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1:05 PM ET, February 15, 2017


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence  —  WASHINGTON — Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year …
Trump aides were in constant touch with senior Russian officials during campaign  —  Trump campaign aides communicated with Russians  — The communications stood out to investigators due to the frequency and the level of the Trump advisers involved  —  (CNN)High-level advisers close …
Mike Allen / Axios:
White House staff in “survival mode ... scared to death”  —  Here's a twist that has top GOP sources buzzing:  — On Jan. 26, Sally Yates, then the acting attorney general, tells the White House that national security adviser Mike Flynn — who has just been grilled by FBI agents — had …
Mark Landler / New York Times:
Trump Condemns Leaks to News Media in a Flurry on Twitter  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump lashed out at the nation's intelligence agencies again on Wednesday, accusing them of illegally leaking information to the news media, on a day of new disclosures about his dealings with Russia during and after the presidential campaign.
ABC News:
The Note: Flynn's out, but questions remain  —  “Evolving and eroding level of trust.”  That's the official White House line on what cost Michael Flynn his job as National Security Adviser.  It's also an apt phrase to describe the White House itself, in terms of its relationship with the press, the public, and Congress, for starters.
James Hohmann / Washington Post:
The Daily 202: It's bigger than Flynn. New Russia revelations widen Trump's credibility gap.
Aidan Quigley / Politico:
Graham: Any Trump ally working inappropriately with Russia ‘needs to pay a price’
Discussion: Political Wire and Raw Story
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
Corker: We Must Address WH Russia Ties So It Doesn't ‘Destabilize’ Country
Discussion: The Week
Seung Min Kim / Politico:
Democrats demand independent Russia probe
Discussion: Joe.My.God.
Alex Pfeiffer / The Daily Caller:
Journalists Go Nuts Over Rehashed New York Times Story
Discussion: Infowars
John Podhoretz / New York Post:
Why you should fear the leaks that felled Mike Flynn
Discussion: RedState and The Week
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:   Flynn Doesn't Matter. This Is About Trump
Eric Lichtblau / New York Times:
Jeff Sessions Resists Pressure to Remove Himself in Russia Inquiries
Discussion: Daily Kos and New York Magazine
Thomas E. Ricks / Foreign Policy:
Robert Harward plans a housecleaning of Trump's National Security Council staff  —  President Donald Trump offered the job of national security advisor to retired Vice Adm. Robert Harward on Monday night, and was a bit surprised when Harward responded by saying he needed a couple of days to think it over.
Dylan Byers / CNN:
Sean Spicer isn't finished  —  Washington (CNN)Sean Spicer has barely moved into his office.  —  Three weeks after the inauguration, the only things adorning the White House press secretary's shelves are a framed picture of himself at the podium, a book on Naval Special Warfare …
Wall Street Journal:
Mike Flynn Is First Casualty of Turmoil in Trump Administration
Brad Reed / Raw Story:
Kellyanne Conway to do fewer TV appearances after leaks allege she's been backstabbing Sean Spicer
J.D. Durkin / Mediaite:
Mika Brzezinski Firmly Says Conway Will No Longer Be Booked on Morning Joe: 'She's Not Credible Anymore'  —  Mika Brzezinski of Morning Joe revealed a tidbit that many may not know about the way Kellyanne Conway gets herself booked onto so many shows on behalf of the administration …
Paulina Firozi / The Hill:
‘Morning Joe’ host says show will no longer book Conway
U.S. detains Mexican immigrant in Seattle covered by Obama program  —  U.S. immigration authorities have detained a 23-year-old Mexican man who was brought to the United States illegally as a child and given a work permit during the Obama administration, according to a lawsuit challenging the detention in Seattle federal court.
