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10:50 PM ET, July 31, 2018

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Erica Orden / CNN:
Exclusive: Mueller refers foreign agent inquiries to New York prosecutors  —  Trump assails Mueller ‘conflicts’ though evidence scant  —  (CNN)Special counsel Robert Mueller has referred a collection of cases to New York federal prosecutors concerning whether several high-profile American lobbyists …
Betsy Woodruff / The Daily Beast:
Accused Russian Spy Maria Butina Told American CEO: Send Cash to Moscow … Maria Butina, the accused Russian operative, didn't just allegedly cultivate the NRA on behalf of the Kremlin.  The 29-year-old Russian national also braced one of America's best-known businessmen …
Discussion: Raw Story
RELATED:
BuzzFeed News:
Russian “Agent” And A GOP Operator Left A Trail Of Cash, Documents Reveal  —  A $45,000 payment to an undisclosed law firm.  A cash withdrawal for $14,000.  Almost $90,000 sent to or from a Russian bank.  These and other bank transactions totaling nearly $300,000, none of which have been made public …
New York Times:
Facebook Has Identified Ongoing Political Influence Campaign  —  WASHINGTON — Facebook is preparing to announce that it has identified a coordinated political influence campaign, with dozens of inauthentic accounts and pages that are believed to be engaging in political activity ahead …
RELATED:
Facebook:
Removing Bad Actors on Facebook  —  Today we removed 32 Pages and accounts from Facebook and Instagram because they were involved in coordinated inauthentic behavior.  This kind of behavior is not allowed on Facebook because we don't want people or organizations creating networks of accounts …
NBC News:
Facebook's new foreign influence report excluded most divisive rhetoric  —  Facebook released only some of the pages and content publicly, declining to release the depth some pages went to stoke racial tension.  —  On Tuesday morning, the political and tech worlds were startled to learn …
Discussion: Associated Press
Benjamin Wittes / Lawfare:
The Justice Department Finds ‘No Responsive Records’ to Support a Trump Speech  —  President Donald Trump delivering an address to a joint session of the U.S. Congress on February 28, 2017 (Source: Wikimedia/Office of the Speaker)  —  “According to data provided by the Department of Justice …
Ryan J. Reilly / HuffPost:
At Paul Manafort Trial, Defense Puts The Blame On Mueller Witness Rick Gates  —  The first trial of Trump's former campaign chairman is now underway in Virginia.  —  ALEXANDRIA, Va. An attorney for former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort told jurors during opening arguments in his tax …
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Prosecutors say Manafort's wealth was fueled by lies to IRS and banks
Discussion: Just Security, The Root, CNBC and Daily Kos
CNN:
Prosecutors tell jury that Manafort owns a $15,000 ostrich jacket
Discussion: New Republic
Annie Karni / Politico:
‘Everyone talked with Woodward’: Trump White House braces for new book  —  Unlike previous administrations, this White House had no process for making officials available to the legendary reporter.  —  Bob Woodward, the legendary Washington Post journalist, was sitting on the couch …
RELATED:
Tony Romm / Washington Post:
President Trump intends to nominate an extreme-weather expert as his first science and tech director
Gabriel Sherman / Vanity Fair:
“Don McGahn Hates Rudy with Intensity of 1,000 Burning Suns”: Is Trump Ready to Cook Giuliani?  —  Inside the West Wing, Giuliani's recent wacko media appearances have attracted the wrong kind of notice.  “Trump thinks he's saying too much,” one Republican close to the White House told me.
Discussion: Raw Story and Mediaite
RELATED:
Rebecca Ballhaus / Wall Street Journal:
John Kelly Tells White House Staff Trump Asked Him To Stay in Post Through 2020
David French / National Review:
A Federal Judge Launches a Futile, Unconstitutional Effort to Block Blueprints for 3D-Printed Guns  —  If there's a hall of fame for futile, symbolic, and ultimately unconstitutional federal court orders, the temporary restraining order just issued in Seattle blocking Defense Distributed …
RELATED:
Michael Sykes / Axios:
Release of blueprints for 3D-printed guns halted by federal judge
Washington Post:   A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order to stop release of blueprints for 3-D printed plastic guns
Laura Litvan / Bloomberg:
Collins Sides With GOP Leaders in Kavanaugh Documents Fight  —  While Democrats are crying foul after Republican leaders angled to limit disclosures of documents related to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's past work, one of the GOP senators whose vote may be pivotal to his confirmation says she's just fine with it.
