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2:40 PM ET, March 15, 2017


 Top Items: 
Willa Paskin / Slate:
Rachel Maddow Turned a Scoop on Donald Trump's Taxes Into a Cynical, Self-Defeating Spectacle  —  At 7:36 pm Tuesday night, Rachel Maddow tweeted “BREAKING: We've got Trump tax returns.  Tonight, 9pm ET.  MSNBC.  (Seriously),” sending the internet into a frenzy of theorizing.
The Daily Beast:
Report: Trump's 2005 Taxes Revealed  —  Donald Trump earned more than $150 million in the year 2005—and paid just a small percentage of that in regular federal income taxes.  Daily Beast contributor David Cay Johnston has obtained what appear to be the first two pages of Trump's 2005 federal …
David Cay Johnston / DCReport:
DCREPORT EXCLUSIVE: Trump Earned $153 Million In 2005; He Paid $36.6 Million In Taxes
Chris Cillizza / Washington Post:
This 2005 Donald Trump tax return is a total nothingburger
Jay Yarow / CNBC:
Op-Ed: Donald Trump just got a nice victory, thanks, of all people, to Rachel Maddow
New York Times:
Trump Wrote Off $100 Million in Losses in 2005, Leaked Forms Show
Jordain Carney / The Hill:
Graham: FBI will ‘screw up big time’ by ignoring Trump wiretap questions … (R-S.C.) is firing a warning shot at the FBI following his request that the agency hand over any evidence relating to wire taps of President Trump.  —  “They're about to screw up big time if they keep running to the …
Discussion: Politico and Business Insider
Seung Min Kim / Politico:   Comey will testify publicly on Russia investigation next week
Skeptical lawmakers pressure Comey on Trump wiretap claim
Discussion: The Week
Mark Hensch / The Hill:
Graham: We'll stall DOJ nominee if FBI doesn't comply on wiretaps
Discussion: RedState and ThinkProgress
Kenneth P. Vogel / Politico:
‘People are scared’: Paranoia seizes Trump's White House  —  A culture of paranoia is consuming the Trump administration, with staffers increasingly preoccupied with perceived enemies — inside their own government.  —  In interviews, nearly a dozen White House aides and federal agency staffers described …
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Only 24% of Voters Support GOP Health Care Plan  —  PPP's newest national poll finds that there is very little support for the American Health Care Act.  Only 24% of voters support it, to 49% who are opposed.  Even among Republican voters only 37% are in favor of the proposal to 22% who are against it …
Discussion: Mediaite, Daily Kos and Political Wire
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation:
Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: ACA, Replacement Plans, Women's Health  —  Ashley Kirzinger, Liz Hamel, Elise Sugarman, Bryan Wu, and Mollyann Brodie  —  KEY FINDINGS:  — The latest Kaiser Health Tracking Poll examines the public's early attitudes towards the House Republican plan to replace …
Eli Yokley / Morning Consult:
Poll: Trump Approval, Voter Optimism on the Rise
Discussion: National Review and The Federalist
An elaborate hoax based on forged documents escalates the phenomenon of “fake news” and reveals an audience on the left that seems willing to believe virtually any claim that could damage Trump.  —  In the third week of  —  January, an Israeli named Yoni Ariel flew from Tel Aviv …
Asawin Suebsaeng / The Daily Beast:
Steve Bannon in College: Grateful Dead Fan, ‘Jerry Brown Liberal,’ ‘Ladies Man’  —  The Stephen K. Bannon the world knows today is a hard-right nationalist and a former ringleader of far-right, race-baiting media.  He's President Donald Trump's anti-immigration and incredibly powerful right-hand man …
Charlie Spiering / Breitbart:
Donald Trump: ‘Failing’ Snoop Dogg Would be in Jail if he Shot Obama in Rap Video  —  President Donald Trump argued that there was a cultural double standard, after rapper Snoop Dogg released a video of him pulling a gun on a man in clown makeup who looked like Donald Trump.
Tim Kenneally / The Wrap:
Secret Service Has Its Eye on Snoop Dogg Over Video Featuring Mock Trump Shooting
Ellen Nakashima / Washington Post:
Justice Department charges Russian spies and criminal hackers in Yahoo intrusion  —  The Justice Department announced Wednesday the indictments of two Russian spies and two criminal hackers in connection with the heist of 500 million Yahoo user accounts in 2014, marking the first U.S. criminal …
Sarah Kliff / Vox:
The Lessons of Obamacare  —  What Republicans should have learned, but haven't.  —  On January 6, President Barack Obama sat down with us for one of his final interviews before leaving the White House.  The subject was the Affordable Care Act — the legislation that has come to carry his name and define his legacy.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice, Axios and Eschaton
Wall Street Journal:
GOP Senators Say House Health Bill Won't Pass Without Changes  —  Concerns mounted after independent report showed millions would be uninsured  —  WASHINGTON—Republican senators, alarmed by a nonpartisan report showing millions would lose insurance under the GOP health-care plan …
Wall Street Journal:
White House May Let States Put Work Requirements on Medicaid Recipients
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Nolan Clay / Daily Oklahoman:
Oklahoma state senator under investigation by Moore police  —  MOORE — Police here are investigating why state Sen. Ralph Shortey was in a hotel room last Thursday with a teenage boy.  —  Police are reviewing text messages purportedly exchanged between Shortey and the teenager as part of the investigation, has learned.
