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10:20 AM ET, February 11, 2019

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 Top Items: 
Lachlan Markay / The Daily Beast:
Mistress' Brother Leaked Bezos' Racy Texts to Enquirer, Sources Say  —  Multiples sources tell The Daily Beast that Michael Sanchez, a Trumpworld associate and brother to Bezos' lover, gave the couple's texts to The National Enquirer.  —  The brother of Jeff Bezos' mistress, Lauren Sanchez …
RELATED:
Eleanor Clift / The Daily Beast:
Steve Schmidt Storms Off Own Podcast When Asked About Advising Howard Schultz  —  “This is bullsh*t,” Schmidt exclaims.  “I'm not doing this.”  —  Anti-Trump strategist and pundit Steve Schmidt is feeling the heat from all sides since his client, Starbucks founder Howard Schultz …
Politico:
POLITICO Playbook: Beds and barriers at issue, as Washington barrels toward another shutdown  —  DRIVING THE DAY  —  OK, WELL WE'RE NOW IN A SHUTDOWN WEEK.  Negotiations between Republicans and Democrats have broken down, and they are on the brink of being beyond repair.
Washington Post:
Jewish House Democrats urge Pelosi to denounce Ilhan Omar for ‘hateful tropes’ in tweets  —  Two Jewish House Democrats, alarmed by what they view as anti-Semitic comments from new Muslim colleagues, are urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her top lieutenants to denounce the divisive rhetoric and take action to stop it.
RELATED:
Ron Kampeas / Haaretz:
Kevin McCarthy Promises ‘Action’ Against Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib
New Yorker:
Private Mossad for Hire  —  Inside a plot to influence American elections, starting with one small-town race.  —  One evening in 2016, a twenty-five-year-old community-college student named Alex Gutiérrez was waiting tables at La Piazza Ristorante Italiano, an upscale restaurant in Tulare, in California's San Joaquin Valley.
Discussion: emptywheel
Jeffrey Toobin / New Yorker:
Roger Stone's and Jerome Corsi's Time in the Barrel  —  Why the mismatched operatives matter to Trump—and to the Mueller investigation.  —  Roger Stone's house, in Fort Lauderdale, is situated between a quiet street and one of the city's canals, which are the only feature Fort Lauderdale shares with its Italian sister city, Venice.
David Leonhardt / New York Times:
Trump's Nightmare Opponents  —  Amy Klobuchar, Sherrod Brown and how to be a middle-class fighter.  —  A few weeks ago, the pollsters at Monmouth University asked Democrats across the country to choose between two different kinds of nominees.  One was a candidate whom the voter agreed …
RELATED:
Paul Mirengoff / Power Line:   Don't sleep on “Spartacus”  —  In every presidential election cycle …
Alexander Burns / New York Times:   Democrats' 2020 Choice: Do They Want a Fighter or a Healer?
Erick Erickson / The Resurgent:
I'll Be Voting for President Trump and Vice President Pence in 2020  —  This week in 2016, I declared I would be “Never Trump.”  A friend suggested I use a hashtag that had started circulating on Twitter, i.e #NeverTrump.  The piece exploded and pushed me into a whirlwind of coverage.
Alex Roarty / McClatchy Washington Bureau:
‘Weaker candidate than Hillary’: Democrats cast deep doubt on Biden's 2020 value  —  Joe Biden is everything a Democratic political consultant should love: He's experienced, well-liked, and his poll numbers look great against Donald Trump.  —  And yet many party strategists have a bleak assessment …
Brian Murphy / Raleigh News & Observer:
Walter Jones, who worked to atone for his Iraq war vote, is dead at 76  —  Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr., an Eastern North Carolina congressman who made it his mission to atone for his vote sending U.S. troops into Iraq in the early 2000s, died Sunday on his 76th birthday.
RELATED:
Felicia Sonmez / Washington Post:
Walter Jones, ‘freedom fries’ congressman who became Iraq War critic, dies at 76
Discussion: Hullabaloo, The Guardian and Politico
Washington Post:
Devastated by one shutdown, dreading the next  —  FRESNO, Calif. — The federal government had finally called her back to work after 35 days, but now Vicki Ibarra wondered how she could afford to get there.  Her used sedan had been repossessed by the bank a few days earlier.
Maeve Reston / CNN:
Harris takes on questions about her ‘blackness’  —  (CNN)Sen. Kamala Harris directly confronted critics Monday who have questioned her black heritage, her record incarcerating minorities as a prosecutor and her decision to marry a white man.  —  In an interview with The Breakfast Club hosts DJ Envy …
RELATED:
Kate Zernike / New York Times:
‘Progressive Prosecutor’: Can Kamala Harris Square the Circle?
