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9:05 PM ET, July 4, 2019


 Top Items: 
Justin Amash / Washington Post:
Our politics is in a partisan death spiral.  That's why I'm leaving the GOP.  —  Justin Amash, an independent, represents Michigan's 3rd Congressional District in the House.  —  When my dad was 16, America welcomed him as a Palestinian refugee.  It wasn't easy moving to a new country, but it was the greatest blessing of his life.
Avi Bueno / Medium:   Patriotism As Theatrics
David Montgomery / Washington Post:
John Kasich: ‘I think members of the Republican Party are in a coma right now’
Discussion: The Hill
Asawin Suebsaeng / The Daily Beast:
This July 4th Had Everything: Tanks, Trump—and Scandal  —  QAnon, MAGA, Baby Trump balloons descended on the nation's capital before a display of military pageantry.  —  After two years of trying, President Donald Trump finally got the military pageantry he has so desperately wanted.
Philip Kennicott / Washington Post:
Forget the tanks.  Trump's violation of the Lincoln Memorial is the real offense.  —  The Mall is a place of public reconciliation.  —  Although originally conceived as a wide avenue in Pierre L'Enfant's 1791 plan for the city, the Mall and its surrounding parks were configured …
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Owen Daugherty / The Hill:
Code Pink denounces no helium decision for Trump baby blimp  —  Activists planning to fly the “Baby Trump” blimp during President Trump's “Salute to America” event on July 4 were told by the National Park Service (NPS) that they could not fill the balloon with helium, essentially grounding the giant inflatable.
Paul Mirengoff / Power Line:
More about that Fourth of July parade  —  Phillip Kennicott, a lefty critic for the Washington Post, begins his column about the Fourth of July parade this way: … Really?  What about those enraged feminists who marched up and down the Mall wearing pussy hats?  They didn't seem conciliatory to me.
Discussion: Instapundit
Washington Post:
Trump administration scrambles to save citizenship question on census  —  Spurred on by President Trump, government lawyers scrambled Thursday to find a legal path to add a controversial citizenship question to the 2020 Census, despite their conclusions in recent days that no such avenue exists.
Scoop: Trump considers executive order on citizenship question  —  President Trump is considering an executive order to try to move forward with a citizenship question on the 2020 census, top sources tell Jonathan Swan and me.  — “We didn't come this far just to throw in the towel,” …
Linda Greenhouse / New York Times:
It's Not Nice to Lie to the Supreme Court
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Bret Stephens / New York Times:
Robespierre's America  —  We need to reclaim the spirit of 1776, not the certitudes of 1789.  —  I was walking through an airport terminal trying to catch a connecting flight last Saturday when I spotted a writer I had never met but whose work I admire.  He greeted me with a look of fatherly concern …
New York Times:
In Iowa, Kamala Harris Calls Joe Biden's Past Views on Busing ‘Wrong’  —  INDEPENDENCE, Iowa — Joseph R. Biden Jr. expressed frustration Thursday at Senator Kamala Harris's pointed criticism about his 1970s-era opposition to busing, arguing that Democrats should “be talking about the future.”
Wall Street Journal:   Despite Feud Over Busing, Harris and Biden Agree on Current Policies
Anna Kaplan / The Daily Beast:
Harris, Like Biden, Comes Out Against Federal Busing Mandate
Heidi Vogt / Midland Reporter-Telegram:
Retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal says if his soldiers were ‘forced to come on a holiday’ to ‘stand in the sun’ for Trump's military parade, he would've stood with them  —  David Choi, provided by  — Retired US Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal gave a diplomatic answer to a question …
Rob Merrick / The Independent:
Brexit: Labour crashes to fourth in poll for first time as frontbencher admits voters fleeing party  —  Just 18 per cent of public backs Jeremy Corbyn's party and only 25 per cent of Remain voters - down from 48 per cent at start of year  —  Labour has crashed to fourth place in a poll for the first time …
Mike Baker / New York Times:
Anchorage Has Never Reached 90 Degrees.  That Could Change This Week.  —  In more than 100 years of Anchorage history, weather stations have never recorded a single 90-degree reading.  If current forecasts hold, it could happen multiple times in the coming days.
