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1:55 PM ET, January 16, 2020


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Lev Parnas, Key Player in Ukraine Affair, Completes Break With Trump and Giuliani  —  In an interview, he said the president knew everything about the effort to push Ukraine to investigate the Bidens and the 2016 election.  —  WASHINGTON — Lev Parnas, the Soviet-born businessman who played …
Christopher Miller / BuzzFeed News:
Ukraine Is Investigating Whether Marie Yovanovitch Was Under Surveillance By Rudy Giuliani's Associates  —  KYIV — Ukrainian authorities said Thursday they had opened a criminal investigation into whether the former US ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch was under surveillance by associates …
Justine Coleman / The Hill:
Five takeaways from Parnas's Maddow interview  —  Rudy Giuliani's associate Lev Parnas revealed new accusations against President Trump and his administration in an interview with MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Wednesday night.  —  A day after the House published evidence provided by Parnas …
Reed Richardson / Mediaite:
Chris Cuomo, Kellyanne Conway Renew Rivalry in Epic Fight Over Impeachment: ‘You Want That Moment to Go Viral’  —  CNN host Chris Cuomo and presidential spokesperson Kellyanne Conway reprised their ongoing, fractious on-air relationship in a long, rambling segment where almost no actual questions …
Discussion: The Week
NBC News:
FBI visits Robert Hyde's home and office after he's swept into Ukraine scheme  —  Impeachment investigators released texts earlier this week suggesting Hyde was tracking the movements of the then-U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.  —  The FBI paid a visit to Republican congressional candidate …
Jason Easley / POLITICUSUSA:
Lev Parnas Just Took Down Attorney General William Barr  —  Lev Parnas said that Attorney General William Barr was basically on the team for the Ukraine plot and trying to get dirt on Joe Biden.  —  Parnas was asked about Barr by Rachel Maddow and said, “Not only Rudy Giuliani, Victoria, and Joe, they were all best friends.
Richard Pérez-Peña / New York Times:
Ukraine Investigates Reports of Surveillance of Marie Yovanovitch
Discussion: ABC News, UPI and Daily Kos
Jonathan Bernstein / Bloomberg:
Republicans Should Fear the Unknown on Trump Impeachment
Discussion: New York Times and The Week
Jim Geraghty / National Review:
Post-Debate Dramatics  —  What Kind of President Trusts …
Discussion: CNN, The Week and
Washington Post:
GOP figure who said he tracked U.S. ambassador was previously involuntarily committed, records show
Discussion: The Editorial Board
Phil Helsel / NBC News:
Giuliani associate Parnas says Trump ‘knew exactly what was going on’
NBC News:
Ukraine launches probe into alleged surveillance of former U.S. envoy
Washington Post:
White House hold on Ukraine aid violated federal law, congressional watchdog says  —  The White House violated federal law in its hold on security aid to Ukraine last year, according to a decision by a congressional watchdog released on Thursday and reviewed by The Washington Post.
White House violated the law by freezing Ukraine aid, GAO says  —  The White House budget office violated the law when it froze U.S. military aid to Ukraine, the Government Accountability Office concluded in a new report.  —  President Donald Trump ordered the hold on the critical security assistance …
Jeremy Herb / CNN:
Government watchdog concludes Trump administration broke law by withholding Ukraine aid
Discussion: The Root
Dareh Gregorian / NBC News:   Trump administration violated the law by withholding Ukraine aid, Government Accountability Office says
Adam Goldman / New York Times:
F.B.I. Arrests Suspected Members of Neo-Nazi Group Before Virginia Gun Rally  —  The three men had obtained guns and discussed traveling to Virginia for protests against new gun control measures, officials said.  —  WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. has arrested three men suspected of being members …
Washington Post:
FBI arrests alleged members of white supremacist group ‘the Base’  —  The FBI has arrested alleged members of a white supremacist group on federal gun charges and other alleged crimes, according to people familiar with the matter.  —  The charges, expected to be unsealed Thursday …
Amber Phillips / Washington Post:
About that oath of ‘impartiality’ senators will take  —  Before the trial part of President Trump's impeachment case even begins, senators take an oath of impartiality, administered by the chief justice of the United States.  It goes something like this, according to past impeachment trials:
Discussion: Raw Story and The Hill
Marianne LeVine / Politico:
Senate kicks off historic Trump impeachment trial
Discussion: NBC News
ABC News:
Trump impeachment trial live updates: Senate accepts articles
Discussion: NBC News
Stephen Ohlemacher / Associated Press:
AP Explains: New rules could muddle results of Iowa caucuses  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — For the first time, the Iowa Democratic Party will report three sets of results from the party's presidential caucuses.  And there is no guarantee that all three will show the same winner.
