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10:50 AM ET, November 12, 2019

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 Top Items: 
Axios:
GOP to argue Trump's “state of mind” on impeachment  —  Confronted with a mountain of damaging facts heading into tomorrow's opening of the public phase of impeachment, House Republicans plan to argue that “the President's state of mind” was exculpatory.  —  The state of play …
RELATED:
Axios:
Scoop: GOP outlines theory of impeachment defense in memo to members  —  Republicans on the three House committees conducting the Trump-Ukraine investigation have settled on “four key pieces of evidence” that they claim will undermine Democrats' arguments for why the president should be impeached …
Michelle Goldberg / New York Times:
To Exonerate Trump, Republicans Embrace Russian Disinformation  —  In this week's impeachment hearings, expect a lot of G.O.P. conspiracy theorizing.  —  On Friday, House investigators released the transcript of the former National Security Council official Fiona Hill's testimony from last month.
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Joel B. Pollak / Breitbart:
‘Impeachment Inquiry’ Witness: Trump Lectured Previous Ukraine President About Corruption, Too
Discussion: Associated Press and The Hill
Juleanna Glover / Politico:
There's a Surprisingly Plausible Path to Removing Trump From Office  —  By most everyone's judgment, the Senate will not vote to remove President Donald Trump from office if the House impeaches him.  But what if senators could vote on impeachment by secret ballot?
New York Times:
Behind Trump's Dealings With Turkey: Sons-in-Law Married to Power  —  Informal relationships between family members help explain the course of diplomacy between the White House and Turkey's leader.  —  ISTANBUL — Behind President Trump's accommodating attitude toward Turkey is an unusual back channel …
RELATED:
Carlotta Gall / New York Times:
Erdogan Warns That Turkey Will Keep Deporting ISIS Detainees  —  The Turkish leader is preparing to travel to Washington to meet with President Trump.  —  ISTANBUL — President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey warned Western nations that he would continue to release people who were thought …
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
ANALYSIS: Democrats have a Col. Vindman problem  —  House Democrats conducted their impeachment interviews in secret, but Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman still emerged as star of the show.  Appearing at his October 29 deposition in full dress uniform, the decorated Army officer …
Richard Wolf / USA Today:
Supreme Court refuses to block lawsuit against gun manufacturer brought by Sandy Hook families  —  WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court refused Tuesday to shield a major arms manufacturer from potential liability in the 2012 school shooting that left 26 students and educators dead in Newtown, Conn.
Discussion: Axios
RELATED:
Associated Press:
Supreme Court lets Sandy Hook shooting lawsuit go forward
Discussion: Political Wire and The Guardian
Joe Sonka / USA Today:
Thousands of Twitter ‘bots’ targeted Kentucky with fake news on election night  —  LOUISVILLE — As the final votes trickled in during last week's Kentucky gubernatorial election, a network of automated Twitter accounts suddenly sprang into action.  —  They spread misinformation about the election …
Adam Cancryn / Politico:
Federal health contract funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars to Trump allies  —  At least eight former White House, presidential transition and campaign officials for President Donald Trump were hired as outside contractors to the federal health department at the cost of hundreds …
Discussion: Raw Story and Political Wire
Washington Post:
White House infighting flares amid impeachment inquiry  —  A dispute erupts between Mulvaney and Cipollone camps over how to counter House Democrats' impeachment push  —  The White House's bifurcated and disjointed response to Democrats' impeachment inquiry has been fueled …
Discussion: NBC News, The Hill and Foreign Policy
RELATED:
Politico:
Mick Mulvaney withdraws attempt to join suit over impeachment testimony
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
RELATED:
Luke Broadwater / Baltimore Sun:
Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, widow of Baltimore Rep. Elijah Cummings, will seek his seat in Congress  —  Maryland Democratic Party Chairwoman Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, the widow of U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings, is running for her husband's seat, arguing Monday she is the best option to carry out his legacy and continue his vision.
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Maya Rockeymoore Cummings to step down as Maryland Democratic Party chair
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
Deval Patrick, Ex-Governor of Massachusetts, Is Considering 2020 Presidential Race  —  Days after Michael Bloomberg began taking steps to enter the 2020 campaign, Mr. Patrick's conversations with top Democrats are the latest evidence of an unsettled presidential primary field.
Michael Edison Hayden / Southern Poverty Law Center:
Stephen Miller's Affinity for White Nationalism Revealed in Leaked Emails  —  In the run-up to the 2016 election, White House senior policy adviser Stephen Miller promoted white nationalist literature, pushed racist immigration stories and obsessed over the loss of Confederate symbols …
Discussion: The Guardian
Edmund DeMarche / Fox News:
DACA heads to Supreme Court and all eyes are on Chief Justice John Roberts  —  The Supreme Court on Tuesday is set to take up the Trump administration's plan to end protections that shield about 660,000 immigrants from deportation, and legal experts say all eyes will be on the likely tie-breaker Chief Justice John Roberts.
RELATED:
Molly Jong-Fast / The Daily Beast:
Donald Trump Jr.'s Series of Unfortunate Book Tour Events  —  “Triggered” was supposed to take MAGA-world by storm.  Instead the storm has come from Junior.  —  BEAST INSIDE  —  The president's large adult son thought a book would be an easy rollout to a political career …
Nate Cohn / New York Times:
Five Polling Results That May Change the Way You Think About Electability  —  Our battleground surveys had some outcomes that upended the conventional wisdom.  —  Democratic voters have a clear ideological choice in this year's presidential primaries.  —  But if there is any lesson …
Discussion: The Week and FiveThirtyEight
CBS News:
Poll finds negative views of Democrats' and Trump's handling of impeachment inquiry  —  Congressional Democrats and Republicans each appear to face a challenge moving public opinion on impeachment as public hearings begin, since many Americans say their views are already locked in.
