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4:40 PM ET, December 12, 2017


 Top Items: 
Katie McDonough / Splinter:
Horse Twitter Comes for Roy Moore  —  Roy Moore, a bigot and alleged serial predator, rode a horse to the polls on Tuesday to cast his ballot in the Alabama Senate special election.  —  Soon after, Horse Twitter came for him.
Steven Shepard / Politico:
Poll: Roy Moore should be kicked out of Senate if he wins  —  A majority of voters nationwide say Republican Roy Moore should be expelled from the Senate if he wins a seat in the chamber in Tuesday's special election in Alabama, according to a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll.
Eric Bradner / CNN:
5 things to watch in Alabama's Senate election
Hannah Keyser / Deadspin:   Roy Moore Doesn't Even Ride A Horse Well
Toluse Olorunnipa / Bloomberg:
Pence Stays Silent on Roy Moore in Rare Break From Trump
Discussion: Shareblue Media
Ben Kamisar / The Hill:   Alabama drama nears an explosive end
Erik Wemple / Washington Post:
CNN's Jim Acosta cites access threat from White House's Sarah Huckabee Sanders  —  President Trump's tweeting Tuesday morning set off the usual scramble among White House reporters for all manner of clarifications and amplifications.  Look at the tweet, and it's not hard to understand why:
Ed O'Keefe / Washington Post:
Already on the 2020 radar, Kirsten Gillibrand catapulted into the spotlight by President Trump
Discussion: IJR
Ashley Parker / Washington Post:
Trump attacks Gillibrand in tweet critics say is sexually suggestive and demeaning
Nolan D. McCaskill / Politico:
Sixth senator says Trump should resign
Discussion: NPR, Axios and Political Wire
Mike Allen / Axios:
Trump lawyers want second special counsel appointed now  —  President Trump's legal team believes Attorney General Jeff Session's Justice Department and the FBI — more than special counsel Robert Mueller himself — are to blame for what they see as a witch hunt.
The Guardian:   Robert Mueller is closing in on Trump. Congress must protect his investigation
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Inside Trump's legal team: Trying to protect the president from Mueller's ‘killers’
Discussion: Daily Kos and Roll Call
Connor Sheets /
In final-hour order, court rules that Alabama can destroy digital voting records after all  —  Alabama is allowed to destroy digital voting records created at the polls during today's U.S. Senate election after all.  —  At 1:36 p.m. Monday, a Montgomery County Circuit Court judge issued …
Connor Sheets /
State Supreme Court stays order directing Alabama not to destroy voting records  —  Update - 9:05 a.m. Dec. 12, 2017: Late Monday night, the Alabama Supreme Court stayed the Montgomery County Circuit Court's order earlier that day directing Alabama election officials to preserve digital ballot images during Tuesday's Senate election.
Discussion: Vox, Gizmodo and Daily Kos
Exclusive: Grassley urges Trump to reconsider controversial judicial picks  —  Trump packing courts with conservatives  —  STORY HIGHLIGHTS  —  Washington (CNN)Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley issued a rare rebuke Tuesday of two of President Donald Trump's …
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Political Wire
Karma Allen / ABC News:
Boy behind viral anti-bullying video amazed by support, celebrity responses  —  A young Tennessee boy whose story gained national attention after his mother posted a heart-wrenching video of him addressing his bullies said he is amazed by all the support he's received on social media this week.
Judd Legum / ThinkProgress:
This is the list of ‘eyewitnesses’ the White House says exonerate Trump  —  On Monday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders promised that she would produce a list of eyewitnesses to exonerate President Trump from allegations of sexual harassment and assault.