Jake Sherman / Politico:
Poll: Trump trails generic Democrat, but not Warren, in 2020  —  Donald Trump begins his presidency facing unprecedented polling headwinds: Roughly a quarter of voters think Donald Trump is the worst president in the past century.  Forty-three percent of voters are ready to vote …
Louis Nelson / Politico:   McConnell: Trump's powers aren't above judicial review
Andrew Puzder / National Review:
No to Puzder  —  Andrew Puzder was from the start an odd choice to head Donald Trump's Labor Department.  The chief of CKE Restaurants, the parent company of fast-food chains such as Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, Puzder has long been one of corporate America's most high-profile advocates of Gang of Eight-style …
Discussion: Mother Jones
Paul Farhi / Washington Post:
‘This is . . .  Nixonian’: Reporter was taped by White House in heated exchange  —  A top aide to President Trump said she has a recording of a dispute with a White House reporter, and has shared parts of it with journalists.  —  Omarosa Manigault, a communications official …
Washington Post:
Pence remains above the fray, but is he outside the inner circle?  —  For nearly two full weeks, nobody told Vice President Pence that he had been misled by national security adviser Michael Flynn.  —  After privately being assured by Flynn that he had never had any discussions …
Discussion: Lawfare and Raw Story
Jordain Carney / The Hill:
Rand Paul: Flynn probe would be ‘excessive’
Tarini Parti / BuzzFeed:
Corey Lewandowski's Potential Clients Say He's Bragging About Access To Trump's Twitter Account  —  Trump's former campaign manager, who now has a lobbying and consulting shop, has mentioned having access to Trump's Twitter account as a selling point in pitch meetings with at least …
Discussion: Raw Story and Mediaite
Suspect arrested over death of Kim Jong Un's half-brother  —  Hong Kong (CNN)A woman has been arrested in connection with the death of Kim Jong Un's half-brother, Malaysian police said.  —  She was detained Wednesday at Malaysia's Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 carrying a Vietnamese travel document.
Discussion: Business Insider and AOL
Akil Yunus / The Star Online:
Clearer image of Jong-nam's alleged killer caught on CCTV
Discussion: New York Times
Timothy Noah / Politico:
Exclusive: Puzder's ex-wife told Oprah he threatened ‘you will pay for this’  —  The ex-wife of President Donald Trump's labor secretary nominee told “The Oprah Winfrey Show” that he “vowed revenge” when she made public spousal abuse allegations, according to a 1990 tape reviewed by POLITICO on Tuesday night.
Peter Suderman / Hit & Run:
Major Blow to Obamacare Mandate: IRS Won't Reject Tax Returns That Don't Answer Health Insurance Question  —  How much difference does a single line on a tax form make?  For Obamacare's individual mandate, the answer might be quite a lot.  —  Following President Donald Trump's executive …
NBC News:
Harrison Ford in Incident With Passenger Plane at California Airport  —  Actor Harrison Ford was involved in a potentially serious incident Monday in California as he was piloting his private plane, a single-engine Husky, NBC News has learned.  —  Ford, an experienced pilot who collects vintage planes …
Dan Lamothe / Washington Post:
Defense Secretary Mattis issues new ultimatum to NATO allies on defense spending  —  BRUSSELS — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis issued an ultimatum Wednesday to allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), warning that if they do not boost their defense spending to goals set by the alliance …
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 More Items: 
Ted / Walid Shoebat:
Both Stephen Bannon And Ann Coulter Are Absolutely Evil, They Are Filled With The Spirit …
Deena Shanker / Bloomberg:
Americans Just Broke the Psychologists' Stress Record
Discussion: The Week
Wall Street Journal:
Amazon, Google Dial Up Plans to Turn Smart Speakers Into Home Phones
Hannah Devlin / The Guardian:
Trump's likely science adviser calls climate scientists ‘glassy-eyed cult’
Tom Dart / The Guardian:
Arizona unveils new death penalty plan: bring your own lethal injection drugs
Pew Research Center:
Americans Express Increasingly Warm Feelings Toward Religious Groups
J.D. Durkin / Mediaite:
‘Go Eff Yourself’: Ernie Els Fires Back at Critics Upset That He Golfed With Trump
 Earlier Items: 
Paul Demko / Politico:
Aetna CEO: Obamacare markets are in a ‘death spiral’
Discussion: Business Insider
Washington Times:
The continuing liberal meltdown
Sherrilyn Ifill / Washington Post:
The president lays the groundwork for a nationwide voter intimidation program
Discussion: Politico
Josh Feldman / Mediaite:
'You're a Little Obsessive About Fox': Tucker Carlson and WaPo Media Reporter Go At It
Discussion: IJR
The Local:
Mass sexual assaults by refugees in Frankfurt ‘completely made up’
Discussion: Hit & Run and RT, more at Mediagazer »
Jason Noble / Des Moines Register:
Iowa Poll: Trump's approval rating is underwater with Iowans
Discussion: BizPac Review