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12:40 AM ET, February 24, 2017

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
CNN:
FBI refused White House request to knock down recent Trump-Russia stories  —  Washington (CNN)The FBI rejected a recent White House request to publicly knock down media reports about communications between Donald Trump's associates and Russians known to US intelligence during the 2016 presidential campaign …
RELATED:
CNN:
White House effort to justify travel ban causes growing concern for some intelligence officials  —  Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump has assigned the Department of Homeland Security, working with the Justice Department, to help build the legal case for its temporary travel ban on individuals …
Discussion: Political Wire
Darius Tahir / Politico:
Boehner: Republicans won't repeal and replace Obamacare  —  Former House Speaker John Boehner predicted on Thursday that a full repeal and replace of Obamacare is “not what's going to happen” and that Republicans will instead just make some fixes to the health care law.
RELATED:
Wall Street Journal:
Kushner, Ivanka Trump Pushed to Remove Words Critical of Climate Deal From Executive Order  —  Trump plans to issue orders aimed at rolling back Obama climate agenda soon; language critical of Paris accord removed  —  WASHINGTON—At the request of President Donald Trump's son-in-law …
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Axios
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Annie Karni / Politico:
Ivanka Trump, Kushner publicly silent as White House rolls back transgender protections
Discussion: ABC News and Axios
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
Closed-Door Events Become Minefields For GOPers Who Shirk Public Town Halls  —  Back home in their districts while Congress is in recess, some Republicans have ducked the raucous crowds at town halls in favor of more tightly controlled conference calls and private events.
RELATED:
BBC:
Not best of times for US - Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg  —  Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says the US is “not experiencing the best of times” - but the “pendulum” will swing back.  —  Speaking to BBC Newsnight in a rare interview, Justice Ginsburg reiterated the importance of the free press.
RELATED:
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Ted Cruz's very strange prediction of an upcoming Supreme Court vacancy
Madeline Conway / Politico:
Ted Cruz predicts a Supreme Court seat will open up this summer
Discussion: ABC News
RELATED:
New York Times:
Kim Jong-nam Was Killed by VX Nerve Agent, Malaysians Say
Discussion: The Daily Caller
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Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Bannon: Trump administration is in unending battle for ‘deconstruction of the administrative state’  —  Stephen K. Bannon, President Trump's reclusive chief strategist and the intellectual force behind his nationalist agenda, said Thursday that the new administration is locked in an unending battle …
RELATED:
David Weigel / Washington Post:
Alt-right leader expelled from CPAC after organizer denounces ‘left-wing fascist group’
Tom LoBianco / CNN:
GOP congressman: Trump should release tax returns  —  Congress could force release of Trump's taxes  — As a candidate, Trump was the first major-party nominee in decades not to release his tax returns  —  Pace, Florida (CNN)A conservative member of Congress called on President Donald …
Discussion: The Week
New York Times:
Weakened Democrats Bow to Voters, Opting for Total War on Trump  —  WASHINGTON — Reduced to their weakest state in a generation, Democratic Party leaders will gather in two cities this weekend to plot strategy and select a new national chairman with the daunting task of rebuilding the party's depleted organization.
Discussion: Mother Jones
CNN:
An underground network is readying homes to hide immigrants  —  Los Angeles (CNN)A hammer pounds away in the living room of a middle class home.  A sanding machine smoothes the grain of the wood floor in the dining room.  —  But this home Pastor Ada Valiente is showing off in Los Angeles …
Discussion: TheBlaze
Dow Jones Newswires:
‘You Have to Stop,’ Renaissance Executive Tells Boss About Trump Support  —  A clash involving Renaissance Technologies hedge-fund billionaire Robert Mercer, who supports President Donald Trump, and another executive of the firm, who opposes the president, reflects divides at other U.S. workplaces.
Tim Dickinson / Rolling Stone:
Border Patrol Agents Stop Domestic Travelers at New York Airport  —  A search for a deportation target leads to a demand for travelers' “papers” at JFK  —  Passengers of a domestic Delta flight from San Francisco to New York were told to show their identity documents to uniformed agents …
Jeff Stein / Newsweek:
EXCLUSIVE: LISTEN TO CONTROVERSIAL WHITE HOUSE TERRORISM ADVISER SEBASTIAN GORKA'S ANGRY CALL TO A CRITIC  —  An embattled White House terrorism advisor whose academic credentials have come under widespread fire telephoned one of his main critics at home Tuesday night and threatened legal action against him, Newsweek has learned.
