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5:30 PM ET, May 20, 2019


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Trump Instructs McGahn to Defy Subpoena and Skip House Testimony  —  Donald McGahn, the former White House counsel, risks being held in contempt of Congress.  But if he defies the president, he could damage his career or put his law firm's business at risk.
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
Jacqueline Thomsen / The Hill:
Judge upholds House panel subpoena for Trump financial records  —  District Judge Amit Mehta on Monday ruled in favor of a subpoena issued by the House Oversight Committee for President Trump's financial records from the accounting firm Mazars.  —  In a 41-page-long opinion, Mehta found that …
Fox News:
White House tells McGahn to skip House hearing, as DOJ asserts ‘immunity’
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Rebecca Ballhaus / Wall Street Journal:
Trump Administration Directs McGahn to Rebuff Congressional Subpoena
Discussion: Shareblue Media
Kia Rahnama / The Atlantic:   What Congress Can Do When Trump Appointees Defy It
Katherine Faulders / ABC News:   Trump blocks former White House counsel McGahn from testifying to Congress
Washington Post:
White House blocks former counsel McGahn from testifying to Congress
Trump to tell ex-White House counsel McGahn not to appear before Congress: New York Times
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
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.
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.
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Why Trump should be worried about Justin Amash
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Politico
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.
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, Shareblue Media and Daily Kos
Statement on Loss of Life in RGV Sector  —  WASHINGTON - A 16-year-old Guatemalan national passed away this morning at the Weslaco Station in the U.S. Border Patrol's Rio Grande Valley Sector.  According to initial reports, U.S. Border Patrol agents apprehended and processed the juvenile for illegal entry May 13 near Hidalgo, Texas.
Alicia A. Caldwell / Wall Street Journal:   Guatemalan Boy Dies in U.S. Border Patrol Custody
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.
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.
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 …
Washington Post:
The narrator in chief: Trump opines on the 2020 Democrats — and so much more
Brooke Singman / Fox News:
Trump mocks Biden, says Obama took him off the ‘trash heap’
Discussion: Breitbart
Washington Post:
Cohen told lawmakers Trump attorney Jay Sekulow instructed him to falsely claim Moscow project ended in January 2016  —  Michael Cohen, President Trump's former longtime personal attorney, told a House panel during closed-door hearings earlier this year that he had been instructed …
Discussion: Political Wire
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.
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: The Daily Caller and Splinter
Greg Stohr / Bloomberg:
U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Bid to Let Businesses Donate to Candidates  —  The U.S. Supreme Court declined an opportunity to give businesses broader rights to contribute money to political candidates and causes.  —  The justices, without comment Monday, refused to question a Massachusetts law …
Greg Stohr / Bloomberg:   U.S. Supreme Court Again Defers Action on Abortion Cases
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 …
Sarah Owermohle / Politico:
McConnell, Kaine unveil bill to raise smoking age to 21  —  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell today introduced legislation to broadly raise the tobacco purchasing age to 21 — now a bipartisan effort that addresses some of the criticism public health groups had of an earlier proposal they saw as too industry-friendly.
Discussion: Axios
Lesley Clark / Lexington Herald-Leader:
McConnell legislation to raise tobacco purchase age from 18 to 21 includes military
Discussion: Task & Purpose
Yvonne Wingett Sanchez / Arizona Republic:
How extremists are reasserting themselves in mainstream GOP politics in Arizona  —  Kelli Ward, Russell Pearce and Andy Biggs (Photo: David Wallace/The Republic; Michael Schennum/The Republic; David Wallace/The Republic)  —  Russell Pearce stepped up to a podium in Gilbert, one of the more affluent and educated communities in Arizona.
Associated Press:
Packing his bags: Trump plans jet-setting summer of travel  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — Four days in Tokyo.  Then it's off to see Queen Elizabeth before a jaunt to Normandy, France, and perhaps time in Ireland.  —  A return trip to Japan?  Why not.  And throw in Seoul.
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 …
Hen Mazzig / Los Angeles Times:
No, Israel isn't a country of privileged and powerful white Europeans  —  Along with resurgent identity politics in the United States and Europe, there is a growing inclination to frame the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in terms of race.  According to this narrative, Israel was established …
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 …
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 …
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 …
Discussion: Quartz
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 More Items: 
Peter Beinart / The Forward:
It's Time to End America's Blank Check Military Aid to Israel
Popular Information:
These six corporations are financing the war on women in six states
Discussion: Common Dreams
Ramin Setoodeh / Variety:
Kathy Griffin Movie ‘A Hell of a Story’ Gets Theatrical Release (EXCLUSIVE)
Discussion: NB Blog
Michael Bennet:
America's Climate Change Plan
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Zoom Video:
Mueller Book Club Featuring Rep. Nadler
Paul Thornton / Los Angeles Times:
SB 50 could have reshaped L.A., and readers were having none of it
Alina Polyakova / New York Times:
You Can't Trust the Far Right
Marlow Stern / The Daily Beast:
John Oliver Drags Meghan McCain: ‘The Most Embarrassing Child of a Prominent Political Figure’
Discussion: NB Blog, Vanity Fair and Fox News
 Earlier Items: 
Ezra Klein / Vox:
Joe Biden's promise: a return to normalcy
Discussion: The Federalist
Domenico Montanaro / NPR:
Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Native American Rights In Wyoming Hunting Case
Discussion: RedState
Sam Biddle / The Intercept:
Thanks to Facebook, Your Cellphone Company Is Watching You More Closely Than Ever
‘Big 4’ leaders to meet Tuesday on budget caps, debt limit
Discussion: Breitbart and Political Wire
T.A. Frank / Washington Post:
The Surreal Life of George Papadopoulos
Victor Davis Hanson / American Greatness:
He Did It, Not Me!  —  There is something Kafkaesque …
Ben White / Politico:
Dark clouds hang over Trump's trade war