DAYBREAK DAILY: McDonnell moves to expedite voting-rights restoration

ABC7 WEATHER: Partly cloudy with highs near 90.

‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the stories – Continuing coverage of the Baltimore-area train derailment; Congress – rather, 10 members – are urging Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder to change the team’s name; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.

NONVIOLENT FELONS REJOICE: To a point, anyway, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Gov. Bob McDonnell today will announce that he is automatically restoring the voting rights of nonviolent felons on an individual basis.The sweeping administrative action - while not an instantaneous blanket restoration - is as far as the governor can go within current Virginia law, administration officials said.

“The change, effective July 15, removes the application process for nonviolent felons. Once the administration verifies a nonviolent felon has paid his debt to society, the governor will send the individual a letter restoring his rights.”

MEANWHILE: Of a “stain,” per the Washington Post editorial board, “VIRGINIA GOV. Robert F. McDonnell took office admirably determined to change a scandalously antiquated system by which the state has deprived several hundred thousand felons of their voting rights — permanently. To his credit, he’s done a better job than any of his predecessors at restoring the vote for former offenders who have served their sentences.

“But measured against the problem, the governor’s efforts have amounted to little. Given that more than half of the state’s prison population is African American, the result is a stain on the state’s democracy.”

HIGH SCHOOL BAGGAGE CHECK: This one’s for graduation, per Gazette.Net, “Friends and family of Montgomery County’s high school graduates may have their bags checked when entering a graduation ceremony this spring. The Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall, in Washington, D.C., which is hosting 20 of Montgomery County Public Schools’ 32 graduations this spring, told the school system to pass along the message to principals that backpacks or large bags may be searched, said schools spokesman Dana Tofig.”

FUNNY MONEY: Actually, not so funny, per the New York Times, “The operators of a global currency exchange ran a $6 billion money-laundering operation online, a central hub for criminals trafficking in everything from stolen identities to child pornography, federal prosecutors in New York said on Tuesday.

“The currency exchange, Liberty Reserve, operated beyond the traditional confines of United States and international banking regulations in what prosecutors called a shadowy netherworld of cyberfinance. It traded in virtual currency and provided the kind of anonymous and easily accessible banking infrastructure increasingly sought by criminal networks, law enforcement officials said.”

MR. MOM: Or something like that, per the Washington Post, “In a trend accelerated by the recent recession and an increase in births to single mothers, nearly four in 10 families with children under the age of 18 are now headed by women who are the sole or primary breadwinners for their families, according to a report released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center.

“The report reveals a sweeping change in traditional gender roles and family life over a few short decades: The number of married mothers who out-earn their husbands has nearly quadrupled, from 4 percent in 1960 to 15 percent in 2011. Single mothers, who are sole providers for their families, have tripled in number, from 7 to 25 percent in the same period.”

THE CAVALIER HOTEL: Virginia Beach landmark is (mostly) sold, per the Virginian-Pilot, “Developer Bruce L. Thompson has signed a contract to buy The Cavalier Hotel and surrounding property for $35.1 million, court papers show. But the very sale of the hotel faces a court challenge. Cavalier Associates LLC agreed to purchase the property that includes the 86-year-old Cavalier on the Hill and its more modern sister hotel on the Oceanfront from Cavalier Hotel Corp., according to the documents filed Thursday in Circuit Court in Buckingham County.”

SITUATION SYRIA: Just the facts, per the Los Angeles Times, “BEIRUT— With violence increasingly spilling over Syria's borders, refugees swamping its neighbors and new arms transfers to both sides on the horizon, a solution to the Syrian conflict has rarely seemed so urgent — and so far beyond reach. U.S. and Russian officials this month raised hope for a peace conference that could lead to a transitional government and, eventually, free elections.”

POLITICO PLAY: “Nancy-Ann DeParle helped get Obamacare enacted during President Barack Obama’s first term. In his second term, she’s trying to get insurers to pony up millions to get the law successfully launched. Now in the private sector, DeParle is asking top executives at several health insurance companies to donate $1 million or more to Enroll America, a nonprofit organization promoting Obamacare enrollment, several sources familiar with her role said.”

** A message from PurpleStride Washington, D.C. -- Help fight pancreatic cancer! Join us June 15 at PurpleStride Washington, D.C. 2013, presented by Fight4Bobby, for a 5K run and family-friendly walk that includes children's activities, food, beverages and music. With just a 6 percent five-year survival rate, pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death. Join us and be a hero!

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Boom, per ABC7—WJLA, “A CSX freight train crashed into a trash truck and derailed Tuesday in a Baltimore suburb and the explosion that followed rattled homes at least a half-mile away, sending a plume of smoke into the air that could be seen for miles, officials and witnesses said.”

THE SINKHOLE: It certainly is stubborn, per City Paper, “The good news is that the downtown sinkhole at 14th and F Streets should be fixed by Friday. The bad news is that fixing it is going to come with a hefty price tag. Speaking in front of the sinkhole (Tuesday) afternoon, Deputy Mayor Paul Quander said the roads surrounding the sinkhole, which have been at least partially closed since it opened up a week ago, will reopen by Friday. Repairing the broken sewer line that caused the hole will likely cost D.C. Water nearly $2 million, according to D.C. Water general manager George Hawkins.”

WE’RE NO. 1: Of houses, per the Washington Examiner, “The Washington area is home to the strongest housing market in the country, as home prices nationally soared to a six-year high, according to a national housing report released Tuesday. The region reached an index of 189.7 in March, on a baseline of 100 taken in January 2000 -- a 7.7 percent jump in home prices over the past year, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report. The national index hit 136.7, good for a 10.2 percent increase from 2012.”

WHATEVER: Of a temper tantrum, per the Washington Times, “A senior Virginia state senator on Tuesday blasted a campaign ad from Democrat Terry McAuliffe as a misleading “example of self-puffery” — a development that comes as Mr. McAuliffe and Republican Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II try to soften their public images early in the high-stakes gubernatorial contest. The 30-second ad describes the General Assembly’s push to pass a $6 billion transportation package backed by Gov. Bob McDonnell, singling out “tea party Republicans” who “refuse to support the plan.”

SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Nationals beat the Orioles 9-3.

STAR-GAZING IN ARLINGTON: Real ones and filmed ones, per ARLnow, “Crystal City is getting ready for its summer showings of outdoor movies. The first movie will run next Monday, June 3. This year’s theme for the Monday night Crystal Screen movie festival is “Blockbusters.” Last year, residents had the opportunity to vote for which movies they’d like to see relating to the theme.”

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: Heads up, Montgomery County smokers. You can no longer smoke on county-owned or leased properties. This includes places like outside the courthouse and at bus stops.

NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is Kurt Erickson of the Washington Regional Alcohol Program, who will be asked about the proposal to reduce the legal blood alcohol limit to .05.

--Skip Wood