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2:05 PM ET, August 9, 2017


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Trump's Threat to North Korea Was Improvised  —  BRIDGEWATER, N.J. — President Trump delivered his “fire and fury” threat to North Korea on Tuesday with arms folded, jaw set and eyes flitting on what appeared to be a single page of talking points set before him on the conference table at his New Jersey golf resort.
Julie Hirschfeld Davis / New York Times:
Trump's Harsh Language on North Korea Has Little Precedent, Experts Say  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump's warning on Tuesday that North Korea would experience “fire and fury like the world has never seen” if it continued threatening the United States was a remarkable escalation of military rhetoric …
Sarah Pulliam Bailey / Washington Post:
‘God has given Trump authority to take out Kim Jong Un,’ evangelical adviser says  —  Texas megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress, one of President Trump's evangelical advisers who preached the morning of his inauguration, has released a statement saying the president has the moral authority to take out North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Alberto Nardelli / BuzzFeed:
This Is What European Diplomats Really Think About Donald Trump  —  Interviews with six top officials paint a picture of a president who is regarded even by allies as erratic and limited, and whose shortcomings are compounded by the ongoing chaos beneath him in the White House.  —  Reporting From
Alex Horton / Agence France-Presse:
Why North Korea threatened Guam, the tiny U.S. territory with big military power  —  North Korea is reviewing plans to strike U.S. military targets in Guam with its medium-range ballistic missiles to create “enveloping fire,” according to state media.
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
Ignore Our Crazy President, U.S. Government Tells North Korea  —  President Trump brought the United States and North Korea to the precipice of war by warning that any further threats would be met with a nuclear attack.  ("North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States.
Discussion: CNN, ThinkProgress and The Week
North Korea vows strikes on US as Trump warns of ‘fire and fury’
Nyshka Chandran / CNBC:
Trump just set his own, uncrossable ‘red line’ — and North Korea crossed it instantly
Discussion: Power Line
Kim Hjelmgaard / USA Today:
‘Not helpful,’ Donald: World reaction to Trump's ‘fire and fury’ comments
James Hohmann / Washington Post:
The Daily 202: The GOP congressional majority may be too strong for Trump to break
Discussion: Breitbart, ABC News and RedState
Henry Farrell / Washington Post:
North Korea just called Trump's bluff. So what happens now?
Discussion: Wall Street Journal and The Week
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Trump warns N. Korea: U.S. nuclear arsenal is ‘more powerful than ever before’
New York Times:
On North Korea Threat, ‘Americans Should Sleep Well at Night,’ Tillerson Says
Washington Post:
FBI conducted predawn raid of former Trump campaign chairman Manafort's home … FBI agents raided the Alexandria home of President Trump's former campaign chairman late last month, using a search warrant to seize documents and other materials, according to people familiar …
New York Times:
Manafort's Home Searched as Part of Mueller Inquiry  —  WASHINGTON — Investigators for the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, recently searched a home of President Trump's former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, for tax documents and foreign banking records, according to a person briefed on the matter.
Robert Costa / Washington Post:
Even in North Korea crisis, retired general John Kelly is an apolitical force in a White House divided by ideology  —  When John F. Kelly attended one of his first policy meetings last week, the other officials in attendance tried to suss out where the newly minted White House chief of staff stood …
Wall Street Journal:
McMaster and the Commander  —  The NSC adviser is the latest target of Steve Bannon's media friends.  —  National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster listens during the daily press briefing at the White House, July 31.  —  Chief of Staff John Kelly is by all accounts imposing more discipline …
Discussion: Raw Story and Talking Points Memo
Steven Perlberg / BuzzFeed:
Behind The Jared And Ivanka PR Machine
Discussion: Raw Story and Mediaite
Lydia Wheeler / The Hill:
LGBTQ rights groups sue Trump over transgender military ban  —  Two LGBTQ rights groups are suing President Trump over his plan to ban transgender people from serving in the U.S. military.  —  The National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) …
Kevin Millerstaff / Press Herald:   Upset by override on tobacco, LePage again proposes raising age to 21 to vote, join military
Robert Barnes / Washington Post:
Active-duty military members sue Trump over transgender ban
Discussion: Refinery29
Jane Mayer / New Yorker:
Has James O'Keefe Accidentally Stung Himself Again?  —  James O'Keefe III, the conservative activist famous for undercover stings, has dedicated his life to exposing the “misconduct” of others.  But he's developed a side business in accidentally exposing his own.