Martyn McLaughlin / Scotsman:
Donald Trump's firm to pay £225,000 to Scottish Government to cover legal bills  —  Donald Trump's company is to pay the Scottish Government £225,000 to cover its legal bills after the US president's firm was defeated in a long-running and acrimonious court battle …
Discussion: Raw Story and Political Wire
Marietje Schaake / Financial Times:
Tech industry should not be deciding on political advertising  —  For a long time, regulators and lawmakers took a hands-off approach towards technology companies.  Initiatives to regulate the industry tended to be criticised as “stifling innovation” by lobbyists.
Discussion: The Guardian
Sara Carter / Sara A. Carter:
Horowitz Report Will Be Damning.  Criminal Referrals Likely.  —  Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz's much anticipated report on his investigation into the FBI's probe into President Trump's campaign is expected to be made public before Thanksgiving and the outcome …
Yoni Appelbaum / The Atlantic:
How America Ends  —  Democracy depends on the consent of the losers.  For most of the 20th century, parties and candidates in the United States have competed in elections with the understanding that electoral defeats are neither permanent nor intolerable.  The losers could accept the result …
Chris Kratzer / Cygnal:
Cygnal Poll: Rispone Closing the Gap With Edwards; LA Voters are Against Impeaching President Trump  —  WASHINGTON, DC - Just a few days until the election, a poll by Cygnal, a national polling and research firm, shows Republican gubernatorial challenger Eddie Rispone is closing the gap …
Discussion: Political Wire
Washington Post:
Maryland and Virginia to rebuild and widen the American Legion Bridge, governors say  —  Virginia and Maryland will partner to rebuild and widen the American Legion bridge in a billion-dollar project to relieve congestion at the Washington region's worst traffic bottleneck, the states' governors announced Tuesday.
Kevin Liptak / CNN:
‘Anonymous’ book excerpts describe Trump's score-settling and toxic West Wing  —  Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump oversees a toxic West Wing and attempts to use his office to settle scores — including with the state of California and former Vice President Joe Biden …
Dan Witters / Gallup:
Millions in U.S. Lost Someone Who Couldn't Afford Treatment  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — More than 13% of American adults — or about 34 million people — report knowing of at least one friend or family member in the past five years who died after not receiving needed medical treatment …
Discussion: HuffPost
Jim Hanson / The Federalist:
Alex Vindman Is Living, Breathing Proof That The Deep State Exists, And It Is Corrupt  —  Democrats and the Deep State have elevated more policy disagreements to what amounts to an attempted coup.  Just listen to Alex Vindman.  —  Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman is living, breathing, testifying proof the Deep State exists.
Joyce White Vance / TIME:
Why All of Trump's Defenses Against Impeachment Are Doomed to Fail  —  We've reached the part of this tired charade where even those who've tried to escape the obvious conclusion now know that the emperor has no clothes.  The mounting evidence from career diplomats, and Trump's own political appointees …
Ron Bousso / Reuters:
Former U.S. top diplomat Rice concerned by shadow diplomacy on Ukraine  —  ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Condoleezza Rice, a secretary of state under Republican President George W. Bush, said on Monday reports of an unofficial U.S. policy being carried out in Ukraine were “deeply troubling.”
Discussion: The Hill, Daily Kos and Washington Post
Mehdi Hasan / The Intercept:
Why Did Chuck Schumer Call an Islamophobe His “Principled” Friend?  —  Hurrah!  One of the leading bigots on Capitol Hill is retiring.  Right-wing Republican Peter King announced Monday that he will not be standing for reelection to the House of Representatives in 2020.
The Hill:
Democrats sharpen their message on impeachment  —  In a last-minute move, Democrats are shifting their impeachment rhetoric and talking points just days before the first public hearings into President Trump's handling of foreign policy in Ukraine.  —  The televised hearings mark a crucial phase …
Discussion: Politico and Breitbart
 
 
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 More Items: 
BBC:
General election 2019: ‘Cyber-attack’ on Labour Party digital platforms
New York Times:
Deal With Taliban Will Free American and Australian Professors, Officials Say
Greg Bluestein / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
AJC POLL: Georgians support impeachment inquiry, split on Trump ouster
Mehdi / National Nurses United:
National Nurses United to Endorse Bernie Sanders
Discussion: Common Dreams
Dylan Lovan / Associated Press:
McConnell: Bevin ‘had a good 4 years,’ but likely lost
Discussion: HuffPost
Megh Wright / Vulture:
John Oliver Is Ready for Another Battle With Coal Company CEO Bob Murray
Carlin Becker / Washington Examiner:
‘Decapitation’: Joe diGenova compares alleged whistleblower Eric Ciaramella to Lincoln assassin
 Earlier Items: 
Karma Allen / ABC News:
Former President Jimmy Carter admitted to hospital for brain surgery
The Daily Beast:
Caught on Tape: National Enquirer Boss' Secret Plan to Pay R. Kelly $1M
Anne Gearan / Washington Post:
Rex Tillerson denies he tried to undermine Trump, says Nikki Haley was ‘rarely present’ at meetings