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5:30 PM ET, May 18, 2020

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Glenn Platt / Washington Post:
Trump's purge just got much more corrupt.  Here's what's coming next.  —  President Trump's abrupt decision to remove the inspector general of the State Department constitutes the latest in a string of corrupt efforts to remove public servants who prioritize real oversight and accountability over protecting Trump at all costs.
RELATED:
Carol Morello / Washington Post:
Pompeo says he didn't know fired inspector general was investigating him  —  Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed Monday that he asked President Trump to fire the State Department inspector general because his work was “undermining” the department's mission, but he declined to describe any specific concerns.
Zachary Cohen / CNN:
Democrats claim watchdog fired by Trump was probing Pompeo's fast-tracking of $8 billion Saudi arms sale  —  Washington (CNN)The State Department inspector general fired by President Donald Trump on Friday, Steve Linick, had nearly completed an investigation into Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's decision …
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Hypocrisy watch: Republicans who championed inspectors general under Obama stand by as Trump purges them  —  When White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows first joined Congress in 2013, he said he did not even know what inspectors general were.  By the following year, though …
Washington Post:
Fired inspector general was examining whether Pompeo had a staffer walk his dog, handle dry cleaning, official says
CNBC:
Trump says he takes hydroxychloroquine to prevent coronavirus infection even though it is unproven as a treatment  — President Donald Trump said Monday that he has been taking anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine for over a week to prevent coronavirus infection even though it is not yet a proven treatment.
Discussion: Raw Story and Political Wire
RELATED:
Associated Press:   Trump says he's taking malaria drug in case he gets virus
Josh Feldman / Mediaite:
A Stunned Neil Cavuto Warns About Hydroxychloroquine After Trump Says He's Taking the Drug …
Washington Post:   Live updates: Trump says he is taking hydroxychloroquine to protect against coronavirus, dismissing safety concerns
Libby Cathey / ABC News:   Trump taking hydroxychloraquine, unproven drug he touted for COVID-19
Washington Post:
Barr installs top DOJ aide, prosecutor of Trump's Mar-a-Lago trespasser, as deputy over U.S. prosecutors in Washington  —  Attorney General William P. Barr has installed a new top deputy over the federal prosecutor's office for Washington, raising concerns that a key U.S. attorney's office …
Discussion: Axios and Raw Story
RELATED:
CNN:
Trump to nominate new top prosecutor for Washington, DC
Discussion: Raw Story and Florida Phoenix
Michael Balsamo / Associated Press:
Source: Trump admin. to name new DEA head, US attorney in DC
Discussion: Politico and The Hill
Alayna Treene / Axios:
McConnell taps Rubio as acting chairman of Senate Intelligence Committee  —  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced Monday that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will serve as the acting chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee while a federal investigation into Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) is ongoing.
RELATED:
Joan E Greve / The Guardian:
Democrats feel tide turning their way in battle to flip US Senate
Discussion: Raw Story
Ro Khanna / The Boston Globe:   Biden can channel FDR by choosing Elizabeth Warren as vice president
David M. Drucker / Washington Examiner:
McConnell-aligned PAC to spend $10M in Montana as danger to Senate majority grows
Discussion: The Hill
Jason Wilson / The Guardian:
US lockdown protests may have spread virus widely, cellphone data suggests  —  Devices associated with protesters travelled up to hundreds of miles after rallies where few precautions were taken  —  Cellphone location data suggests that demonstrators at anti-lockdown protests …
Discussion: Raw Story and POLITICUSUSA
Yaron Steinbuch / New York Post:
Man who called coronavirus ‘fake crisis’ gets infected, issues warning  —  A Florida man who initially believed the coronavirus is a “fake crisis” that was “blown out of proportion” is now hospitalized along with his wife — and is sounding a cautionary note about the deadly bug.
