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2:00 PM ET, May 21, 2020

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
New York Times:
For Spy Agencies, Briefing Trump Is a Test of Holding His Attention  —  President Trump's intelligence briefings have gotten renewed attention since he blamed them for failing to sound the alarm early on about the coronavirus.  —  WASHINGTON — President Trump has blamed many others …
The Daily Beast:
Trump in Private: I Wish I Could Run Against Hillary Again  —  The playbook that worked in 2016 isn't so far in 2020.  And some in Trump land are feeling nostalgic for their old foe.  —  In 2016, Donald Trump and his campaign staff found themselves up against a Democratic nominee …
Discussion: Raw Story and Fox News
RELATED:
Matt Egan / CNN:
Trump will lose in a landslide because of the economy, new election model predicts  —  New York (CNN Business)The economy has gone from President Donald Trump's greatest political asset to perhaps his biggest weakness.  —  Unemployment is spiking at an unprecedented rate.  Consumer spending is vanishing.
RELATED:
Teo Armus / Washington Post:   Social distancing a week earlier could have saved 36,000 American lives, study says
Brooke Singman / Fox News:
Senate confirms Ratcliffe as next director of national intelligence  —  The Senate on Thursday voted to confirm Rep. John Ratcliffe as the next director of national intelligence.  —  Ratcliffe, R-Texas, was approved on a 49-44 vote.  The installment comes as the intelligence community once …
RELATED:
Shane Harris / Washington Post:
Senate confirms John Ratcliffe as next director of national intelligence  —  The Senate confirmed Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Tex.) as the next director of national intelligence on Thursday, capping an unusually protracted process that saw the congressman withdraw his nomination last year in the face …
Jeremy Herb / CNN:
Senate confirms Ratcliffe to lead intelligence community under fire  —  (CNN)Rep. John Ratcliffe was confirmed Thursday as President Donald Trump's top intelligence official on a party-line Senate vote, putting the Texas Republican into the center of a political firestorm over the FBI's prosecution …
David E. Sanger / New York Times:
Trump to Withdraw From ‘Open Skies’ Arms Control Treaty  —  Mr. Trump's decision, the third major retreat from arms control agreements, will be viewed as evidence that he also plans an exit from the last major arms treaty with Russia: New START.  —  President Trump has decided to withdraw …
RELATED:
Washington Post:   Trump administration to withdraw from Open Skies arms control treaty
Alexis C. Madrigal / The Atlantic:
‘How Could the CDC Make That Mistake?’  —  Editor's Note: The Atlantic is making vital coverage of the coronavirus available to all readers.  Find the collection here.  —  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is conflating the results of two different types of coronavirus tests …
Discussion: Raw Story and WAVY-TV
RELATED:
Daniel Rivero / WLRN Miami Herald News, Events, Radio:
CDC's National Dashboard Includes COVID-19 Data That Expert Says Mixes ‘Apples To Oranges’
Discussion: Orlando Sentinel
Nicholas Reimann / Forbes:
Dire Situation In Alabama Capital: ICUs Full, Coronavirus Cases Double In May  —  The mayor of Montgomery, Alabama, says the city's health care system has been “maxed out” as cases of coronavirus have more than doubled in May—a sharp contrast to the slowing coronavirus spread that's taken place across …
Discussion: al.com and Balloon Juice
Burgess Everett / Politico:
Republicans try to placate Cory Gardner's opposition to Senate recess  —  Republican leaders are trying to work out an agreement with Sen. Cory Gardner that would allow the Senate to go on recess for the Memorial Day holiday while accommodating his concerns about leaving while the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage.
Discussion: The Hill
RELATED:
Ronn Blitzer / Fox News:
Several GOP senators press for more stimulus payments during coronavirus crisis
Discussion: The Hill and Raw Story
CNN:
Internal divisions linger as GOP push grows for new recovery package
Discussion: Washington Post and The Hill
Justice News:
California Couple in College Admissions Case Agrees to Plead Guilty  —  BOSTON - Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli have agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy charges in connection with securing the fraudulent admission of their two children to the University of Southern California as purported athletic recruits.
