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March 20, 2014
Getty Images/Franco Origlia

Just over a year into his reign as the Vicar of Christ, Pope Francis has gained a reputation as a generous soul. But Vatican officials increasingly fear the budget cuts and austerity measures he is imposing on day-to-day operations. Last month, the Vatican's Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin informed all department heads of an immediate freeze on new hires, wage increases, and overtime. Expensive management consultants have been hired to advise the restructuring.

Not all the officials are happy with the austerity measures. From the U.K.'s Catholic Herald:

But many can see how the situation could be handled better. "Everything is cuts, cuts, cuts," said one official. "Not once have they talked about how we could raise revenue." A senior official in the secretary of state told me they're so understaffed and overworked that "the work simply never gets done." "The problem is they're so socialistic here," the first official said. "You say the word revenue and they respond with: 'Oh filthy lucre!' They're all secretly jealous [of enterprising initiatives]." Some have proposed a fundraising office for the Holy See, but it's apparently ruled out because it would appear crass. [Catholic Herald]

The union of Vatican workers is relatively powerless to stop the cuts. And employees are being assured that changes to their status will be handled with care. The Church's mission is one of reconciliation. As head of state, Pope Francis seems to be reconciling the "socialistic" distaste of money power with a parsimonious form of austerity. Michael Brendan Dougherty

10:17 a.m. ET

Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore in 2011 gave an interview to a radio show called Aroostock Watchmen during which he agreed with the host's suggestion that it "would eliminate many problems" to void all the constitutional amendments passed after the first 10, the Bill of Rights. A clip of the conversation was uncovered and reported by CNN on Sunday.

"You know people don't understand how some of these amendments have completely tried to wreck the form of government that our forefathers intended," Moore said after his initial assent, specifically citing his objection to the 17th Amendment, which instituted the direct election of senators, who were originally chosen by state legislatures.

"People also don't understand, and being from the South I bet you get it, the 14th Amendment was only approved at the point of the gun," the radio host said next. "Yeah, it had very serious problems with its approval by the states," Moore again agreed, going on to explain that the "danger in the 14th Amendment" is that it was used to restrict "the states from doing something that the federal government was restricted from doing and allowing the federal government to do something which the first 10 amendments prevented them from doing."

The 14th Amendment prohibits slavery and eliminates the Three-Fifths Compromise; it is also the basis for the doctrine of incorporation, which applies the restrictions of the Bill of Rights to state governments and which is central to Moore's argument here.

Moore does not specify in the audio provided by CNN whether he would exclude any post-Bill of Rights amendments, which include suffrage guarantees to women and minorities, from his condemnation. Listen to Moore's remarks in context here. Bonnie Kristian

10:09 a.m. ET

CNN's New Day team expressed open alarm Monday morning over a New York Times report that alleges President Trump watches four to eight hours of television a day. "First of all that's more than even doctors recommend," said host Alisyn Camerota. "And second of all, shouldn't the president be busier?"

"If you go through the commercials, you can watch eight hours of television in 19 minutes," Chris Cuomo chimed in. He then got serious, adding that Trump's "latest strategy of doubling down on attacking the media is a little bit different than just how many Big Macs he eats." As he's previously explained, Cuomo also said Monday that Trump's blanket denials should frighten the public.

"There's a danger to this," he said.

In fact, Cuomo's comments were uncannily relevant, as just moments later Trump logged onto Twitter:

Watch the New Day staff discuss Trump's TV obsession below. Jeva Lange

9:51 a.m. ET
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The New York Police Department reported Monday morning that there was an explosion in the subway station below the Port Authority Bus Terminal at 42nd Street and 8th Avenue in Manhattan during the morning commute. Law enforcement officials who spoke with The Associated Press say the explosion, which occurred around 7:20 a.m. ET, was caused by the detonation of "a pipe bomb strapped to a man."

NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said the suspect, Akayed Ullah, a 27-year-old male, is in custody. Ullah was wearing "an improvised, low-tech explosive device attached to his body," O'Neill said. "He intentionally detonated that device." Four people were injured in the blast, including Ullah. None of the injuries are life-threatening.

The NYPD responded by evacuating the A, C, and E subway lines and shutting down trains traveling through the nearby transportation hub at Times Square. By 9:50 a.m. ET Monday morning, the system was largely back up and running, though most trains are still bypassing the affected area.

"This was an attempted terrorist attack," New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said. The Port Authority bus station sees 250,000 travelers and commuters pass through it every day, the New York Daily News reports. Jeva Lange

This is a breaking news story and has been updated throughout.