Discussion: NBC News and KFOR-TV
Denise Grady / New York Times:
Moderna Coronavirus Vaccine Trial Shows Promising Early Results  —  The company said its preliminary test in 8 healthy volunteers was safe.  It is on an accelerated timetable to begin a larger human trial soon.  —  The first coronavirus vaccine to be tested in people appears to be safe …
RELATED:
Dexter Filkins / New Yorker:
The Twilight of the Iranian Revolution  —  For decades, Ayatollah Khamenei has professed enmity with America.  Now his regime is threatened from within the country.  —  One night last December, the chief resident physician at a hospital in the Iranian city of Gorgan was asked to consult on a baffling case …
Matt Zapotosky / Washington Post:
Barr says he does not expect Obama or Biden will be investigated by prosecutor reviewing 2016 Russia probe  —  Attorney General William P. Barr said Monday that he did not expect the prosecutor he handpicked to review the 2016 FBI investigation into President Trump's campaign …
Discussion: Daily Kos
RELATED:
Michael Wines / New York Times:
Freed by Court Ruling, Republicans Step Up Effort to Patrol Voting  —  Officials seek to recruit 50,000 poll watchers and spend millions to fight voter fraud.  Democrats say the real goal is to stop them from voting.  —  WASHINGTON — Six months before a presidential election in which turnout …
Discussion: Washington Post
Maxine Bernstein / Oregonian:
Judge finds Oregon governor's coronavirus restrictions on religious gatherings ‘null and void.’ Governor to seek state Supreme Court review  —  A Baker County judge on Monday ruled that Gov. Kate Brown's restrictions on religious gatherings were “null and void” because her emergency order amid …
RELATED:
Associated Press:
Judge rules that Oregon virus restrictions are invalid
Discussion: Twitchy
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
The media is helping Trump turn the bogus ‘Obamagate’ into the 2020 version of Clinton's emails  —  It's becoming clear that journalists never fully reckoned with the mistakes of 2016 campaign coverage.  We know this because they seem poised to repeat them.
RELATED:
Eric Boehlert / PRESS RUN:   CBS hired conspiracy reporter from Fox News, now she's pushing “Obamagate”
CNN:
Former Australian PM calls out the ‘Murdoch mafia’  —  Kevin Rudd, a former prime minister of Australia, argues that Rupert Murdoch's media empire is a “cancer on democracy” in the U.S., U.K. and Australia, using “mafia"-like intimidation tactics against dissenting voices.
Ben Lefebvre / Politico:
Biden White House would yank Keystone XL permit  —  The Monday statement is the first from Biden's campaign about how he would handle the project.  —  Former Vice President Joe Biden.  Sean Rayford/Getty Images  —  Joe Biden would rescind President Donald Trump's permit allowing …
RELATED:
Nancy Cook / Politico:
Trump's reopening troubles play out in his White House
Discussion: Breitbart and The Hill
Bloomberg:
Over 100 Million in China's Northeast Face Renewed Lockdown  — Conditions return to height of China's epidemic in February  — Frustration as restrictions tighten again after earlier easing  —  Some 108 million people in China's northeast region are being plunged back under lockdown conditions …
Discussion: Gizmodo
Associated Press:
Illinois Supreme Court disbars former Gov. Rod Blagojevich  —  CHICAGO (AP) — The Illinois Supreme Court officially disbarred former Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Monday, two months after a state panel recommended that the disgraced politician lose his law license.
Discussion: The Hill, Breitbart and WGN-TV
RELATED:
Ariane de Vogue / CNN:   House Democrats tell Supreme Court they need Mueller grand jury materials to decide on new articles of impeachment
detroitnews:
Whitmer: Reopening for Northern Michigan, U.P. includes bars, restaurants  —  Lansing — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Monday the partial reopening of Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula.  —  Starting Friday, two regions — 6 and 8, which include 17 northern Michigan counties …
RELATED:
Andrew O'Reilly / Fox News:
Defiant Whitmer slams anti-lockdown protests, questions political motives behind demonstrations
Discussion: Washington Times
Alex Isenstadt / Politico:
Swing-state Republicans warn Trump's reelection is on shaky ground  —  Donald Trump has made clear he will attack Joe Biden unmercifully in order to ensure the election is a choice between him and Joe Biden — rather than an up-or-down vote on the president's handling of the coronavirus.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Harmeet Kaur / CNN:
California is now offering support to undocumented immigrants, in the first relief fund of its kind
Andrew O'Reilly / Fox News:
Restaurant executives plead with Trump for more flexibility with PPP loans amid coronavirus pandemic
Discussion: The Hill
JM Rieger / Washington Post:
The Trump administration keeps downgrading its economic projections amid the coronavirus pandemic
Discussion: ABC News and Raw Story
Derek Thompson / The Atlantic:
We Can Prevent a Great Depression. It'll Take $10 Trillion.
Susan Faludi / New York Times:
‘Believe All Women’ Is a Right-Wing Trap
Discussion: Twitchy and Althouse
 Earlier Items: 
NBER:
The Relationship between In-Person Voting, Consolidated Polling Locations, and Absentee Voting …
New York Times:
F.B.I. Finds Links Between Pensacola Gunman and Al Qaeda
Rebecca Klar / The Hill:
Schwarzenegger holds up mock Trump University diploma in commencement speech
Discussion: Breitbart and POLITICUSUSA
Geoffrey Skelley / FiveThirtyEight:
Are Older Voters Turning Away From Trump?
Molly Jong-Fast / The Daily Beast:
It's Official: Laura Ingraham Wants Your Grandmother to Die
Tim Miller / The Bulwark:
Trump's Weekend of Scandal Was Hiding in Plain Sight
Discussion: Raw Story