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12:15 AM ET, December 8, 2018


 Top Items: 
Exclusive: Mueller investigators questioned John Kelly in obstruction probe  —  Washington (CNN)White House chief of staff John Kelly was interviewed by special counsel Robert Mueller's team in recent months, three people with knowledge of the matter told CNN.
Garrett M. Graff / Wired:
The Mueller Investigation Nears the Worst Case Scenario  —  WE ARE DEEP into the worst case scenarios.  But as new sentencing memos for Trump associates Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen make all too clear, the only remaining question is how bad does the actual worst case scenario get?
Dana Bash / CNN:
Giuliani says Mueller has accused Manafort of lying about Trump  —  Washington (CNN)Special counsel Robert Mueller's team has made clear to Paul Manafort's attorneys that they believe the former Trump campaign chair is lying to them about President Donald Trump, according to the President's attorney Rudy Giuliani.
New York Times:
Is This the Beginning of the End for Trump?  —  Sentencing memos reveal damning evidence about collusion and campaign finance violations.  —  Mr. Berke is a lawyer specializing in white-collar criminal defense.  Mr. Bookbinder is a former federal corruption prosecutor.
Discussion: Townhall, Fox News Insider, NPR and CNBC
‘Totally Clears the President’?  What Those Cohen and Manafort Filings Really Say  —  President Trump responded to today's filings from federal prosecutors in the cases of Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort with a Twitter cry of triumph: … Don't spend a lot of time looking through …
Discussion: NPR, Raw Story, Boing Boing and KBZK
Washington Post:
New Mueller filing says Trump's ex-lawyer Michael Cohen was in touch with a Russian seeking ‘political synergy’ with campaign  —  BREAKING NEWS: The unidentified Russian said that a meeting between Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin could have a “phenomenal” impact …
Discussion: The Atlantic and Townhall
Washington Post:
Mueller says Manafort told ‘discernible lies,’ including about contacts with an employee alleged to have Russian intelligence ties  —  Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III said Friday that Paul Manafort, President Trump's former campaign chairman, told “multiple dis­cern­ible lies” …
Mikhaila Fogel / Lawfare:
Document: Special Counsel's Office Files Submission in Support of Breach Determination in Manafort Case  —  Today, the Special Counsel's Office filed a submission in support of its determination that Paul Manafort allegedly breached his plea agreement.  The filing is available here and below:
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
The Department of Justice Calls Donald Trump a Felon  —  Federal prosecutors released sentencing recommendations for two alleged criminals who worked closely with Donald Trump: his lawyer Michael Cohen, and campaign manager Paul Manafort.  They are filled with damning details.
Aidan McLaughlin / Mediaite:   Dershowitz Says Michael Cohen Sentencing Memo Sends Message: Don't Cooperate With Mueller
Timothy L. O'Brien / Bloomberg:
Mueller Weaves Trump, Manafort and Cohen Ever Closer
Discussion: CNN, Mediaite and New York Times
Adam Rawnsley / The Daily Beast:   Mueller: Manafort Lied About Contacts With Trump Officials
Kaitlan Collins / CNN:
White House chief of staff John Kelly expected to resign soon
NBC News:   Michael Cohen assisted Mueller's office with info about contacts between Trump aides and Russia
Philip Bump / Washington Post:   The government implicates Trump and the Trump campaign in federal campaign finance violations
Washington Post:   New Mueller filing says Trump's ex-lawyer Michael Cohen was in touch with a Russian seeking …
Prosecutors: Michael Cohen acted at Trump's direction when he broke the law
Discussion: Hit & Run and Washington Press
Ex-FBI Director James Comey exasperated after closed-door interview on Capitol Hill  —  (CNN)Former FBI Director James Comey, after facing aggressive questioning from members of Congress on Friday, expressed exasperation that he had been dragged to a private setting on Capitol Hill …
Associated Press:
House GOP unhappy with Comey's answers behind closed doors
Discussion: Shareblue Media
Olivia Beavers / The Hill:
Nadler: I'm ending investigation into FBI, DOJ when I become chairman
Discussion: Breitbart
Burgess Everett / Politico:
Trump leans on McConnell to vote on criminal justice reform  —  President Donald Trump pressured Senate Majority Leader Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Friday to pass criminal justice reform, hoping to push a reluctant McConnell to put it on the floor during a crowded lame duck session.
