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3:50 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 …
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Trump's and Pompeo's weird non-denials about Trump working for Russia  —  Pompeo's may actually be more telling — especially now that Trump has denied it … It's been about 60 hours since it was first reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation launched an inquiry into whether President Trump was working for Russia.
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 …
Ruby Cramer / BuzzFeed News:
Bernie Sanders Will Meet With Former Female Staffers About 2016 Campaign Sexism And Harassment  —  Bernie Sanders will meet on Wednesday with women who have said they experienced sexual harassment and gender discrimination while working on his 2016 presidential campaign …
RELATED:
Holly Otterbein / Politico:
Bernie Sanders staffs up for 2020  —  Bernie Sanders is adding firepower to his political team ahead of a potential 2020 campaign, locking down digital alumni who were key to his surprise performance in 2016 and recruiting the media production company that helped launch Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to prominence.
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is freaking out the news media. And it's working for her.
Michael Knowles / Fox News:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the voice of an ignorant generation
Discussion: twitchy.com
Victor Davis Hanson / American Greatness:
The Game of Pseudo-Authenticity  —  Americans always have been prone …
Brian Schwartz / CNBC:
GOP's John Kasich is looking to join CNN or MSNBC amid speculation he could run for president in 2020  — Republican John Kasich, who is thinking about running for president in 2020, is likely to announce this week that he will join a major cable news network.
RELATED:
Joe Concha / The Hill:   Kasich expected to join CNN or MSNBC as early as this week: report
John R. Kasich / USA Today:   Republican Party is mired in the 1950s and ignores today's America at its peril
Michael Burke / The Hill:
Rasmussen poll shows Trump with lowest approval in a year  —  A conservative-leaning poll released Monday showed President Trump with his lowest approval ratings in almost a year.  —  The Rasmussen poll found that 43 percent of likely voters polled approve of Trump's job performance …
RELATED:
Zoe Tillman / BuzzFeed News:
Trump's DC Circuit Nominee — And Reported Supreme Court Contender — Wrote Inflammatory Op-Eds In College  —  WASHINGTON — Neomi Rao — President Donald Trump's pick for a powerful federal judgeship and a reported US Supreme Court contender — wrote a string of op-eds in college …
Senior Trump Official / The Daily Caller:
I'm A Senior Trump Official, And I Hope A Long Shutdown Smokes Out The Resistance  —  The Daily Caller is taking the rare step of publishing this anonymous op-ed at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose career would be jeopardized by its disclosure.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Daily Wire
Congressman Bobby Rush:
Rush Responds to Steve King's Rabid Racism with Censure Resolution  —  WASHINGTON — Today, U.S. Representative Bobby L. Rush (D-Ill.) released the following statement announcing that he will be introducing a resolution to formally censure U.S. Representative Steve King (R-Iowa) for his pattern of racist and xenophobic statements:
Discussion: Axios and IJR
Nika Shakhnazarova / The Sun:
SPIDERS OF MARS Skin-crawling moment hundreds of spiders ‘rain’ from the sky in Brazil leaving terrified residents running for cover  —  The 14-year-old who filmed the incredible moment said it left him ‘stunned and scared’ as the arachnids floated in the air
Discussion: Mashable
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 …
Bloomberg:
The Next American Car Recession Has Already Started  —  These should be boom times for Detroit.  Unemployment is at a half-century low, gasoline is cheap and auto sales in the U.S. were near record levels last year.  Yet American automakers are closing factories, cutting shifts and laying off thousands of workers.
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
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 …
Discussion: USA Today, abc7ny.com, Boing Boing and KTLA
Alexandra Bruell / Wall Street Journal:
P&G Challenges Men to Shave Their ‘Toxic Masculinity’ in Gillette Ad  —  Spot pegged to #MeToo asks ‘Is this the best a man can get?’  —  Gillette is embracing the #MeToo movement in a new digital ad campaign aimed at men, the latest message from an advertiser attempting to change societal norms.
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: USA Today and Politico
RELATED:
Hayley Miller / HuffPost:
Raj Shah Out As White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary  —  He joins the growing list of Trump administration officials to exit in recent months.  —  Raj Shah has left his role as White House principal deputy press secretary, becoming the latest of several Trump administration officials to depart in recent months.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Raw Story
Washington Post:
Bipartisan Senate group forming in search of shutdown deal amid impasse between Trump, party leaders  —  A bipartisan group of rank-and-file senators are planning to hold discussions on how to end the weeks-long government shutdown, with talks between congressional leaders and the White House at a standstill.
