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2:25 PM ET, May 14, 2019


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
White House Reviews Military Plans Against Iran, in Echoes of Iraq War  —  WASHINGTON — At a meeting of President Trump's top national security aides last Thursday, Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan presented an updated military plan that envisions sending as many as 120,000 troops …
New York Times:
It's Time for the Leaders of Saudi Arabia and Iran to Talk  —  Two foreign policy experts, from each side of the Islamic Middle East's most prominent rivalry, say common ground can be found.  —  Mr. Mousavian was a spokesman for the Iranian nuclear negotiation team between 2003 and 2005.
Linnaea Honl-Stuenkel / CREW:   Emails Show Tom Barrack Pitched Wilbur Ross on Middle East Plan
POLITICO Playbook PM: Trump says he'd ‘absolutely’ send troops to the Middle East
Alex Thompson / Politico:
‘A hate-for-profit racket’: Warren refuses Fox town hall invite  —  Elizabeth Warren turned down a Fox News invitation Tuesday for a televised town hall and denounced the cable network as a “hate-for-profit racket that gives a megaphone to racists and conspiracists.”
Jonathan Easley / The Hill:
Poll: Sanders support among young voters drops sharply  —  Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has seen his support drop sharply among the young voters that have powered his rise in Democratic politics, according to a new poll.  —  The survey from Morning Consult finds that Sanders's support among people between …
NBC News:
Elizabeth Warren turns down Fox News town hall, calls network a ‘hate-for-profit racket’  —  The Massachusetts senator's rejection breaks with other Democratic contenders like Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg.  —  Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., said Tuesday she had turned down the chance …
Shahien Nasiripour / Bloomberg:
Trump Tower Is Now One of NYC's Least-Desirable Luxury Buildings  — Most condo owners who sold since 2016 have recorded a loss  — ‘No one wants in that building,’ says one former owner  —  Trump Tower, once the crown jewel in Donald Trump's property empire, now ranks …
New York Times:
Barr Assigns U.S. Attorney in Connecticut to Review Origins of Russia Inquiry  —  WASHINGTON — Attorney General William P. Barr has assigned the top federal prosecutor in Connecticut to examine the origins of the Russia investigation, according to two people familiar with the matter …
Laura Jarrett / CNN:
CIA, FBI, Director of National Intelligence working with Attorney General Barr to review Russia probe origins  —  Washington (CNN)Attorney General William Barr is working closely with the CIA to review the origins of the Russia investigation and surveillance issues surrounding Donald Trump's …
Caitlin Oprysko / Politico:
Rosenstein slams Comey for becoming a ‘partisan pundit’
Washington Post:
White House explores new farmer bailout plan as U.S.-China trade war heats up  —  White House officials are scrambling to come up with a new bailout plan to placate furious farmers after President Trump's initial idea of donating unused crops to poor countries came under scrutiny, people briefed on the planning said.
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Trump's long trade war  —  Senior administration officials tell Axios that a trade deal with China isn't close and that the U.S. could be in for a long trade war.  —  The state of play: A senior administration official said the differences between the two sides are so profound that …
Timothy L. O'Brien / Bloomberg:
Don't Go Searching for Strategy in Trump's Tariffs
Discussion: Politico, Mediaite and Washington Press
Geoff Earle / Associated Press:
Trump says it's ‘very unfair’ that Don Jr should have to testify again after it is revealed his high-publicity subpoena came after he backed out of TWO scheduled interviews behind closed doors  — Republican Intel chair Sen. Richard Burr told colleagues Trump Jr. backed out twice before his panel issued the subpoena
Discussion: Politico, POLITICUSUSA and Contemptor
Geoff Ziezulewicz / Navy Times:
The Navy's probe into sky penis  —  It prompted viral guffaws from some and online outrage from others.  —  There are shot glasses commemorating the event and it birthed memes ahead of the annual Army-Navy game.  —  But the inside story of how an EA-18G Growler jet crew drew a penis across …
Los Angeles Times:
It's John Bolton's world.  Trump is just living in it  —  John Bolton, President Trump's national security advisor, is leading the United States in a dangerous direction.  —  In February, it was Bolton who reportedly pressed Trump to take an uncompromising line on denuclearization …
USA Today:
Trump is edging toward a disastrous war with Iran. Stop the brinksmanship: Murphy & Himes
Discussion: New York Times and Bloomberg
John McLaughlin / OZY:   Why Trump's Iran Strategy Puts America on the Road to Nowhere Good
Lolita C. Baldor / Associated Press:
Official: Initial US assessment blames Iran for ship attacks  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — An American military team's initial assessment is that Iranian or Iranian-backed proxies used explosives Sunday to blow large holes in four ships anchored off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, a U.S. official said Monday.
Discussion: Big League Politics and Daily Wire
Saudi Arabia says oil facilities outside Riyadh attacked
Discussion: CNBC, Jerusalem Post and Breitbart
Vivian Yee / New York Times:   Saudi Arabia Says Drones Hit Oil Pipeline, After Reports of Tanker Attacks
Kyle Cheney / Politico:
Judge grills Trump attorney in subpoena case  —  A federal judge raised pointed doubts Tuesday about arguments by President Donald Trump's legal team that a Democratic effort to subpoena Trump's financial records was an invalid exercise of congressional power.
