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12:45 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.
Los Angeles Times:
It's John Bolton's world. Trump is just living in it
USA Today:
Trump is edging toward a disastrous war with Iran. Stop the brinksmanship: Murphy & Himes
Discussion: Bloomberg
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 …
Discussion: The Daily Caller and The Week
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 …
Geoff Earle / Associated Press:
Don Jr.s high-publicity subpoena from Senate Republicans came after he backed out of TWO scheduled interviews behind closed doors - and wanted to give his answers in writing  — Republican Intel chair Sen. Richard Burr told colleagues Trump Jr. backed out twice before his panel issued the subpoena
Discussion: CNN, POLITICUSUSA and Contemptor
Associated Press:
AP sources: Trump Jr. subpoena sent when interviews declined
Discussion: The Hill and Washington Times
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.”
NBC News:
Elizabeth Warren turns down Fox News town hall, calls network a ‘hate-for-profit racket’
Discussion: The Daily Beast and The Week
Amanda Terkel / HuffPost:
Elizabeth Warren Says No To Fox News Town Hall
Discussion: Vox, Mother Jones and POLITICUSUSA
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 …
Washington Post:
White House explores new farmer bailout plan as U.S.-China trade war heats up
Discussion: Breitbart, Daily Kos and Political Wire
Timothy L. O'Brien / Bloomberg:
Don't Go Searching for Strategy in Trump's Tariffs
Discussion: Politico, Mediaite and Washington Press
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 …
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
Trump can't admit he enacted a new tax  —  President Trump cannot admit that the short-term effects of his tariff war hurt Americans.  He had to stop insisting China pays the tariffs when his economic adviser Larry Kudlow contradicted him on Fox News.  Trump then decided that we just buy stuff elsewhere …
Discussion: Raw Story, Fortune, IJR and CNN
Josh Rogin / Washington Post:   China is using the Washington swamp against us
Eugene Robinson / Washington Post:
Trump has no idea what he's doing
Discussion: Politico, Shareblue Media and Reuters
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 …
Discussion: Task & Purpose, Gizmodo and Althouse
David Siders / Politico:
‘When Biden announced, everything changed’  —  First came the Cory Booker relaunch.  Then a pivot from Kamala Harris.  Now, Beto O'Rourke is hosting high-dollar fundraisers and courting national TV.  —  It's reset season in the presidential primary campaign.
Discussion: Fox News and Axios
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.
Aaron E. Carroll / New York Times:
Why Politics Should Be Kept Out of Miscarriages  —  The possible problems of a new Georgia law, including causing further pain.  —  Georgia's much-discussed new law on abortion is one of the most restrictive in the nation.  Abortion will be banned as early as six weeks into pregnancy — before many women even know they are pregnant.
Kirsten Powers / USA Today:   ‘Heartbeat bills’ reveal extremist anti-abortion view that values unborn over women
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
Vivian Yee / New York Times:
Saudi Arabia Says Drones Hit Oil Pipeline, After Reports of Tanker Attacks  —  BEIRUT, Lebanon — A Saudi oil pipeline was attacked by drones, causing “limited damage,” the Saudi energy minister said on Tuesday, a day after Saudi Arabia said two of its oil tankers had been damaged in an act of sabotage …
Reuters:   Saudi Arabia says oil facilities outside Riyadh attacked
Kyle Cheney / Politico:
Judge grills Trump attorney in subpoena case  —  President Donald Trump's strategy of outright resistance to House subpoenas is facing its first test in federal court on Tuesday, setting up a ruling that could boost Democrats' efforts to investigate the president's business dealings.
Discussion: ABC News, Axios and Washington Post
Gregg Re / Fox News:
Rosenstein unloads on Comey, says he broke ‘bright lines that should never be crossed’  —  Rod Rosenstein unloaded on former FBI Director James Comey in remarks to the Greater Baltimore Committee (GBC) on Monday evening, slamming Comey's turn as a “partisan pundit,” reiterating that he deserved to be fired …
Caitlin Oprysko / Politico:
Rosenstein slams Comey for becoming a ‘partisan pundit’
Discussion: Fox News
Joseph Bernstein / BuzzFeed News:
YouTube's Newest Far-Right, Foul-Mouthed, Red-Pilling Star Is A 14-Year-Old Girl  —  “Soph” has nearly a million followers on the giant video platform.  Its executives only have themselves to blame.  —  What does a 14-year-old girl dressed in a chador have to say on YouTube to amass more than 800,000 followers?
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
Discussion: Shareblue Media
Mehul Srivastava / Financial Times:
WhatsApp voice calls used to inject Israeli spyware on phones  —  A vulnerability in the messaging app WhatsApp has allowed attackers to inject commercial Israeli spyware on to phones, the company and a spyware technology dealer said.  —  WhatsApp, which is used by 1.5bn people worldwide …
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 …
Sidney Blumenthal / Just Security:
An Open Memo: Comparison of Clinton Impeachment, Nixon Impeachment and Trump Pre-Impeachment  —  [Editor's note: Just Security will publish a series in conversation with Blumenthal's Open Memo including from John Dean, Ryan Goodman, Hon. Elizabeth Holtzman, Kevin Kruse and Julian Zelizer (co-authored), and Walter Pincus.]
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 More Items: 
Linnaea Honl-Stuenkel / CREW:
Emails Show Tom Barrack Pitched Wilbur Ross on Middle East Plan
Michael Woodel / Missoulian:
Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins announces 2020 bid for US Senate
Maureen Groppe / USA Today:
Is there a Capitol jail where Democrats could lock up Trump aides who refuse to testify?
John McLaughlin / OZY:
Why Trump's Iran Strategy Puts America on the Road to Nowhere Good
San Francisco Chronicle:
San Francisco's disturbing press crackdown
Jim Sciutto / The Atlantic:
Russia Has Americans' Weaknesses All Figured Out
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Examiner:
The Green New Deal is about power, not the planet
Arthur Delaney / HuffPost:
Behind The Scenes, Trump Diligently Tries To Slash Social Programs
Catherine Rampell / Washington Post:
Democrats should be shouting Trump's trade failures from the rooftops
Discussion: The Atlantic and Daily Kos
Ian Geoghegan / Politico:
Senior Tories warn Theresa May against Brexit deal with Labour
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic:
The Damage That Harvard Has Done
Andrew Perez / The Intercept:
Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly's Rural Voter Project Tied To “Medicare For All” Opponents
Discussion: Splinter
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
Why was FBI so wrong in Trump-Russia wiretap warrant?