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1:45 PM ET, August 23, 2017


 Top Items: 
Leinz Vales / CNN:
James Clapper calls Trump speech ‘downright scary and disturbing’  —  (CNN)James Clapper, former director of National Intelligence, said Wednesday morning he questioned President Donald Trump's fitness for office.  —  “I really question his ability to be — his fitness to be — in this office …
Arizona Republic:
Fake news?  Trump supporters circulate photo of Phoenix rally crowds ... but it's not … Ah social media is a glorious place.  You see something, it looks cool, and so you retweet it.  —  And sometimes that gets you into trouble.  —  Such was the case Tuesday night …
Discussion: Raw Story
Rachel Chason / Washington Post:
James Clapper questions Trump's fitness, worries about his access to nuclear codes
Discussion: Shareblue
Ian Schwartz / RealClearPolitics:
James Clapper: I Question Trump's Fitness For Office, Wonder If He Is “Looking For A Way Out”
Discussion: Daily Wire
Jenna Johnson / Washington Post:
As Trump ranted and rambled in Phoenix, his crowd slowly thinned  —  PHOENIX — Just before President Trump strolled onto the rally stage on Tuesday evening, four speakers took turns carefully denouncing hate, calling for unity and ever so subtly assuring the audience that the president is not racist.
Philip Bump / Washington Post:
Why Ben Carson's appearance in Phoenix was likely a violation of federal law  —  Right before Ben Carson took the stage at President Trump's rally in Phoenix on Tuesday night, the announcer introduced him.  —  “The secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development …
Exclusive: Hillary Clinton in her own words  —  Hillary Clinton reflects on the 2016 campaign in her new book ‘What Happened.’ Morning Joe has an exclusive first look. ...  more Duration: {{video.duration.momentjs}}
Mark Murray / NBC News:   12 Days That Stunned a Nation: How Hillary Clinton Lost
Louis Nelson / Politico:
Clinton says her ‘skin crawled’ from Trump's looming behavior at debate
Discussion: Althouse
Ian Hanchett / Breitbart:
Clinton Book Excerpt: I Wonder If I Should Have Called Trump a ‘Creep’ During Debate
Cleve R. Wootson Jr / Washington Post:
Hillary Clinton calls Donald Trump a ‘creep,’ says her ‘skin crawled’ during debate
Discussion: Daily Wire, Refinery29 and Mediaite
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Trump Holds Steady After Charlottesville; Supporters Think Whites, Christians Face Discrimination  —  PPP's newest national poll finds that Donald Trump's approval rating is pretty steady in the wake of the Charlottesville attack, probably because his supporters think that whites and Christians …
Discussion: The Week and Politicus USA
Steven Shepard / Politico:
Poll: Trump hits new low after Charlottesville  —  President Donald Trump's approval rating has hit a new low following a week in which a majority of voters believe he did more to divide the country than unite it, a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll shows.  —  Only 39 percent of voters approve …
Cameron Easley / Morning Consult:
Trump's Approval Rating Dips Below 40% for First Time After Charlottesville  —  Americans are taking a dimmer-than-ever view of President Donald Trump's job performance following his response to the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., earlier this month, when a woman was killed …
Clay Travis / Outkick the Coverage:
MSESPN Pulls Asian Announcer Named Robert Lee Off UVa Game To Avoid Offending Idiots  —  UPDATE: ESPN ISSUES OFFICIAL STATEMENT ON MOVING ROBERT LEE FROM VIRGINIA GAME:  —  “We collectively made the decision with Robert to switch games as the tragic events in Charlottesville were unfolding …
Matthew Haag / New York Times:
ESPN Pulls Announcer Robert Lee From Virginia Game Because of His Name
Robert Anglen / Arizona Republic:
Bundy Ranch standoff trials … A federal jury in Las Vegas did not return any guilty verdicts Tuesday against four men accused of taking up arms against federal agents during the Bundy Ranch standoff in 2014.  —  Jurors dealt government prosecutors a stinging defeat in the case when …
Ken Ritter /
Jury refuses to convict in Bundy ranch standoff
Los Angeles Times:
Once again, a jury rules in favor of Bundy supporters in their 2014 standoff with federal agents
Discussion: Daily Wire
Katie Mettler / Washington Post:
The strange story of that ‘Blacks for Trump’ guy standing behind POTUS at his Phoenix rally  —  At a number of political rallies over the year, a character calling himself “Michael the Black Man” has appeared in the crowd directly behind Donald Trump, impossible to miss and possibly planted.
