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8:50 PM ET, July 2, 2018


 Top Items: 
George Stephanopoulos / ABC News:
Michael Cohen says family and country, not President Trump, is his ‘first loyalty’  —  Michael Cohen — President Donald Trump's longtime personal attorney and a former executive vice president at the Trump Organization — has always insisted he would remain loyal to the president.
Chris Cillizza / CNN:
Donald Trump's dream casting for America's next SCOTUS justice: Amy Coney Barrett  —  (CNN)For Donald Trump, image is everything.  —  How you look is a major marker for how you will do in Trump's world.  You need to look the part for him to imagine you in the job.  Your personal story has to stand out in the crowd.
David French / National Review:
Progressives Deploy Religious Ignorance and Bigotry to Stop Amy Coney Barrett
Washington Post:
Trump interviews Supreme Court candidates as political fight over Kennedy replacement intensifies
Discussion:, The Hill and CBS Chicago
New York Times:
Conservatives, Don't Put Too Much Hope in the Next Justice
NBC News:
News media paid Melania Trump thousands for use of photos in ‘positive stories only’  —  The First Lady earned six figures from an agreement with Getty Images that paid royalties to the Trumps and mandated photos be used in positive coverage.  —  Since her husband took office Melania Trump …
Washington Post:
Pruitt aides reveal new details of his spending and management at EPA  —  Two of Scott Pruitt's top aides provided fresh details to congressional investigators in recent days about some of his most controversial spending and management decisions, including his push to find a six-figure job …
Discussion: Splinter
Danielle Ohl / Baltimore Sun:
Trump declines request to lower flags in memory of Capital Gazette shooting victims  —  Mourners gathered in Annapolis to honor the five employees who were killed Thursday in a shooting at the Capital Gazette newsroom.  Their names are Gerald Fischman, Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith and Wendi Winters.
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
In U.S., Record-Low 47% Extremely Proud to Be Americans  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — This Fourth of July marks a low point in U.S. patriotism.  For the first time in Gallup's 18-year history asking U.S. adults how proud they are to be Americans, fewer than a majority say they are “extremely proud.”
Osita Nwanevu / Slate:
Why Did the Rhode Island Democratic Party Endorse an Alt-Right Supporter Over a Progressive Incumbent?  —  Moira Jayne Walsh, a 27-year-old former waitress and labor organizer, captured a bit of national attention after she won a seat in the Rhode Island House in 2016.
Associated Press:
Russian charged with Trump's ex-campaign chief is key figure  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — During the special counsel's Russia investigation, Konstantin Kilimnik has been described as a fixer, translator or office manager to President Donald Trump's ex-campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
Discussion: Washington Press
Deborah Yetter / Courier-Journal:
Bevin cuts dental, vision benefits to nearly 500K Medicaid recipients  —  Gov. Matt Bevin's administration has abruptly cut Medicaid dental and vision benefits to nearly half a million Kentuckians, prompting an outcry from Democrats who called the Republican governor's decision “rash.”
Peter Sullivan / The Hill:
Ky. governor cancels Medicaid dental, vision benefits after losing work requirement ruling
Discussion: Washington Press and Daily Kos
New York Times:
Merkel, to Survive, Agrees to Border Camps for Migrants  —  BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel, who staked her legacy on welcoming hundreds of thousands of migrants into Germany, agreed on Monday to build border camps for asylum-seekers and to tighten the border with Austria in a political deal to save her government.
Wall Street Journal:
Germany's Angela Merkel, Coalition Partner Strike Deal on Immigration
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Daily Wire
Julie Hirschfeld Davis / New York Times:
In Pointed Letters, Trump Demands More Defense Spending From NATO Allies  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump has written sharply worded letters to the leaders of several NATO allies, including Germany, Belgium, Norway and Canada, taking them to task for spending too little on their own defense …
Douglas MacMillan / Wall Street Journal:
Tech's ‘Dirty Secret’: The App Developers Sifting Through Your Gmail  —  Software developers scan hundreds of millions of emails of users who sign up for email-based services  —  Google said a year ago it would stop its computers from scanning the inboxes of Gmail users for information …
Man allegedly threatens to chop up Rand Paul and his family with an ax  —  Matt Stone/Louisville Courier Journal  —  A man is accused of threatening to chop up U.S. Sen. Rand Paul and his family with an ax.  —  The man has been arrested.  He allegedly called in the threats to Paul's Bowling Green office.
