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12:25 PM ET, May 10, 2018


 Top Items: 
The Michael Cohen avalanche
NBC News:
Prisoner release event highlights the best and worst of Trump  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump's tarmac greeting of the three American prisoners that North Korea released was a definite achievement for the White House ahead of the upcoming summit over North Korea's nuclear program.
Associated Press:
Trump gives freed Americans flag-waving, wee-hours welcome  —  JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md. (AP) — Staging a made-for-TV, still-of-the-night arrival ceremony, President Donald Trump welcomed home three Americans freed by North Korea and declared their release a sign of promise toward his goal of denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.
Discussion: IJR, Axios and New York Times
John Bolton / Washington Post:
The Iran deal was betrayed by its own abysmal record
Associated Press:   The Latest: Pence says 1 detainee 'hadn't seen daylight'
Charlie Mahtesian / Politico:
Why the Democrats Just Lost the Senate  —  While Nancy Pelosi is shopping for speaker's gavels, Chuck Schumer should be preparing for another term as minority leader.  —  For Democrats, the Don Blankenship dream is over.  The coal-mining baron and ex-con was a pleasant diversion …
Discussion: Instapundit
Rebecca Morin / Politico:
Grassley tries to nudge Supreme Court justices into early retirement  —  Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley on Thursday encouraged Supreme Court justices flirting with retirement to immediately step down, saying he would like to push through a nominee before the midterm elections.
Discussion: Axios and Political Wire
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Donald Trump Jr. plans big midterm role
NBC News:
Fans of Sean Hannity, Black Lives Matter among targets of Russian influence campaign  —  The ads highlight how Russia's efforts focused on divisive cultural issues  —  Russian propaganda efforts used ads on Facebook and Instagram to push divisive messages to fans of a variety …
USA Today:
Thousands of Facebook ads bought by Russians to fool U.S. voters released by Congress  —  SAN FRANCISCO — Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee released thousands of Russian Facebook ads on Thursday, offering the public its first in-depth look at the troubling messages used …
Discussion: Althouse
George F. Will / Washington Post:
Trump is no longer the worst person in government … Donald Trump, with his feral cunning, knew.  The oleaginous Mike Pence, with his talent for toadyism and appetite for obsequiousness, could, Trump knew, become America's most repulsive public figure.  And Pence, who has reached this pinnacle …
Washington Post:
Israel launches massive military strike against Iranian targets in Syria … MOUNT BENTAL, Golan Heights — The Israeli military said Thursday that it had bombed dozens of Iran-linked military facilities in Syria, as tensions between the three countries soared.
Laurent Lozano / Yahoo:
Israel in major raids on ‘Iran’ targets in Syria after rocket fire
Discussion: Daily Wire and The Daily Caller
Yonah Jeremy Bob / Jerusalem Post:
Liberman: We hit almost all Iranian infrastructure in Syria
Discussion: The Guardian and VICE News
Margaret Coker / New York Times:
Five Top ISIS Officials Captured in U.S.-Iraqi Sting  —  BAGHDAD — Five senior Islamic State officials have been captured, including a top aide to the group's leader, in a complex cross-border sting carried out by Iraqi and American intelligence, two Iraqi officials said Wednesday.
Discussion: Reuters, NBC News, IJR and Task & Purpose
Maher Chmaytelli / Reuters:   Exclusive: Iraq used Baghdadi aide's phone to capture Islamic State commanders
STATEMENT BY SASC CHAIRMAN JOHN McCAIN ON THE NOMINATION OF GINA HASPEL TO BE DIRECTOR OF THE CIA  —  Washington, D.C. ­- U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement today on the nomination of Gina Haspel to be Director of the CIA:
Eli Okun / Politico:   Dick Cheney: Restart enhanced interrogation programs
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Tom Cotton is filled with rage. Thank God he wasn't tapped as CIA director.
Alex Isenstadt / Politico:
Sheldon Adelson kicks in $30M to stop Democratic House takeover  —  Las Vegas casino mogul Sheldon Adelson has cut a $30 million check to the House GOP-aligned Congressional Leadership Fund, a massive cash infusion that top Republicans hope will alter the party's electoral outlook six months before Election Day.
Doug Donovan / Baltimore Sun:
Baltimore County Executive, Democratic candidate for governor Kevin Kamenetz dies  —  Kevin Kamenetz, Baltimore County Executive and Democratic candidate for governor died this morning of cardiac arrest.  —  Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz — a Democratic candidate for governor …
New York Times:
Giuliani Resigns From Law Firm Amid Tensions Over Comments About Trump  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump's personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, abruptly resigned from his law firm after weeks of tensions over his public comments.  —  Mr. Giuliani took a leave of absence last month from the firm …
Associated Press:
Pence says it's time for Mueller to wrap it up  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence says it's time for special counsel Robert Mueller to conclude his probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election.  —  He says: “In the interests of the country, I think it's time to wrap it up.”
