Here is some stuff in the news today...
[Content Note: Pulse shooting] President Obama is traveling to Orlando today to meet privately with survivors and grieving families. The President "will 'make clear that the country stands with the people of Orlando, stands with the LGBT community in Orlando as they grieve,' a White House spokesman said. Few details have been released but no major speech is planned."
[Continued CN] Also having traveled to Orlando are 12 golden retrievers who are trained as comfort dogs: "They had come to offer comfort to some of the victims of the attack, the families of those killed and the emergency medical workers, as well as anyone else in the city in need of some canine affection after the deadliest shooting in American history. ...Tim Hetzner, the president of the charity, said that the dogs in Orlando were helping to provide a feeling of safety, allowing those in distress to relax their guard and express their vulnerability during a difficult time. 'We've had a lot of people here that start petting the dog, and they break out crying,' he said. The dogs and their 20 handlers have visited hospitals and churches, and attended vigils and memorial services. On Wednesday, they visited some of the hospitalized victims and met with the staff of Pulse, the gay nightclub where the shooting occurred. 'People couldn't get out of their bed, so we had to bring the dog up so they could pet the dog while laying down,' Mr. Hetzner said. 'They start smiling, and in a couple cases, they started talking as much as they could.'" Blub.
In case you are wondering why it was that Bernie Sanders could be arsed to participate in the Senate filibuster last night to demand a vote on gun reforms, he "was in Burlington, Vt., ahead of a simulcast speech to supporters today. (He is not expected to concede.) He'd been in Washington the night before the filibuster began, for the Democratic luncheon and a meeting with Hillary Clinton, but he was not able to return to the city. 'It just didn't work yesterday,' said Sanders spokesman Michael Briggs. 'We're keeping an eye on votes next week.'" Oh. It just didn't work out. Sure.
Here's a cool line from that same article, following a note about what Sanders tweeted: "Hillary Clinton did roughly the same thing." Yeah, roughly. Except for the fact that she's not a sitting senator, so the fact that she only tweeted her support is actually rather NOT ROUGHLY THE SAME THING AT ALL.
[CN: War on agency; abortion; sexual violence] Disappointing: "Obama Administration Punts on Helms Amendment: The administration confirmed to Rewire that the president's remarks on 'treating survivors' at the United State of Women Summit Tuesday will not translate into executive action on the Helms Amendment—the subject of a demonstration that preceded Tuesday's summit activities."
Oprah Winfrey has endorsed Hillary Clinton. "You're gonna get a female president! And you're gonna get a female president! Everybody in here is gonna get a female president!!!"
Hillary has also secured the endorsement of the AFL-CIO: "Hillary Clinton is a proven leader who shares our values," said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka in a statement. "Throughout the campaign, she has demonstrated a strong commitment to the issues that matter to working people, and our members have taken notice."
Ohio Governor John Kasich and Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough had a terrific exchange (ahem) about whose fault Donald Trump is. Kasich says it's the media's fault, like his party and its base and the cultivation of hatred had nothing to do with it. Meanwhile, Scarborough acts as though the media has no choice in whether to cover Trump. No one wants any responsibility. Cool. I guess how Donald Trump became the Republican nominee is a mystery lost to the sands of time.
Meanwhile, one of Donald Trump's campaign co-chairs and policy advisers Sam Clovis says of criticism from other prominent Republicans and the party leadership: "Either they want to get behind the presumptive nominee who will be the nominee of this party and make sure that we do everything we can to win in November or we're just asking them if they can't do that, then just shut the hell up." What a terrific team Trump has put together.
Congratulations to Jamie Shupe, who has won their legal battle to identify as neither male nor female, a historic ruling that makes them the first legally non-binary person in the US.
A woman parked in a space reserved for veterans. Someone who didn't know her left a note on her car reading: "This parking is for veterans, lady. Learn to read & have some respect." I bet you can guess how this ends! If you guessed that the person who wrote the note is a misogynistic asshole and the woman to whom it was written is a Navy veteran whose Facebook response has gone viral, give yourself a thousand points!
Wow: "Scientists have collected a second burst of gravitational waves sweeping through the Earth. The warping of space-time was sensed on Christmas Day in the US at the Advanced LIGO laboratories—the same facilities that made the historic first detection in September last year. Back then, the waves came from two huge coalescing black holes. This new set of waves, likewise, is ascribed to a black hole merger—but a smaller one. Reporting the event in the journal Physical Review Letters, the international collaboration that operates LIGO says the two objects involved had masses that were 14 and eight times that of our Sun."
[CN: Moving GIFs at link] And finally! Rescue pig and French bulldog puppy are BFFs. I MEAN.