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8:50 AM ET, June 29, 2020


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Russian bounties to Taliban-linked militants resulted in deaths of U.S. troops, according to intelligence assessments  —  Russian bounties offered to Taliban-linked militants to kill coalition forces in Afghanistan are believed to have resulted in the deaths of several U.S. service members …
New York Times:
Spies and Commandos Warned Months Ago of Russian Bounties on U.S. Troops  —  The recovery of large amounts of American cash at a Taliban outpost in Afghanistan tipped off U.S. officials.  —  WASHINGTON — United States intelligence officers and Special Operations forces in Afghanistan alerted …
POLITICO Playbook: Is one thing going well for Trump?
Discussion: Washington Post, Raw Story and The Week
Tom Boggioni / Raw Story:
Trump's claim he was ignorant of Russian bounty on US soldiers ripped apart by ex-CIA official
Discussion: CANNONFIRE
Associated Press:
Trump denies briefing about reported bounties on US troops
Discussion: National Review
Stephen Collinson / CNN:   As the pandemic rages, Trump indulges his obsessions
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Marty Baron Made The Post Great Again.  Now, the News Is Changing.  —  The ultimate old-school editor is grappling with a moment of cultural reckoning.  —  Almost anyone who works in the Washington Post newsroom can look inside its publishing system, Methode, to see what stories are coming.
Lloyd Grove / The Daily Beast:
CNN's Van Jones Secretly Helped Craft the Weak Trump Police Reform He Praised on TV  —  The ex-Obama aide's willingness to help Trump—whom he once dubbed among the “worst people ever born”—has drawn the ire of liberal allies while gaining him fans in Jared and Kimye.
Washington Post:
Some Trump allies push for campaign shake-up to revive president's imperiled reelection bid  —  President Trump and his campaign team are grappling with how to resuscitate his imperiled reelection effort amid a wave of polling that shows him badly trailing presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden …
Discussion: POLITICUSUSA, Daily Kos, The Week and Axios
Donald J. Trump for President:
Memorandum on Enthusiasm  —  RE: Enthusiasm and Unity Update, Polling Methodology  —  This memorandum lays out two important sets of facts as we head toward the home stretch of the 2020 campaign for president.  First, there is clear and irrefutable evidence that Joe Biden's candidacy …
E.J. Dionne / Washington Post:
Biden could be the unlikely instrument of a new generational alignment
Discussion: New York Times and Financial Times
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Trailing in key states, Trump campaign seeks to rebrand Biden as a danger to America
Discussion: Raw Story and Financial Times
Fox News:
Rough polling stretch has GOP operatives asking: Could Trump drop out?
Discussion: Lawyers, Guns & Money
Shannon Pettypiece / NBC News:   Trump's growing re-election threat: Republican skeptics
Associated Press:
China forces birth control on Uighurs to suppress population  —  The Chinese government is taking draconian measures to slash birth rates among Uighurs and other minorities as part of a sweeping campaign to curb its Muslim population, even as it encourages some of the country's Han majority to have more children.
Discussion: National Review
New York Times:
How the Trump Campaign Is Drawing Obama Out of Retirement  —  Just after Donald J. Trump was elected president, Barack Obama slumped in his chair in the Oval Office and addressed an aide standing near a conspicuously placed bowl of apples, emblem of a healthy-snacking policy soon to be swept aside, along with so much else.
Discussion: The Hill
Emily Wagster Pettus / Associated Press:
Mississippi lawmakers vote to remove rebel emblem from flag  —  JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi lawmakers voted Sunday to surrender the Confederate battle emblem from their state flag, triggering raucous applause and cheers more than a century after white supremacist legislators adopted …
Katherine Mitchell / Mississippi Center …:
Confederate battle flag comes down in Mississippi; Myrlie Evers weeps.  'Medgar's wings must be clapping.'