Tracy Jan / Washington Post:
Why nearly 350,000 workers in mostly red states aren't seeing wage increases, even though their local lawmakers passed them  —  For most of her 13 years working the grill and cash register at McDonald's, Bettie Douglas earned just over $7 an hour.  Then in 2017, the St. Louis resident's hourly pay rose …
CREW Requests Documents into Fourth of July Fireworks Donation  —  Following reports that Phantom Fireworks CEO Bruce Zoldan both donated $750,000 dollars worth of fireworks to President Trump's Fourth of July celebration and successfully lobbied the president to not implement tariffs …
Sarah K. Burris / Raw Story:
White House staff forced to hand out VIP tickets to Trump's Fourth of July rally to anyone who will take them  —  The big-Republican donors that were offered tickets from the White House couldn't make it — so the White House is begging for anyone at this point.
Andrew O'Reilly / Fox News:
Antiwar group brings massive diaper-wearing Trump balloon to Washington Monument  —  The antiwar organization Code Pink brought its 20-foot-tall, diaper-clad balloon of an infant Donald Trump to the Washington Monument on Thursday to protest the president's planned “Salute to America” Fourth of July celebration.
Discussion: Reuters
Nicholas Bagley / The Incidental Economist:
The Justice Department's New Brief in Texas v. United States  —  Last week, the Fifth Circuit asked the parties to Texas v. United States—the broadside challenge to the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act—to submit letter briefs on whether anyone had standing to appeal.
Discussion: ACA Signups
Megan Sheets / Daily Mail:
Pentagon officials 'are concerned Trump's July 4 parade could be too political' - despite the president's claim that military chiefs are ‘thrilled’ to be taking part in the event  — An insider says the military's top brass have been hesitant about accepting Trump's invitation to the event at the National Mall on Thursday
Washington Post:
After Confederate statues, America's culture war targets Betsy Ross and a founding father  —  As the nation has celebrated its birthday with displays of its contemporary power and prestige this week, two of its cherished historic symbols came under fire — its first flag and its third president.
Maxine Bernstein / Oregonian:
Portland's police chief calls for anti-mask law, different approach for violent protesters  —  Gallery: Chief Danielle Outlaw, July 3, 2019  —  Police Chief Danielle Outlaw said Wednesday the city, police and community need “a better way” to address protest groups bent on brawling …
Dom Phillips / The Guardian:
Outcry after reports Brazil plans to investigate Glenn Greenwald  —  Federal police reportedly asked money laundering unit to investigate the ‘financial activities’ of the US journalist  —  Brazil's Bar Association, journalists and opposition lawmakers have reacted with outrage to reports …
Associated Press:
AP FACT CHECK: Trump often is wrong about military matters  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — In his Fourth of July remarks, President Donald Trump will be celebrating the armed forces and showcasing what he's done for them.  But in recent days, he has falsified his record on military matters on several fronts.
Discussion: KTLA
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 More Items: 
T.H. Breen / New York Times:
George Washington Would Hate Trump's July 4 Parade
Soo Rin Kim / ABC News:
Special prosecutor assigned to investigate police shooting in South Bend, Indiana
Discussion: Politico
Financial Times:
Boris Johnson is poised to become prime minister. Is he up to the job?
Charles M. Blow / New York Times:
It's the Cruelty, Stupid
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Patricia Cohen / New York Times:
Southerners, Facing Big Odds, Believe in a Path Out of Poverty
Matthew Boyle / Breitbart:
Exclusive — Michigan Poll: Justin Amash Underwater Beneath 20 Percent, Trails Challenger by Double Digits
Discussion: Big League Politics
Kathleen E. Powers / Washington Post:
Surprised by those Fourth of July tanks? …
Discussion: Hullabaloo and New Republic
Joshua Partlow / Washington Post:
Trump's undocumented former employees want to be spared deportation.  So they've asked the president for a meeting.
Discussion: CNN, KTLA and Axios
 Earlier Items: 
Kyle Smith / New York Post:
This Fourth of July, why patriotism is worth defending
George WillMax Boot / Washington Post:
Trump's Fourth of July salute to himself will only hurt him
A July 4 NPR Tradition: A Reading Of The Declaration Of Independence
Discussion: Balloon Juice
The Babylon Bee:
Imperial AT-ATs Begin Arriving In Capital For Military Parade
Reid J. Epstein / New York Times:
Democrats Grapple With a Sprawling Primary Field, and No One to Shape It
The Times of Israel:
Kushner hints Palestinian refugees won't return, says Trump ‘very fond’ of Abbas