April 30, 2014
CC by: Seth Anderson

The Obama administration has had some pretty serious defeats before the Supreme Court recently, but Tuesday wasn't one of those cases. In a 6-2 decision, the justices ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency can use the Clean Air Act to regulate pollution from one state crossing into another. (Justice Samuel Alito recused himself, and Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas are the dissenters.) The decision overturns a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia circuit.

This upholding of the 2011 "good neighbor" rule is not just a win for the White House and EPA but also for states along the Eastern Seaboard who have spent decades breathing the smog and fumes sent over from Appalachia and the upper Midwest, where air quality rules are more lax. It's a loss for the coal industry, since coal-fired plants will have to install expensive equipment to "scrub" emissions of smog-causing pollutants or close down.

But the ruling is more than that — it provides, or hints at, maybe the biggest tool the Obama White House has to fight climate change. "It's a big win for the EPA, and not just because it has to do with this rule," Harvard environmental law expert Jody Freeman tells The New York Times. "It's the fact that it's setting the stage and creating momentum for what's to come." And what's to come is a broader use of the Clean Air Act to, well, clean our air of some heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions. Peter Weber

10:41 p.m. ET

Hillary Clinton lost Indiana to Bernie Sanders on Tuesday, but not by a wide enough margin to significantly affect her delegate lead. Clinton's campaigned focused on the general election instead, calling Donald Trump the "presumptive Republican nominee," and predictably suggesting he wouldn't make a very good president:

You can see the contours of the general election taking shape, assuming Clinton and Trump win the nominations. Trump, in his victory speech, criticized Clinton on trade and her plan to phase out coal energy. Clinton's campaign argues that the next president has to main jobs, "keep our nation safe in a dangerous world and help working families get ahead here at home," adding that Trump is "prepared to do neither," and that "with so much at stake, Donald Trump is simply too big of a risk." Few think the race will stay this civil. Peter Weber

10:05 p.m. ET

And then there were two: On Tuesday night, after Ted Cruz dropped out of the Republican presidential race, John Kasich told voters that "now more than ever, there are two paths."

Earlier in the day, after coming in last place in the Indiana Republican primary, the Kasich campaign announced that the Ohio governor was staying in the race unless one of the other candidates reached 1,237 bound delegates before the convention. Now that it's down to just Kasich and Donald Trump, Kasich is sharing on Twitter a video reminding people that he is a very different person from Trump.

Kasich also had kind words for Cruz, telling him he should be "proud of his strong and disciplined campaign" and saying "Texas is lucky to have you." Catherine Garcia

9:53 p.m. ET

"It's been some unbelievable day," Donald Trump said to supporters in New York after he won the Indiana Republican primary, forcing rival Ted Cruz out of the race. He thanked legendary Indiana basketball coach Bobby Knight, professed his love for the Hoosier State ("I said, maybe I'll just never leave"), and criticized the onslaught of negative ads he saw while campaigning in Indiana. Most of the ads were directed at him, and "I said, how can anyone endure this?" Trump asked. "The people are so smart. They don't buy it. They get it."

Trump turned to the general election, criticizing Hillary Clinton on trade policy and for threatening to shut down coal mines, saying, "we're going to get those miners back to work." He also vowed to prevent U.S. companies from moving jobs overseas, saying, "we will not let them leave," and if they do, "there will be consequences, and there will be very, very serious consequences." Trump said America needs to rebuild its infrastructure and its military, calling the military buildup "the cheapest thing we can do," and said that under a Trump foreign policy, other countries are "going to end up liking us better than they do now."

Finally, Trump turned to Cruz, saying he's not sure if his erstwhile rival likes him, "but he is one hell of a competitor. He is a tough, smart guy. And he has got an amazing future." He wasn't so charitable to the last man standing in the race, John Kasich. Trump began by thanking RNC chairman Reince Preibus, saying it is hard to manage "17 egos," then added, "and now I guess he's down to one — I don't know, is there a second?" In case Kasich didn't get the hint, Trump said, "What Ted did is actually a very brave thing to do," paving the way for party unity. Peter Weber

9:17 p.m. ET

If you ever find yourself standing on a stage with Ted Cruz, run — don't walk — away as fast as you can for your own protection, lest you become the latest person to get hurt.

Over the weekend, Carly Fiorina ate it after introducing the one-time Republican presidential candidate, falling off the stage and disappearing into a sea of Cruz supporters. On Tuesday, after Cruz announced his decision to drop out of the race, he elbowed his wife Heidi not once, not twice, but three times in the head as he went to embrace his father. He then awkwardly pulled Heidi into their hug, and she buried her face into his arm, clearly in survival mode.

Now that Cruz is no longer running, the world is instantly a safer place for those who might have found themselves sharing a dais with him. Don't be surprised if Cruz, knowing of his curse, tries to make his way onstage with a certain former rival — Donald Trump, you've been warned. Catherine Garcia

9:15 p.m. ET
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

With Ted Cruz's departure, the Republican presidential race has become a two-man contest, but Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus apparently doesn't think much of John Kasich's chances to overtake Donald Trump. After Trump's romp in Indiana, Priebus tweeted a sort of congratulations to Trump, and a plea for party unity.

Be careful, Priebus, #NeverTrump is watching. Peter Weber

8:55 p.m. ET

After losing the Indiana Republican presidential primary to Donald Trump, Ted Cruz suspended his campaign. Cruz had called Indiana his firewall, and said on Monday he would fight on as long as he had a viable path to the Republican nomination. "Tonight, I'm sorry to say, it appears that path has been foreclosed," Cruz told a crowd in Indianapolis on Tuesday night. "Together, we left it all on the field in Indiana. We gave it everything we had. But the voters chose another path." Cruz ended his speech promising to fight on. "We are suspending our campaign," he said, "But hear me now, I am not suspending our fight for liberty," the U.S. Constitution, and the "Judeo-Christian values that built America."

Carly Fiorina, who just last week joined Cruz's campaign as his running mate, introduced Cruz, saying she spoke for the whole Cruz team "when I tell you how many Hoosiers we have fallen in love with on this campaign." She thanked everyone in the room, and said "we came here as warriors, warriors in a cause." Fiorina called Cruz "one of the great citizens of this extraordinary nations." When he came on, Cruz began, "God bless the Hoosier State," talked about the last contested Republican convention, when Ronald Reagan lost to Gerald Ford in 1976, suggesting that he may be back again for the 2020 race. Peter Weber

8:26 p.m. ET
Yuri Gripas/AFP/Getty Imagesr

John Kasich came in a very distant third place in the Indiana Republican primary, but the Ohio governor says the results are "not going to alter" his campaign plans.

"Our strategy has been and continues to be one that involves winning the nomination at an open convention," the Kasich campaign wrote in a note on Facebook. Kasich will remain in the race unless a candidate reaches 1,237 bound delegates before the convention because he "remains the candidate best positioned to win a contested convention."

The campaign argues that a "plurality of Trump delegates will support him after the first ballot," and he can unite the Republican Party "better than anyone else. Trump's cynical sowing of division will render the GOP into angry, irrelevant status for decades." The campaign also called Trump out for "disrespectful ramblings" and said "Americans overwhelmingly want to vote for Governor Kasich in a general election." Catherine Garcia

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