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12:55 PM ET, December 16, 2019


 Top Items: 
William Webster / New York Times:
I Headed the F.B.I. and C.I.A. There's a Dire Threat to the Country I Love.  —  And President Trump and William P. Barr are wrong to say that it is.  —  Mr. Webster is a former federal judge and the former director of both the F.B.I. and the C.I.A.  —  The privilege of being the only American …
Discussion: Mediaite and Raw Story
The Crime Report:
Ex-FBI Chief Webster Assails Trump's ‘Slur’ on Bureau  —  The FBI's integrity is “tragically, under assault from too many people whose job it should be to protect” it, writes former FBI and CIA director William Webster in the New York Times.  Webster, a Republican, says he is “deeply disturbed” …
Elissa Slotkin / Detroit Free Press:
Rep. Elissa Slotkin: How I reached my decision on impeachment  —  (Photo: Nick King/Lansing State Journal)  —  On September 23, I wrote in an op-ed column for the Free Press that I believed President Trump's actions regarding Ukraine, by his own admission, warranted the opening of an impeachment inquiry.
Jonathan Cohn / HuffPost:
Key House Democrat From Swing District Says She'll Support Impeachment
Sarah Owermohle / Politico:
Democrats box in Republicans on drug pricing
Discussion: NBC News, Breitbart and Raw Story
NBC News:
House Judiciary Committee publishes full impeachment report  —  In making its case that President Donald Trump abused his power and obstructed Congress, the committee concludes, “President Trump has realized the Framers' worst nightmare.”  —  The House Judiciary Committee released its full report …
Wall Street Journal:
More On-the-Fence Democrats Back Impeachment of Trump
Discussion: Politico, Washington Post and Disrn
Elizabeth Drew / New York Times:
The Impeachment Process Is Barely Functioning
Discussion: Check Your Fact and CNN
Domenico Montanaro / NPR:
NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll: Biden, Sanders Lead 2020 Democratic Race  —  Former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders lead the crowded Democratic field, pulling in together about half of the support of Democratic voters and Democratic-leaning independents, according to the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll.
NBC News:
There are two ways to look at Trump's unchanging poll numbers on impeachment
Associated Press:   Turbulence shakes Democrats going into final debate of 2019
Julia Davis / The Daily Beast:
Russia's State TV Calls Trump Their ‘Agent’  —  Russian commentators note, rightly, that “sooner or later, the Democrats will come back into power,” and they're already joking about offering Trump asylum.  —  Sometimes a picture doesn't have to be worth a thousand words.  Just a few will do.
Discussion: Raw Story
Nathaniel Weixel / The Hill:
Congress poised to ban tobacco sales to anyone under 21  —  Congress appears poised to permanently prohibit the sale of tobacco to anyone under the age of 21.  —  The provision is expected to be included in a final year-end spending deal, according to a senior Democratic aide.
Burgess Everett / Politico:   Congress on the brink of banning tobacco sales to anyone under 21
Nancy Cook / Politico:
Trump's impeachment chaos evolves into a White House strategy
Discussion: VICE, Breitbart and Raw Story
Ruby Cramer / BuzzFeed News:
You Don't Know Bernie  —  i.  —  He doesn't bother explaining why he's here.  —  This is early on, late May, a few months into the race, but he is already of the belief that he is doing something extraordinary with his presidential campaign — something that's never been done before.
David Siders / Politico:   What Would the Bernie Presidency Really Look Like?
Saira Asher / BBC:
Barack Obama: Women are better leaders than men  —  If women ran every country in the world there would be a general improvement in living standards and outcomes, former US President Barack Obama has said.  —  Speaking in Singapore, he said women aren't perfect, but are “indisputably better” than men.
Carly Fiorina says it is ‘vital’ Trump be impeached, but doesn't rule out voting for him in 2020  —  Carly Fiorina: It is “vital” Trump be impeached  —  (CNN)Former Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina said she thinks it is “vital” that President Donald Trump be impeached …
Discussion: Axios, Breitbart, The Hill and Raw Story
David Wasserman / The Cook Political Report:
Van Drew Party Switch Moves NJ-02 from Toss Up to Lean Republican  —  Freshman Democratic Rep. Jeff Van Drew (NJ-02) set off a political earthquake over the weekend when he informed his staff that he plans to become a Republican after meeting with President Trump and losing support …
Sarah Ferris / Politico:
Staff exodus in Van Drew office after party switch
Alexi McCammond / Axios:
Focus group: These Obama/Trump voters are just Trump voters now  —  SAGINAW, Mich. — Some swing voters here who voted for Barack Obama and then Donald Trump are firmly in Trump's camp now — and they're sick of impeachment.  —  Why it matters: The two-plus hour conversation revealed major warning signs …
Discussion: Breitbart
Karoun Demirjian / Washington Post:
Trump goes after Pelosi's teeth as the House gears up for impeachment vote
A.B. Stoddard / The Bulwark:
Pete Williams / NBC News:
Supreme Court won't disturb ruling against anti-homeless law  —  By refusing to hear the case, the court leaves in place a lower court ruling that said Idaho's camping ban violated the Constitution.  —  WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday left a lower court ruling in place …
Discussion: Washington Post
David G. Savage / Los Angeles Times:   Supreme Court lets stand ruling that protects homeless who sleep on sidewalk
Robert Robb / USA Today:
Russia collusion investigation did become a witch hunt, the inspector general report shows  —  The investigation quickly got off track and ran into dead ends.  It should have never led to a special counsel investigation that convulsed the country for two years.