Sarah K. Burris / Raw Story:
BUSTED: Trump campaign chair caught in a motel room with an underage boy
Discussion: Towleroad
Mother Jones:
Businesswoman Who Bought Trump Penthouse Is Connected to Chinese Intelligence Front Group  —  When a Chinese American businesswoman who sells access to powerful people recently purchased a $15.8 million penthouse in a building owned by President Donald Trump, the deal raised a key question.
Discussion: Shakesville, Daily Kos and Raw Story
New York Times:
Neil Gorsuch Has Web of Ties to Secretive Billionaire  —  WASHINGTON — The publicity-shy billionaire Philip F. Anschutz inherited an oil and gas firm and built it into an empire that has sprawled into telecommunications, railroads, real estate, resorts, sports teams, stadiums …
Jacob Bunge / Wall Street Journal:
Startup to Serve Up Chicken Strips Cultivated From Cells in Lab  —  ‘Clean meat’ developers say it avoids towering costs of feeding, caring for livestock; Tyson takes note  —  Bay Area startup Memphis Meats says it has developed the world's first chicken strip grown from self-reproducing cells.
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Consumerist
John Wagner / Washington Post:
The cost of failure on health care?  It may be the rest of Trump's agenda.  —  In the roiling debate over the plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, there's a lot more at stake for President Trump than whether the bill can be saved: Its fate could also determine how much else he can get done …
Matt Fuller / The Huffington Post:
Republicans May Be Ready To Redefine Success On Obamacare  —  Call it a win if they manage to pass their repeal-and-replace bill in the House.  —  WASHINGTON With the GOP bill facing opposition from House conservatives, and a dismal Congressional Budget Office score stirring opposition …
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
Chelsea Clinton fuels speculation of political run  —  When rumors started swirling after the election that Chelsea Clinton was considering her own foray into politics, it was met with eye rolls even from staunch supporters of the family.  —  “Think we can let the dust settle a bit …
Michael Harriot / The Root:
Everything You Think You Know About the Death of Mike Brown Is Wrong, and the Man Who Killed Him Admits It  —  Here is the story of Michael Brown's murder that we all believed: One sunny day in Ferguson, Mo., a huge behemoth of a man named Michael Brown walked into a convenience store …
Discussion: Washington Post
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 More Items: 
New York Times:
Into the Void, With Steve King
Geneva Sands / ABC News:
AG Jeff Sessions gave Trump no reason to believe wiretap claim
Discussion: Washington Post and Daily Kos
Charles P. Pierce / Esquire:
What We Can All Learn from Maddow's Trump Taxes Broadcast
Discussion: Hullabaloo and Eschaton
Defense News:
Sources: Mattis, Ricardel clashed over Pentagon appointees
Discussion: Raw Story and Washington Post
Laura Litvan / Bloomberg:
House Republicans Take Their Own Path on Trump's Border Wall
Katie Pavlich /
Judicial Watch Sues For Info on Bill Clinton's Plane Meeting With Loretta Lynch
Discussion: Politico and Axios
Los Angeles Times:
Trump to shelve fuel mileage rules, inviting a fight with California
Discussion: Mother Jones
 Earlier Items: 
Matthew Barakat / Associated Press:
Plea deal reached for man who fired shots inside DC pizzeria
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and DCist
John Pacenti / mypalmbeachpost:
Yachts of Trump financial backer, Russian oligarch seen close together
James Queally / Los Angeles Times:
ICE agents make arrests at courthouses, sparking backlash from prosecutors and attorneys
Official: Tax Mar-a-Lago owner to help pay for cost of Trump visits
Discussion: Raw Story
Kevin Ambrose / Washington Post:
We checked on the cherry blossoms yesterday during the storm. It doesn't look good.
Discussion: DCist
Katie Mettler / Washington Post:
Snow forces two congressmen on a bipartisan road trip from Texas to D.C. — singing along the way
Discussion: Mediaite and Mashable
Gabriel Debenedetti / Politico:
O'Malley tests 2020 waters with Iowa poll
Discussion: The Daily Caller, TheBlaze and The Week