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8:45 PM ET, December 13, 2018

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Trump Inauguration Spending Under Criminal Investigation by Federal Prosecutors  —  Probe looking into whether committee misspent funds and top donors gave money in exchange for access to the administration  —  Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether President Trump's …
RELATED:
Tom Winter / NBC News:
Trump was in the room during hush money discussions, NBC News confirms  —  A source confirms to NBC News that the “other member of the campaign” present when Michael Cohen and David Pecker agreed to silence women was Donald Trump.  —  Donald Trump was the third person in the room in August 2015 …
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
7 quotes that show how blatant the Trump hush money coverup was  —  President Trump on Thursday tacitly admitted, for the first time, that he directed Michael Cohen to facilitate hush-money payments to two women who had alleged affairs with Trump, Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels.
Tommy Christopher / Mediaite:
Former Apprentice Staffer Claims Trump Was ‘Speed Freak,’ Invited Teen Beauty Queens to His Suite  —  A former staffer on The Apprentice and current stand-up comic named Noel Casler claims that Donald Trump was a “speed freak” who snorted crushed-up Adderall, and also says that Trump invited …
Caleb Ecarma / Mediaite:
Watch Napolitano Debunk All of Fox & Friends' Trump Defenses: ‘John Edwards Case Actually Hurts the President’  —  As the co-hosts of Fox & Friends rallied to defend their favorite president, as their colleague, senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano, continued to confront them with the implication …
NBC News:
Trump confides to friends he's concerned about impeachment  —  Despite public declarations that he's unconcerned, the president has told people close to him he's alarmed about the prospect of impeachment.  —  WASHINGTON — Despite President Donald Trump's public declaration that he isn't concerned …
CNN:
Trump inaugural committee under criminal investigation, source says
Discussion: Hullabaloo and Raw Story
Khorri Atkinson / Axios:
Trump uses Congress as excuse on alleged campaign finance violations
Discussion: ABC News and Mediaite
HuffPost:
Trump Considering Son-In-Law Jared Kushner For Next Chief Of Staff  —  The president is in the third round of his search for a job not many people seem to want.  —  WASHINGTON Having run through his first choices for his chief of staff vacancy without any luck, President Donald Trump is considering his own son-in-law for the job.
RELATED:
Christine Stapleton / Palm Beach Post:
BREAKING: Trump plans 16-day holiday visit to Mar-a-Lago  —  President Donald Trump is expected to spend 16 days at Mar-a-Lago over the Christmas and New Year's holidays, according to an alert issued by the Federal Aviation Administration this morning.  —  The alert warns pilots to avoid …
Howard Kurtz / Fox News:
Trump cancels White House Christmas party for the press  —  EXCLUSIVE - President Trump has canceled the White House holiday party for the media, making the decades-old tradition a victim of his increasingly contentious relationship with major news organizations.
Rebecca Morin / Politico:
David Bossie emerges as divisive chief of staff hopeful  —  Depending on who you ask, David Bossie, a controversial Republican operative excluded from the president's earliest batch of hires, is either a frontrunner or a nonstarter in President Donald Trump's chief of staff sweepstakes.
Grace Segers / CBS News:
Jared Kushner under consideration for White House chief of staff
Discussion: Joe.My.God. and Raw Story
Ginger Gibson / Reuters:
Pelosi says House Democrats will begin process to obtain Trump tax returns
Discussion: Daily Kos
Washington Post:
7-year-old migrant girl taken into Border Patrol custody dies of dehydration, exhaustion  —  A 7-year-old girl from Guatemala died of dehydration and shock after she was taken into Border Patrol custody last week for crossing into the United States illegally with her father and a large group …
Discussion: Raw Story
CNN:
Alleged Russian spy Maria Butina admits to engaging in conspiracy against US  —  Washington (CNN)Alleged Russian spy Maria Butina admitted in federal court Thursday morning to engaging in a conspiracy against the United States.  —  Butina, 30, was accused of working to infiltrate Republican …
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Russian Maria Butina pleads guilty in effort to forge Kremlin bond with U.S. conservatives
Discussion: Above the Law and The Mahablog
Matthew Rosenberg / New York Times:
Maria Butina Pleads Guilty to Role in a Russian Effort to Influence Conservatives
Discussion: The Atlantic and Daily Kos
New York Times:
Senate Votes to Limit War Powers in Yemen, Angered by Saudi Killing of Journalist  —  WASHINGTON — The Senate voted resoundingly on Thursday to withdraw American military assistance for Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen, issuing the latest in a series of stinging bipartisan rebukes of President Trump …
Discussion: The Atlantic, VICE News, CNN and The Hill
RELATED:
David Corn / Mother Jones:
Did Michael Flynn Try to Strike a Grand Bargain With Moscow as It Attacked the 2016 Election?  —  In early December, special counsel Robert Mueller, in preparation for the upcoming sentencing of Michael Flynn, submitted two memos outlining his recommended punishment for President Donald Trump's former national security adviser.
RELATED:
Stephen Robinson / Wonkette:
Totally Non-Evil ICE Arrests 170 Immigrants Trying To Save Babies From Baby Jails  —  It's the holiday season, and in between debating the merits of Love Actually and “Baby It's Cold Outside,” you've probably wondered what's going on with all those migrant children the Trump administration separated from their families.
