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8:55 PM ET, January 22, 2019

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 Top Items: 
Azeen Ghorayshi / BuzzFeed News:
Trump's Lawyer Said There Were “No Plans” For Trump Tower Moscow.  Here They Are.  —  Trump's lawyer claims the Moscow tower was barely more than a notion.  “There were no drafts.  Nothing in the file.”  Documents obtained by BuzzFeed News tell a different story.
RELATED:
CNN:
Republicans: Cohen lawyer says key topics off-limits for congressional hearing  —  (CNN)Michael Cohen's congressional testimony next month will exclude any topic that's “under investigation,” Republicans say they were told by Cohen's lawyer, which could mean Cohen won't discuss lying to Congress …
Discussion: Observer and KTLA
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
The Covington Scissor  —  Welcome to another controversy algorithmically designed to tear America apart.  —  In a short story published last October, “Sort by Controversial,” Scott Alexander imagines a Silicon Valley company that accidentally comes up with an algorithm to generate what it calls a “Scissor.”
RELATED:
Washington Post:
A viral story spread.  The mainstream media rushed to keep up.  The Trump Internet pounced.  —  The online supporters of the president were ready for a moment like the Covington Catholic controversy.  —  The video, taken from an Instagram account and reposted to Twitter, went viral with the caption …
Molly Roberts / Washington Post:
Everyone is still wrong about the Covington kids  —  Your opinion on the Covington Catholic fracas depends on the angle you choose to see it from.  Literally.  —  A clash captured on video among a group of white MAGA-wearing schoolboys, a Native American activist and a handful …
Melissa Reinert / Cincinnati.com:
Nathan Phillips rejects Jeff Ruby's offer to ‘break bread’ with CovCath students  —  Nathan Phillips has turned down Cincinnati restaurateur Jeff Ruby's invitation to “break bread and make amends” with Covington Catholic High School students.  —  On Monday, Ruby offered to fly Phillips …
Andrew Egger / The Bulwark:
Is It Manly to Use a Bunch of Kids to ‘Own the Libs’?
Discussion: American Greatness, CNN and Vox
Jennifer Edwards Baker / WXIX-TV:
CovCath, Diocese release statement following school closure Tuesday
James Varney / Washington Times:   Vietnam Veteran status of Native American at center of viral encounter in D.C. in question
New York Times:
Senate Leaders Plan Competing Bills to End Shutdown  —  Senate Leaders Plan Competing Bills on Shutdown  — With dueling votes planned for Thursday, the Senate will finally move off the sidelines a month into the partial government shutdown.  — Both measures face long odds …
Nancy Cook / Politico:
Trump's liaison to Congress eyeing exit  —  Shahira Knight, the president's legislative affairs director and a central figure in the White House's shutdown negotiations with Congress, is planning to leave the White House in the coming months, according to four sources familiar with her plans.
RELATED:
Katherine Faulders / ABC News:
Trump preparing two State of the Union speeches for different audiences: Sources
Politico:
Ocasio-Cortez and liberal freshmen join Oversight Committee  —  The House Oversight Committee is adding a group of progressive flamethrowers to its ranks.  —  Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) …
Discussion: Splinter and Joe.My.God.
RELATED:
Media Matters for America:
MSNBC contributor Hugh Hewitt: Joe Biden has “transgendered into Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez”
Discussion: Mediaite
J. David Goodman / New York Times:
Ocasio-Cortez Builds a National Platform, but a District Office? Not Open Yet
Discussion: CNN
Sara Murray / CNN:
Mueller wants to know about 2016 Trump campaign's ties to NRA  —  Washington (CNN)Special counsel Robert Mueller's team has expressed interest in the Trump campaign's relationship with the National Rifle Association during the 2016 campaign.  —  “When I was interviewed by the special counsel's office …
Carol Morello / Washington Post:
Top diplomat for European affairs resigns from State Department  —  A. Wess Mitchell, the top diplomat in charge of European affairs, will resign from the State Department next month, creating a key vacancy at a time when European leaders are questioning President Trump's commitment to historic alliances.
RELATED:
Washington Post:   ‘Knock them in the teeth.’ How Trump turns crises into leverage.
Politico:
POLITICO Playbook PM: Unpaid, uncertain and unmoored: Inside the White House
Des Moines Register:
Divorce filing: U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst says her husband physically attacked her  —  Years before her divorce, U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst was assaulted by her husband after she confronted him about his alleged affair with their daughter's babysitter, she wrote in court filings.
Discussion: The Guardian, The Week and Politico
RELATED:
CNN:
Power struggle paralyzes ‘irrelevant’ White House press shop  —  Washington (CNN)White House press briefings, in steady decline even before the partial government shutdown, have now ground to a halt as a prolonged power struggle among President Donald Trump's aides leads to a muddled messaging strategy …
McClatchy Washington Bureau:
Campaign workers demand minimum wage, progressive culture from 2020 Dems  —  Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., left, accompanied by Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., right, speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2017, to unveil their Medicare for All legislation to reform health care.
