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Here’s what you need to know:
Back to “catch and release”
• Many immigrant families who are detained after crossing the Mexican border illegally will be quickly released if they promise to return for a court hearing, the nation’s top border security official has decided, reviving — at least temporarily — the approach used during the Obama administration.
The commissioner of Customs and Border Protection said on Monday that his agency would stop handing over migrants for prosecution until the government agreed on a policy that didn’t result in the extended separation of families.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, said that there was no change in the “zero tolerance” policy, but that the U.S. didn’t have the resources to detain all of the families. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, however, vowed to continue enforcing the policy.
If it sounds confusing, it is.
President Trump has called for immigrants and asylum seekers to be deported without a court hearing. We explain the due-process rights of migrants.
• During the recent immigration debate, some have publicly shamed members of the Trump administration. Those confrontations have exposed a divide among Democrats.
Pot becomes an election issue
• In this year’s midterm elections, the growing cannabis industry is hoping that the spread of marijuana legalization will give rise to new single-issue voters: people who cast ballots based on benefits they have received or fears that the government could rescind access.
A test case will be the campaign of Representative Jared Polis, who is running for Colorado governor with the promise of protecting and promoting the cannabis industry. The state’s primary is today.
Six other states, including New York, are also voting today. Here’s what to watch for, including the return of Mitt Romney.
No sequels from the Supreme Court
• The justices said on Monday that they would not consider cases similar to those that prompted decisions this month on a baker who refused to serve a gay couple and on challenges to voting maps warped by politics.
In a pair of one-sentence orders, the court sent appeals in similar disputes back to lower courts, passing up opportunities to clarify its inconclusive rulings in some of the most closely watched cases this term.
• The court also declined to hear the appeal of Brendan Dassey, whose murder conviction was documented in the Netflix documentary series “Making a Murderer.”
In hock to China
• Beijing has helped finance at least 35 ports around the world in the past decade, according to a Times analysis of construction projects. One is in Sri Lanka, just a few hundred miles from India, a Chinese rival, and along a crucial commercial and military waterway.
The Sri Lankan government took out ever-greater loans from Beijing to pay for the project, which feasibility studies correctly predicted wouldn’t work. Under pressure, the government handed the port, and 15,000 acres around it, to the Chinese in December.
• The case is one of the most vivid examples of China’s ambitious use of loans and aid to gain influence around the world — and of its willingness to play hardball to collect. Read our investigation here.
A World Cup odyssey
• Every four years, some soccer enthusiasts endure periods of self-imposed hardship to nurture their passion and make life decisions that nonfanatics would consider ludicrous.
Meet Jose Ramon Diaz, a Mexican college student who scraped together money to travel to Russia, even though he has no tickets to matches.
• As the results of the tournament’s group stage come into focus, here’s a look at where the teams stand. Today’s games begin at 10 a.m. Eastern, and we’ll have live scores and analysis.
• This coral must die
In a lab in Philadelphia, scientists are studying what it takes to kill “super coral,” hoping to understand the impact of human activities on ocean reefs.
• Best of late-night TV
After President Trump attacked Jimmy Fallon on Twitter, the “Tonight Show” host took the president to task: “Melania, if you’re watching, I don’t think your anti-bullying campaign is working.”
• Quotation of the day
“Ladies love the sombrero. It’s a key that opens a lot of doors.”
— Jose Ramon Diaz, a Mexican soccer fan who, with the help of his headgear, has followed his country’s team around Russia during the World Cup.
• The Times, in other words
• What we’re reading (and watching)
John Schwartz, a climate change reporter, recommends this “Carpool Karaoke” segment on James Corden’s “Late Late Show”: “Corden’s series can be hit or miss, but this one, wow. Paul McCartney. They drive around Liverpool. They visit Penny Lane. They drop in on people. And the joy of it simply builds and builds. I was in tears. I don’t want to spoil it for you. Just watch.”
On this day in 1974, the first item with a Universal Product Code was scanned at a supermarket in Troy, Ohio.
The rectangular bar code was the result of many decades of invention and collaboration, but it was based on an original, circular design by N. Joseph Woodland. He came up with the idea while sitting on the beach.
As a graduate student at the Drexel Institute of Technology, Mr. Woodland heard from a classmate about a supermarket executive in search of a solution to long checkout lines. Intrigued, they started trying to solve the problem. Mr. Woodland eventually moved to his grandparents’ house in Miami Beach to devote himself full time to the endeavor.
It’s there that he drew four lines in the sand with his fingers, envisioning a kind of graphical Morse code.
It was a flash of inspiration that Mr. Woodland said “sounds like a fairy tale.”
Though the original patent was sold for a paltry $15,000, Mr. Woodland was awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation in 1992 by President George Bush.
Emma McAleavy wrote today’s Back Story.