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12:35 PM ET, January 14, 2019

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
CNN:
Transcripts detail how FBI debated whether Trump was ‘following directions’ of Russia  —  (CNN)In the chaotic aftermath at the FBI following Director James Comey's firing, a half-dozen senior FBI officials huddled to set in motion the momentous move to open an investigation into President Donald Trump …
RELATED:
Eric Tucker / Associated Press:
Trump's AG nominee: ‘Vitally important’ Mueller finish work  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's nominee for attorney general will tell senators at his confirmation hearing “it is vitally important” that special counsel Robert Mueller be allowed to complete his Russia investigation …
CNBC:
Trump says ‘I never worked for Russia,’ calls claim ‘a whole big fat hoax’ after explosive report of FBI probe  — Trump's denial come on the heels of a report that the FBI in 2017 opened an investigation into whether he had fallen under the influence of the Kremlin.
Max Boot / Washington Post:
Here are 18 reasons Trump could be a Russian asset
Discussion: Raw Story, The Week and East Bay Times
Betsy Woodruff / The Daily Beast:
Kremlin Blessed Russia's NRA Operation, U.S. Intel Report Says  —  When Maria Butina and Alexander Torshin's brought NRA bigwigs to Moscow, it wasn't a rogue mission.  It was okayed from the very top, according to a report reviewed by The Beast.  —  Betsy Woodruff
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Scoop: Trump dressed down Mulvaney in front of congressional leaders  —  President Trump chastised his new chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, over his handling of shutdown talks, creating an awkward scene in front of congressional leaders of both parties, according to two sources who were present.
RELATED:
Rachael Bade / Politico:
Trump backs off national emergency with no end to shutdown in sight  —  President Donald Trump on Monday appeared to rule out — at least for now — declaring a national emergency to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, setting aside one of the White House's leading options for ending the 24-day partial government shutdown.
Kelly Yamanouchi / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Hartsfield-Jackson security lines more than an hour long amid federal shutdown  —  Security lines at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport stretched more than an hour long Monday morning, causing travelers to miss flights amid the partial federal shutdown.
Discussion: Politico
RELATED:
Philip Klein / Washington Examiner:
Democrat Rep. Rashida Tlaib photographed with pro-Hezbollah activist who says Israel has no right to exist  —  Freshman Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., was photographed with a Palestinian activist who praised the terrorist group Hezbollah, said Israel did not have the right to exist …
Michael Knowles / Fox News:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the voice of an ignorant generation  —  The majority of American Millennials identify as socialist, according to surveys by both Reason-Rupe and the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.  That's the bad news.  The good news is that just 32 percent of Millennials can define socialism.
Discussion: twitchy.com
RELATED:
Allyson Chiu / Washington Post:
'A 10 isn't enough': This UCLA gymnast's flawless floor routine just broke the Internet  —  As the first strains of Tina Turner's “Proud Mary” filled the Anaheim Arena on Saturday, Katelyn Ohashi came alive.  —  As she executed a quick body roll with a giant smile plastered across her face …
Courier-Journal:
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is going to Canada for surgery  —  Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, one of the fiercest political critics of socialized medicine, will travel to Canada later this month to get hernia surgery.  —  Paul, an ophthalmologist, said the operation is related to an injury in 2017 when his neighbor …
Discussion: Raw Story
Andrew Kaczynski / CNN:
Tulsi Gabbard once touted working for anti-gay group that backed conversion therapy  —  (CNN)Rep. Tulsi Gabbard in the early 2000s touted working for her father's anti-gay organization, which mobilized to pass a measure against same-sex marriage in Hawaii and promoted controversial conversion therapy.
New York Times:
Pentagon Officials Fear Bolton's Actions Increase Risk of Clash With Iran  —  WASHINGTON — Senior Pentagon officials are voicing deepening fears that President Trump's hawkish national security adviser, John R. Bolton, could precipitate a conflict with Iran at a time when Mr. Trump …
RELATED:
Washington Post:
‘They screwed this whole thing up’: Inside the attempt to derail Trump's erratic Syria withdrawal
Los Angeles Times:
LAUSD teachers go on strike for the first time in 30 years  —  Los Angeles teachers braved cold, drizzly weather Monday morning as they walked off the job in their first strike in 30 years to demand smaller class sizes, more support staff at schools and better pay.
RELATED:
CBS Los Angeles:
LA Teachers Go On Strike For First Time In 30 Years
Discussion: Splinter
Jessica Schneider / CNN:
Mueller should be allowed to finish report, AG nominee William Barr says  —  Washington (CNN)Attorney General nominee William Barr said that, if confirmed, he would let special counsel Robert Mueller finish his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and believes the results should be made public.
RELATED:
Washington Examiner:
Kamala Harris and Mazie Hirono deserve scorn for effort to establish an anti-Catholic religious test  —  Sen. Kamala Harris is running for president in a very crowded field.  Maybe the need to distinguish herself drove her to take the lead on anti-Catholicism.