Discussion: The American Mirror
RELATED:
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Trump's phony ‘compromise’ has now been unmasked as a total sham  —  President Trump and his allies have spent days talking up the idea that his new proposal to reopen the government constitutes a “compromise.”  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has vowed to bring the proposal …
RELATED:
Bloomberg:   McConnell to Allow Votes on Competing Bills to End Shutdown
Christopher Flavelle / Bloomberg:
Corporate America Is Getting Ready to Monetize Climate Change  — Storms, floods, drought and heat waves worry largest companies  — Merck, Apple, Home Depot also see new revenue opportunities  —  Bank of America Corp. worries flooded homeowners will default on their mortgages.
Discussion: Mashable
Washington Post:
Hundreds of IRS employees are skipping work.  That could delay tax refunds.  —  Hundreds of Internal Revenue Service employees have received permission to skip work during the partial government shutdown due to financial hardship, and union leaders said Tuesday they expected absences to surge …
Will Doran / The Charlotte Observer:
Judge denies Mark Harris request to certify his win despite election fraud investigation  —  The state's investigation into alleged election fraud by the Mark Harris campaign will continue, a judge ruled Tuesday morning.  —  Harris is the Republican candidate who appeared to narrowly win …
Charles Homans / New York Times:
Mitch McConnell Got Everything He Wanted.  But at What Cost?  —  The president whom the Senate Republican leader helped elect has turned out to be the one thing he can't control.  —  At sunrise, there it was: a red-tailed hawk, its gyre widening over the United States Capitol building …
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
Supreme Court Revives Ban on Transgender Military Service  —  WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Tuesday revived the Trump administration's policy of barring most transgender people from serving in the military.  In a brief, unsigned order, the justices lifted nationwide injunctions that had blocked the policy.
Lisa Lerer / New York Times:
On Politics With Lisa Lerer: The Kamala Harris Factor  —  Hi.  Welcome to On Politics, your guide to the day in national politics.  I'm Lisa Lerer, your host.  —  When people talk about the emerging 2020 Democratic primary field, it can sound an awful lot like the opening lines of a children's book.
Joe Concha / The Hill:
Fox News anchor Baier, family in car crash, released from hospital  —  Fox News anchor Bret Baier and his family were in a car accident while vacationing in Montana on Monday, which CBS late-night host Stephen Colbert described as serious.  —  “We just found out that he and his family …
Public Policy Polling:
Trump Polling At Only 41-42% Against Possible Democratic Foes  —  PPP's newest national poll finds that at the midway point of Donald Trump's term as President, he's a clear underdog for reelection.  —  Trump gets just 41 or 42% in head to head match ups against 7 likely Democratic candidates for President.
Discussion: Althouse
Juliegrace Brufke / The Hill:
House passes bill expressing support for NATO  —  The House passed bipartisan legislation on Tuesday expressing congressional support for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).  —  The bill, which passed in a 357-22 vote, includes a provision rejecting any efforts made by President Trump …
Discussion: Fox News Insider
Steve Staeger / KUSA-TV:
Denver Public Schools recruits workers affected by government shutdown as substitutes ahead of potential strike  —  Superintendent Susana Cordova said the district has been attending job fair-like events to recruit furloughed workers “looking to pick up some extra cash.”
Discussion: Splinter and Denver Westword
Kurzius / DCist:
Dan Snyder Buys $100 Million Yacht As D.C. Officials Work To Woo Back His Football Team  —  Dan Snyder, the owner of Washington's football team, has purchased a $100 million superyacht that its builders say will “redefine the boundaries of luxury yacht construction,” including a two-deck Imax theater and a helipad.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Rene Marsh / CNN:
Email: TSA makes plea for backup as shutdown drags on
Discussion: Axios and KTLA
Sue Halpern / New Yorker:
How Voting-Machine Lobbyists Undermine the Democratic Process
CNN:
State Department cancels border security conference due to shutdown over border security
Jackson Ryan / CNET:
Scientists teach a robot dog to get back up after they kick it down
Ellie French / VTDigger:
Welch bill would prohibit forcing federal employees to work without pay
Discussion: Washington Post
United States Courts:
Judiciary Has Funds to Operate Through Jan. 31
Discussion: Politico and Bloomberg
Olivia Nuzzi / New York Magazine:
How Trump Offered NASA Unlimited Funding to Go to Mars in His First Term
Discussion: Splinter and Joe.My.God.
New York Post:
El Chapo planned to flee authorities in his car while naked
 Earlier Items: 
Sherman Smith / Topeka Capital-Journal:
Kris Kobach used state funds to pay for court-ordered class
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Jaclyn Cashman / Boston Herald:
Three hard-left women is a recipe for Democratic disaster in 2020
Michael Graham / InsideSources:
Is “Vice” The Worst Best-Picture Nominee EVER?
Discussion: The Daily Beast
Bloomberg Law:
Death to Scabby: Trump Labor Counsel Wants Protest Icon Deflated
Discussion: Splinter
K.T. Nelson / VICE:
What I Learned Inside the Lonely, Sad World of QAnon Facebook Groups
Discussion: Raw Story
Dan Diamond / Politico:
Trump's health secretary refuses Democrats' request to testify on separated kids
Matthias Gafni / Mercury News:
“5 minutes of sheer terror”: Hackers infiltrate East Bay family's Nest surveillance camera …
Discussion: Gizmodo