Discussion: The Root
Kaitlan Collins / CNN:
White House has paperwork ready for Joe Arpaio pardon  —  (CNN) The White House has prepared the paperwork for President Trump to pardon former sheriff Joe Arpaio when he makes the final decision to do so, CNN has learned.  —  An administration official said the White House …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and IJR
John Wagner / Washington Post:
Trump threatens shutdown, suggests controversial pardon at Arizona rally
Haroon Siddique / The Guardian:
Charlottesville: United Nations warns US over ‘alarming’ racism  —  UN committee on the elimination of racial discrimination expresses alarm at growth of far-right groups and hate crimes  —  A UN committee charged with tackling racism has issued an “early warning” over conditions in the US …
Discussion: Yahoo, Shareblue and The Week
Sewell Chan / New York Times:
U.N. Panel Condemns Trump's Response to Charlottesville Violence
Discussion: U.S. : NPR and Splinter
Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Has More Troops in Afghanistan Than Publicly Disclosed  —  Pentagon hasn't included 3,500 who slip in and out of theater in force tally  —  WASHINGTON—The Pentagon maintains more than 12,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, defense officials said, currently about 3,500 more than it publicly acknowledges …
Courtney Kube / NBC News:
U.S. Has Thousands More Troops in Afghanistan Than the Pentagon Admits
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Trump's ambassador to Israel: Charlottesville response 'wasn't fine'  —  President Trump's ambassador to Israel on Wednesday criticized the president's response to the deadly violence earlier this month at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va.  —  During an interview …
David Smith / The Guardian:
'He's anti-left, anti-PC, anti-stupid': Trump supporters in their own words  —  Trump is breath of fresh air.  He's totally not a political person.  He's a businessman: he's anti-left, he's anti-PC, he's anti-stupid.  He just wants to go in and make the best deal for Americans that he can.
Discussion: Shakesville
Josh Dawsey / Politico:
Trump prepared to go to mat for wall funding  —  President Donald Trump's vow Tuesday to close down the government if he doesn't get money for the border wall mirrors private comments he has made to advisers in recent days - and could cause significant rifts within his own party if he follows through.
CBS News:
Some U.S. diplomats in Cuba diagnosed with serious health conditions, medical records show  —  According to medical records reviewed exclusively by CBS News, a U.S. doctor who evaluated American and Canadian diplomats working in Havana diagnosed them with conditions as serious as mild traumatic brain injury …
Discussion: Axios
Olivia Messer / The Daily Beast:
‘This Is Not Hazing.  This Is Rape’: Inside a Texas Town's Football Nightmare … LA VERNIA, Texas—When Jennifer's* son made varsity—as a freshman, no less—it should have been cause for celebration.  —  Here, football is king.  The town is one of the oldest communities in the Lone Star State …
Discussion: Raw Story
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 More Items:
16-year-old MPS student arrested after punching teacher several times in the head
Discussion: Raw Story
Exclusive— Rick Santorum Crafting Different Obamacare Repeal Plan with Lawmakers: 'It Will …
Discussion: Raw Story
Wall Street Journal:
Iowa Seeks Ambitious Waiver to Reshape Health Law Within Its Borders
David Roth / The Baffler:
The President of Blank Sucking Nullity
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Steven Morris / The Guardian:
Firefighters eat sausages made of piglets they saved from blaze
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Mediaite
Andrea Cavallier / New York's PIX11:
Sunnyside building decorated with Nazi propaganda, Jim Crow images terrifies neighbors
Discussion: Shakesville and Raw Story
Colby Itkowitz / Washington Post:
‘Raised up by God’: Televangelist Paula White compares Trump to Queen Esther
Discussion: AOL and Christian
 Earlier Items: 
Doreen McCallister / NPR:
Commander Of Navy's 7th Fleet Dismissed After Series Of Ship Mishaps
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
Secret Service agrees to stop erasing White House visitor log data
Lucien Greaves / Washington Post:
I'm a founder of the Satanic Temple. Don't blame Satan for white supremacy.
Discussion: Christianity Today and Daily Wire
Brooke Seipel / The Hill:
Trump claims news media turned off cameras at rally as live coverage goes uninterrupted
J.M. Berger / Politico:
Here's What Russia's Propaganda Network Wants You to Read
Martin Selsoe Sorensen / New York Times:
Kim Wall Is Confirmed Dead as Danish Inventor Is Investigated
Discussion: Gizmodo
New York Times:
Trump and McConnell Locked in a Cold War, Threatening the G.O.P. Agenda