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3:36 AM ET, February 24, 2019


 Top Items: 
Rachel Weiner / Washington Post:
Paul Manafort a ‘hardened’ and ‘bold’ criminal, Mueller prosecutors tell judge  —  Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort “repeatedly and brazenly violated the law” and shows a “hardened adherence to committing crimes,” prosecutors told a Washington federal judge.
Zachary Basu / Axios:
Robert Mueller files 800+ page sentencing memo for Paul Manafort  —  Special counsel Robert Mueller has filed a sentencing memo for President Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort.  Mueller does not take a position on how much time in prison Manafort should serve, but accuses him of …
Discussion: Politico
New York Times:
Russian Spy or Hustling Political Operative?  The Enigmatic Figure at the Heart of Mueller's Inquiry  —  WASHINGTON — In the nearly two years that the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, has been investigating whether there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign …
Katelyn Polantz / CNN:
Prosecutors say Manafort's ‘criminal actions were bold’ in redacted sentencing memo  —  Mueller's Manafort filing today may provide important info  —  (CNN)In the sentencing memo for Paul Manafort, prosecutors from special counsel Robert Mueller's office wrote that the former Trump campaign chairman's …
Discussion: Law & Crime
Franklin Foer / The Atlantic:
The Loud Silence of Mueller's Manafort Memo  —  A court filing by the special counsel is filled with elegant omissions—but that doesn't mean there's nothing there.  —  A nation is waiting, with no clear sense of timing or resolution, to learn if its leader is a foreign agent of a hostile power.
Discussion: Splinter and Daily Kos
Adam Davidson / New Yorker:   Robert Mueller's Nothing-Burger Sentencing Memo on Paul Manafort
Sharon LaFraniere / New York Times:
Sentencing Memo Paints Manafort as Someone Who ‘Repeatedly and Brazenly’ Broke Law
Discussion: Mother Jones
Katelyn Polantz / CNN:
Mueller filing on Manafort sentencing still not public after midnight deadline
Discussion: Raw Story, The Week and Mediaite
Washington Post:
Four dead, 24 injured after pro-government militias open fire on Venezuela-Brazil border  —  The standoff between Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaidó continued to intensify Saturday as the two sides clashed over delivery of humanitarian aid into the impoverished country.
Associated Press:   Soldiers unleash tear gas amid tension on Venezuela's border
New York Times:
Some Aid From Brazil Pierces Venezuela's Blockade, but Deadly Violence Erupts
Discussion: Breitbart and Axios
Stephania Taladrid / New Yorker:
Venezuela's Food Crisis Reaches a Breaking Point
Discussion: New York Times
Associated Press:
The Latest: 2 killed, 18 injured in Venezuela border clashes
Discussion: NPR
Alexandra Hutzler / Newsweek:
Bill Maher Mocks Red State Voters, Says Rich and Educated Live in Blue States  —  Bill Maher ridiculed red state voters in a segment about Amazon's HQ2 locations, saying that the rich and educated people of America live in blue states.  —  “That's why red state voters are so pissed off.
Joshua A. Geltzer / CNN:
What if Trump refuses to accept defeat in 2020?  —  Joshua A. Geltzer is executive director and visiting professor of law at Georgetown Law Center's Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection and an ASU future of war fellow at New America.  He previously was senior director …
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit and Hullabaloo
New York Times:
Inside the Rise and Fall of a Multimillion-Dollar Airbnb Scheme  —  Multiple misleading identities, more than 100 host accounts and 18 corporations were created to run an illegal hotel business in Manhattan, according to a lawsuit filed by the city.  —  [What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.]
Aaron Lorenzo / Politico:
As tax refunds shrink, Republicans scramble to defend Trump tax cut  —  Size apparently does matter, at least when it comes to tax refunds, and that's put Republicans on the defensive as Americans start filing their returns.  —  With headlines blaring about smaller refunds in the first weeks …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Mahablog
Naomi Jagoda / The Hill:   Average tax refunds down double-digits, IRS data shows
David Nakamura / Washington Post:
‘No rush’: Trump redefines success ahead of second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un  —  Days ahead of his second summit with Kim Jong Un, President Trump is redefining success in his bid to force North Korea to relinquish its nuclear program, tamping down public expectations amid evidence …
Bill McKibben / New Yorker:
The Hard Lessons of Dianne Feinstein's Encounter with the Young Green New Deal Activists  —  One imagines that Senator Dianne Feinstein would like a do-over of her colloquy with some young people on Friday afternoon.  A group of school students, at least one as young as seven …
Woman arrested for assaulting man wearing MAGA hat on Cape Cod  —  FALMOUTH, Mass. - A woman on Cape Cod is facing charges for assaulting a man wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat.  —  Rosiane Santos, 41, of Falmouth was charged with disorderly conduct and assault and battery.
Discussion: Breitbart and Big League Politics
Ronald A. Klain / Washington Post:
Time for Democrats to stare down Trump's red scare  —  Ronald A. Klain, a Post contributing columnist, served as a senior White House aide to Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton and was a senior adviser to Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign.  —  It's time for Democrats to stand up and stare down the great …
New York Times:
Republican Cries Against Voter Fraud Go Mostly Quiet After Scheme Tied to Party  —  RALEIGH, N.C. — Republican politicians across the country have for years railed against the threat of voter fraud.  Some have made unproven claims about how rampant it has become in order to pass voter ID laws and open sweeping investigations.
John Bowden / The Hill:
Judge tosses North Carolina mandatory voter ID amendment citing gerrymandering
Discussion: Splinter and Axios
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 More Items: 
Jacob Bogage / Washington Post:
Mississippi basketball players kneel in protest during anthem as Confederate groups rally in Oxford
Cristina Maza / Newsweek:
Saudi Arabia's Mohammed bin Salman Defends China's Use of Concentration Camps for Muslims During Visit to Beijing
Emily Cochrane / New York Times:
Justice Democrats Helped Make Ocasio-Cortez. They're Already Eyeing Their Next Targets.
Paul Sonne / Washington Post:
Pentagon sending 1,000 more troops to the Mexican border
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Townhall
Associated Press:
US pushes NATO allies to join observer force in Syria
Robert Pear / New York Times:
Health Care and Insurance Industries Mobilize to Kill ‘Medicare for All’
Melanie Zanona / Politico:
Dems prepare to subpoena family separation documents from Trump administration
 Earlier Items: 
John Bowden / The Hill:
Warren: Native Americans should be ‘part of the conversation’ on reparations
Will Sommer / The Daily Beast:
Trump Employs QAnon Believer Elizabeth Alfieri as Pastry Chef at Mar-a-Lago
Discussion: Raw Story and 1100 Pennsylvania
Kevin Roose / New York Times:
Do Not Disturb: How I Ditched My Phone and Unbroke My Brain
Elon Green / Columbia Journalism Review:
How Esquire lost the Bryan Singer story