Christina Cauterucci / Slate:   I'm So Sorry to Report that Ted Cruz's New Beard Looks Great
Associated Press:   McConnell blocks sentencing bill, upsetting Grassley, GOP
Washington Post:
Self-professed neo-Nazi James A. Fields Jr. convicted of first-degree murder in car-ramming that killed one, injured dozens  —  CHARLOTTESVILLE — An avowed supporter of neo-Nazi beliefs who took part in the violent and chaotic white supremacist “Unite the Right” rally in this city last year …
Denise Lavoie / Associated Press:   Man who drove into crowd convicted of first-degree murder
Sergio Chapa / Houston Chronicle:
Rex Tillerson makes rare public appearance in Houston  —  Russia interfered with the 2016 U.S. elections, former Secretary of State and Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson said during a Thursday evening visit to Houston.  —  Making his first public appearance in nearly nine months …
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Rex Tillerson on Trump: ‘Undisciplined,’ 'doesn't like to read' and tries to do illegal things
Salvador Hernandez / BuzzFeed News:
Ammon Bundy Is Quitting The Militia Movement After Breaking With Trump On Anti-Immigrant Rhetoric  —  For more than six years Ammon Bundy and his family amassed hundreds of followers and supporters willing to pick up a gun at a moment's notice and rally to their side for a confrontation with the federal government.
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Eric Levitz / New York Magazine:
Ammon Bundy Quits Militia Movement in Solidarity With Migrant Caravan
Discussion: BuzzFeed News
Jack Crowe / National Review:
Academic Stabbed to Death for ‘Insulting Mohammed’ During Lecture  —  An Irish lecturer was stabbed to death by a student outside the Paris university where he taught on Wednesday for allegedly insulting the prophet Mohammed by displaying a drawing of him during class.
Daily Mail:
Arrested: Ali R. was arrested at the scene after stabbing Irish university lecturer John Dowling …
Libby Watson / Splinter:
Access Journalism Must Die  —  In the Atlantic today, Elaina Plott published what she described as a piece about “why it's so annoying when people sneer at so-called ‘access journalism.’” She went there, folks.  —  Plott's piece is a defense of access journalism by way of praising Richard Ben Cramer's book What it Takes.
Mairead McArdle / National Review:
Virginia Teacher Fired after Refusing to Call Trans Student by Preferred Pronoun  —  A Virginia high-school teacher was fired on Thursday after refusing to address a transgender student by the student's preferred pronoun.  —  The school board of the West Point Consolidated School District …
New York Times:
Mattis Erupts Over Niger Inquiry and Army Revisits Who Is to Blame  —  WASHINGTON — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was livid last month when he summoned top military officials to a video conference at the Pentagon to press them about an investigation into a 2017 ambush in Niger that killed four Americans on a Green Beret team.
Discussion: Task & Purpose
Peter Hamby / Vanity Fair:
“They're All Too Old”: Democrats Face a Generational Reckoning  —  The choice in the 2020 primary ultimately comes down to one thing: who is best prepared to beat Trump at a time when Trump owns the culture?  Someone who actually understands culture would be a start.
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 More Items: 
Megan McArdle / Washington Post:
The Weekly Standard may be teetering, but its anti-Trumpism is a model of standing firm on principle
Henry Grabar / Slate:
Minneapolis Confronts Its History of Housing Segregation
Miriam Jordan / New York Times:
2 More Immigrants Say They Worked for Trump Despite Lacking Legal Status
Discussion: Washington Post, and NPR
Wall Street Journal:
Uber Lays Groundwork for IPO
Wall Street Journal:
CIA Names First Woman to Lead Clandestine Operations
Matt Viser / Washington Post:
As her DNA test still reverberates, Sen. Elizabeth Warren's political operation shows fissures
Ryan Browne / CNN:
Trump to name new Joint Chiefs chairman, sources say
 Earlier Items: 
Alexnpress / Alex Press:
Case Study of 1  —  A red ticket-dispenser in the psychiatric …
Hugh Hewitt / Washington Post:
A week to push back against America's steady creep toward cruelty
McClatchy Washington Bureau:
Lynn Jenkins sets up lobbying business — but she's still a Kansas congresswoman
Wall Street Journal:
David Boies's Risky Next Act
Andrew Sullivan / New York Magazine:
America's New Religions
Isaac Stanley-Becker / Washington Post:
Heather Nauert cited D-Day as the height of U.S.-German relations. Now she's headed to the U.N.
TUI refunds holiday for ‘horrifying’ dead son tribute