Happening Today: Oscars Flub, Bill Paxton, Trump Budget, Tom Perez

What to Know

  • The Oscars got a cinematic ending of their own Sunday when "La La Land" was mistakenly declared the winner instead of "Moonlight"
  • The White House is expected to announce major cuts to the EPA and other longtime Republican targets when it reveals its budget
  • Actor Bill Paxton, known for "Twister" and other blockbusters, died at the age of 61

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“Moonlight” Wins Best Picture After Gaffe

If you stayed up to watch the end of the Oscars you got to see two films win for best picture, "La La Land" and moments later after some confusion, the real winner "Moonlight." Oscar presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway incorrectly announced "La La Land" as the best picture winner, a mistake that wasn't corrected until the filmmakers had already given their acceptance speeches onstage. Moments later the filmmakers of "Moonlight" were ushered onstage and presented with the Oscar. Casey Affleck's portrayal of a grieving father in "Manchester by the Sea" won him the award for Best Actor, and Emma Stone's portrayal of a struggling actress in "La La Land" got her Best Actress. See a list of all the winners. The blunder was all the talk at Hollywood parties on Sunday night. 

Actor Bill Paxton Dies

Bill Paxton, a prolific and charismatic actor who had memorable roles in such blockbusters as "Apollo 13" and "Titanic" while also cherishing his work in "One False Move" and other low-budget movies and in the HBO series "Big Love," died from complications due to surgery at the age of 61. A family representative issued a statement Sunday on the death but provided no further details. Response to his death streamed in on Twitter Sunday, with Hollywood stars like Tom Hanks, Aaron Paul and Charlize Theron all writing notes to mourn their friend.

Health Care, U.S. Budget on Trump Agenda

President Donald Trump toasted the nation's governors on Sunday, welcoming state leaders to a black-tie ball at the White House ahead of discussions about his plans to repeal and replace the so-called Obamacare law. During his toast, the president noted his Monday meeting with the governors at the White House, saying, "Perhaps health care will come up," a nod to the effort in Congress to repeal and replace the sweeping health care law installed under President Barack Obama. Meanwhile, Capitol Hill aides say the White House is moving to propose slashing cuts to longtime Republican targets like the Environmental Protection Agency as it prepares its budget for the upcoming fiscal year. The White House budget office will send agencies proposed levels for the 2018 budget year on Monday, aides said. The Pentagon is due for a huge boost, but many nondefense agencies and foreign aid programs are facing cuts.

Vandals Target Jewish Cemetery

Vandals targeted a Jewish cemetery in the Wissinoming section of Philadelphia, knocking over hundreds of headstones. Police told said at least 100 more headstones were knocked over. A rabbi who walked through the cemetery said he counted 460 headstones that were toppled or damaged. "To topple so many headstones clearly is a concerted effort with intent,” Rabbi Shawn Zevit of Mishkan Shalom said. Last week vandals damaged 154 headstones at a Jewish cemetery in University City, Missouri. More than 10 Jewish Community Centers across the country were also evacuated last week due to bomb threats.

New DNC Chief Faces a Trump-Era Reckoning

When Tom Perez stepped to the stage as the newly elected Democratic national chairman, his first official act was to invite his vanquished rival to join him as deputy chairman. Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison accepted on the spot and two men stood together, smiling like a national ticket at a presidential nominating convention. Reaction wasn't enthusiastic among the liberal groups that embraced Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign. The reaction underscores the challenges Perez and Democrats face as they look to recover from a disastrous electoral slide.

Dozens Injured in Mardi Gras Crash

The man who allegedly plowed into a crowd enjoying a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans had a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit, police said Sunday. The New Orleans Police Department issued a statement identifying the man as 25-year-old Neilson Rizzuto. The accident happened Saturday during one of the busiest nights of Mardi Gras. Police said Sunday that 28 people were hurt in the accident that sent 21 people to the hospital; an additional seven people at the scene declined medical help.

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