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7:40 PM ET, August 12, 2019

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New York Post:
Jeffrey Epstein hanged himself with prison bedsheet: source  —  Jeffrey Epstein was found hanging in his Lower Manhattan jail cell with a bedsheet wrapped around his neck and secured to the top of a bunk bed, The Post has learned.  —  The convicted pedophile, who was 6 feet tall …
Brian Schwartz / CNBC:
L Brands CEO Les Wexner has been giving documents to investigators showing alleged Jeffrey Epstein theft  —  KEY POINTS  — L Brands founder Les Wexner and his legal team have been providing documents to federal investigators that they believe show Epstein misappropriated funds while the child predator was Wexner's money manager.
Lisa Friedman / New York Times:
U.S. Significantly Weakens Endangered Species Act  —  WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Monday announced that it would change the way the Endangered Species Act is applied, significantly weakening the nation's bedrock conservation law credited with rescuing the bald eagle …
RELATED:
Madeleine Gregory / VICE:   The Trump Administration Just Gutted the Endangered Species Act
Andrew O'Reilly / Fox News:
Trump administration overhauls Endangered Species Act in bid to reduce red tape
Discussion: Politico
Darryl Fears / Washington Post:   New Trump rules weaken wildlife protections
Henry J. Gomez / BuzzFeed News:
The Uneasiness Of Joe Biden's Presidential Campaign Is About More Than The Gaffes  —  DES MOINES — Joe Biden's fight for the soul of America often feels like a fight for the soul of Joe Biden.  —  His four-day swing through Iowa began with a confident rebuke of President Donald Trump's racist rhetoric.
Discussion: Vanity Fair, Mediaite and Daily Wire
RELATED:
Cameron Joseph / VICE:   Iowa Democrats Are Getting Nervous About Biden's Trail of Gaffes
Sydney Ember / New York Times:   Why Bernie Sanders Stood Out at the Iowa State Fair
Ben Kamisar / NBC News:
Tom Steyer spends big in race to make debate stage
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Associated Press:
Warren wows in Iowa as candidates' sprint to caucuses begins
Discussion: Jewish Insider
Tristan Justice / The Federalist:
The Biden Gaffe Machine: A Running List Of Joe Biden's Best Slip-Ups
New York Times:
U.S. Officials Suspect New Nuclear Missile in Explosion That Killed 7 Russians  —  American intelligence officials are racing to understand a mysterious explosion that released radiation off the coast of northern Russia last week, apparently during the test of a new type of nuclear-propelled …
Francesca Bacardi / Page Six:
Sarah Silverman fired from new movie for blackface photo  —  Sarah Silverman revealed that she was recently fired from a movie over an old photo of her in blackface.  —  She said the photo, which was snapped on the set of “The Sarah Silverman Show” in 2007, recently resurfaced and caught the eye of the film's producers.
German Lopez / Vox:
Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris's controversial Michael Brown tweets, explained  —  Elizabeth Warren delivers a campaign speech at the Des Moines Register Political Soapbox at the Iowa State Fair on August 10, 2019.  Alex Wong/Getty Images  —  The tweets claimed a police officer “murdered” Michael Brown.
RELATED:
Sharyl Attkisson / The Hill:
Time to retire Ferguson narrative
Discussion: RedState and twitchy.com
Sarah McGregor / Bloomberg:
U.S. Budget Deficit Already Exceeds Last Year's Total Figure  —  The U.S. fiscal deficit has already exceeded the full-year figure for last year, as spending growth outpaces revenue.  —  The gap grew to $866.8 billion in the first 10 months of the fiscal year, up 27% from the same period a year earlier …
Discussion: Axios
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Jeff Cox / CNBC:
The US budget deficit is up 27% and getting closer to $1 trillion  —  The U.S. budget deficit widened another $119.7 billion, good for a 27% increase over a year ago, according to government figures released Monday.  —  Total outlays increased by 22.8% over last July as receipts grew 11.6%.
