Rock star bomber? Rolling Stone is taking heat for its cover featuring accused Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. The cover goes with a story about Tsarnaev’s childhood and family life, which promises to reveal how a “popular, promising student was failed by his family, fell into radical Islam, and became a monster,” according to the publisher. But critics say the “glam shot” of Tsarnaev gives his supporters a rock star-style poster to hang on their bedroom walls. The photo shows Tsarnaev sometime before his arrest, with tousled, curly hair and a hint of a goatee. Critics point out it’s very reminiscent of the covers the magazine did of rock and roll “royalty,” including The Doors’ Jim Morrison. Despite the criticism, Rolling Stone is probably reveling in all the attention the cover’s getting. Everyone will want to read that story now.
Primary battle. Liz Cheney, the most recognizable of former Vice President Dick Cheney’s daughters, plans to challenge Sen. Michael Enzi of Wyoming in next year’s GOP primary. In an online video announcing her candidacy, Cheney focused most of her criticism on President Barack Obama, rather than her future opponent, although she did say Republicans could “no longer afford simply to get along to go along.” She’s obviously not interested in changing the divisive tone in Washington. And her candidacy is already causing plenty of division in the Republican Party. The National Republican Senatorial Committee said it would support the incumbent, while Cheney’s father has already started to court some of the party’s big donors on his daughter’s behalf.
Temporary disarmament. The Senate has reached a deal to avoid the threatened “nuclear option” that would have ended the minority party’s ability to filibuster Cabinet appointees. Under an agreement finalized yesterday, Republicans agreed to vote on seven nominations to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Democrats agreed to give up two other NLRB nominees whom President Obama appointed during a congressional recess, but the U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing those appointments anyway. When asked whether he’d won his point. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada hedged and said he’d take the compromise. But he’s also keeping his nuke in his pocket in case Republicans refuse to play nice next session.
More charges in Cleveland. Accused Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro appeared in court again today to respond to more than 600 additional charges prosecutors filed against him. He now faces 977 charges stemming from accusations he held three women—Amanda Berry, Michelle Knight, and Gina DeJesus—against their will in his home for almost 10 years, repeatedly beating and raping them. Castro has pleaded not guilty. But his lawyers admitted today some of the charges are irrefutable and said their client would be willing to reach a plea deal if the prosecutor will drop plans to seek the death penalty. Castro faces two charges of aggravated murder in the deaths of two unborn babies he allegedly caused Knight to miscarry.