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7:00 AM ET, September 21, 2017


 Top Items: 
Calvin Woodward / Associated Press:
Sen. Graham implores colleague to vote for GOP health bill  — d47ed2ceb087  —  Link copied!  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — In an overheard phone call Wednesday, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham leaned on a fellow senator to back his GOP health care bill despite “all its imperfections.”
Ryan Struyk / CNN:
Republicans' new health care plan would need to move faster than 96% of laws  —  Sen. Cassidy defends health bill amid backlash  —  STORY HIGHLIGHTS  — Only 4% of bills signed into law over the last four decades have taken less than 10 days from introduction to the law books
Jason Noble / Des Moines Register:
Chuck Grassley: Fulfilling campaign promise just as important as ‘substance’ of health bill  —  Republican Senators have taken up another bill to repeal Obamacare.  Here's what's in the legislation.  USA TODAY  —  CONNECT  —  Despite many evident shortcomings in a bill to repeal …
Chris Cillizza / CNN:
How the ‘Jimmy Kimmel test’ became the health care fight's measuring stick  —  Washington (CNN)In a nearly seven-minute monologue on his show last night, Jimmy Kimmel delivered an impassioned call for Congress to reject the latest Republican attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare …
Dan Boyd / Albuquerque Journal:
Gov. Martinez gives thumbs-down to latest GOP health care bill  —  SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez has waded into the debate on the latest Republican-backed Obamacare repeal plan — and she's not sold on the bill's merits.  —  “While it's encouraging that Congress is working on a healthcare solution …
Discussion: The Hill
Seung Min Kim / Politico:
Senate girds for final Obamacare repeal vote
Reihan Salam / Slate:
Graham-Cassidy could turn a red electoral map blue.
Discussion: Washington Post and CNN
Sarah Kliff / Vox:
Cassidy is selling his health plan with misleading numbers
Josh Barro / Business Insider:
The new healthcare bill includes an ‘Alaska Purchase’ to woo a key senator
Discussion: New York Magazine and Daily Kos
Sen. Rand Paul / National Review:
Another Chance on Health Care
Discussion: RedState and Daily Wire
Avik Roy / Washington Post:
Cassidy-Graham is attractive in theory. But it has a giant flaw.
Discussion: Forbes
Washington Post:
Manafort offered to give Russian billionaire ‘private briefings’ on 2016 campaign  —  FILE - In this July 17, 2016 file photo, then-Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort talks to reporters on the floor of the Republican National Convention at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland as Rick Gates listens at back left.
Michael S. Schmidt / New York Times:
Mueller Seeks White House Documents Related to Trump's Actions as President  —  Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, is interested in Mr. Trump's firing of his F.B.I. director and national security adviser and other events.  —  September 20, 2017  —  Republican Leaders Defy Bipartisan Opposition to Health Law Repeal
Wall Street Journal:
All Mr. Comey's Wiretaps  —  Congress needs to learn …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Daily Wire
Washington Post:
Mueller casts broad net in requesting extensive records from Trump White House
Aidan McLaughlin / Mediaite:
LEAKED: Watch MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell's Unhinged Outtakes...for Eight Crazy Minutes (UPDATE)  —  Lawrence O'Donnell had a really bad night on August 29, 2017.  —  We draw that conclusion based on the above clip obtained by Mediaite, showing behind the scenes footage of a furious O'Donnell absolutely …
David Rutz / Washington Free Beacon:
Bill O'Reilly and Lawrence O'Donnell: Together at Last
Discussion: Grabien News and Mediaite
NBC News:
Trump Leaning Toward Decertifying Iran Nuclear Deal, Say Sources  —  President Donald Trump is leaning toward decertifying the Iran nuclear deal and putting the decision of whether the United States withdraw from the accord in the hands of Congress, according to four sources …
Adam Kredo / Washington Free Beacon:
Tillerson, Haley Clash Over Iran Nuclear Deal
Discussion: Bloomberg, RedState and IJR
Steve Benen / MSNBC:
One of Trump World's worst habits: burying inconvenient facts
New York Times:
Manafort Working on Kurdish Referendum Opposed by U.S.  —  WASHINGTON — Paul J. Manafort, the former campaign chairman for President Trump who is at the center of investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, is working for allies of the leader of Iraq's Kurdish region …
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai / Motherboard:
Turning Off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth in iOS 11's Control Center Doesn't Actually Turn Off Wi-Fi or Bluetooth  —  And it's a feature, not a bug.  —  Turning off Bluetooth and Wi-Fi when you're not using them on your smartphone has long been standard, common sense, advice.