RELATED:
Jeffrey Toobin / New Yorker:   Should Democrats Bother Fighting Brett Kavanaugh's Confirmation? History Suggests Yes
Debbie Stabenow / Detroit News:   Kavanaugh the wrong choice for Michigan
Elizabeth Williamson / New York Times:
Alex Jones, Pursued Over Infowars Falsehoods, Faces a Legal Crossroads  —  AUSTIN, Tex. — In the five years since Noah Pozner was killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., death threats and online harassment have forced his parents, Veronique De La Rosa and Leonard Pozner, to relocate seven times.
Discussion: Raw Story, Vox and Mashable
Associated Press:
US says driving would be riskier if fuel standards tougher  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration says people would drive more and be exposed to increased risk if their cars get better gas mileage, an argument intended to justify freezing Obama-era toughening of fuel standards.
Discussion: Shareblue Media
Jeffry Bartash / MarketWatch:
Worker pay and benefits climbing at fastest pace in 10 years, ECI finds  —  The numbers: American workers are finally reaping the benefits of the lowest unemployment rate and best jobs market in decades: Wages and benefits are rising at the fastest pace in a decade.
RELATED:
Harriet Torry / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Workers Get Biggest Pay Increase in Nearly a Decade
Discussion: Mother Jones
Scott Bixby / The Daily Beast:
Watch: Top Trump Officials Refuse to Raise Hands to Defend Family Separation … Top Trump administration officials were asked in a Senate hearing on Tuesday to raise their hands if they thought that the “zero tolerance” immigration and family separation policies were good ideas.
Discussion: ABC News, Breitbart and Mediaite
Zoé Samudzi / Broadly:
What ‘Interracial’ Cuckold Porn Reveals About White Male Insecurity  —  The genre, in which a Black man has sex with a white man's wife, represents the ultimate threat to white manhood and racial purity.  And it's loaded with racist undertones that have real-world implications.
Murray Waas / NYR Daily:
Flynn, Comey, and Mueller: What Trump Knew and When He Knew It  —  Previously undisclosed evidence in the possession of Special Counsel Robert Mueller—including highly confidential White House records and testimony by some of President Trump's own top aides—provides some of the strongest evidence …
Bloomberg:
U.S. Considers Higher Tariffs on $200 Billion in Chinese Imports  — U.S. may now seek 25 percent tariffs on $200 billion in goods  — Officials seeking ways to re-engage after talks stalled  —  The Trump administration will propose raising to 25 percent its planned 10 percent tariffs …
KFI AM 640:
L.A. City Councilman Wants Ban on Electric Scooters  —  LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A Los Angeles city councilman introduced a motion today to ban the operation of electric scooters until the city drafts full regulations on their use.  —  The move by Councilman Paul Koretz comes as the City Council …
Emilie Raguso / Berkeleyside:
Berkeley zoning board says latest 2701 Shattuck proposal is ‘still excessive’  —  A proposal for a five-story, 57-unit building in South Berkeley has come back in its latest iteration after a failed attempt in 2013 to get city approval.  —  The project, at 2701 Shattuck Ave., at Derby Street …
Bloomberg:
Here's How America Uses Its Land  —  There are many statistical measures that show how productive the U.S. is.  Its economy is the largest in the world and grew at a rate of 4.1 percent last quarter, its fastest pace since 2014.  The unemployment rate is near the lowest mark in a half century.
