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2:30 PM ET, May 20, 2019


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Trump Expected to Instruct McGahn to Defy Subpoena and Skip House Testimony  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump is preparing to instruct his former White House counsel, Donald F. McGahn II, to defy a congressional subpoena and skip a hearing scheduled for Tuesday, denying Democrats testimony …
Discussion: Raw Story
Kyle Cheney / Politico:
Some Republicans unsettled by Trump's sweeping claims of immunity  —  Senior House Republicans are breaking with Donald Trump over the president's legal claims that Congress can't investigate whether a commander-in-chief violated the law.  —  That view, advanced by Trump's personal attorney …
Discussion: Raw Story and Axios
Byron York / Washington Examiner:   Mueller changed everything
Ryan Goodman / New York Times:   Trump's Position on the Mueller Report Is Legally Ridiculous — and Dangerous
Trip Gabriel / New York Times:
There's No Boom in Youngstown, but Blue-Collar Workers Are Sticking With Trump  —  YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — In May 2016, David Betras, a Democratic Party leader in the heart of industrial northeast Ohio, sent a memo warning Hillary Clinton's campaign that it was on the verge of losing Ohio …
Alex Isenstadt / Politico:
Trump scrambles to reverse Rust Belt slide  —  Donald Trump's aides and allies are moving aggressively to shore up his support in three Rust Belt states that propelled him to the presidency — but where his own polling shows him in trouble heading into 2020.
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
How Throwing Justin Amash Out of the GOP Might Make Trump Lose 2020  —  Saturday, Representative Justin Amash became the first Republican in Congress to call for impeaching President Trump on the basis of the massive misconduct detailed by the Mueller report.  It was a rare act of bravery, one likely to end his career in Congress.
Todd Spangler / Detroit Free Press:
After impeachment remarks, Rep. Justin Amash gets Republican challenger  —  WASHINGTON — A Republican state representative plans to challenge U.S. Rep. Justin Amash, R-Cascade Township, after Amash said this weekend he believes President Donald Trump committed impeachable offenses.
Stephen Collinson / CNN:
GOP throws up impeachment shield around Trump
Associated Press:
5th Migrant Child Dies After Detention by Border Patrol  —  HOUSTON — The U.S. government says a 16-year-old Guatemalan died Monday at a Border Patrol station in South Texas, the fifth death of a migrant child apprehended by border agents since December.  —  U.S. Customs and Border Protection …
Discussion: Axios and Daily Kos
Tim Elfrink / Washington Post:
‘Mindless murdering savages’: Border agent used slurs before allegedly hitting migrant with his truck  —  In November 2017, U.S. Border Patrol Agent Matthew Bowen fumed about the humane treatment his agency was expected to give migrants who had illegally crossed into the country.
Statement on Loss of Life in RGV Sector
Kara Scannell / CNN:
Prosecutors examining tens of thousands of Trump inauguration documents  —  WH downplaying Trump inaugural committee subpoena  —  (CNN)Federal prosecutors in New York are scrutinizing tens of thousands of documents relating to Donald Trump's inauguration in a sign that the investigation into the committee's finances is advancing.
Greg Stohr / Bloomberg:
U.S. Supreme Court Again Defers Action on Abortion Cases  —  The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday deferred acting on state efforts to put more restrictions on abortion, issuing a list of orders without mentioning two pending Indiana appeals.  —  The appeals were on a list of case the justices …
Greg Stohr / Bloomberg:
U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Bid to Let Businesses Donate to Candidates
Discussion: Political Wire
Politico:   POLITICO Playbook PM: White House, Hill budget talks will kick off tomorrow
Peter Baker / New York Times:
The Profanity President: Trump's Four-Letter Vocabulary  —  WASHINGTON — In modern times, presidents have rarely been church mice afraid of a little salty language.  But President Trump has grown increasingly willing in recent months to say in public what most of his predecessors tried to keep behind closed doors.
Discussion: Splinter
Wall Street Journal:
‘Playing Catch-Up in the Game of Life.’ Millennials Approach Middle Age in Crisis  —  New data show they're in worse financial shape than every preceding living generation and may never recover  —  American millennials are approaching middle age in worse financial shape than every living generation ahead …
James Hohmann / Washington Post:
The Daily 202: The Koch network is reorganizing under a new name and with new priorities  —  THE BIG IDEA: The Koch network is getting a new name to reflect its shifting strategy.  —  The Seminar Network, which includes the constellation of groups funded by the billionaire industrialist Charles Koch …
Sam Biddle / The Intercept:
Thanks to Facebook, Your Cellphone Company Is Watching You More Closely Than Ever  —  Among the mega-corporations that surveil you, your cellphone carrier has always been one of the keenest monitors, in constant contact with the one small device you keep on you at almost every moment.
Jon Gambrell / Associated Press:
Trump warns Iran not to threaten US or it will face ‘end’  —  DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — President Donald Trump warned Iran early on Monday not to threaten the United States again or it would face its “official end,” shortly after a rocket landed near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad overnight …
Chuck Ross / The Daily Caller:
Gowdy: FBI Has Papadopoulos Transcripts That Are Potential ‘Game-Changer’  —  Former Republican South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy said he is aware of potentially game-changing evidence in the FBI's Russia probe regarding George Papadopoulos, the former Trump campaign adviser.
