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4:05 PM ET, February 21, 2018


 Top Items: 
Sophie Tatum / CNN:
NRA to participate in CNN town hall  —  Watch CNN's town hall “Stand Up: The Students of Stoneman Douglas Demand Action” live on Wednesday, February 21 at 9 p.m. ET on CNN TV and  —  Washington (CNN)The National Rifle Association will participate in CNN's nationally televised town hall Wednesday …
Rebecca Savransky / The Hill:
Texas school district threatens to suspend students who protest gun violence  —  A superintendent in a Texas school district is warning that students will be suspended if they cause any disruptions to protest gun violence.  —  Needville Independent School District (ISD) …
Discussion: RedState
Shelby Webb / Houston Chronicle:
Houston-area school district threatens to suspend students who protest after Florida shooting  —  Needville ISD Superintendent Curtis Rhodes on Tuesday threatened to suspend any student who disrupts schools or walks out to protest current gun laws.  —  In a letter sent to families and published …
Discussion: Mother Jones, TheBlaze and Daily Kos
Nicole Chavez / CNN:
School shooting survivor knocks down ‘crisis actor’ claim  —  (CNN)David Hogg has become a strong voice among survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High.  —  The attention has given him a powerful platform — but it has also made him the subject of smear campaigns and demonstrably false conspiracy theories.
Travis M. Andrews / Washington Post:
Florida House refuses to debate guns, declares porn dangerous … The Florida House of Representatives was in session on Tuesday considering several issues.  These included a motion to debate a bill banning the sale of assault weapons in the aftermath of the mass shooting that killed 17 people …
Nicholas Riccardi / Associated Press:
Colorado congressman booed as people demand action on guns
The #1 Trending Video on YouTube Right Now Suggests That a Student From the Parkland Shooting Is a Crisis Actor
Students are walking out in protest: Live updates
Matt Dixon / Politico:   Once a ‘proud NRA sellout,’ Putnam won't say if he'd use term again
Jerry Iannelli / Miami New Times:   Here Are the Eight Miami GOP Dirtbags Who Just Voted Down Assault Weapon Ban
Christina Wilkie / CNBC:
Trump's former bodyguard makes $15,000 a month from a GOP ‘slush fund’  — The Republican National Committee is paying a firm owned by Trump's former bodyguard $15,000 a month for consulting, according to its latest campaign filings.  — Within weeks of leaving the White House …
NBC News:
Mueller asking if Manafort promised banker White House job in return for loans  —  Federal investigators are probing whether former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort promised a Chicago banker a job in the Trump White House in return for $16 million in home loans, two people with direct knowledge of the matter told NBC News.
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
New charges filed in Manafort-Gates case  —  The notice of sealed charges comes after prosecutors accused the former Trump campaign chairman of bank fraud.  —  New charges have been filed in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's criminal case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort …
Tara Palmeri / ABC News:
Former Trump Adviser Sam Nunberg expected to meet with special counsel team
Discussion: Politico and Political Wire
Shannon Vavra / Axios:
Trump: “Why aren't Dem crimes under investigation?  Ask Jeff Sessions!”  —  Question: If all of the Russian meddling took place during the Obama Administration, right up to January 20th, why aren't they the subject of the investigation?  Why didn't Obama do something about the meddling?
Brad Reed / Raw Story:   Trump demands to know why ‘Jeff Session’ isn't investigating Obama for Russian meddling in crazed tweet
Washington Post:
Melania Trump's parents are legal permanent residents, raising questions about whether they relied on ‘chain migration’ … The parents of first lady Melania Trump have become legal permanent residents of the United States and are close to obtaining their citizenship, according to people familiar …
William Brennan / New York Magazine:
Worst Roommate Ever  —  “You've got your whole life in front of you.  You're pretty, you've got this house — well, you don't have this house anymore.  This house is my house.”  —  Alex Miller's spare room had been on Craigslist for two weeks when, last March, she got the call she'd been waiting for.
Sports Illustrated:
Exclusive: Inside the Corrosive Workplace Culture of the Dallas Mavericks  — More than a dozen current and ex-employees characterize the Mavs' hostile work environment—ranging from sexual harassment to domestic violence—as an “open secret.”  Sports Illustrated details the allegations in a special investigation.
Ronald.Hansen / Arizona Republic:
Flirtatious texts, topless photo roil Steve Montenegro's campaign; he blasts ‘false tabloid trash’  —  Five Republican candidates in the race for the 8th Congressional District seat give their thoughts on personal behavior, bipartisan efforts and congressional groups during the azcentral debate Jan. 24, 2018. azcentral
Arizona candidate got topless selfie from legislative staffer, messages reveal
Laurie Goodstein / New York Times:
Billy Graham, 99, Dies; Pastor Filled Stadiums and Counseled Presidents  —  The Rev. Billy Graham, a North Carolina farmer's son who preached to millions in stadium events he called crusades, becoming a pastor to presidents and the nation's best-known Christian evangelist for more than 60 years, died on Wednesday at his home.