Reid Wilson / The Hill:   Iowa Democrats view flawed front-runners with anxiety
Alexandra Jaffe / Associated Press:
New Iowa caucus rules could spark clashing claims of victory
Discussion: Bloomberg and Politico
CBS News:
D.C. Fire Department recruits might be making “white power” hand gesture in photo  —  Washington — A photo of fire department recruits possibly using a racist hand gesture is being investigated by District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services.  CBS Washington, D.C. affiliate WUSA-TV reports …
Discussion: Twitchy
Becket Adams / Washington Examiner:   Here we go again: CBS News falsely accuses firefighters of flashing ‘white power’ symbol
Brian Bennett / TIME:
Inside Jared Kushner's Unusual White House Role  —  Jared Kushner's White House office is a shrine to his own influence.  Gold-framed accolades from his father-in-law hang on the walls, written in thick black Sharpie in President Donald Trump's spiky hand.  To Jared, Great job on Mexico.
Discussion: Mediaite and The Hill
Rashaan Ayesh / Axios:
Senate passes USMCA trade deal  —  The Senate voted 89-10 Thursday to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), designed to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.  —  Why it matters: The deal now heads to President Trump's desk for his signature, allowing the president …
Discussion: Associated Press
Sabrina Rodriguez / Politico:
Senate passes USMCA, but much work remains
Discussion: Breitbart
Dwight Garner / New York Times:
A Meticulous Account of Trump's Tenure Reads Like a Comic Horror Story  —  The essence of irony, Henry Fowler wrote in “A Dictionary of Modern English Usage,” is that it “postulates a double audience” — one that's in on the joke, and another that isn't.  The title of Philip Rucker …
Discussion: Political Wire
Nick Reynolds / Casper Star-Tribune:
Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney announces she will not run for Senate  —  Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney announced Thursday she will not be making a bid for the U.S. Senate, initiating a reelection campaign some predict could one day lead to her becoming speaker of the house.
Exclusive: Warren accused Sanders in tense post-debate exchange of calling her a ‘liar’ on national TV  —  Sanders responded that it was Warren who called him a liar and said they should not talk about it right then.  —  When the CNN/Des Moines Register debate concluded …
David Catron / The American Spectator:
Sanders Supporters Shocked to Find Bias at CNN
Wall Street Journal:
The Bloomberg Effect: Huge Spending Transforms 2020 Campaign Dynamics  —  Michael Bloomberg has spent roughly three-quarters of the amount spent by all other presidential campaigns combined on ads  —  The presidential election is 10 months away, but Michael Bloomberg's long-shot campaign is running like it's already late October.
Burgess Everett / Politico:
Rand Paul threatens fellow Republicans with explosive witness votes  —  Sen. Rand Paul is waging a fierce campaign to prevent the Senate from hearing witnesses in Donald Trump's impeachment trial, vowing to force tough votes on his fellow Republicans if they break with the president or back Democrats' demands for new evidence.
Associated Press:
AP visits immigration courts across US, finds nonstop chaos  —  LUMPKIN, Ga. (AP) — In a locked, guarded courtroom in a compound surrounded by razor wire, Immigration Judge Jerome Rothschild waits — and stalls.  —  A Spanish interpreter is running late because of a flat tire.
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 More Items: 
Lolita C. Baldor / Associated Press:
US military training for Saudi students could resume soon
Ronn Blitzer / Fox News:
Iraqi refugee launches GOP challenge to Ilhan Omar: ‘She needs to be stopped’
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Jessica Moulite / The Root:
Exclusive: Rep. Ayanna Pressley Reveals Beautiful Bald Head and Discusses Alopecia for the First Time
Discussion: The Hill
Jennifer Smith / Daily Mail:
EXCLUSIVE: Jeffrey Epstein had burst capillaries in his eyeballs after he died which pathologist tells …
Discussion: Big League Politics and Breitbart
Julian E. Zelizer / USA Today:
Don't downplay Donald Trump's toxic tweets. A president's words are never a sideshow.
 Earlier Items: 
Paresh Dave / Reuters:
Google cutting web cookies, ending lucrative tracking tool for advertisers
Discussion: Politico, VICE and Ad Hominem
Mike Tipping / Beacon:
Collins lies about Sackler contribution, won't return Eli Lilly money
Fredreka Schouten / CNN:
Koch network plans its biggest election-year effort in 2020
Discussion: The Hill
Lia Russell / New Republic:
The Silicon Valley Economy Is Here. And It's a Nightmare.
Scott Rosenberg / Axios:
Russia has already won the fight to undermine U.S. elections
Martin Matishak / Politico:
Intel agencies push to close threats hearing after Trump outburst
Discussion: CNN and The Week