DAYBREAK DAILY: As expected, Brown skips Md. gubernatorial debate

ABC7 WEATHER: Mostly cloudy with highs in the mid 80s.

‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – Updates on storm damage; Small P.G. town removes suspect speed cameras; Eastern Market attacks to be discussed at community meeting; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.

WHERE’S WALDO?: Not at the debate, per the Baltimore Sun, “With the front-runner in the race conspicuously absent, Democratic gubernatorial candidates Douglas F. Gansler and Heather R. Mizeur disagreed — politely — during a debate Tuesday night, with Gansler saving the brunt of his criticism for the missing Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown. The debate at the WBFF (Fox 45) studios was unusual not only because Brown did not participate, but because the station chose to highlight his absence by displaying a lectern with his name posted prominently in front.

“Gansler has repeatedly criticized Brown over Maryland's botched rollout of the federal Affordable Care Act, and he did so again Tuesday despite Brown's absence. "If he had spent more time actually running the Affordable Care Act rollout instead of raising money from special interests, we wouldn't be in this position," Gansler said.”

MINI-KEYSTONE: Or something like that, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Dominion Resources Inc. is considering building an approximately 450-mile natural gas transmission pipeline from West Virginia through Virginia to southern North Carolina that would go into service by the end of 2018.

“The project is in the “extremely preliminary” stage, company spokesman Jim Norvelle said. “We have not decided to do this.” The pipeline, called the Dominion Southeast Reliability Project, would extend from the Marcellus and Utica shale production regions in the Appalachians to markets in Virginia and North Carolina, according to a statement from Thomas F. Farrell II, Dominion Resources’ chairman, president and CEO.”

DISTRICT TAX CUTS: Of a proposal, per the Washington Post, “D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson says he will attempt to do Wednesday what Mayor Vincent C. Gray failed to do in this year’s budget: ask the council to implement the largest package of tax cuts for District residents in 15 years.

“The cuts would be phased in over five years, first softening the tax burden for low- and middle-income residents in January. Over ensuing years, tax cuts would expand to benefit every city resident earning up to $1 million annually and even those who inherit multi-million-dollar estates.”

MARK WARNER: Let the race begin, per the Virginian-Pilot, “U.S. Sen. Mark Warner in a new ad reminds Virginia voters of his business and political resume in Richmond and Washington as he prepares to officially kick-off his re-election bid with a statewide tour starting Wednesday. The former governor seeking a second six-year term in Congress is embarking on his "Working Together" tour featuring 14 events in six days "to talk with Virginians about his proven track record of working from the sensible center." Warner, a Democrat, underscores that message in a new 60-second ad released Tuesday.”

AFGHANISTAN: Moving out, per the New York Times, “President Obama, declaring that it was “time to turn the page on a decade in which so much of our foreign policy was focused on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq,” announced on Tuesday that he planned to withdraw the last American troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2016. Under a new timetable outlined by Mr. Obama in the Rose Garden, the 32,000 American troops now in Afghanistan would be reduced to 9,800 after this year.

“That number would be cut in half by the end of 2015, and by the end of 2016, there would be only a vestigial force to protect the embassy in Kabul and to help the Afghans with military purchases and other security matters. At the height of American involvement, in 2011, the United States had 101,000 troops in the country.”

DONALD STERLING: The latest, per the Los Angeles Times, “Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling is mounting a hurried sale of the team that her husband, Donald, bought 33 years ago and could name a prospective new owner by the end of the week, according to people familiar with the situation. Shelly Sterling is trying to sell the Clippers in advance of a Tuesday deadline, when the 30 pro basketball teams will vote on whether to strip control of the team from both of the Sterlings, in response to Donald Sterling's racially charged remarks about blacks.

“The developments in the NBA's biggest-ever ownership crisis came on the same day that a defiant Donald Sterling lashed out at what he called the league's "illegal termination process." In a 30-page response to the charges that the NBA formally leveled against him last week, Sterling excoriated the NBA for insisting on his ouster for what he deemed an illegal recording of a "lover's quarrel." In the documents obtained by The Times, Sterling said he had already received offers "in excess of $2.5 billion" for the Clippers.”