Alex Thompson / Politico:
Warren pivots on ‘Medicare for All’ in bid to become Biden's VP  —  In the thick of primary season, Elizabeth Warren and Joe Biden brawled over “Medicare for All”: He called her approach “angry,” “elitist,” “condescending”; she shot back, anyone who defends the health care status quo …
Discussion: Washington Post, The Week and Daily Kos
RELATED:
Perry Bacon Jr / FiveThirtyEight:   How Biden Could Be The Most Liberal President In Modern U.S. History
Tom LoBianco / Business Insider:
The mastermind of George W. Bush's White House victories is advising Donald Trump's 2020 campaign, focusing on swing state battlegrounds and Republican voter outreach  — Karl Rove, the senior adviser to the last GOP president, has been helping the Trump reelection effort as an unpaid and informal role.
Bobby Allyn / NPR:
Researchers: Nearly Half Of Accounts Tweeting About Coronavirus Are Likely Bots  —  Nearly half of the Twitter accounts spreading messages on the social media platform about the coronavirus pandemic are likely bots, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University said on Wednesday.
Discussion: Breitbart
Adam Edelman / NBC News:
‘Ridiculous,’ ‘scary,’ ‘distraction’: Whitmer berates Trump's threats to cut off Mich. funding  —  Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday slammed President Donald Trump's threats to withhold federal funding to her state as “ridiculous,” a “distraction” and “scary.”
Discussion: Breitbart and CBS News
RELATED:
Jonathan Safran Foer / New York Times:
The Coronavirus and a World Without Meat  —  If you care about the working poor, about racial justice, and about climate change, you have to stop eating animals.  —  Jonathan Safran Foer is the author of “Eating Animals” and “We Are the Weather.”  —  Is any panic more primitive …
Discussion: Althouse and Twitchy
Tommy Christopher / Mediaite:
Home-Bound Locked-Down Fox & Friends Implores New Yorkers to Defy Stay at Home Orders  —  The denizens of Fox & Friends urged New York businesses to reopen en masse despite lockdown orders and a still-deadly coronavirus pandemic, but they did so from the safety of their own homes and secure locations.
Discussion: Law & Crime, Fox News and Instapundit
RELATED:
Washington Post:
China to impose sweeping national security law in Hong Kong, bypassing city's legislature  —  HONG KONG — China's Communist Party will impose a sweeping national security law in Hong Kong by fiat during the annual meeting of its top political body, officials said Thursday, criminalizing …
RELATED:
New York Times:
China Moves to Impose New Hong Kong Security Law, Increasing Party's Sway
Discussion: Townhall
Spencer Ackerman / The Daily Beast:
FEMA Tells States to Hand Public Health Data Over to Palantir  —  Aggregated COVID-19 information matters to public health, but it's also a big economic opportunity.  Now a Trump-aligned company gets that data daily from all 50 states.  —  The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency …
Hannah Sparks / New York Post:
‘Hot’ nurse disciplined for wearing bra and panties under see-through PPE gown  —  This naughty nurse is going viral.  —  A nurse in Russia was suspended from the hospital where she worked in Tula, 100 miles south of Moscow, after she arrived at her shift in the all-male coronavirus patient wing …
Discussion: Redstate and The US Sun
Lara Seligman / Politico:
Active shooter ‘neutralized’ at Texas Navy base  —  Security forces “neutralized” an active shooter this morning at a Texas naval installation, the Navy announced.  —  One naval security force member was injured.  A Navy statement said the sailor was in “good condition” and is expected to be released Thursday.
Megan Cassella / Politico:
Reopening reality check: Georgia's jobs aren't flooding back  —  Georgia's early move to start easing stay-at-home restrictions nearly a month ago has done little to stem the state's flood of unemployment claims — illustrating how hard it is to bring jobs back while consumers are still afraid to go outside.
