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8:50 PM ET, December 17, 2017


 Top Items: 
CBS News:
Sen. John McCain returns to Arizona, will miss vote on GOP tax bill  —  Republican Sen. John McCain is returning to Arizona after spending several days in a Maryland hospital recovering from side effects from chemotherapy treatment for brain cancer, CBS News has learned.
David Sirota / International Business Times:
Tax Bill: John Cornyn Says Tax Cut Potentially Benefiting Bob Corker Was Part Of Effort To Secure Votes For Passage  —  Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, the majority whip, on Sunday said a tax provision, which could personally enrich key Republican lawmakers, was added to the final tax bill as part of an effort to …
New York Times:
The Winners and Losers in the Tax Bill
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Jacqueline Thomsen / The Hill:
McCain returns to Arizona, won't vote on GOP tax bill: report
Discussion: CBS News
Josh Keefe / International Business Times:
Last-Minute Real Estate Tax Break In GOP Bill Will Benefit Trump
Discussion: Daily Kos
ABC News:
‘This Week’ Transcript 12-17-17: Sen. John Cornyn and Sen. Chris Van Hollen
Discussion: Washington Post and Hullabaloo
Mike Allen / Axios:
Trump: “My people are very upset” about Mueller obtaining emails  —  Officials of President Trump's transition team plan to ask Special Counsel Robert Mueller to return “many tens of thousands” of transition emails they contend were unlawfully provided to him.
Brandon Carter / The Hill:
Mueller team defends obtaining Trump transition emails  —  Special counsel Robert Mueller's office on Sunday defended its work after a lawyer for President Trump  —  's transition team accused investigators of improperly obtaining thousands of emails from transition officials.
Discussion: RedState, AOL and CNBC
Michael S. Schmidt / New York Times:
Trump Lawyer Says Mueller Improperly Obtained Transition Emails  —  WASHINGTON — A lawyer for President Trump has accused the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, of improperly obtaining emails and other records from Mr. Trump's transition team, the latest in the mounting attacks …
Aída Chávez / The Intercept:
Former Nixon White House Counsel: Trump Might Have Obstructed Justice to Prevent Russia Investigation
Discussion: The Hill and Raw Story
Carrie Johnson / NPR:   3 Ways Trump Or His Allies Might Try To Disrupt The Mueller Russia Probe
Martin Matishak / Politico:
Firing Mueller ‘obviously’ up to Trump, Mnuchin says
Discussion: CNN
Gregg Jarrett / Fox News:
Mueller's allegedly lawless acts have corrupted his probe and demand his removal
Discussion: IJR
Vladimir Isachenkov / Associated Press:
Kremlin says Putin thanked Trump for CIA tip on bombings  —  MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin telephoned U.S. President Donald Trump Sunday to thank him for a CIA tip that helped thwart a series of bombings in St. Petersburg, the Kremlin said.
Discussion: TASS, Axios and The Daily Caller
David Filipov / Washington Post:
Putin thanks Trump for CIA intel that foiled a planned terrorist attack in Russia
Poolreports / Public Pool:
Subject: Readout of President Donald J. Trump's Call with President Vladimir Putin
Discussion: IJR
Washington Post:   Putin phoned Trump to thank him for CIA intel that foiled a planned terrorist attack in Russia, the Kremlin says
Brett Samuels / The Hill:
Ex-Obama transportation chief on Atlanta airport power outage: ‘Total and abject failure’  —  A former transportation secretary in the Obama administration ripped Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta for its response to a massive power outage on Sunday.  —  “Total and abject failure here at ATL Airport today.
Discussion: Raw Story
Power outage cripples Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson airport  —  (CNN)A power outage at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, the world's busiest airport, is leaving thousands of passengers stranded and planes grounded indefinitely.  —  The Federal Aviation Administration issued …
Cornel West / The Guardian:
Ta-Nehisi Coates is the neoliberal face of the black freedom struggle  —  The disagreement between Coates and me is clear: his view of black America is narrow and dangerously misleading  —  a-Nehisi Coates' We Were Eight Years in Power, a book about Barack Obama's presidency and the tenacity …
Discussion: Lawyers, Guns & Money
Mark Murray / NBC News:
Democrats hold biggest lead in congressional preference since 2008  —  WASHINGTON — Fresh off their victory in Alabama's special Senate election, Democrats now enjoy their largest advantage in congressional preference in nine years, according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll …
Discussion: Axios
Janet Hook / Wall Street Journal:
Voters Increasingly Favor Democrats for Congress, New Poll Shows
Discussion: Business Insider
Rachael Bade / Politico:
Paranoia grips Capitol Hill as harassment scandal spreads  —  The details change almost daily, but the rumor won't die: A credible news organization is preparing to unmask at least 20 lawmakers in both parties for sexual misconduct.  —  Speculation about this theoretical megastory is spreading …
New York Times:
As Venezuela Collapses, Children Are Dying of Hunger  —  For five months, The New York Times tracked 21 public hospitals in Venezuela.  Doctors are seeing record numbers of children with severe malnutrition.  Hundreds have died.  —  Venezuela has the largest proven oil reserves in the world.
Discussion: Power Line and
Lolita C. Baldor / Associated Press:
APNewsBreak: US soldier ambushed in Niger wasn't captured  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — An American soldier killed in an ambush in Niger with three comrades but recovered days later wasn't captured alive by the enemy or executed at close range, The Associated Press has learned, based on the conclusion of a military investigation.
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Axios
Tony Romm / Recode:
Twitter's new rules could result in a major purge of alt-right accounts  —  The new rules start tomorrow.  —  Twitter will begin enforcing new rules tomorrow that will suspend accounts affiliated with hate groups “on and off the platform” — a policy that could lead to a crack down on some alt-right users.
Discussion: Gizmodo and
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 More Items: 
Jacqueline Thomsen / The Hill:
Mark Hamill strikes back at Cruz: Thanks for ‘smarm-spaining’ net neutrality to me
Discussion: Politico, RedState, The Daily Beast and IJR
Amber Athey / The Daily Caller:
CNN Contributor Accuses Georgetown Student Of Anti-Semitism
Discussion: Power Line and New York Post
Salman Masood / New York Times:
Pakistan Church Attacked by 2 Suicide Bombers
Discussion: CNN, AOL, RedState and The Daily Caller
Matthew Goldstein / New York Times:
The Next Crisis for Puerto Rico: A Crush of Foreclosures
Discussion: Splinter
Mallory Shelbourne / The Hill:
Jones promises he will consider voting Republican in the Senate
Discussion: RedState, Politico, Vox and The Week
Washington Post:
‘We feel like our system was hijacked’: DEA agents say a huge opioid case ended in a whimper
Josh Feldman / Mediaite:
CNN's Stelter Goes Off on ‘Friends of Trump’ at Fox News: ‘Talking Like Propagandists’
 Earlier Items: 
Scott Johnson / Power Line:
What happened in Wisconsin, cont'd
Jim Tankersley / New York Times:
File Your Taxes on a Postcard? A G.O.P. Promise Marked Undeliverable
Gregory S. Schneider / Washington Post:
A Democratic winner in Virginia says it's time for bipartisanship
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Tiffany Stanley / Politico:
This Evangelical Leader Denounced Trump. Then the Death Threats Started.
Discussion: RedState and Raw Story
Salena Zito / New York Post:
Why depression and suicide are rampant among American farmers
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
A War Trump Won
Discussion: Power Line