Michael Calderone / Politico:
Preet Bharara joins CNN as senior legal analyst  —  Preet Bharara, whom President Donald Trump fired as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, is joining CNN as a Senior Legal Analyst, POLITICO has learned.  —  Bharara was known for his media savvy on the job in Manhattan …
Jonathan O'Connell / Washington Post:
Black employees of BLT Prime, in Trump International Hotel, allege racial discrimination  —  Dominique Hill and Irving Smith Jr. had good jobs.  —  Last year, Hill worked as a bartender at P.F. Chang's in Tysons Corner and Smith had recently been promoted to bartender at Wildfire grill, also in Tysons.
Discussion: Raw Story and Talking Points Memo
NBC News:
All Power Out as Hurricane Maria's Winds, Floods Crush Puerto Rico  —  SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Hurricane Maria is likely to have “destroyed” Puerto Rico, the island's emergency director said Wednesday after the monster storm smashed ripped roofs off buildings and flooded homes across the economically strained U.S. territory.
Ryan Dailey / Tallahassee Democrat:
Parents divided in opinion after gender neutral teacher sends home note with 5th graders  —  A new fifth grade teacher at Canopy Oaks Elementary is asking students to use gender-neutral pronouns in the classroom.  —  Math and science teacher Chloe Bressack sent the request home in a letter to parents headlined “About Mx.
Sheryl Sandberg:
Last week we temporarily disabled some of our ads tools following news reports that slurs or other offensive language could be used as targeting criteria for advertising.  If someone self-identified as a ‘Jew-hater’ or said they studied ‘how to burn Jews’ in their profile …
Bret Baier / Fox News:
Samantha Power sought to unmask Americans on almost daily basis, sources say  —  Samantha Power, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, was ‘unmasking’ at such a rapid pace in the final months of the Obama administration that she averaged more than one request for every working day in 2016 …
Jeff Greenfield / Politico:
The Strange Authenticity of Hillary Clinton  —  By now, you know the news nuggets from Hillary Clinton's new campaign memoir, What Happened.  You know that she blames herself for the most shocking upset in American political history, while indicting (in varying degrees of anger and exasperation) …
Sharyl Attkisson / The Hill:
It looks like Obama did spy on Trump, just as he apparently did to me  —  BY SHARYL ATTKISSON, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR — 09/20/17 08:30 AM EDT THE VIEWS EXPRESSED BY CONTRIBUTORS ARE THEIR OWN AND NOT THE VIEW OF THE HILL  —  Many in the media are diving deeply into minutiae in order to discredit …
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission:
SEC Chairman Clayton Issues Statement on Cybersecurity  —  Discloses the Commission's Cyber Risk Profile, Discusses Intrusions at the Commission, and Reviews the Commission's Approach to Oversight and Enforcement  —  SEC Chairman Jay Clayton today issued a statement highlighting the importance …
Robert Costa / Washington Post:
'You've got to go': How the GOP persuaded Trump to campaign in Alabama  —  President Trump had formally given Sen. Luther Strange his “complete and total endorsement.”  But as recently as last week, his advisers were deeply divided on whether the president should risk jetting to Alabama …
Dominica knocked to its knees by Hurricane Maria's might  —  Over Dominica, in the Caribbean (CNN)Hurricane Maria's first victim was Dominica, and it was clear from a flight Wednesday over the island nation that the storm showed absolutely no mercy.  —  At least 14 people are dead …
Discussion: The Guardian
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 More Items: 
Chuck Grassley preparing subpoenas for two FBI officials
Nicole D. Nelson / New York Times:
When Will Black Lives Matter in St. Louis?
Discussion: Shakesville
Karl Etters / Tallahassee Democrat:
Another Garcia cellmate comes forward with information on Markel
James Queally / Los Angeles Times:
L.A. County probation officer accused of sex abuse pleads guilty to assaulting girls at juvenile hall
Discussion: Raw Story
Joe Ryan / Bloomberg:
Nicaragua Joins Paris Accord, Leaving Trump Alone With Syria
Discussion: The Week
Kimberly Roots / TVLine:
Law & Order Vet Sam Waterston to Bring Jack McCoy to SVU Season 19
 Earlier Items: 
Ryan Lizza / New Yorker:
Why Is Congress Conducting Its Russia Investigation in Secret?
Discussion: Raw Story
Peter Sullivan / The Hill:
Blue Cross warns GOP repeal bill ‘undermines’ pre-existing condition rules
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Immigrant taken by ICE from Austin courthouse was killed in Mexico
Discussion: ThinkProgress
The Daily Beast:
Russians Appear to Use Facebook to Push Pro-Trump ‘Flash Mobs’ in Florida