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7:20 AM ET, October 19, 2017


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Trump offered a grieving military father $25,000 in a call, but didn't follow through  —  President Trump, in a personal phone call to a grieving military father, offered him $25,000 and said he would direct his staff to establish an online fundraiser for the family, but neither happened, the father said.
Nahal Toosi / Politico:
White House staff drafted Niger sympathy statement for Trump that was never released  —  Staffers at the National Security Council drafted and circulated a statement of condolence for President Donald Trump to make almost immediately after a deadly ambush of U.S. soldiers in Niger earlier this month.
New York Times:
Trump's Condolence Call to Soldier's Widow Ignites an Imbroglio  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump's condolence call to the widow of a slain soldier exploded into a vicious row that swamped the White House on Wednesday, with the soldier's grieving mother accusing the president of disrespecting …
New York Times:
Signaling Frustration, Senior House Republican Plans to Quit Early  —  In a sign of mounting frustration among Republicans in Washington, Representative Pat Tiberi of Ohio, a senior lawmaker with close ties to his party's leaders, is expected to resign and take up an executive post …
Discussion: Business Insider
The Daily Beast:
Trump Campaign Staffers Pushed Russian Propaganda Days Before the Election … Some of the Trump campaign's most prominent names and supporters, including Trump's campaign manager, digital director and son, pushed tweets from professional trolls paid by the Russian government in the heat of the 2016 election campaign.
Kevin Collier / BuzzFeed:
Twitter Was Warned Repeatedly About This Fake Account Run By A Russian Troll Farm And Refused To Take It Down  —  The account was one of hundreds created by Russia's Internet Research Agency and drew 136,000 followers by tweeting divisive messages in the name of the Tennessee Republican Party.
Laura Vozzella / Washington Post:
Trump strategist quits Gillespie campaign for Va. governor, sources say  —  RICHMOND — The man who rallied Southwest Virginia to vote for Donald Trump last year quit Republican Ed Gillespie's gubernatorial campaign this week, offended by a personal snub and exasperated by the campaign's …
Discussion: Political Wire
Dana Blanton / Fox News:   Fox News Poll: Democrat Northam has seven-point edge over Republican Gillespie in Virginia gubernatorial race
Mary Hui / Washington Post:
Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore says kneeling during the anthem is against the law  —  Roy Moore, the Republican nominee for the Senate in Alabama, said that NFL players who kneel during the national anthem are breaking the law.  —  “It's against the law, you know that?”
Nash Jenkins / TIME:
Senate Candidate Roy Moore Says NFL Protesters Are Breaking the Law
Alex Seitz-Wald / NBC News:
Shakeup at Democratic National Committee, Longtime Officials Ousted  —  WASHINGTON — A shakeup is underway at the Democratic National Committee as several key longtime officials have lost their posts, exposing a still-raw rift in the party and igniting anger among those in its progressive wing …
Zoe Tillman / BuzzFeed:
A Judge Just Ordered The Trump Administration To Allow An Undocumented Teen To Get An Abortion  —  A federal judge ordered federal officials to allow the teen to travel to an abortion provider “promptly and without delay.”  The 17-year-old Jane Doe at the center of the case is approximately 15 weeks pregnant.