Discussion: Political Wire
John Wagner / Washington Post:
Pence says it's time for special counsel to ‘wrap up’ Russia investigation
Emily Smith / Page Six:
Don Jr. moving on from Vanessa with Fox host Kimberly Guilfoyle  —  Amid his divorce from his wife of 12 years, Donald Trump Jr. has started dating stunning Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle.  —  Multiple sources exclusively tell Page Six that Don Jr. and Guilfoyle, a co-host of “The Five …
John McCain / Wall Street Journal:
‘Vladimir Putin Is an Evil Man’  —  In an excerpt from his new memoir, Sen. McCain discusses his longstanding opposition to the Russian strongman—and his own role in receiving ‘the Steele dossier’ about Donald Trump  —  I regularly attend an annual security conference in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Discussion: Raw Story
The Charlotte Observer:
GOP strategist says ‘fall may be brutal’ for party after North Carolina primary upset  —  Tuesday's surprising upset in the 9th District Republican primary sets the stage for not only one of North Carolina's most competitive congressional elections but one of the most closely watched in the country.
David M. Drucker / Washington Examiner:
Eric Greitens takes aim at Republicans, leaves liberal measures on midterm ballot  —  Embattled Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, a Republican, is declining to block from the November ballot three initiatives that could boost Democratic turnout in the midterm.  —  Greitens faces possible impeachment …
Peter Hamby / Vanity Fair:
“People Get Subpoenas, Shit Gets Real”: What John Edwards Should Teach the Media About Covering Trump  —  If you were in Las Vegas and could win $1 million by placing a simple prop bet on whether Trump enjoyed some pee play with Russian hookers in Moscow in 2013, would you bet yes or no?
Allison De Jong / ABC News:
Protestants decline, more have no religion in a sharply shifting religious landscape (POLL)  —  The nation's religious makeup has shifted dramatically in the past 15 years, with a sharp drop in the number of Americans who say they're members of a Protestant denomination …
Duane Patterson / The Hugh Hewitt Show:
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley on President Trump's Nominees  —  The audio:  —  05-10hhs-grassley  —  The transcript:  —  HH: I am so pleased to welcome United States Senator Charles Grassley.  He is chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  It's great to have you on, Senator, good morning.
Dan Rys / Billboard:
Spotify Removes R. Kelly Music From Its Playlists As Part of New Hate Content & Hateful Conduct Policy: Exclusive  —  Beginning today (May 10), Spotify users will no longer be able to find R. Kelly's music on any of the streaming service's editorial or algorithmic playlists.
Ben Shapiro / Weekly Standard:
How Conservatives Can Win Back Young Americans  —  There's a generational age gap, but it's not insurmountable.  —  Young Americans are moving to the left.  On virtually every issue, they support the Democratic party.  A Harvard University poll taken in December 2017 found …
Jerry Iannelli / Miami New Times:
Miami Police Union Says Head-Kicking Cop “Used Great Restraint,” Shouldn't Be Charged … Hours after Miami Police Officer Mario Figueroa was charged with misdemeanor assault today after film surfaced of the cop trying to kick a handcuffed man in the head, the city's police union released …
Jonathan Van Meter / Vogue:
Georgina Chapman on Life After Harvey Weinstein  —  “I have moments of rage.  I have moments of confusion.  I have moments of disbelief!” says Chapman.  —  Photographed by Annie Leibovitz, Vogue, June 2018  —  On the day in late February when I arrive at Georgina Chapman's town house …
Discussion: The Guardian, Jezebel, AOL, Glamour and IndieWire
Gwynne Hogan / WNYC News:
Schneiderman Can Use Campaign Cash in Ways Donors Never Imagined  —  Eric Schneiderman has amassed more than $8.5 million in campaign donations, according to his most recent filing with the state in January.  —  But New York State doesn't require him to return the funds, even though he's not running for re-election.
Gideon Resnick / The Daily Beast:
McCain Confirms He Gave Trump Dossier to Comey: ‘Duty Demanded I Do’ It … In his new book, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) confirms that he gave a controversial dossier about President Trump to former FBI chief James Comey.  —  “I agreed to receive a copy of what is now referred to as 'the dossier …
David Harsanyi / The Federalist:
The Obama Legacy Deserves To Be Destroyed  —  Smash the rickety legacy of executive abuse!  —  It's strange that a president who had such a transformative effect on our national discourse will leave such a negligible policy legacy.  But Barack Obama, whose imperial term changed …
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 More Items: 
Matthew Walther / The Week:
The humorless media has learned nothing
Discussion: Washington Post
Lindsay VanHulle / Bridge Magazine:
Racial accusations embroil Michigan Medicaid reform debate
Ashley Kirzinger / The Henry J. Kaiser Family …:
Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: Preview of the Role of Health Care in the 2018 Midterm Campaigns
Maya Kosoff / Vanity Fair:
“It's All Turned into One Big Mess”: Are Millennial Women Tuning Out the Russia Investigation?
Discussion: National Review
Thomas B. Edsall / New York Times:
Which Side Are You On?  —  Should taxes on households making $250,000 …
Eric Boehlert / Shareblue Media:
Louisiana GOP threatens to evict 20,000 nursing home residents
Discussion: KALB-TV and WWL-TV
Ezra Klein / Vox:
American democracy has faced worse threats than Donald Trump
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Post:
Massive passport fraud in Hungary allowed dozens of people to enter U.S. under false identities, officials say
This Cryptocurrency Billionaire Is Trying to Split California Into Three States