Mara Siegler / Page Six:
Brian Ross is leaving ABC after botched Michael Flynn report  —  ABC News' Brian Ross — who was suspended last year as chief investigative correspondent for a faulty report on Michael Flynn — is leaving the network, Page Six has exclusively learned.  —  ABC suspended Ross last December …
Emma Loop / BuzzFeed:
The Senate Intel Committee Is In Regular Contact With The Trump-Russia Dossier Author  —  The committee's chair, Richard Burr of North Carolina, told BuzzFeed News that there are weekly contacts with Christopher Steele.  —  Reporting From Washington, DC  —  The head of the top congressional …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Daily Caller
Scott Johnson / Power Line:   The Brennan factor  —  I have followed the Trump-Russia collusion …
Alyssa Fisher / The Forward:
Alan Dershowitz ‘Shunned’ By Friends In Martha's Vineyard For Defending Trump  —  Lawyer Alan Dershowitz is afraid that America is growing increasingly intolerant toward opposing views.  His proof, according to his recent op-ed in The Hill: Friends are ostracizing him in Martha's Vineyard.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and The Week
New York Times:
In Denmark, Harsh New Laws for Immigrant ‘Ghettos’  —  COPENHAGEN — When Rokhaia Naassan gives birth in the coming days, she and her baby boy will enter a new category in the eyes of Danish law.  Because she lives in a low-income immigrant neighborhood described by the government as a …
Ginger Gibson / Reuters:
Exclusive: Largest U.S. business group attacks Trump on tariffs  —  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the nation's largest business group and customarily a close ally of President Donald Trump's Republican Party, is launching a campaign on Monday to oppose Trump's trade tariff policies.
Iran diplomat among four arrested over suspected plot against Iranian opposition meeting
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
Judge sets hearing in Flynn case  —  The hearing would be the former Trump national security adviser's first court appearance since pleading guilty more than seven months ago.  —  A pair of legal filings suggesting that special counsel Robert Mueller's office is almost-but-not-quite ready …
Discussion: Political Wire and Raw Story
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
Interviewer Asks Trump to Bring Country Together.  He Praises His Base.  —  In her interview with President Trump, Maria Bartiromo cited the polite protest of the Red Hen restaurant, along with the crass denunciations of a couple movie stars, to highlight the alleged incivility of Trump's opponents.
Martin E. Comas / Orlando Sentinel:
Lake deputy shoots gator with AR-15, freeing girl trapped in tree — ‘please hurry!’ mom pleads to 911 operator  —  A Florida alligator was shot and killed by a Lake County deputy with an AR15 Bushmaster rifle that had trapped a girl in a tree.  —  Privacy Policy
Washington Post:
Facebook's disclosures under scrutiny as federal agencies join probe of tech giant's role in sharing data with Cambridge Analytica  —  A federal investigation into Facebook's sharing of data with political consultancy Cambridge Analytica has broadened to focus on the actions and statements …
NBC News:
Trump White House sets turnover records, analysis shows  —  According to the most recent filing, 141 staffers who worked for the president at that point last year are gone.  —  WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has seen staff turnover in excess of 37 percent over the calendar year ending June 30 …
Discussion: Axios, Splinter and ABC News
Paul Bedard / Washington Examiner:
Eric Trump rushes into NYC traffic to save ailing woman  —  An ordinary morning in New York City last week for President Trump's son Eric Trump abruptly turned frantic when he rushed to the aid of a woman who passed out near a train station, dodging rush-hour traffic to chase down a passing ambulance.
Kavitha Surana / ProPublica:
“I Just Want to Tell My Son I Love Him”  —  LOS FRESNOS, Texas — Calling from an unreliable phone at the Port Isabel Detention Center, her voice sounds muffled, and far away.  To be understood, she needs to keep repeating herself.  For her to hear the person calling, they need to yell.
Discussion: Los Angeles Times and VICE News
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
Judge's order could undercut Trump's immigrant detention plan  —  An order a federal judge issued Monday requiring individualized decisions on whether some asylum-seekers can be released into the U.S. poses a new legal threat to President Donald Trump's effort to crack down on migrants crossing the border from Mexico.
Charles M. Blow / New York Times:
Trump's Rage Junkies  —  It is truly a confounding time to be alive, to be an American.  —  We are watching as a president of the United States openly lies, fabricates and exaggerates while two-fifths of the population cheers him for it.  —  He spurns our allies and embraces our adversaries and people shrug.
Discussion: The Mahablog and
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 More Items: 
Jonah Goldberg / National Review:
Another Lazy ‘Never Trump’ Screed
Mark Joseph Stern / Slate:
The Sad Delusion of Anthony Kennedy Conspiracy Theories
Discussion: Salon, National Review and POLITICUSUSA
British Vogue:
Oprah Winfrey Covers August Vogue
Discussion: AOL, Daily Wire and The Daily Caller
Petula Dvorak / Washington Post:
‘Tormented and traumatized’: Rage toward women fuels mass shooters
Strzok's lawyer slams House panel, accusing GOP of twisting his testimony
Ian Shapira / Washington Post:
He once defended the poor in court. Now he defends white supremacists.
 Earlier Items: 
The top Democratic Senate recruit who's ditching Chuck Schumer
Annie Gowen / Washington Post:
As mob lynchings fueled by WhatsApp messages sweep India, authorities struggle to combat fake news
William Finnegan / New Yorker:
Can Andy Byford Save the Subways?
Nina Shapiro / The Seattle Times:
Under pressure, afraid to take bathroom breaks? Inside Amazon's fast-paced warehouse world
Melissa Korn / Wall Street Journal:
You Graduated Cum Laude? So Did Everyone Else
A Morgan Stanley Star Wants You to Back His Political Movement