Sari Horwitz / Washington Post:
Law professors file misconduct complaint against Kellyanne Conway  —  A group of law professors from around the country has filed a professional misconduct complaint against White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, a graduate of George Washington University Law School who was admitted to the D.C. Bar in 1995.
Discussion: Western Journalism and Raw Story
Joe Concha / The Hill:
New York Times launches major ad campaign: ‘The Truth’  —  The New York Times will run its first-ever advertising during the Academy Awards this Sunday with a spot that appears to target the Trump administration titled “The Truth.”  —  The ad lists conflicting statements that all start with three words, “The truth is.”
Josh Eidelson / Bloomberg:
AFL-CIO Dismissing Staff Amid Declines in U.S. Union Membership  —  GOP control of court, states, White House brings major threats  —  Largest union federation cutting support for some programs  —  The AFL-CIO is dismissing dozens of staff members as part of a restructuring amid continuing declines …
Discussion: Hot Air
Rumana Ahmed / The Atlantic:
I Was a Muslim in Trump's White House  —  In 2011, I was hired, straight out of college, to work at the White House and eventually the National Security Council.  My job there was to promote and protect the best of what my country stands for.  I am a hijab-wearing Muslim woman …
Discussion: The Guardian, twitchy.com and Raw Story
Rebecca Mead / New Yorker:
Betsy DeVos's Spineless Transgender Bathroom Politics  —  When historians write their accounts of the Trump era—assuming the practice of historical scholarship survives it—a small but significant portion of those chronicles will be concerned with the bewildering phenomenon …
Alana Goodman / Daily Mail:
EXCLUSIVE: Illegal fundraiser for the Clintons made secret tape because he feared being ASSASSINATED over what he knew - and used it to reveal Democrats' bid to silence him  — DailyMail.com has obtained a video in which convicted illegal Clinton fundraisers Johnny Chung gave secret testimony while in fear of his life
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Spicer: Trump didn't mean ‘military operation’ literally  —  President Trump wasn't speaking literally when he described his deportation push as a “military operation,” according to his top spokesman.  —  “The president was using that as an adjective.  It is happening with precision,” …
Chicago Tribune:
Homicides in Chicago outpacing last year after deadliest day so far in 2017  —  2016 was the most deadly year in decades and 2017 homicides have now suprassed last year as of Feb. 22.  —  Homicides are now outpacing last year in Chicago after the city experienced its deadliest day so far this year …
Discussion: The Hill and Politicus USA
US News:
CARTOON GALLERY … The bathroom issue is the first skirmish in a coming war over Title IX.  First passed in 1972, Title IX was aimed at equalizing opportunities for women in education.  Best known for its focus on equal access to athletic opportunities in higher education, Title IX actually covers a variety of educational activities.
Discussion: Joanne Jacobs and Eduwonk
Madeline Conway / Politico:
Spicer: Expect to see ‘greater enforcement’ of federal marijuana law  —  White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Thursday that he expects states to see “greater enforcement” of the federal law against marijuana use, a move that would be at odds with a growing number of states' decisions to legalize it.
 
 
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 More Items: 
The Guardian:
Byelections: Labour defeated by Tories in Copeland, but wins in Stoke - live
Cristiano Lima / Politico:
Rep. McCaul: We don't need ‘a 2,000-mile wall’ with Mexico
Jimmie Åkesson and / Wall Street Journal:
Trump Is Right: Sweden's Embrace of Refugees Isn't Working
Discussion: The Local and Hot Air
Peter Sterne / Politico:
John Podesta joins The Washington Post as contributing columnist
Discussion: BizPac Review and twitchy.com
Washington Post:
France's National Front scandal has exposed the dirty little secret of Europe's far right
New York Times:
A Paid Hour a Week for Sex? Swedish Town Considers It
Glenn Greenwald / The Intercept:
The Increasingly Unhinged Russia Rhetoric Comes From a Long-Standing U.S. Playbook
 Earlier Items: 
CNN:
Trump lawyer pushed pro-Russia deal for Ukraine, politician claims
Discussion: Raw Story and Talking Points Memo
Katie Orr / NPR:
Trump's Election Drives More Women To Consider Running For Office
Discussion: Progress Pond and Political Wire
Lizzie Dearden / The Independent:
Danish man who videoed himself burning the Quran charged with blasphemy
Fox News Insider:
Fox News Channel's Alan Colmes Dies at Age 66