Your Wednesday Briefing – The New York Times

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Iran will “take the next step” on Sunday in enriching uranium beyond the levels specified under the 2015 international deal limiting its nuclear program, President Hassan Rouhani said today, according to state news outlets.

Inspectors visited five facilities in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas last month and found standing-room-only cells and children without showers or hot meals, according to a report by the watchdog, the Office of Inspector General.

The information supported the accounts of House Democrats, who detailed their own findings this week. Two House committees announced hearings next week into conditions at the centers.

Related: A federal judge blocked an order by Attorney General William Barr that would have detained thousands of migrants indefinitely while they waited for their asylum cases to be decided.

The Trump administration on Tuesday dropped its plan to add a question to next year’s head count, after a Supreme Court ruling last week temporarily blocked the effort.

Critics, and even officials at the Census Bureau, have said that asking about citizenship status would lead to an undercount of noncitizens and minority residents. The Commerce Department, which oversees the bureau, had argued that the Justice Department needed a more accurate count of citizens to enforce the 1965 Voting Rights Act, a rationale that the Supreme Court rejected.

Explainer: We answered some common questions about the census and the yearlong battle over the citizenship question.

Related: In the prelude to the census, which occurs every 10 years, the government has embraced technology as never before, hoping to stop its costs ballooning. But experts are worried about hacking, glitches and disinformation.

Mr. Iacocca was the only executive in modern times to preside over two of the Big Three automakers, and he came to personify the American auto industry in the 1970s and ’80s. He died on Tuesday at 94.

During his 32 years at Ford Motor Company, he brought out the best-selling Mustang, before being fired in 1978 by Henry Ford II, the founder’s grandson. Mr. Iacocca went on to rescue the floundering Chrysler Corporation with the help of a $1.5 billion federal loan guarantee. Experts called it one of the most brilliant turnarounds in business history.

Closer look: The son of an immigrant hot-dog vendor, Mr. Iacocca became so widely admired that there was talk of his running for the White House in 1988. “He’s like Babe Ruth,” a retired Chrysler executive said of Mr. Iacocca. “He hit home runs and he struck out a lot. But he always filled the ballpark.”

The U.S. team that will play for the Women’s World Cup title on Sunday “has a self-confidence that has set as concrete,” our chief soccer correspondent writes. “It is not so much that it seems to go into every game expecting to win, but that it appears not to have heard about the possibility of defeat.”

The details: The U.S. advanced to its third consecutive World Cup final after edging England, 2-1, on Tuesday. The Americans will face the winner of today’s Netherlands-Sweden match, which starts at 3 p.m. Eastern.

Another angle: The American star Megan Rapinoe missed Tuesday’s match with a minor muscle strain, but she has vowed to be ready for the final.

Snapshot: Above, viewing a total solar eclipse in Paiguano, Chile, on Tuesday, the first since 2017. See more photographs here.

A Nike tribute fizzles: The company canceled the release of a sneaker featuring a 13-star American flag that is associated with the Revolutionary War, Betsy Ross and, more recently, racist ideologies.

Santa in the off-season: The Times tagged along on the 11th annual Santa Cruise, a chance for professional Santas (and Mrs. Clauses) to gather, schmooze, and stay sharp.

Late-night comedy: Most shows are in reruns, so our column is taking the week off.

What we’re reading: This article in Jezebel. Jessica Grose, the editor of NYT Parenting, writes, “We recently wrote about how celebrities became influential in the world of vaccines, but Anna Merlan has been covering the subject for years. Her most recent piece is about getting kicked out of America’s biggest anti-vaccine conference.”

Smarter Living: If you’re an “only” in a group setting — for example, if you’re a woman or a person of color — don’t underestimate the importance of your presence. Studies show that companies with greater diversity perform better and are more productive. Here are some tips about how to navigate outsider status.

And we have recommendations on how to prepare for Amazon Prime Day, which is July 15 and 16.

The U.S. will celebrate Independence Day on Thursday with the aesthetically pleasing high explosives known as fireworks.

But fireworks celebrations have also been marred by mayhem and injury.

In 1887, The Times reported, “One of the skyrockets sent up at the Democratic mass meeting at the Academy of Music, Brooklyn, last night, set fire to the roof of Dr. S.F. Spier’s residence, 162 Montague St.”

Fireworks have set off trouble large and small, such as the errant sparkler that ignited a fatal fire in a department store in Cleveland in 1908, and the street-level chaos of unsanctioned fireworks competitions nowadays.

For all of their visual glory, large-scale fireworks are essentially mortar rounds — aerial shells made up mostly of gunpowder, plus proprietary concoctions of chemicals, which create a sonic boom as the exploding gases rapidly expand.

So let’s be safe out there, people.

A correction: Tuesday’s Morning Briefing referred incorrectly to remarks by members of Congress who had visited detention facilities at the border. Lawmakers called Border Patrol officers’ behavior toward them toxic and called the detention system broken; they did not describe the migrant holding sites as toxic or broken.

The briefing is off on Thursday for Independence Day but will return on Friday. (Although I will not; my colleague Mike Ives will be writing while I’m away on vacation next week.)

See you next time.

— Chris

Thank you
Melina Delkic helped compile today’s briefing. Mark Josephson and Eleanor Stanford provided the break from the news, and Adam Pasick, on the briefings team, wrote today’s Back Story. You can reach the team at

• We’re listening to “The Daily.” Today’s episode is about Joe Biden’s record on race.
• Here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: Any spade in the card game Spades (5 letters). You can find all our puzzles here.
• The Times won three Gerald Loeb Awards last week for outstanding business reporting in features, investigative and personal finance.

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