The top U.S. and Russian diplomats discuss Ukraine today. George P. Bush wins a primary election while John Travolta weighs in on his butchering of a name at the Oscars. A new poll shows a drop in support for Gov. Chris Christie's handling of Hurricane Sandy. And questions arise about buried gold coins worth a fortune.
Welcome to the Wednesday edition of “5 Things to Know for Your New Day."
1. UKRAINE IN CRISIS
Battle for the soul of a nation: Secretary of State John Kerry is to meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Paris on Wednesday. The meeting unfolds as a standoff grinds on in Ukraine, a country at the center of a tenuous tug-of-war between Russia and the West. Check out the map below to understand a key dynamic in the conflict. The red in eastern Ukraine shows places with a high proportion of ethnic Russians. That includes Crimea, an autonomous region of Ukraine that suddenly is home to thousands more Russian troops. All that purple in the west? Ethnic Ukrainians live there. They tend to look west toward the rest of Europe for their sense of identity. After an uprising ousted Ukraine’s pro-Russian president, it looked like a win for the ethnic Ukrainians. Then Russia sent troops into eastern Ukraine. What’s happening today? Check out CNN’s live blog of running developments. And tune into “New Day” for coverage on the air – CNN has correspondents and producers in Ukraine, Russia, the United States and several European countries bringing you all angles of the story.
2. BUSH: THE NEXT GENERATION
George Bush wins election: Sound familiar?: George P. Bush has won the primary for Texas land commissioner, marking Bush's first big contest as he launches what many political observers expect to be a must-watch career in politics. He is the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, nephew of former President George W. Bush and grandson of former President George H.W. Bush. He is favored to win the race in November.
Background on Bush's campaign:
3. JOHN TRAVOLTA ON NAME-MANGLING
Hey, we all make mistakes: By now you probably know: John Travolta butchered Idina Menzel’s name at the Academy Awards on Sunday night. He called her "the wickedly talented Adele Dazeem" (the pronunciation should have been closer to "Uh-deen-ah Men-zelle"). Travolta weighed in on Tuesday. His publicist sent this statement to CNN, requesting that it be shared in its entirety: "I've been beating myself up all day. Then I thought...what would Idina Menzel say She'd say, Let it go, let it go! Idina is incredibly talented and I am so happy Frozen took home two Oscars Sunday night!"
4. GOV. CHRISTIE TAKES A HIT IN SANDY POLL
Support for his handling of storm declines to 54%: New Jersey voters aren’t as happy as they used to be with Gov. Chris Christie’s handling of Superstorm Sandy recovery efforts, a new poll indicates. Fifty-four percent of voters approve of his job performance on Sandy recovery, down from 69% in mid-January and 80% in November, according to a Rutgers-Eagleton Poll released today.
5. GOLD COINS IN GROUND – STOLEN?
Were they stolen way back in 1901?: Remember that couple who were walking their dog when they found cans in the ground full of gold coins from the 1800s? The coins had a face value of $27,000, but experts say they’re worth $10 million or more today. Now there’s an intriguing development in the story: Some have suggested that the coins were stolen during a robbery of the U.S. Mint in San Francisco in 1901. A spokesman for the mint doubts the theory. And that’s good news for the couple – because if Uncle Sam once owned those coins, he’d most certainly want them back.
Here's some background on the discovery of the coins:
Tune into "New Day" from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. ET for coverage of these and other stories.
Those are your five biggies for the day. Here are a couple of others that are brewing and have the Internet buzzing.
–Lights, sirens – and smooth dance moves: Check out these cops getting their groove on
–Runners clap for elderly man in uniform: An elderly man in a military uniform claps as runners race by. Then they clap for him. And shake his hand. And thank him.
–No more guacamole if the Earth keeps warming?: Chipotle has warned investors that weather events related to climate change could increase prices for some of its ingredients. If that happens, Chipotle says, "we may choose to temporarily suspend serving menu items, such as guacamole or one or more of our salsas, rather than paying the increased cost for the ingredients." The restaurant statement comes in an annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
There you go. All you need to know to get an early start to your morning.
Be sure to tune in to "New Day," from 6 to 9 a.m. ET, join us at NewDayCNN.com and go and have a GREAT NEW DAY!