Whatever You Say
March 25, 2014
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Musician and producer Pharrell Williams has a chart-topping single, a silly hat, and, now, a bold prediction about the 2016 presidential race. In a wide-ranging interview with GQ, Pharrell talks about how far the country came to elect a black president. And from there, he says the nation's forward progress — combined with a few other factors, like Republican attempts to limit abortion access — means Hillary Clinton is a shoo-in to take over the White House come 2016.

Everywhere you go in this country, you have red and blue. You got the Democrats; you got the Republicans. You got the Bloods; you got the Crips. Everything is red and blue in this country. You know what else is red and blue? Blood. Blood is blue in your body until air hits it, and then it turns red. That means there's unity. There's gonna be unity. [...] Trust me. And it's a two-for-one: Bill is the coolest dude in the game, still plays saxophone, and every woman in the world wants him. It's a two-for-one. Hillary's gonna win. Everybody laughed at me when I said Obama was going to win, but I knew what he represented. But I know what Hillary represents: She represents a woman in power, and she did great as the Secretary of State. She's gonna win. [GQ] Jon Terbush

Sweet Sorrows
11:42 p.m. ET

Late Monday, Texas ice cream maker Blue Bell Creameries recalled all its products after two samples of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream tested positive for listeriosis, a potentially fatal foodborne illness caused by the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. The voluntary recall follows a partial recall and the closure of an Oklahoma facility earlier in the month.

"We're committed to doing the 100 percent right thing, and the best way to do that is to take all of our products off the market until we can be confident that they are all safe," said CEO Paul Kruse in a statement.

A message from our CEO and President.

Posted by Blue Bell Ice Cream on Monday, April 20, 2015

The recall affects retailers in 23 states and international markets. Blue Bell, a family-owned creamery that has been making ice cream for 108 years, says it will return to market after it tracks down the source of the listeria and tests all its products for the bacteria. Peter Weber

This is terrible
11:15 p.m. ET
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More than 5 million hens at an Iowa commercial laying facility will be euthanized, following the discovery of bird flu on the premises, officials said.

In a statement, the Iowa Department of Agriculture said that the facility has been quarantined, and the birds will be "humanely euthanized to prevent the spread of the disease." Since December, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says almost 8 million cases of bird flu have been found in 13 states, with more than 7 million having been confirmed this month. This is the second outbreak in Iowa, CNN reports; the first happened at a turkey facility in Buena Vista County. Catherine Garcia

farewell neon cheese
10:26 p.m. ET
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Kraft Macaroni & Cheese's electric orange hue will soon be a thing of the past: Starting next January, the company will no longer sell its original version with artificial preservatives and colors, instead using paprika, annatto, and turmeric to give the dish its tint.

The change comes as consumers continue to shy away from processed foods, and while Kraft was willing to adapt, they had to make sure the taste wasn't altered. "We weren't ready to change the product until we were confident that Kraft Macaroni & Cheese tastes like Kraft Macaroni & Cheese," the company said. Kraft already has one product on the market, Kraft Mac & Cheese Boxed Shapes, without artificial flavors, preservatives, or synthetic colors, and plans to roll out additional preservative-free macaroni and cheese varieties later in 2016. Catherine Garcia

that's one solution
9:44 p.m. ET
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William Shatner has come up with what he says is a surefire way to save California from its drought: Build a pipeline from rain-drenched Seattle to the Golden State.

"I want $30 billion...to build a pipeline like the Alaska pipeline," he told Yahoo. "How bad would it be to get a large, 4-foot pipeline, keep it aboveground — because if it leaks, you're irrigating." The actor plans to launch a Kickstarter in an attempt to raise the billions of dollars necessary to make the pipeline a reality, and believes he's doing a public service by at least bringing awareness to the drought. "If I don't make $30 billion, I'll give it to a politician who says, 'I'll build it,'" he said.

This isn't the first time a pipeline has been proposed to help California with water. Several decades ago, state water officials discussed securing water from the Pacific Northwest, but that plan never came to fruition. In 1977 and 1990, Los Angeles Supervisor Kenneth Hahn discussed digging aqueducts to carry water from the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest and the Snake River in Idaho, but those states weren't interested — in a 1990 letter to Hahn, Oregon Gov. Neil Goldschmidt wrote, "I have the distinct impression that you are trying to steal my water." Catherine Garcia

Foreign affairs
8:21 p.m. ET
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The Chinese government is investing in a program called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a $46 billion project that will do everything from upgrade railways to build power plants in Pakistan.

Chinese President Xi Jinping is in Pakistan for his first state visit, and during a ceremony in Islamabad on Monday, Xi and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif performed a remote groundbreaking via video on five projects, including a $1.4 billion dam near Islamabad. "Friendship with China is the cornerstone of Pakistan's foreign policy," Sharif said. "Today, we have planned for the future."

Chinese companies will tackle the work, The Wall Street Journal reports, and it will be financed through Chinese investment or loans. The proposed corridor will link the northwestern Chinese province of Xinjiang with the Pakistani port of Gwadar through a system of roads, and will create important power-generation plants to combat Pakistan's frequent electricity shortages. Most of the $28 billion in advance projects are expected to be finished by 2018, with the rest by 2030. Catherine Garcia

crisis in yemen
7:31 p.m. ET
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Pentagon officials on Monday said that the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt has been moved off the coast of Yemen in the event that it needs to intercept shipments of Iranian arms to Houthi rebels in the chaos-filled country.

The carrier had been in the Persian Gulf, a spokesman said, and two Defense officials told USA Today that the Roosevelt also was tracking a convoy of Iranian ships on their way to the Gulf of Aden. Now that the Roosevelt is in place, there are nine warships in Yemen, a Navy official said, with the Roosevelt "significantly" adding to the amount of firepower. Catherine Garcia

Iran
6:48 p.m. ET

Iran is charging The Washington Post's Tehran bureau chief, Jason Rezaian, with espionage, "collaborating with hostile governments," and "propaganda against the establishment," his lawyer said.

Rezaian was arrested nine months ago, and his attorney, Leila Ahsan, said this is the first time the exact charges against him have been provided. The indictment says that Rezaian gathered information "about internal and foreign policy" and then gave it to "individuals with hostile intent." The Post's executive editor, Martin Baron, calls the charges "scurrilous" and called for Rezaian to be exonerated.

Ahsan met with Rezaian for 90 minutes on Monday, and it was the first time he had been able to consult with a lawyer since his arrest in July. The Revolutionary Court has not made the charges public, and Ahsan said in a statement that "all of the items and accusations are the ones that I mentioned and I cannot divulge details because the trial has not yet begun." She added that the case file has no evidence to justify the charges, and they stem from his work. "Jason is a journalist, and it is in the nature of his profession to gain access to information and publish them," she said. "My client, however, has never had any direct or indirect access to classified information to share with anyone." Catherine Garcia

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