Discussion: The Root and Althouse
New York Times:
In Closed Hearing, a Clue About ‘the Heart’ of Mueller's Russia Inquiry  —  WASHINGTON — Of the few hints to emerge from the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, about evidence of possible collusion between President Trump's campaign and Russia, one of the most tantalizing surfaced almost …
Discussion: The Week
RELATED:
John Solomon / The Hill:   The case for Russia collusion ... against the Democrats
Alexei Koseff / San Francisco Chronicle:
Newsom pulling National Guard troops from border to fight ‘real threats’  —  SACRAMENTO — Gov. Gavin Newsom will withdraw most of the California National Guard troops who were deployed to the U.S.-Mexico border last year, saying the state needs them to prepare for wildfires …
RELATED:
Jose A. Del Real / New York Times:
California Is Expected to Pull National Guard Troops Out of Border Duty
Anna Brown / Pew Research Center:
About a third of Americans say blackface in a Halloween costume is acceptable at least sometimes  —  A slight majority of Americans (53%) think it is generally unacceptable for a white person to use makeup to darken their skin to appear to be a different race as part of a Halloween costume …
Discussion: Political Wire, Politico and fox8.com
Marianne LeVine / Politico:
Republicans gush over Klobuchar  —  Amy Klobuchar has an unusual constituency behind her as she launches her run for president: Senate Republicans.  —  In a Democratic caucus filled with presidential hopefuls taking a hard line against Donald Trump's presidency, the Minnesota senator's brand of pragmatic politics stands out.
Discussion: FITSNews and HuffPost
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Russia to disconnect from the internet as part of a planned test  —  Russia's internet contingency plan gets closer to reality.  —  Russian authorities and major internet providers are planning to disconnect the country from the internet as part of a planned experiment, Russian news agency RosBiznesKonsalting (RBK) reported last week.
Trey Yingst / Fox News:
Trump administration's Middle East peace plan finished, officials say  —  JERUSALEM - The Trump administration's Middle East peace plan is finished and President Trump has been briefed on its contents, two senior administration officials told Fox News on Sunday.
Lisa De Pasquale / The Federalist:
Why The Anti-Men 'Galentine's Day' Is Nothing To Celebrate  —  I'm just as materialistic and greedy for gifts as the next gal, but why has this sitcom-created faux holiday morphed into an anti-men celebration?  —  Festivus isn't the only holiday that has transitioned from sitcom punch line to real-life marketing opportunity.
Wall Street Journal:
Trump Heads to Border for First Rally of Year  —  President Trump will return in earnest to campaign posture, holding his first rally of the year in the shadow of the Mexican border and in the hometown of a potential rival, former Democratic Rep. Beto O'Rourke.
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Scoop: More Trump schedules leaked as enraged officials launch internal hunt  —  Our lead item in Axios Sneak Peek last week — a leak of three months of Trump's private schedules — enraged White House officials.  —  The president's secretary Madeleine Westerhout tweeted that the leak was “a disgraceful breach of trust.”
David Edwards / Raw Story:
Fox & Friends host says he hasn't washed hands in 10 years: 'Germs are not a real thing — I can't see them'  —  Don't miss stories.  Follow Raw Story!  —  Fox News host Pete Hegseth explained on Sunday that he doesn't wash his hands because “germs are not a real thing.”
Discussion: Splinter
Ben Soskin / U.S. Congresswoman Lucille Roybal Allard:
Rep. Roybal-Allard Statement on ICE Detention Beds  —  f t # e  —  Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40) the chair of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee and a member of the House-Senate Conference Committee on Homeland Security, issued the following statement regarding …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Julie Kelly / American Greatness:
The Indecent Inquisitors
Thomas Erdbrink / New York Times:
The Iran Revolution at 40: From Theocracy to ‘Normality’
Victor Davis Hanson / American Greatness:
Progressives Bearing Gifts
David M. Drucker / Washington Examiner:
Disorganized Virginia Republicans scramble to capitalize on Democratic scandals
Ted Hesson / Politico:
The Border Patrol's recruiting crisis
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Lissandra Villa / BuzzFeed News:
Rep. Seth Moulton Is Thinking About Running For President
Discussion: The Hill and Talking Points Memo
Kark-Tv / WATE-TV:
Heaven has a wall: Grocery store ad mailer stirs controversy
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
 Earlier Items: 
Raphael Satter / Associated Press:
AP Exclusive: Undercover spy exposed in NYC was 1 of many
Damian Carrington / The Guardian:
Plummeting insect numbers ‘threaten collapse of nature’
Discussion: Common Dreams