Barnini Chakraborty / Fox News:
Rep. Meadows: Declassification of key Russia probe documents ‘right around the corner’
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Chris Jenks / Just Security:
Sticking It To Yourself: Preemptive Pardons for Battlefield Crimes Undercut Military Justice and Military Effectiveness  —  A couple of years ago a cell phone company aired a commercial featuring an executive boasting to a subordinate that a new cell phone plan was the executive's “little way of sticking it to the man.”
Eric Levitz / New York Magazine:
Trump: E-Verify Would Make It Too Hard to Hire Undocumented Workers  —  Since taking office, Donald Trump has revoked the legal status of roughly 1 million longtime U.S. residents, used the mass psychological torture of children as a means of deterring asylum seekers, overseen the deportation …
Discussion: Washington Post
Ben White / Politico:
Dark clouds hang over Trump's trade war  —  President Donald Trump is doing everything he can to soften the economic blow of his trade battle with China, doling out billions of dollars in farmer bailouts and telling Americans that the Chinese are paying the tariffs he's slapped on U.S. importers.
Pat Rynard / Iowa Starting Line:
Starting Line/Change Research Poll: Biden, Sanders Locked In Iowa Tie  —  Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are locked in a tie in Iowa atop the large field of Democrats running for the presidential nomination.  An Iowa Starting Line/Change Research Poll of 615 likely Democratic caucus-goers …
Associated Press:
Harris wants to fine companies that pay men more than women  —  NEW YORK (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris is unveiling a pay inequity proposal that aims to close the gender pay gap by holding corporations accountable when men are paid more than women.
T.A. Frank / Washington Post:
The Surreal Life of George Papadopoulos  —  Russiagate felon.  Hollywood denizen.  Friend of Tom Arnold.  Is there anything more 2019?  —  Story by T.A. Frank Photos by Elisabeth Caren  —  This is a story about stories.  Most of them are crazy.  Some of them are true.
Eric Felten / RealClearInvestigations:
Spy vs. Spy Euphemism at the FBI  —  While Washington pols and pundits angrily debate who counts as a spy, and whether any such exotic creatures have ever been employed by the FBI, new evidence is emerging that the FBI not only uses spies, but has done so extensively, including in the Trump-Russia investigation.
Richard Rubin / Wall Street Journal:
IRS Audit Rate Drops Again as It Examines Fewer High-Income Households  —  Tax agency, shrinking after years of budget cuts, seeks funding boost from Congress  —  WASHINGTON—The Internal Revenue Service audited just .59% of individual tax returns last year, marking the seventh consecutive annual decline …
Alice Miranda Ollstein / Politico:
How Mike Pence's ‘Indiana mafia’ took over health care policy  —  Sweeping new protections for religious health care workers and an overhaul of family planning programs to effectively cut out Planned Parenthood represent something unusual in the Trump administration: a clear spotting of the fingerprints of Vice President Mike Pence.
Discussion: Shakesville and Raw Story
Lisa Friedman / New York Times:
E.P.A. Plans to Get Thousands of Deaths Off the Books by Changing Its Math  —  WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency plans to change the way it calculates the future health risks of air pollution in a way that would predict thousands of fewer deaths and would help justify …
Maxwell Tani / The Daily Beast:
Here's How Much Money Fox News Hosts Have Made Off GOP Speaking Gigs  —  A new study reveals that many of the pro-Trump network's stars, including its ‘hard news’ anchors, have fattened their wallets by speaking at GOP events—an ethical no-no.  —  Boosting the Republican Party has paid off—quite literally—for many Fox News hosts.
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 More Items: 
Hen Mazzig / Los Angeles Times:
No, Israel isn't a country of privileged and powerful white Europeans
Zia Weise / Politico:
Austria's Kurz requests dismissal of far-right interior minister
Brooke Singman / Fox News:
Trump mocks Biden, says Obama took him off the ‘trash heap’
Discussion: Breitbart
Eric Lipton / New York Times:
He's One of the Biggest Backers of Trump's Push to Protect American Steel. And He's Canadian.
Brent Scher / Washington Free Beacon:
Eric Swalwell Is a Financial Mess
‘Big 4’ leaders to meet Tuesday on budget caps, debt limit
Discussion: Political Wire
Jan M. Olsen / Associated Press:
Sweden requests detention order for WikiLeaks' Assange
Discussion: Political Wire and Fox News
Kevin Bohn / CNN:
Trump appears to confirm cyberattack against Russian entity during midterms
Discussion: The Daily Caller
 Earlier Items: 
Lauren McGaughy / Dallas Morning News:
Controversial Texas voting bill likely dead this year after failing to be set for debate
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Benjy Sarlin / NBC News:
Racial wealth gap is vast: 2020 Democrats have plans to close it
Eli Watkins / CNN:
CNN to host four more presidential town halls: Bennet, Moulton, Ryan and Swalwell
Discussion: NTK Network
Pedro Nicolaci da Costa / Forbes:
Trump Fed Nominee Backs Policies That Would Crash The Economy
Shay Khatiri / The Bulwark:
Pardoning War Criminals Isn't Just Wrong. It Hurts the Military and American Interests.
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Victor Davis Hanson / American Greatness:
He Did It, Not Me!  —  There is something Kafkaesque …
Discussion: Spectator USA and
Jacqueline Alemany / Washington Post:
Power Up: The Trump impeachment slow burn
Discussion: CNBC, Al Jazeera and Washington Press
Gregg Re / Fox News:
Buttigieg takes on Trump, pitches four new tax hikes in Fox News Town Hall