Discussion: Political Wire
Jim Rutenberg / New York Times:
No Coincidence Here: Trump's Bezos Attack Was a Valentine to The Enquirer  —  Even by the tweeting habits of the 45th president of the United States, it was a puzzler.  —  Until you examined it.  Then it started to make sense.  —  A Twitter post on Sunday night showed Mr. Trump …
Discussion: Mediaite, Joe.My.God. and Raw Story
NBC News:
Two killed, 40 detained in new gay purge in Chechnya  —  The new allegations come after reports in 2017 of more than 100 gay men arrested and subjected to torture, and some of them killed, in the Russian region.  —  The Russian republic of Chechnya has launched a new crackdown on gays …
Noah Rothman / NBC News:
Trump's shutdown gamble now hinges on a wall many Republicans were never truly sold on  —  For two years, the GOP had many opportunities to fund Trump's wall both in part or in whole and it declined on every occasion.  —  On Friday, January 11, a dubious milestone was reached.
Judith Kohler / Denver Post:
Big win for oil and gas industry: Colorado Supreme Court reverses Appeals Court ruling in Martinez case  —  Ruling says state regulators correct to balance development with public health, environmental impacts … In a big win for the oil and gas industry, the Colorado Supreme Court …
Jamie O'Grady / The Cauldron:
So, What Really Happened To The Cauldron?  —  Thinking about launching your own media startup?  You might want to consider my crazy story first.  —  Jamie O'GradyBlockedUnblockFollowFollowing  —  The call came in late winter of 2013 from a New York City number I didn't recognize.
New York Times:
It's Time for T.S.A. Workers to Strike  —  The shutdown is painful, but it is also an opportunity for labor to take a stand.  —  Ms. Ehrenreich is the author of “Nickel and Dimed” and the founder of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project.  Mr. Stevenson is a former labor organizer.
Colby Itkowitz / Washington Post:
Democrats' desire to subpoena interpreters in Trump, Putin meetings raises ethical questions  —  A bombshell Washington Post report that revealed over the weekend that President Trump had seized interpreter notes from a private meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin reignited Democrats' desire …
Discussion: CNN, ABC News, The Atlantic, NB Blog and IJR
Rachael Bade / Politico:
White House mulls wooing moderate Dems to end shutdown  —  White House officials, increasingly desperate to find a path out of a shutdown war they're seen as losing, are considering a last-ditch effort to woo moderate Democrats with a border security deal reopening the government, according to people familiar with the plans.
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 …
Sarah Kliff / Vox:
You can now look up charges at your local hospital.  Good luck understanding them.  —  What “2-D ECHO TTE COMP NO CONTRST” tells you about modern health care.  —  The Trump administration rang in 2019 by enacting a seemingly great health care policy: requiring all hospitals to list the price …
Discussion: Mother Jones and New York Times
Brianna Gurciullo / Politico:
Eager drone industry gets new regs, despite shutdown  —  Though large swaths of the Transportation Department are shuttered, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao today still rolled out a new proposed rule, much anticipated by industry, that would make it easier to fly a drone over crowds of people and at night.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Richard L. Hasen / Slate:
The House Democrats' Colossal Election Reform Bill Could Save American Democracy
Ryan McCrimmon / Politico:
Shutdown tests farmers' loyalty as Trump visits their annual convention
Discussion: ABC News
Jon Ralston / The Nevada Independent:
Harry Reid unplugged — Part II
Adam Kredo / Washington Free Beacon:
Pompeo: Trump Admin Will Help Iranian People Take ‘Control of Their Capital’
Eva Dou / Wall Street Journal:
Chinese Court Sentences Canadian National to Death for Drug Crimes in Retrial
Rick Noack / Washington Post:
U.S. ambassador in Berlin warns Germans about Russian gas pipeline, triggering applause elsewhere
Discussion: Bloomberg
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
 Earlier Items: 
Adam Serwer / The Atlantic:
What's the Difference Between Steve King and Donald Trump?
Discussion: CNN, Washington Post, NPR and Vox
Mike Eckel / Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty:
World-Renowned Scientific University Quietly Untangles Itself From Russian Billionaire
Washington Examiner:
Kamala Harris and Mazie Hirono deserve scorn for effort to establish an anti-Catholic religious test
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
Political Memo: Democrats Want to Run on Issues in 2020. But Does Beating Trump Matter Most?
Discussion: Political Wire and Washington Post
Geoff Ziezulewicz / Navy Times:
Worse than you thought: inside the secret Fitzgerald probe the Navy doesn't want you to read
Discussion: Task & Purpose
Meagan Flynn / Washington Post:
Compelled to work without pay, federal employees sue Trump, accusing him of violating 13th Amendment
Discussion: TheStreet
Washington Post:
First snowstorm of 2019 packs a wallop: How much snow fell and how it happened