sleeve. It wasn’t an additional accessory, extra support or for compression; instead, Taurasi was hiding her moderate-to-severe eczema. 

Slug: Sports-Diana Taurasi Eczema. 980 words. By Joshua Heron.

2 photos available.


Investigative journalism students with Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU examined how ASU and UArizona have complied with federal law to repatriate Indigenous remains and artifacts and found starkly different records at the state’s flagship public universities. Questions? Reach out to project editor Ken Foskett,

Misplaced artifacts, inaccurate inventories and 2% of Native American remains returned to tribes: Inside ASU’s repatriation record

PHOENIX – Arizona State University has made under 2% of its Indigenous human remains and artifacts available to Native American tribes, one of the lowest rates in the nation, according to an analysis by Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

Slug: NAGPRA-ASU. 4,350 words. By Sam Ellefson and Aspen Ford | Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

Photos, video, documents and graphics available.

Low staffing, space crunch hobble state museum’s Native American repatriation work at UArizona

TUCSON – The Arizona State Museum holds the largest number of Indigenous remains in Arizona. But the museum has struggled to comply with a 1990 law to repatriate Native American remains and artifacts because of staffing and space shortages.

Slug: NAGPRA-UArizona. 2,850 words. By Reagan Priest and Christopher Lomahquahu, Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

Photos, video, documents and graphics available.

Community, healing and justice: Indigenous journalists share what reporting on repatriation meant to them

PHOENIX – Three Indigenous Cronkite reporters describe how reporting on the repatriation of Native American remains deepened their appreciation for returning ancestors home.

Slug: NAGPRA-First Person. 1,030 words. By Chad Bradley, Aspen Ford and Christopher Lomahquahu | Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

Photo, video available.

What is the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990?

PHOENIX – The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act empowered Indigenous people to reclaim ancestors and artifacts from American museums. The 1990 law is regarded as one of the most significant Indigenous civil rights laws of the 20th century.

Slug: NAGPRA-Explainer. 335 words. By Staff | Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

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How Cronkite News and the Howard Center reported on NAGPRA

PHOENIX – Journalists at Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism reported on how Arizona public universities have complied with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990. Here’s how they did it.

Slug: NAGPRA-How We Did It. 310 words. By Staff | Cronkite News and the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at ASU.

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