Discussion: Mediaite
Harry Reid / New York Times:
The Filibuster Is Suffocating the Will of the American People  —  To save our country's future, Democrats must abolish this arcane Senate rule.  —  Mr. Reid is a former Senate majority leader from Nevada.  —  I am not an expert on all of government, but I do know something about the United States Senate.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Politico
Martha C. White / NBC News:
Trump's trade war could spark a recession, Goldman Sachs warns  —  Economists are increasingly worried that the president may have set in motion a chain of events that can't be controlled.  —  President Donald Trump's trade war with China is increasing the odds that America will be thrown into a recession …
RELATED:
Michael Schuman / The Atlantic:
Hong Kong Shows the Flaws in China's Zero-Sum Worldview
Discussion: BBC, Reason and Quartz
Jessica Bursztynsky / CNBC:
GOP Sen. Rick Scott: Americans should get tax cuts in return for tariffs paid on Chinese goods
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Trump administration tightens rule that could deny green cards, citizenship to immigrants who need public assistance
Discussion: The Crime Report and Daily Kos
Gabby Orr / Politico:
'Using the Lord's name in vain': Evangelicals chafe at Trump's blasphemy  —  Paul Hardesty didn't pay much attention to President Donald Trump's campaign rally in Greenville, N.C., last month until a third concerned constituent rang his cellphone.  —  The residents of Hardesty's district …
Will Sommer / The Daily Beast:
Did a Far-Right Star Recruit Jacob Wohl to Terrorize Women?  —  “I'll make it my mission to torture you so much that you end up killing yourself,” reads a text message from a phone number belonging to notorious smear merchant Jacob Wohl.  —  A perennial House candidate's alleged harassment …
Discussion: Contemptor and Mediaite
New York Times:
How YouTube Radicalized Brazil  —  NITERÓI, Brazil — When Matheus Dominguez was 16, YouTube recommended a video that changed his life.  —  He was in a band in Niterói, a beach-ringed city in Brazil, and practiced guitar by watching tutorials online.
Kylie Atwood / CNN:
Bolton pushes for Brexit, telling UK officials ‘we are with you’  —  London (CNN)National security adviser John Bolton voiced the Trump administration's full-throated support of the new British prime minister's push to leave the European Union, saying the US even supports a no-deal …
Discussion: Political Wire
RELATED:
Vivian Salama / Wall Street Journal:   Bolton Says U.S. Strongly Backs Brexit Even if No EU Deal Is Reached
Kate Taylor / Business Insider:
Starbucks is bringing back the Pumpkin Spice Latte on its earliest launch date ever  — Starbucks' Pumpkin Spice Latte will return to menus on Tuesday, August 27, according to employees at the coffee giant.  — An August 27 debut would be the earliest Pumpkin Spice Latte launch date for Starbucks.
Discussion: The Week and WTVR-TV
Dean Obeidallah / The Daily Beast:
Trump's (Almost) All-White GOP Emerges  —  We know the president prefers white people.  But a look at the percentages on his appointments gives new meaning to the phrase “White House.”  —  BEAST INSIDE  —  After the 2014 midterm election, there was a sense the GOP was becoming …
CNN:
Trump is impeaching himself  —  Julian Zelizer is a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University and author, with Kevin Kruse, of the new book “Fault Lines: A History of the United States Since 1974.”  Follow him on Twitter at @julianzelizer.  The opinions expressed in this commentary are his own.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Washington Post:
As overdoses soared, nearly 35 billion opioids — half of distributed pills — handled by 15 percent of pharmacies
The Daily Beast:
NYT Top Editor: Trump Racism Headline Was a ‘F*cking Mess’
Discussion: Mediaite
Alexia Fernández Campbell / Vox:
The US labor shortage, explained
Discussion: Mother Jones
Hadas Gold / CNN:
Russia warns Google against election ‘interference’
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Patrick Svitek / The Texas Tribune:
Latina organizer Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez enters Democratic primary to challenge Cornyn
Discussion: YouTube
Timothy Johnson / Media Matters for America:
On Sinclair, Sebastian Gorka compared gun regulation to the Holocaust
Michael Balsamo / Associated Press:
Barr defends police, takes swipe at progressive prosecutors
Discussion: Splinter
KTVU-TV:
San Jose mayor proposes 1st-in-nation insurance requirement for gun owners
Discussion: Fox News
 Earlier Items: 
Eugene Scott / Washington Post:
Anger at being labeled racist is the new ‘cultural anxiety’ for Trump supporters
Discussion: twitchy.com and Towleroad Gay News
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
North Carolina's 9th Congressional District has gotten worse for Republicans
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
This is how to respond to Trump's conspiratorial lunacy
Vann R. Newkirk II / The Atlantic:
The Great Land Robbery
Harmeet Dhillon / Fox News:
Hey, California, Trump has a right to run for reelection. The Constitution is crystal clear
Jonathan Capehart / Washington Post:
What I learned about the Democrats at a family barbecue in North Carolina