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6:05 PM ET, September 22, 2017


 Top Items:
SENATOR JOHN McCAIN ON HEALTH CARE REFORM  —  Washington, D.C. ­- U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) released the following statement today on health care reform:  —  “As I have repeatedly stressed, health care reform legislation ought to be the product of regular order in the Senate.
Joe Lawlorstaff / Press Herald:
Sen. Collins says she's leaning ‘no’ on Graham-Cassidy health care bill  —  The Republican from Maine listed serious deficiences in her party's latest effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.  —  U.S. Sen. Susan Collins all but said she would vote “no” on an Affordable Care Act repeal bill …
Future Development Reads:
How will the Graham-Cassidy proposal affect the number of people with health insurance coverage?  —  Editor's Note: … On September 13, Senators Graham and Cassidy, together with two other Republican colleagues, introduced legislation that would repeal major portions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Amber Phillips / Washington Post:
The Cassidy-Graham bill probably won't become law.  And more than half of America is good with that.  —  Republicans' last-ditch effort to repeal Obamacare was always a moonshot.  —  A bill proposed by Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) looks like it doesn't have enough support …
Discussion: Political Wire
Trump publicly backs healthcare effort, privately harbors doubts  —  While the president appears all in some in the White House wonder about Graham-Cassidy's contents and its chances.  —  In public, President Donald Trump is all-in on the Senate's final chance to repeal Obamacare.
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
Republicans to Murkowski: Nice State You Have There.  Shame If Something Should Happen to It.  —  Wall Street Journal writer Kimberley Strassel's column typically channels talking points from congressional Republicans, and today's effort is dedicated to putting the squeeze on Alaska senator Lisa Murkowski.
Discussion: The Federalist
New York Times:
McCain Announces Opposition to Republican Health Bill, Likely Dooming It  —  WASHINGTON — Senator John McCain of Arizona announced on Friday that he would oppose the latest proposal to repeal the Affordable Care Act, leaving Republican leaders with little hope of succeeding in their last-ditch attempt to dismantle the health law.
Associated Press:
The Latest: Collins ‘leaning against’ GOP health care bill  — c728fa51a4fc  —  Link copied!  —  PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Latest on health care legislation (all times local):  —  Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine says she's “leaning against” …
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Cruelty, Incompetence and Lies
Jordain Carney / The Hill:
McCain to vote no on ObamaCare repeal
Lauren Fox / CNN:
John McCain won't back Graham-Cassidy bill, likely ending GOP health care push
Gary Langer / ABC News:
Public prefers Obamacare to Graham-Cassidy, 56-33% (POLL)
Discussion: Axios, The Daily Caller and Shakesville
Megan Messerly / The Nevada Independent:
Sandoval doubles down on criticism of Heller-sponsored measure; state analysis highlights up to $2 billion loss
Discussion: Washington Post and Political Wire
Axelrod: I cried when they passed Obamacare
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Rebecca Ballhaus / Wall Street Journal:
GOP Funds Donald Trump's Defense in Russia Probe With Help From a Handful of Wealthy People  —  Payment arrangement is legal, but ethics experts warn that reliance on party and campaign accounts could raise thorny political issues  —  President Donald Trump's attorneys in the probe …
CNN poll: 54% say Russia-backed content on social media moved 2016 election
Brian Stelter / CNNMoney:
Trump says this is all a hoax. Mueller, Congress and Facebook disagree.
Shane Harris / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Monitored Manafort After He Left Trump Campaign
The former FBI director spoke at Howard University.  It did not go well.  —  STORY HIGHLIGHTS  —  Washington (CNN)Students at Howard University loudly protested former FBI Director James Comey Friday as he delivered a convocation address.  —  As Comey, making a rare public appearance since leaving …
Fox News:
Comey convocation address derailed by angry protesters at Howard University
Bob Grip / WALA-TV:
Roy Moore leads Luther Strange in FOX10 News poll  —  If the Alabama GOP Senate runoff election were held today, former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore would defeat incumbent Senator Luther Strange, according to an exclusive, FOX10 News/Strategy Research statewide poll, conducted Wednesday.
Discussion: Politico, The Hill and RedState
Abby Phillip / Washington Post:
Ben Carson breaks with Trump, endorses Roy Moore in Alabama Senate nomination race
Neal Rothschild / Axios:
Ben Carson breaks with Trump, supports Roy Moore
Discussion: Politico
Aaron C. Davis / Washington Post:
How Tom Price decided chartered, private jets were a good use of taxpayer money  —  After Tom Price was sworn in as health and human services secretary, the Georgia Republican faced an inconvenience known to millions of Americans: His flight was delayed, an aide said, and he was forced to spend hours at an airport.
Aaron C. Davis / Washington Post:
Inspector general to investigate Price's travel on private charter planes
Matt Vespa /
Collapse: Time Magazine's Brutal Deep Dive Into The Ever Shrinking And Regional Democratic Party  —  The Democratic Party is in shambles.  Say what you will about the Republicans—they have problems too—but at least they're a national party.  For all his faults, Trump was able to virtually …
Jim Geraghty / National Review:
The Unlearned Lessons of 2016  —  The media, Democrats …
Discussion: The Atlantic and Instapundit
Nancy Cook / Politico:
Trump aides begin looking for the exits  —  A fast-growing number of White House staffers are starting to look for the exits, even though the one-year mark of President Donald Trump's first term is still months away.  —  Many who joined the administration in January did so with the explicit idea …
Discussion: Raw Story, The Week and theGrio
Jason Leopold / BuzzFeed:
Sebastian Gorka Gave A Classified “Tirade” About Radical Islam  —  The former Trump aide delivered a two-and-a-half-hour speech to students at a US Army elite special operations center, documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show.  People who were there said it was a fiery speech …
Discussion: Newsweek, New York Magazine and Axios
Brian Bennett / Los Angeles Times:
Aides warned Trump not to attack North Korea's leader personally before his fiery U.N. address  —  North Korean leader Kim Jong Un called President Trump “mentally deranged” and said Trump will “pay dearly” for his threat to destroy North Korea.  (STR / AFP/Getty Images)
Phil McCausland / NBC News:
Kim Jong Un Calls President Trump ‘Dotard’ and ‘Frightened Dog’
James Hibberd /
Bill Clinton's first novel to become a Showtime TV series in major deal  —  Clinton and James Patterson's upcoming thriller, The President Is Missing, getting series treatment  —  Bill Clinton has landed a major TV series deal.  —  The former president and bestselling author James Patterson …
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 More Items: 
Joe Uchill / The Hill:
DHS tells 21 states they were Russia hacking targets before 2016 election
Joseph O'Sullivan / The Seattle Times:
Russian hackers tried to access Washington state's voting systems, officials say
Discussion: Raw Story
Paul Bedard / Washington Examiner:
Poll: Kid Rock riding ‘Trump Train’ to US Senate, leads GOP field
Kimberley A. Martin / The Buffalo News:
Stephen Hauschka on racial equality, a cause close to his heart
Discussion: ProFootballTalk, Deadspin and IJR
 Earlier Items: 
Sen. Ron Wyden places hold on Treasury nominee for Russia financial documents
Ivanka Trump Faces Courtroom Showdown Over $785 Sandals
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Jezebel
Caitlin Emma / Politico:
Obama-era school sexual assault policy rescinded
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Daily Kos
Laura Meckler / Wall Street Journal:
Trump Administration Finalizes New Restrictions to Replace Travel Ban