Daniel Dale / CNN:
After false claims about Michigan and voting, Trump repeats false claim he was Michigan's ‘Man of the Year’  —  Dale: One of my favorite Trump lies out of thousands  —  Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump has a favorite way to illustrate what he says is the strength of his relationship …
Discussion: The Root
Ezra Klein / Vox:
Why are liberals more afraid of the coronavirus than conservatives?  —  President Donald Trump tours a Honeywell International Inc. factory producing N95 masks in Phoenix, Arizona.  Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images  —  Covid-19 and the complex politics of fear.
Daniel Burke / CNN:
The religious roots of Trump's magical thinking on coronavirus  —  (CNN)As the novel coronavirus has spread across the globe, President Trump has repeated one phrase like a mantra: It will go away.  —  Since February Trump has said the virus will “go away” at least 15 times, most recently on May 15.
Discussion: Raw Story
Washington Post:
2.4 million Americans filed jobless claims last week, bringing nine-week total to 38.6 million  —  Americans continue clamoring for aid as a fight has broken out in Washington about whether to renew expanded benefits past July  —  President Trump and top Republican lawmakers …
Seung Min Kim / Washington Post:
Senate committee approves nominee to oversee U.S. media agency criticized by Trump  —  The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday advanced the nomination of a Trump administration pick — whose nonprofit organization is being investigated for possible tax violations …
Parker Molloy / Media Matters for America:
What's behind the rise of “COVID contrarian” Alex Berenson in right-wing media?  —  In the world of conservative media, author Alex Berenson is a star.  Thanks in large part to his relentless Twitter criticism of how mainstream media and Democratic politicians have responded to the COVID-19 pandemic …
Andrew Desiderio / Politico:
Engel threatens subpoena over Pompeo's handling of GOP Hunter Biden probe  —  The secretary of state already sent key documents to Senate Republicans.  —  House Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel.  J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo  —  The chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee …
Associated Press:
Trump tests whether incumbent leader can tap outsider anger  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is running against himself.  —  With his cries to “Reopen our country!” and his rebukes of the federal bureaucracy and health regulations amid the coronavirus pandemic …
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
How ‘60 Minutes’ survived CBS upheaval to become ‘the Tony Fauci of newsmagazines’  —  Early this month, with the “60 Minutes” season nearly ready to wrap production for the summer, executive producer Bill Owens took a heartfelt pitch to his boss, CBS News president Susan Zirinsky.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Associated Press:
Coronavirus-triggered layoffs in US hit nearly 39 million
Paul Brinkmann / UPI:
SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft faces its biggest test
Ryan J. Reilly / HuffPost:
Matthew Whitaker's Time As Trump's Attorney General Was Unique. His Book Isn't.
emptywheel:
Flynn Was Hiding that He Coordinated His Kislyak Call with Mar-A-Lago
Discussion: Daily Kos
Andrew Freedman / Washington Post:
NOAA predicts Atlantic hurricane season will be unusually active
Discussion: Wired
 Earlier Items: 
Walter Olson / Overlawyered:
Adjourned: Overlawyered to cease publication May 31
Discussion: Reason
Yuichiro Kakutani / Washington Free Beacon:
Obama's Man in China Now Beijing's Man in Washington
Discussion: Redstate
John F. Harris / Politico:
Once Again, Democrats Are Caught in the Trump Trap
Maggie Fox / CNN:
Coronavirus testing is ‘a mess’ in the US, report says
USA Today:
Coronavirus ‘does not spread easily’ by touching surfaces or objects, CDC now says.  But it still ‘may be possible’.
Chuck Ross / The Daily Caller:
FBI Offered To Pay Christopher Steele ‘Significantly’ To Dig Up Dirt On Michael Flynn
Discussion: Redstate and Townhall
Lachlan Markay / The Daily Beast:
Kelly Loeffler's Husband Pours $1 Million Into Pro-Trump Super PAC
Discussion: The Hill