Discussion: NBC News
Erin Banco / The Daily Beast:
Get Ready for Mueller's Phase Two: The Middle East Connection  —  The ‘Russia investigation’ is set to go global.  In court filings due to drop in 2019, prosecutors will unveil Middle Eastern countries' attempts to influence U.S. politics.  —  Over the past year, the indictments, convictions …
Kate Bennett / CNN:
Melania Trump's poll numbers plummet  —  Washington (CNN)Melania Trump's favorable rating has fallen by double-digits, according to a new CNN poll.  The first lady, whose favorability stood at 54% in October, has slipped to 43% in just two months.  —  Additionally, 36% of those polled found …
Discussion: AOL, Mediaite, Washington Times and Splinter
RELATED:
Matthew Choi / Politico:
Melania Trump's approval rating drops 11 points in CNN poll
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Nick Corasaniti / New York Times:
Democrats in New Jersey Have a Firm Grip on Power.  They Want Even More.  — A Democratic proposal would essentially write gerrymandering into the State Constitution and relegate Republicans to a permanent minority.  — The measure, which must be approved by voters …
J. K. Trotter / New York Times:
Chris Hayes's Work Diary: ‘My Life Is an Unceasing Festival of Impatience’  —  The journalist and MSNBC host wakes up to Twitter and ends the day “basically a brain-dead mess.”  —  As told to J. K. Trotter  —  Before he began hosting “All In,” which airs weeknights on MSNBC …
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Sarah McGregor / Bloomberg:
U.S. Budget Deficit Hits Widest on Record for Month of November  — Federal outlays double revenue collections, Treasury data show  — U.S. ran largest fiscal gap in six years in fiscal 2018  —  The U.S. posted the widest November budget deficit on record as spending doubled revenue.
Discussion: Mother Jones
Peter Aldhous / BuzzFeed News:
The Cities Where The Cops See No Hate  —  The victims were beaten or threatened with deadly weapons.  They were taunted with racist or anti-gay abuse.  Yet the police decided these weren't hate crimes.  —  The dispute ended in a severe beating on the street in Irving, Texas …
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
Sanders and Warren Meet and Agree: They Both Are Probably Running  —  WASHINGTON — Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders met Wednesday night at her condominium in Washington to discuss their political intentions but did not reach any accord about coordinating …
Sean Sullivan / Washington Post:
For Arizona governor, McSally's star dims as possible choice for Senate seat  —  Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has lost enthusiasm for appointing Rep. Martha McSally, a fellow Republican, to the Senate in recent weeks even as Republican leaders in Washington have championed her.
New York Times:
Behind CBS's Secret $9.5 Million Settlement With the Actress Eliza Dushku  —  In March 2017, Eliza Dushku, an actress known for her work on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” signed on to play a major role in three episodes of the CBS prime-time drama “Bull,” and there were plans to make her a full-time cast member.
Dan Morain / CALmatters:
Chief justice of the California Supreme Court leaves the Republican Party, citing Kavanaugh  —  California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye has quietly given up her Republican registration and re-registered as a no-party-preference voter, saying Thursday she had become increasingly uncomfortable …
Jacob Snow / ACLU:
Amazon's Disturbing Plan to Add Face Surveillance to Your Front Door  —  Recently, a patent application from Amazon became public that would pair face surveillance — like Rekognition, the product that the company is aggressively marketing to police and Immigration and Customs Enforcement …
Michael Van Sickler / Tampa Bay Times:
Ron DeSantis says Amendment 4 should be delayed until he signs bill from lawmakers  —  In an interview with the Palm Beach Post, Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis says the ballot measure that allows most ex-felons to vote (and that he opposed) shouldn't go into effect until state lawmakers approve an implementation bill that he signs.
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Palm Beach Post
Carl Hulse / New York Times:
It Took Quite a Push, but McConnell Finally Allows Criminal Justice Vote  —  WASHINGTON — I was wrong about Mitch McConnell.  —  I doubted he would ever put a criminal justice measure that divided Republicans and ran counter to his conservative political instincts on the floor for a vote.
Discussion: Hit & Run
Rob Picheta / CNN:
Foul-mouthed Santa horrifies parents  —  (CNN)Organizers of a Christmas event have apologized to outraged parents after a fire alarm reportedly prompted Santa Claus to burst out of his grotto, rip off his beard and scream at children to “get the f**k out.”  —  The incident occurred at an event …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Susan Cornwell / Reuters:
Congress passes bill to make members pay sexual misconduct claims
Discussion: HuffPost, Splinter and Daily Wire
USA Today:
Was your child's coach banned for sexual misconduct? Better check
Jack Crowe / National Review:
Florida Senate Rules Brenda Snipes Cannot Rescind Her Resignation
Valerie Strauss / Washington Post:
Anti-Semitic graffiti sprayed on and around American Federation of Teachers headquarters
Steven Hayward / Power Line:
Settled Science: There Really Are ‘Latte Liberals’
Ashe Schow / Daily Wire:
New York State Issues Ultimatum To Faith-Based Adoption Agency
 Earlier Items: 
RealClearInvestigations:
Ballot Fraud, American-Style ... and Its Bitter Harvests
David Nakamura / Washington Post:
House approves resolution calling persecution of Myanmar Muslims a ‘genocide,’ in contrast with Trump's silence
Discussion: Politico and KXLF-TV
Jessica Valenti / Medium:
The $400 Rape … A young woman in Texas found out this week precisely …
Mark Strassmann / CBS News:
“I blame myself”: Retirement remains out of reach for millions of Americans
Discussion: The Big Lead
Jonathan Chait:
Since there seems to be some interest in my position …
Discussion: Splinter
Bret Stephens / New York Times:
When Anti-Zionism Tunnels Under Your House