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Morning Update: Hard Brexit, Dark Money

The influence of dark money on Brexit, remembering Nipsey Hussle, the best worst April Fools’. Your BuzzFeed News newsletter, April 2.

Posted on April 2, 2019, at 9:34 a.m. ET

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Hard Brexit, Dark Money: Links between these secretive campaigns raise new questions for Facebook about political ads

A few weeks ago we reported that Facebook’s political transparency measures were under scrutiny after Britain’s Future, a shadowy pro-Brexit group, became the biggest-spending political advertiser on the platform, all the while its funding source remains a mystery.

Now, we’ve established a link between Britain’s Future and We Are the 52%, a second hard-Brexit campaign. We Are the 52% is attracting fresh scrutiny from MPs and transparency critics.

The campaign has spent nearly £50,000 on ads promoting a clean break from the EU, which puts it at seventh on the list of top political advertisers on Facebook in the UK, since the company began publishing spending data. That’s higher than the Labour Party.

Experts estimate its ads have been viewed up to 10 million times.


The Trump administration wants to send hundreds more asylum-seekers back to Mexico every day. The plan is a vast expansion of a new and controversial policy enacted in January that sees asylum-seekers wait in Mexico while their cases are processed in the US.

Facebook removed hundreds of Indian and Pakistani political pages for spreading bad information before India’s election. More than 800 pages were purged. The move comes 10 days before India holds major national elections that will determine whether the country’s Hindu nationalist prime minister, Narendra Modi, returns to power.

Rapper Nipsey Hussle was shot and killed outside of his store in South Los Angeles. He used his fame to advance his community and push young people toward tech skills and entrepreneurship. Tributes from celebrities poured in to remember Hussle. Issa Rae, particularly, had some heartbreaking words about the loss of the rapper.

The Rolling Stones have postponed their North America tour due to Mick Jagger’s health. The band didn’t specify why Jagger, 75, needs medical treatment — only that doctors advised him that he can’t perform.

Here are the April Fools’ jokes that were particularly cruel this year. A popular Instagram account promised In-N-Out Burger will finally open in New York. Tinder said it will add a height verification tool. Here are the best pranks from this year. Now, can we make pranks stop forever? Thanks.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.