Discussion: The Atlantic
Steven Perlberg / BuzzFeed News:
Kushner Family Newspaper Cuts Ties With A Writer Who Attacked Kremlin Foes  —  The Kushner family-owned New York Observer has cut ties with a writer who has, since 2014, authored dozens of pro-Kremlin articles for the website, the most recent a story in April offering Russia's spin …
Karen Tumulty / Washington Post:
Will Democrats lurch to the left?  Watch Michigan.  —  This state has long been known as an early indicator of emerging trends in politics — and for upending expectations.  —  In 2016, Michigan voters dealt Hillary Clinton two stunning upsets: first in the Democratic primary …
Discussion: twitchy.com and Vox
Tana Ganeva / Raw Story:
WATCH: Safeway calls cops on black mother for giving food to the homeless because they thought she was a shoplifter  —  Altruism can now be added to the list of benign activities black people apparently can't engage in without being treated like criminals.  —  Sunnyvale, California resident …
Discussion: CBS San Francisco and The Root
Miriam Jordan / New York Times:
A Migrant Boy Rejoins His Mother, but He's Not the Same  —  Parents reunited with young children are reporting mental health issues.  One 5-year-old boy has started a new life with his mother in Philadelphia, but signs of trauma remain.  —  PHILADELPHIA — Before they were separated …
Discussion: New Republic and Shareblue Media
Samantha Schmidt / Washington Post:
Trump administration must stop giving psychotropic drugs to migrant children without consent, judge rules  —  A federal judge on Monday found that U.S. government officials have been giving psychotropic medication to migrant children at a Texas facility without first seeking the consent …
Kelly Weill / The Daily Beast:
Charlottesville Hate Leader Jason Kessler Doxxes His Own Followers … The organizer of last year's deadly right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Virginia sued the city for the right to host a one-year anniversary event this August.  He lost his quest for a permit and dragged his alt-right allies' names into court documents process.
Ronald.Hansen / Arizona Republic:
Martha McSally and Kelli Ward clashed at The Arizona Republic.  Here's what we learned.  —  In the first and apparently only debate of the U.S. Senate Republican primary, U.S. Rep. Martha McSally and former state Sen. Kelli Ward sparred Monday over the future of border security, the national debt …
Sarah E. Needleman / Wall Street Journal:
Ready, Aim, Hire a ‘Fortnite’ Coach: Parents Enlist Videogame Tutors for Their Children  —  It's not the violence or the addiction of the hit game that bothers mom and dad—it's the losing  —  Ally Hicks fretted over her 10-year-old son playing the hugely popular shoot-em-up videogame “Fortnite.”
Discussion: The Big Lead
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar / The Guardian:
An open letter to the NFL's owners  —  To deny professional athletes the right to express dissent in a peaceful manner is a disgrace to the Constitution, the opposite of patriotism and shameful moral weakness  —  Dear NFL owners:  —  Whew!  What a tumultuous year for your league.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Bailey Stonecipher / Manhattan District …:
Tomorrow: D.A. Vance Ends Prosecution of Marijuana Possession and Smoking Cases
Discussion: RedState
Bridge Magazine:
Republican Supreme Court justices have ties to Michigan gerrymandering group
Thomas Erdbrink / New York Times:
Ordinary Iranians on Trump Talks Offer: ‘Why Not Try the Americans?’
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times:
New York Times Names Cliff Levy as Its New Metro Editor
Paul Farhi / Washington Post:
How chyrons took on a life of their own
Samuel Chamberlain / Fox News:
Trump rallies support for Scott, DeSantis in Florida midterm contests
Discussion: Fox News Insider
 Earlier Items: 
Melanie Sevcenko / The Guardian:
How legal cannabis actually made things worse for sick people in Oregon
Discussion: TheBlaze and Shakesville
Donald G. McNeil Jr / New York Times:
Maybe You Were Thinking About Eating Raw Centipedes. Don't.
Karl Baker / delawareonline:
Priest punched, doused in wine, beaten with bottle, police say
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Online NewsHour:
WATCH LIVE: ICE, Border Patrol testify at Senate hearing on family separations
Aris Folley / The Hill:
Ex-FBI chief of staff: Collusion is ‘absolutely a crime’
Discussion: IJR and Hullabaloo
Duncan Campbell / ComputerWeekly.com:
Briton ran pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign that helped Trump deny Russian links