In the end, the measure met nearly every deadline in an optimistic timeline. “Today, we are giving the people of this country their money back,” Speaker Paul Ryan said on Tuesday.
But our reporters note: “To get to that moment, Republicans walled themselves off from criticism, convincing one another that unfavorable economic analyses of their bill were wrong, and that its poor poll numbers would improve once the cuts worked their way into Americans’ paychecks.”
• Republicans are nearing their first major legislative achievement since taking power. But they’re also keeping an eye on next year’s midterm elections, our chief Washington correspondent writes.
From #MeToo to #WhatAboutUs
• The Harvey Weinstein scandal unleashed a global movement against harassment in the worlds of entertainment, media and government. The plight of blue-collar workers has drawn much less attention, however.
The Times spoke with female employees at two Ford plants in Chicago where harassment persisted decades after the company tried to tackle sexual misconduct.
Tonya Exum, an Army veteran who reported being groped, recalled a union representative saying: “It’s not sexual harassment. He only did it one time.” (If you’re a blue-collar worker, you can confidentially share your experiences here.)
• To read more, sign up for our newsletter The #MeToo Moment.
The source of subway riders’ misery
• New York City’s subway system has had its worst year of delays since the transit crisis of the 1970s.
An investigation by The Times found that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s flawed policies and practices led to preventable breakdowns.
• A close look at service in June — the system’s most-delayed month this year — highlights how avoidable maintenance problems cause commuter anguish practically every hour.
“The Daily”: Ending the individual mandate
• Congress is using the tax bill to kill the Affordable Care Act provision. What does this mean for the future of health care?
Listen on a computer, an iOS device or an Android device.
• “Porch pirates” are busy during the holiday season, swiping packages from doorsteps.
But homeowners and retailers are striking back with cameras and other technology.
• Uber lost a major legal battle today, when the European Union’s highest court declared that the company must comply with tough rules governing traditional taxi associations.
• The Winklevoss twins, Tyler and Cameron, were once mocked for their investment in the virtual currency Bitcoin. Who’s laughing now?
Separately, a hedge fund dedicated to virtual currencies released its return to investors: 25,004 percent (not a typo).
• U.S. stocks were down on Tuesday. Here’s a snapshot of global markets.
Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.
• How to be a better traveler: Here’s what we learned in 2017.
• The best toys and games that teach kids how to code.
• Recipe of the day: Go retro with stuffed mushrooms.
• Dancing down the years
Today’s 360 video continues our series in which dancers of retirement age reflect on why they’re still practicing. “My perspective as a dancer is completely dramatic, because I’m identified with the body,” said Douglas Dunn, 75. “And the body is the thing that is changing.”
• Disgraced cardinal dies
Cardinal Bernard Law, at one time the senior Roman Catholic prelate in the United States, resigned as the archbishop of Boston in 2002 after revelations that he had protected pedophile priests for years. He was 86.
• The year in pictures
Photographs hold the power to clarify in tumultuous times. View some of the most remarkable images from 2017.
• Why every vote counts
A Democrat in Virginia defeated a Republican incumbent by a single vote — 11,608 to 11,607 — leaving the House of Delegates evenly split between the two parties.
• At War returns
We retired our long-running blog dedicated to the military last year, but we’d like your help shaping its replacement. Let us know what you’d like to see.
• Where to next?
NASA will announce the finalists today for a coming space mission. Here are the options.
• Best of late-night TV
Jimmy Fallon joked that the broadly unpopular Republican tax overhaul was “payback for the majority of Americans who voted for Hillary Clinton.”
• Quotation of the day
“Like Celine Dion, poutine was once mocked and underappreciated in Quebec.”
Nicolas Fabien-Ouellet, a professed “poutinologist” from Montreal who presented an academic paper arguing that Canada had culturally appropriated a dish so quintessentially Québécois that it amounted to theft. Poutine consists of French fries, cheese curds and gravy.
Eighteen years ago today, Portugal handed Macau back to China after ruling it as a colony for 442 years. The move came two years after Britain handed back Hong Kong, which had made Macau the last European colony in Asia.
Portugal offered to return the territory in the 1970s, but China’s leaders demurred because they feared losing a trading link to the outside world, The Times reported on the eve of the 1999 handover.
“Since then, the Portuguese administration has presided over Macau’s steady deterioration into a disreputable, vaguely sinister gambling destination for weekend wagerers from Hong Kong,” the Times story said.
The territory, which is about 40 miles west of Hong Kong, has a population of about 650,000.
A different kind of milestone was reached less than a decade after the handover, when Macau overtook Las Vegas to become the world’s biggest gambling center, with $6.95 billion in annual revenue.
“Where Macau was once derided for its seedy gambling dens and endemic organized crime, it is now being referred to as Asia’s Las Vegas, and not just by the locals,” The Times reported in 2007.
Mike Ives contributed reporting.
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