Emily Sweeney /   Billy Graham once said the devil should be run out of Boston
Media Matters for America:
David Clarke on Parkland shooting survivor: “My dad would have backhanded me” for “popping off to an authority figure”  —  David Clarke attacked a survivor of the Parkland, FL, school shooting for speaking out about gun violence, saying “my dad would have backhanded me” for “popping off” …
New York Times:
Kushner Resists Losing Access as Kelly Tackles Security Clearance Issues  —  Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, is resisting giving up his access to highly classified information, prompting an internal struggle with John F. Kelly, the White House chief of staff …
Matt Novak / Gizmodo:
Conservative Twitter Users Lose Thousands of Followers, Mass Purge of Bots Suspected  —  Twitter suspended thousands of accounts overnight and conservatives on the platform aren't happy about it.  Twitter has yet to make a public statement about the issue, but right-wing users believe …
Ryan Goodman / Just Security:
The Pardon Boomerang: Why Trump Associates May Need to Decline Any Offer of a Pardon  —  With some conservatives urging the President to pardon Trump associates caught up in the Russia investigation, there's a reason that option may simply fail the president.
Discussion: Raw Story
Jaclyn Peiser / New York Times:
The Atlantic Plans a Hiring Spree  —  A media company is expanding its newsroom.  You read that right.  —  The Atlantic plans to add as many as 100 employees to its staff over the next 12 months, its president, Bob Cohn, told employees during a staff meeting on Wednesday.
CBS News:
Mass shooting plot at SoCal high school allegedly thwarted by alert security guard  —  WHITTIER, Calif. — Authorities say they've thwarted a student's plot for a mass shooting at a Southern California high school.  The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said Tuesday that a security guard …
Adam Serwer / The Atlantic:
The Tragedy of Erik Killmonger  —  The following article contains major spoilers.  —  Black Panther is a love letter to people of African descent all over the world.  Its actors, its costume design, its music, and countless other facets of the film are drawn from all over the continent and its diaspora …
Discussion: Washington Post and Daily Wire
Rob Tornoe /
‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek to moderate a Pa. gubernatorial debate  —  In 2012, longtime Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek admitted he would have loved to have been one of the questioners at a presidential debate between President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
Discussion: Fox News, CNN, The Daily Caller, NPR and Mediaite
Jeremy Barr / Hollywood Reporter:
Vox Media Laying Off Around 50 Staffers  —  The cuts, which mainly targeted social video teams, were announced by CEO Jim Bankoff on Wednesday morning.  —  In a memo to staff Wednesday morning, Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff announced plans to lay off around 50 employees, with the Racked, Curbed …
Brian Feldman / New York Magazine:
It's Time to End ‘Trending’  —  In the wake of last week's Parkland high school shooting, right-wing conspiracy theorists are pushing the ludicrous story that the teenage survivors speaking out against gun violence are “crisis actors” — dupes hired to pretend to be victims of tragedy.
Press Gazette Media:
Voters upset after discovering they were removed from voter rolls  —  GREEN BAY - Dozens of active Green Bay area voters went to cast their ballot in Tuesday's primary election only to find they had been removed from voter rolls.  —  Wisconsin Elections Commission spokesman Reid Magney attributed …
Discussion: Political Wire
The unwitting: The Trump supporters used by Russia  —  Rosenstein: Russians paid, recruited Americans  —  A Donald Trump supporter who unwittingly helped a Kremlin-linked operation to meddle in American politics says he only learned of his part in the Russian plot when the FBI showed up at his doorstep months later.
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 More Items: 
Jacob Sullum / New York Post:
Russia's trolls were barely background static in the 2016 campaign
Discussion: Hot Air and American Greatness
Transparency International e.V. / Transparency …:
Corruption Perceptions Index 2017
Discussion: Washington Post
Southern Poverty Law Center:
The Year in Hate: Trump buoyed white supremacists in 2017, sparking backlash among black nationalist groups
Discussion: Raw Story and VICE News
Amanda Hurley / WLTX-TV:
Bill Would Ban Saggy Pants in South Carolina
Discussion: theGrio and WCCO | CBS Minnesota
Morgan Chalfant / The Hill:
Judicial order in Flynn case prompts new round of scrutiny
Andrew Kirell / The Daily Beast:
Dinesh D'Souza Mocked Shooting Survivors. Why Is He Still on the ‘National Review’ Masthead?
Discussion: Mediaite
 Earlier Items: 
Brad Reed / Raw Story:
‘How gullible is he?’  CNN panel mocks Don Trump Jr's ‘brainpower’ after he falls for Parkland conspiracies
Nashville strip club advertises AR-15 on street corner
Discussion: Raw Story
Ron Nixon / New York Times:
Under Trump, Border Patrol Steps Up Searches Far From the Border
Discussion: Splinter
Charles Duhigg / New York Times:
The Case Against Google  —  Critics say the search giant …
Jonathan Bandler /
Fox News' Jeanine Pirro pleads guilty to 95 mph speeding ticket, down from 119 mph
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Trump privately talks up new age limit on guns