Discussion: The Hill
John D. Sutter / CNN:
About 1 million Americans without running water. 3 million without power.  This is life one month after Hurricane Maria.  —  Puerto Rico (CNN)After Hurricane Maria toppled the bridge that connects him to the rest of civilization and ripped the roof and walls off his house here in the central mountains …
USA Today:
Real death toll in Puerto Rico is probably 450 — much higher than official count
Discussion: Washington Post, CNN and Daily Kos
Anna Palmer / Politico:
Frail and disoriented, Cochran says he's not retiring  —  Mississippi GOP Sen. Thad Cochran insists that he is not retiring from Congress, despite widespread speculation about the veteran lawmaker's health and political future.  —  The 79-year-old Cochran appeared frail and at times disoriented during …
Discussion: Axios and Political Wire
Fenit Nirappil / Washington Post:
Black candidate omitted from Democratic campaign fliers in Virginia  —  In this Sept 4, 2017 photo, Democratic candidate for Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, right, talks during a Democratic breakfast, with Attorney General Mark Herring, sitting from left, gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam …
New York Times:   Obama Returns to Campaign Trail to Rally Black Voters
Tom Dreisbach /
Numbers Disagree With Trump Golf Course Claim Of ‘Millions To Charity’  —  NPR's “Embedded” podcast team examined charitable giving by Trump National Golf Club, Los Angeles.  It found the organization appears to have fallen short of its bold claims of philanthropic giving.  —  EMBEDDED
Discussion: Eschaton
Tom Dreisbach / NPR:   A Trump Golf Course Said It Gave Millions To Charity. Here's What The Numbers Say
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
Steve Bannon's Motley Crew of Challengers  —  One is fresh out of prison.  Another held a town hall to discuss ‘chemtrail’ theories.  —  Steve Bannon, the failed presidential adviser and alt-right sympathizer, has declared war on incumbent Republicans, particularly Sen. Mitch McConnell.
Trip Gabriel / New York Times:
In North Carolina, Republicans Stung by Court Rulings Aim to Change the Judges  —  RALEIGH, N.C. — Republicans with a firm grip on the North Carolina legislature — and, until January, the governor's seat — enacted a conservative agenda in recent years, only to have a steady stream …
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Laura Donnelly / Telegraph:
NHS provokes fury with indefinite surgery ban for smokers and obese  —  The NHS will ban patients from surgery indefinitely unless they lose weight or quit smoking, under controversial plans drawn up in Hertfordshire.  —  The restrictions - thought to be the most extreme yet to be introduced …
Mallory Shelbourne / The Hill:
Sessions declines ‘blanket’ assurance to not jail journalists  —  on Wednesday said he could not make a “blanket commitment” to not putting journalists in jail.  —  During testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Amy Klobuchar  —  (D-Minn.) asked Sessions if he could pledge to not place …
New York Times:
Jann Wenner and His Biographer Have a Falling Out  —  Jann Wenner and his biographer are no longer on speaking terms.  —  If things had gone according to Mr. Wenner's plan, the two of them would be appearing together at parties, talks and other promotional events timed to the publication …
Pema Levy / Mother Jones:
Justice Department Has Communicated With Controversial Election Commission, Sessions Confirms  —  The revelation fuels concerns over voter suppression efforts and could raise legal questions.  —  Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed Wednesday that there have been communications between …
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 More Items: 
Jason Horowitz / New York Times:
In Italian Schools, Reading, Writing and Recognizing Fake News
Ashley Killough / CNN:
Cruz, Sanders debate tax reform in CNN town hall
Discussion: Business Insider
Pete Kasperowicz / Washington Examiner:
Trey Gowdy: Samantha Power testified that intel officials made ‘unmasking’ requests in her name
Josh Delk / The Hill:
Stabenow to deliver opening remarks at women's convention
Discussion: IJR
Dan Corey / NBC News:
Obama's Name to Replace Jefferson Davis' on Mississippi School
Discussion: Axios
Matthew Chapman / Shareblue Media:
Americans raise $200k overnight for children of grieving Army widow Trump insulted
 Earlier Items: 
Christopher Jacobs / The Federalist:
The Alexander-Murray Health ‘Deal’ Sends Tax Dollars To Abortion Coverage
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
Eagerness to Go on TV Has Warped the Liberal Media, Glenn Greenwald Tells TV Host
CBS News:
Rick Perry calls fallen soldiers phone call controversy “asinine”
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
NFL ratings continue fall, latest Nielsen numbers show
Shaun King / The Intercept:
Dear White People: Be More Like Gregg Popovich
Discussion: JustOneMinute
The Moscow Times:
Russia Prepares to Blacklist Five ‘Undesirable’ U.S. Media Outlets