Geoff Ziezulewicz / Navy Times:
Worse than you thought: inside the secret Fitzgerald probe the Navy doesn't want you to read  —  A scathing internal Navy probe into the 2017 collision that drowned seven sailors on the guided-missile destroyer Fitzgerald details a far longer list of problems plaguing the vessel …
Discussion: Task & Purpose
David French / The Atlantic:
The Unmanning of Conservatism  —  In Trump's view of masculinity, cheap shots replace bravery and hostility replaces honor.  —  Donald Trump wants everyone to know that he's a tough guy.  In 2017, the congressional candidate Greg Gianforte “body-slammed” the Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs …
John R. Kasich / USA Today:
Republican Party is mired in the 1950s and ignores today's America at its peril  —  Republicans need to break their own self-made mold of being naysayers instead of doers.  It means designing solutions that actually solve problems.  —  CONNECT  —  It's a new year and almost two decades …
Discussion: Political Wire
Mike Eckel / Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty:
World-Renowned Scientific University Quietly Untangles Itself From Russian Billionaire  —  Nine years ago, Russian tycoon Viktor Vekselberg was welcomed with open arms by U.S. companies, universities, and even the government.  —  Washington's relations with Moscow were being reset …
Adam Serwer / The Atlantic:
What's the Difference Between Steve King and Donald Trump?  —  The Republican Party is doing a little soul searching.  Last week, Representative Steve King of Iowa drew harsh rebukes from some members of his party for his defenses of white nationalism and white supremacy.
Discussion: Vox, Mediaite and IJR
Kristine Phillips / Washington Post:
Trump says ‘weak’ Biden came off the ‘trash heap’ as former vice president mulls 2020 bid  —  President Trump called former vice president Joe Biden a “weak” man when asked Saturday night about a growing list of Democrats seeking to topple him in 2020.  —  Trump — who prizes strength …
Discussion: New York Post
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
Democrats Want to Run on Issues in 2020.  But Does Beating Trump Matter Most?  —  WASHINGTON — Medicare for All.  A federal jobs guarantee.  The “Green New Deal.”  No Super PAC money.  No mass deportations.  —  And, of course, a candidate who can beat President Trump — right?
Discussion: Washington Post
Washington Post:
First snowstorm of 2019 packs a wallop: How much snow fell and how it happened  —  The long-duration storm dumped 6 to 12 inches, enough to set some records  —  This was not a heavy snowstorm of typical origin — not a nor'easter, which most often delivers the memorable snow events such as …
Monica Hesse / Washington Post:
How ‘traditional masculinity’ hurts the men who believe in it most  —  My grandfather is traditionally masculine in most senses of the word: He was a soldier, then a bait-shop owner, then a garbage collector; he rose before dawn most days of his life and I never heard him complain about it.
Discussion: The Federalist
Meagan Flynn / Washington Post:
Compelled to work without pay, federal employees sue Trump, accusing him of violating 13th Amendment  —  A group of federal employees working without pay during the partial government shutdown are likening the predicament to involuntary servitude in a lawsuit filed last week …
Jonathan V. Last / The Bulwark:
2020 Republican Primary Power Rankings  —  Get ready for the Trump primary!  —  Since 1964, nine sitting presidents have stood for re-election.  —  Five of them were challenged in the primaries.  —  If 2020 obeys the normal rules of political physics, President Trump will face a primary challenger.
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
What Happens When Elizabeth Warren Sells Out to Powerful Interests?  —  Last September, I wrote about Elizabeth Warren's smart platform, which has harnessed the most politically attractive elements of the populist agenda while avoiding the most politically vulnerable parts.
Discussion: Lawyers, Guns & Money
 
 
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 More Items: 
Emily Ekins / The Federalist:
Americans Used To Support A Border Wall. What Changed Their Minds?
Stephen Gutowski / Washington Free Beacon:
Va. Governor's Gun-Confiscation Proposal Could Affect Millions of Residents
Discussion: National Review and twitchy.com
Michael Tomasky / New York Times:
What's the Best Way to Dump Trump?
Martin Longman / Washington Monthly:
To Take Back the Map, Democrats Need a Plan to Revive Heartland Cities
Stephen Dinan / Washington Times:
Immigration loophole allows MS-13 gang members to go free
Gareth Johnson MP / BBC:
Theresa May urges MPs to back Brexit deal 'for country's sake'
Discussion: Breitbart
Mosaic Magazine:
Middle East Strategy? What Middle East Strategy?
Discussion: israpundit.org
Citizen Times:
Police: 51-year-old man assaulted child at Asheville Mall
Discussion: The Root and Raw Story
 Earlier Items: 
Fred Hiatt / Washington Post:
China has detained an old man and tormented his daughter. Trump thinks this is ‘honorable’?
Ariel Edwards-Levy / HuffPost:
Most Americans Hold Trump Responsible For Government Shutdown, New Polls Show
Discussion: CNN, Washington Post and The Root
Tara Palmeri / ABC News:
Interpreter from Trump-Putin summit may be forced into congressional spotlight
Discussion: The Atlantic, NPR and Shareblue Media
Annie Lowrey / The Atlantic:
The Truth About the Gig Economy
Wall Street Journal:
Shutdown Pinches Economic Growth
Discussion: Politico
New York Times:
Stung by Florida Midterm Losses, Democrats See a Swing State Drifting Away
Cara Lombardo / Wall Street Journal:
Hedge-Fund-Backed Media Group Prepares Bid for Gannett