Guy Benson / Townhall:
Devastating: Chris Wallace Grills, Dismantles Comey on IG Report
Daniel Lippman / Politico:
Why Trump's path to reelection is totally plausible  —  If President Donald Trump wins reelection in 2020, there will not be lots of people — unlike in 2016 — gasping with surprise at the outcome.  But there are plenty of people who remain utterly bewildered by the prospect.
Discussion: Raw Story
Jeff Stein / Greenwich Time:
2018 corporate tax rate plunged to 11.3% under Trump law; 99% of biggest firms paid no federal tax at all  —  About 400 of America's largest corporations paid an average federal tax rate of about 11 percent on their profits last year, about half the official rate established under President …
Jeff Stein / Washington Post:   Corporations paid 11.3 percent tax rate last year, in steep drop under President Trump's law
Washington Post:
President Trump has made 15,413 false or misleading claims over 1,055 days  —  In 2017, President Trump made nearly 1,999 false or misleading claims.  In 2018, he added another 5,689, for a total of 7,688.  —  Now, with still a few weeks left in 2019, the president already has more than doubled …
Discussion: The Root and Raw Story
Agence France-Presse:
Holocaust architect's grave dug up in Berlin  —  Berlin (AFP) - The grave of a top Nazi who helped plan the Holocaust and was assassinated by British-trained agents during World War II has been dug up in Berlin, German police said on Monday.  —  The grave of Reinhard Heydrich was …
Just Security:
Federal Criminal Offenses and the Impeachment of Donald J. Trump  —  Table of Contents  —  Editor's note from co-editor-in-chief Ryan Goodman: This collection of leading legal experts discusses a range of federal crimes that apply to the conduct of President Donald Trump …
Alexander Heffner / USA Today:
Trump impeachment: Pelosi reclaims the Constitution for liberals and today's America  —  The Trump impeachment is spotlighting the Founders' fears of foreign influence on US security and leaders, and turning liberals into originalists.  —  There is one indisputable fact about the impeachment …
Ramesh Ponnuru / Bloomberg:
New Defenses of Trump Are as Bad as the Old Ones  —  A Republican congressman who kept an open mind is now making nonsensical arguments for the president.  —  Chip Roy, a Republican House member from Texas, has handled the Ukraine controversy in an unusual way: He listened to the testimony …
Gerald F. Seib / Wall Street Journal:
In Impeachment, Tribalization of Politics Becomes Almost Complete  —  Trump ran with little use for the Republican establishment, but enters the House impeachment debate with virtually complete support from that establishment  —  When Donald Trump launched his presidential bid in 2016 …
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 More Items: 
Mexico Escalates Showdown With U.S. Over Trade Rules Enforcement
Alexander C. Kaufman / HuffPost:
Progressive In Colorado Senate Race Raises Eyebrows With Apocalyptic Climate Ad
Discussion: Denver Post
Patrick Svitek / The Texas Tribune:
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee endorses MJ Hegar in crowded U.S. Senate primary
Jeffrey Gettleman / New York Times:
Protests Spread Across India Over Divisive Citizenship Law
Discussion: Common Dreams and The Diplomat
Representative Chris Pappas:
Statement From Congressman Pappas On Articles Of Impeachment
Discussion: BizPac Review and Breitbart
Adam Entous / New Yorker:
The Ukrainian Prosecutor Behind Trump's Impeachment
Discussion: Washington Post
 Earlier Items: 
Gustavo Solis / San Diego Union-Tribune:
Remain in Mexico has a 0.1 percent asylum grant rate
Julie Carr Smyth / Associated Press:
AP Exclusive: Thousands of Ohio absentee applications denied
Discussion: The Hill
Robert Samuels / Washington Post:
Inside Pete Buttigieg's years-long, and often clumsy, quest to understand the black experience
Discussion: Politico
John Harwood / CNBC:
Elizabeth Warren: The government listens too much 'to rich guys who don't want to pay taxes'
Jay Root / The Texas Tribune:
George P. Bush failed to disclose financial interests in nearly a dozen companies
Michael Tesler / Washington Post:
The impeachment hearings haven't changed public opinion. This explains why.
Discussion: The Atlantic
Rebecca Rosenberg / Page Six:
Harvey Weinstein: I deserve pat on back when it comes to women