Leonard Greene / New York Daily News:
Why Melania, Ivanka and Jared's mayoral election votes didn't count  —  Good thing last month's mayoral election wasn't close because if New Yorkers needed the Trump family to decide the outcome, they would have been out of luck.  —  President Trump and his family of New Yorkers …
Discussion: Splinter
New York Times:
Ken Friedman, Power Restaurateur, Is Accused of Sexual Harassment  —  Natalie Saibel, a longtime server at the Spotted Pig, a West Village restaurant with celebrity investors, didn't quit in 2015 after the owner, Ken Friedman, ran his hands over her buttocks and then her groin in a room crowded …
Transparency International e.V. / Transparency …:
Corruption in the USA: The difference a year makes  —  New public opinion survey compares 2017 with 2016  —  The US faces a wide range of domestic challenges related to the abuse of entrusted power for private gain, which is Transparency International's definition of corruption.
Discussion: TalkLeft and Sunlight Foundation
Josh Rogin / Washington Post:   Report: Americans view Trump White House as the most corrupt government institution
New York Times:
Donald Trump Jr. Demands Leak Probe of House Intelligence Committee  —  Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son, has asked the House Intelligence Committee to open an investigation into leaked information related to his closed interview with the committee last week.
Discussion: Axios
Susan Cornwell / Reuters:
U.S. House Democratic women seek probe of Trump misconduct accusations
NFL Harassment Suit Alleges Groping by Top Executive, Ex-Players  —  Former employee says ex-producer sent several nude photos  —  NFL Network says employees suspended pending investigation  —  A former executive producer at the National Football League's TV network and ex-players including Marshall Faulk …
D.C. McAllister / The Federalist:
Can We Be Honest About Women?  —  Here's a little secret we have to say out loud: Women love the sexual interplay they experience with men, and they relish men desiring their beauty.  —  David French of National Review recently wrote an article asking, “Can we be honest about men?”
Marist Poll:
12/12: Majority Views Tax Bill as Adding Financial Injury... POTUS Favors Wealthy, Say Americans  —  The tax reform bill is highly unpopular among the American people.  —  The tax reform bill is highly unpopular among the American people.  In fact, a majority of U.S. residents (52%) …
Washington Post:
Congress could finalize deal to reconcile House and Senate tax bills as soon as today, top Republican says  —  Lawmakers are on the verge of striking a tentative agreement that would reconcile tax bills passed separately by the House and Senate, and an announcement could come later Tuesday …
Discussion: Bloomberg and Daily Kos
San Francisco Chronicle:
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee dead at 65  —  San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee died early Tuesday morning at age 65, his office said.  —  The sudden news came in an email from the office at 2:23 a.m. It read: “It is with profound sadness and terrible grief that we confirm that Mayor Edwin M. Lee passed away …
Robin Wright / New Yorker:
Trump to Let Assad Stay Until 2021, as Putin Declares Victory in Syria  —  Despite the deaths of as many as half a million people, dozens by chemical weapons, in the Syrian civil war, the Trump Administration is now prepared to accept President Bashar al-Assad's continued rule until Syria's …
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 More Items: 
Michael Schaub / Los Angeles Times:
Feminism is word of the year, Merriam-Webster announces
Discussion: IJR, AOL and
Putin Gets Reports on Trump's Tweets, Kremlin Says
Discussion: VICE News
Abdi Guled / Associated Press:
US drone strike removes ‘imminent threat’ to Somali capital
The Hill:
Watch live: Trump signs National Defense Authorization Act
Discussion: IJR and The Right Scoop
Brian Steinberg / Variety:
‘Today’ Ratings Continue to Surge After Matt Lauer Departure
Fenit Nirappil / Washington Post:
After 9-point loss in Va., Gillespie says he would not encourage others to run for office …
 Earlier Items: 
Maggie Haberman / New York Times:
A Campaign Memoir That Shows Trump, at Least Partly, as He Is
Joseph Bernstein / BuzzFeed:
Inside Steve Bannon's #War Against Twitter
Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel:
Our View: Collins should drop support for tax bill
Zephyr Teachout / New York Times:
I'm Not Convinced Franken Should Quit