9:18 a.m. ET

Guillermo del Toro's aquatic fairy tale, The Shape of Water, leads the 2018 Golden Globes with seven nominations, followed by fellow Best Picture, Drama, nominees The Post and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri with six each. The trio will compete in the category against Dunkirk and Call Me By Your Name.

In the television drama category, just one show — This Is Us — belongs to a traditional network, competing against Netflix's Stranger Things and The Crown, Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale, and HBO's Game of Thrones. In the Best TV Musical or Comedy section, Black-ish, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Master of None, SMILF, and Will and Grace will go head-to-head. The Best Motion Picture Comedy or Musical category hosts The Disaster Artist, Get Out, I, Tonya, The Greatest Showman, and Lady Bird.

The biggest snubs were in the Best Director categories, where major women directors — Greta Gerwig of Lady Bird, Dee Rees of Mudbound, and Patty Jenkins of Wonder Woman — failed to be nominated. See the full nominations at the Los Angeles Times. Jeva Lange

9:14 a.m. ET
Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

If Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai convinces two other FCC commissioners to vote with him Thursday, as expected, he will dismantle net neutrality, potentially allowing internet providers to slow down traffic to certain sites and favor others based on business or other decisions. But Pai has actually been on a deregulation spree at the FCC, and since he was named chairman in January, he has "rewritten the rules of the information age so thoroughly that there's no mode of communication under his control where the rules aren't looser than they were a year ago," David McCabe says at Axios.

Most of the changes allow for various forms of media consolidation, so one company can control more of local markets, but collectively they "will likely alter the way people experience the internet, broadcast TV, and even AM radio" for years to come, McCabe writes. Pai has also taken a whack at regulations that will affect nobody's life, like deregulating the telegraph industry. This move may not do anything, really, Axios notes, but it "was a boon to Pai's political rhetoric around deregulation."

Pai seems to embrace his reputation, joking at a dinner on Friday about industry "collusion" and being a "puppet" of Verizon, where he served as associate general counsel. Peter Weber

8:58 a.m. ET
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images

In a story published Monday, four women told Eater NY that they had been sexually harassed by celebrity chef Mario Batali. Three of the women had previously worked for Batali, while the fourth was never his employee but works in the restaurant industry.

The women all described instances in which Batali touched them inappropriately; one alleged the chef "compelled her to straddle him," Eater NY wrote, while two described Batali groping their breasts. Another said Batali repeated grabbed her from behind, "like a disgusting bear hug," often while they were in close quarters in the back of a restaurant in Manhattan's West Village.

Eater NY additionally reported that Batali has a reputation for making sexually charged remarks, including questions about female colleagues' sex lives and "what color underwear they wore."

In a statement, Batali did not deny the allegations, saying "much of the behavior described does, in fact, match up with ways I have acted. That behavior was wrong and there are no excuses." He said he would "step away from the day-to-day operations" of his business, whose enterprises include the Eataly restaurants, in order to "try to regain the trust of those I have hurt and disappointed."

Read more at Eater NY. Kimberly Alters

7:41 a.m. ET
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Special Counsel Robert Mueller is reportedly going over the 18 days between when White House officials learned that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn was vulnerable to Russian blackmailing and when he was finally fired on Feb. 13, 2017 with a fine-tooth comb, NBC News reports. Questions surrounding the more than two-week period are at the heart of a potential obstruction of justice case against President Trump himself, people familiar with the investigation revealed.

"The obstruction of justice question could hinge on when Trump knew about the content of Flynn's conversations with Russia's ambassador to the U.S. during the transition, which were at the crux of [then acting Attorney General Sally] Yates's warning [to White House Counsel Don McGahn], and when the president learned Flynn had lied about those conversations to the FBI," NBC News writes based on conversations with such sources.

Yates told McGahn on Jan. 26 that Flynn had lied to senior members of President Trump's administration about sanctions conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak. At that point, Vice President Mike Pence had already mistakenly reassured the public that Flynn did not discuss sanctions with Kislyak, making Flynn vulnerable to blackmail since Russia would have then become aware he had misled senior administration officials. McGahn, also on Jan. 26, reportedly briefed Trump himself about Yates' warning. Trump has claimed he didn't ask Flynn to resign after that initial conversation because McGahn did not make it "sound like an emergency."

"Mueller is trying to determine why Flynn remained in his post for 18 days after Trump learned of Yates' warning, according to two people familiar with the probe," NBC News adds. "He appears to be interested in whether Trump directed him to lie to senior officials, including Pence, or the FBI, and if so why, the sources said." Read the full scoop at NBC News. Jeva Lange

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