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Raw Story
Tegna / WXIA-TV:
Atlanta gym owner makes no apologies for ‘No Cops’ sign … A shocking and vulgar sign about police officers has been posted in front of a local business in Atlanta.  The sign could be seen from the street with the curse word blurred out, but the message is clear: It says no cops allowed.
John Crudele / New York Post:
There's something unusual about the job growth numbers  —  MORE FROM: … Job growth was decent in July — the fourth straight month of just-OK results on that front, which probably led to high fives at the White House.  —  But there's something unusual in the numbers.
Ashley Killough / CNN:
White House official goes after McConnell over ‘excessive expectations’ comment  —  STORY HIGHLIGHTS  —  (CNN)A close aide to President Donald Trump hit back Wednesday against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, exhibiting further tension between the White House and Congress …
Discussion: Courier-Journal, Vox and Politico
The Daily Beast:
Pentagon to Bannon's Blackwater Buddy Erik Prince: GTFO … Erik Prince made a windfall convincing the State Department, military and CIA to hire his mercenary firm, Blackwater.  But this time, his plan to win Afghanistan through a new infusion of guns-for-hire has few customers.
Michael Gartland / New York Post:
Emails reveal de Blasio bullies his staffers  —  Mayor de Blasio is an imperious bully of a boss who threatens his underlings with dire punishment if they fail to meet his demands, emails obtained by The Post reveal.  —  “What do I need to get you guys to follow a direct order?
Frank Phillips /
Lowell Democrat Niki Tsongas won't seek another term in Congress  —  US Representative Niki Tsongas said Wednesday she will not seek another term in Congress.  —  “I feel it is a good time to go,” she told the Globe ahead of releasing a statement announcing her decision.
Discussion: Political Wire
Daniel Squadron / New York Daily News:
Why I'm leaving the N.Y. Senate  —  On election night 2008, as our taxi crept through Times Square's spontaneous celebration, my fiance and I whooped out the window.  We were inspired by Barack Obama's election and excited about my own.  I had defeated a 30-year incumbent to become …
Discussion: Capitol Confidential and Gothamist
James Kirchick / Los Angeles Times:
Op-Ed Who are you calling a ‘warmonger’?  —  Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks in Baltimore on June 5.  (Patrick Semansky / Associated Press)  —  Do you believe that economic sanctions are necessary to prevent the Iranian government from obtaining nuclear weapons?
Nick Bilton / Vanity Fair:
Mark Zuckerberg's Political Ambitions Are Grander Than You Think  —  He's probably going to seek higher office one day, and it looks like he's already preparing for the job.  —  A couple months ago, I received a text message from a friend containing a brief video clip that caught me utterly by surprise.
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 More Items: 
Henry J. Gomez / BuzzFeed:
The Confederate Flag Fight Is Back
London City Hall:
YouTube must crack down on videos pushing violence & knife crime
Discussion: IJR and The Daily Caller
National Enquirer:
Trump Advisor Sex Scandal — Paul Manafort's Sick Affair
Discussion: Raw Story
Peacemakers at White House vigil urge U.S. to empty its nuclear arsenal
Robin Eberhardt / The Hill:
Anne Frank Center notes ‘alarming parallels’ between Trump, pre-Holocaust Germany
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
The smartest people in Trumpland
Discussion: New York Magazine
 Earlier Items: 
Ted Hesson / Politico:
Trump deportations lag behind Obama levels
Discussion: Washington Post, Axios and AOL
Sean Illing / Vox:
Media scholar on Trump TV: “This is Orwellian, and it's happening right now, right here”
Annie Karni / Politico:
Trump to stay at Trump Tower for three nights
Discussion: Gothamist and Talking Points Memo
Pat Rynard / Iowa Starting Line:
Iowa Democrats Win Special Election In Trump +22 District
D.C. McAllister / The Federalist:
Anti-Trumpers Need To Fire On The Real Enemy Instead Of On Conservatives
Steven Shepard / Politico:
Trump hits new polling low as base shrinks