Discussion: Law & Crime, ABC News, Raw Story and Axios
Washington Post:
Before Trump's purge at DHS, top officials challenged plan for mass family arrests  —  In the weeks before they were ousted last month, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and top immigration enforcement official Ronald Vitiello challenged a secret White House plan to arrest thousands …
Stephanie Wilkinson / Washington Post:
I own the Red Hen restaurant that asked Sarah Sanders to leave.  Resistance isn't futile.  —  Stephanie Wilkinson is the co-owner of the Red Hen in Lexington, Va.  —  “Hello Intolerant, intellectually-challenged, psychotic, socialists!  —  Your so-called business is in jeopardy.
Alexander Nazaryan / Yahoo News:
Why did right-wing troll Charles C. Johnson want to meet with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross?  —  The year 2018 was not an especially auspicious one for Charles C. Johnson,  —  the Boston Globe has deemed “one of the country's most notorious Internet trolls.”  —  In June, Johnson agreed to pay $25,000 to
Steve Bullock / YouTube:
Fair Shot  —  About a hundred years ago, this was “the richest hill on earth.”  —  The men who owned it were called kings.  —  With their money, they bought politicians; attacked unions, exploited workers, and left us all with a toxic reminder of what happens when our democracy is put up for sale.
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
A ‘Calming Feeling,’ a Frenzy and a New Front in the War Over Anti-Semitism  —  WASHINGTON — What Representative Rashida Tlaib said in a Yahoo News podcast about the Palestinian role in the founding of Israel was questionable history and not particularly eloquent.
Benny Morris / The Atlantic:
Rashida Tlaib Has Her History Wrong
Discussion: Fathom and
Exclusive photos reveal children sleeping on the ground at Border Patrol station  —  (CNN)Photos obtained exclusively by CNN show migrants at the McAllen, Texas, Border Patrol station over the weekend, many of whom are children, sleeping on the ground on rocks and covered by Mylar blankets.
Betsy Woodruff / The Daily Beast:
NRA Legal Bills Raise ‘All Sorts of Red Flags’  —  Ollie North claims the NRA faces unfathomably high legal expenses.  Experts say his concerns are serious.  ‘The IRS would definitely be interested in it,’ one tells The Daily Beast.  —  Betsy Woodruff  —  “One hundred thousand dollars a day?
Discussion: Raw Story and ABC News
Brendan Farrington / Associated Press:
DeSantis: Russians accessed 2 Florida voting databases  —  TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Russian hackers gained access to voter databases in two Florida counties ahead of the 2016 presidential election, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said at a news conference Tuesday.
Jason Samenow / Washington Post:
It was 84 degrees near the Arctic Ocean this weekend as carbon dioxide hit its highest level in human history  —  Over the weekend, the climate system sounded simultaneous alarms.  Near the entrance to the Arctic Ocean in northwest Russia, the temperature surged to 84 degrees Fahrenheit (29 Celsius).
Michael Woodel / Missoulian:
Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins announces 2020 bid for US Senate  —  Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins announced Monday that he will seek nomination for next fall's U.S. Senate election in Montana.  —  Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins announces his candidacy for U.S. Senate on Monday …
Discussion: Politico and ABC News
The Guardian:
Steve Bannon sought alliance with FBI in 2017 White House meeting  —  Bannon, then Trump's closest adviser, told FBI officials to put their past differences with the White House ‘behind them’  —  Steve Bannon urged two senior FBI officials to put their differences with the White House …
Harry Enten / CNN:
Joe Biden's early state polling looks more like those of past winners than losers  —  Biden bolts to the top of Democratic rankings  —  (CNN)Former vice president Joe Biden is enjoying a large lead in national primary polls.  Primaries, of course, aren't all conducted at once …
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Scoop: Top aide to Labor Secretary to depart after clash with White House  —  The top aide to Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta is leaving the Trump administration after a clash with White House officials who regarded him as personally difficult and an impediment to President Trump's deregulatory agenda …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Guardian
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic:
The Damage That Harvard Has Done  —  Defense attorneys often arouse what John Adams called a “clamor of popular suspicions and prejudices” when representing reviled clients.  Just last week, the attorney Christopher Darden stopped representing a California man charged with killing …
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 More Items: 
Tom Hamburger / Washington Post:
How William Barr, now serving as a powerful ally for Trump, has championed presidential powers
Reps. Omar and Schakowsky: We must confront threat of white nationalism — together
Just Security:
All the President's Lawyers: A Chart of Misconduct and Possible Crimes Revealed by Mueller Report
Maureen Groppe / USA Today:
Is there a Capitol jail where Democrats could lock up Trump aides who refuse to testify?
 Earlier Items: 
Sidney Blumenthal / Just Security:
An Open Memo: Comparison of Clinton Impeachment, Nixon Impeachment and Trump Pre-Impeachment
San Francisco Chronicle:
San Francisco's disturbing press crackdown
Catherine Rampell / Washington Post:
Democrats should be shouting Trump's trade failures from the rooftops
Discussion: The Atlantic and Daily Kos
Andrew Perez / The Intercept:
Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly's Rural Voter Project Tied To “Medicare For All” Opponents
Discussion: Splinter
David Siders / Politico:
‘When Biden announced, everything changed’
Discussion: Fox News and Axios
Mehul Srivastava / Financial Times:
WhatsApp voice calls used to inject Israeli spyware on phones