VETERAN AFFAIRS: Hoping to cut red tape, per The Hill, “Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered a 90-day review of the military health care system amid a nationwide investigation into treatment delays and secret waiting lists at Veteran Affairs facilities. Hagel has tapped Jonathan Woodson, assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, to lead the review assessing the quality of health care at military treatment facilities and care that the department purchases from civilian healthcare providers.

“Hagel will meet Wednesday with senior Pentagon leaders to discuss the review's parameters. He also expects to receive recommendations on how to improve the system once the review is complete, Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby told the Associated Press on Tuesday.”

POLITICO PLAY: “A defiant Rep. Michael Grimm, in his most extensive interview since federal prosecutors accused him of rampant fraud, accused the media on Tuesday of trying to destroy him and vowed to campaign hard for reelection — even as the New York Republican acknowledged his fundraising has dried up to the point he can’t air TV ads.

“Insisting he’s not the “bad boy” of Congress, the former Marine and FBI agent suggested that GOP leaders including Speaker John Boehner were acting “politically” by refusing to back his reelection to a competitive Staten Island congressional district. Grimm, now literally running his own campaign after his lone full-time political aide departed last week, promised to prove his skeptics wrong.”

YOU BEAT US: So let’s party, per City Paper, “Being the District's Democratic nominee for mayor must be pretty sweet. Not only do you get to thrash your mayoral rivals in the primary, but when it's all over, they throw you a party.

“Beaten Muriel Bowser opponents Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells, At-Large Councilmember Vincent Orange, and Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans are all listed as hosts for a "unity fundraiser" Saturday at K Street's Capitale Lounge. Other elected officials on the host list include former Vince Gray stalwarts Marion Barry and Yvette Alexander, and At-Large Councilmember and D.C. Democratic State Committee boss Anita Bonds.”

SPEAKING OF PARTY: This one didn’t t turn out so well, per Gazette.Net, “The case against a Damascus family accused of assaulting police officers breaking up an underage-drinking party has moved from District Court to Circuit Court. The Montgomery County state’s attorney’s office on May 19 charged parents George Magas, 55, and Cathy Magas, 46, and their sons Nicholas Magas, 21, and Eric Magas, 19, with furnishing alcohol to minors, obstruction and assaulting police.”

TOO MUCH WINE: Rather, too much traffic, per the Frederick News-Post, “Linganore Winecellars is considering a move to all Internet-based ticket sales for future events after thousands of people clogged area roads Saturday trying to enter and exit the winery for its Caribbean Wine Music and Art Festival, President Anthony Aellen said Tuesday. Though final numbers weren’t available through the event’s online ticket seller, about 6,800 people walked up and bought tickets Saturday, drawing as many as about 13,000 people to the winery, at 13601 Glissans Mill Road in Mount Airy, Aellen said.”

SILVER LINE: Promises, promises, per DCist, “Yes, it's true: you will be able to ride the Silver Line this summer.

“. . .Metro Deputy General Manager Rob Troup announced that they "declared operational readiness effective of 0530 this date," meaning that "Metro is now in control of all the Silver Line stations, the right of way, and the facilities." With "operational readiness" now in effect, Metro has 90 days until it begins running trains for the public. Although Troup said that the Dulles Transit Partners—the contractor that's been working on the Silver Line—has come up with fixes to all of the reliability issues that could cause service issues, he couldn't say for sure if Metro would need the full 90 days before it opens.”

SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Nationals-Marlins postponed.

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “An Alexandria Sheriff's Deputy named Bryant Pegues has been arrested for sexually assaulting an adult female inmate at the William G. Truesdale Adult Detention Center. He is charged with Rape and Carnal Knowledge of an Inmate, and has been terminated from his position.”

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--Skip Wood