Rick Rojas / New York Times:
Mississippi Lawmakers Vote to Retire State Flag Rooted in the Confederacy
Discussion: Mississippi Today
Kate Smith / CBS News:
Mississippi to remove state flag, the last to display the Confederate battle emblem
Discussion: The Week
Sarah K. Burris / Raw Story:
Armed St. Louis couple comes out waving AR-15 at Black Lives Matter protesters  —  A St. Louis couple came out of their home Sunday, waving their guns and threatening Black Lives Matter protesters.  —  The protesters were in the Central West End, on Lake Ave. in St. Louis protesting Mayor Lyda Krewson …
Discussion: and The US Sun
Teo Armus / Washington Post:   St. Louis couple point guns at peaceful crowd of protesters calling for mayor to resign
Houston Chronicle:
Houston hospitals hit 100% base ICU capacity.  Then they stopped reporting data.  —  Texas Medical Center hospitals have stopped reporting key metrics showing the stress rising numbers of COVID-19 patients are placing on their facilities, undermining data that policy makers and the public …
Discussion: Raw Story, The Hill and Axios
John Harwood / CNN:
Trump's self-defeating resistance to mask wearing says it all  —  (CNN)President Donald Trump, ever impulsive, often acts against his own interests.  But nothing tops his self-defeating resistance to mask wearing during the coronavirus pandemic.  —  His dogged stance, mimicked by supporters …
Nick Timiraos / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Officials Press President Trump to Wear Mask in Coronavirus Fight
Discussion: CNN
A Sun Belt time bomb threatens Trump's reelection  —  The explosion of Covid-19 cases in Sun Belt states is becoming another albatross for President Donald Trump's reelection hopes — and creating a new opening for Joe Biden and Democrats in November.  —  Republican governors in Florida …
Discussion: Raw Story and TheBlaze
Frances Robles / New York Times:
Florida's Covid Cases Up Fivefold in 2 Weeks: ‘The Numbers Are Scary’  —  A surge in coronavirus cases has prompted state officials to prohibit alcohol sales in bars and close Miami beaches for the coming holiday.  But will it be enough?  —  MIAMI — John Delgado has slept in a tent in his backyard for 57 nights and counting.
Matt Taibbi / Reporting:
On “White Fragility”  —  A few thoughts on America's smash-hit #1 guide to egghead racialism  —  This is part of a larger piece that will be made available to subscribers later this week:  —  A core principle of the academic movement that shot through elite schools in America since …
Discussion: Instapundit
Washington Post:
Zuckerberg once wanted to sanction Trump.  Then Facebook wrote rules that accommodated him.  —  Starting as early as 2015, Facebook executives started crafting exceptions for the then-candidate that transformed the world's information battlefield for years to come.
Discussion: The Wrap and IJR, more at Techmeme »
Jeffrey Toobin / New Yorker:
Why the Mueller Investigation Failed  —  President Trump's obstructions of justice were broader than those of Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton, and the special counsel's investigation proved it.  How come the report didn't say so?  —  Robert Mueller submitted his final report as the special counsel more than a year ago.
Elizabeth Cohen / CNN:
Fauci says Covid-19 vaccine may not get US to herd immunity if too many people refuse to get it  —  (CNN)Dr. Anthony Fauci says he would “settle” for a Covid-19 vaccine that's 70% to 75% effective, but that this incomplete protection, coupled with the fact that many Americans …
Discussion: New York Post, The Hill and Axios
Kadia Goba / BuzzFeed News:
Democrats Are Threatening To Kick Republicans Out Of Future Coronavirus Hearings For Not Wearing Masks  —  WASHINGTON — Democrats on the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis are threatening to bar Republican members from attending future meetings in-person after they showed up to a hearing on Friday without masks.
Discussion: Raw Story
Jamie Ehrlich / CNN:
Choir of more than 100 people perform without masks at Pence event  —  Washington (CNN)A choir of more than 100 people performed without masks at a robustly attended event in Texas at the First Baptist Church on Sunday that featured a speech by Vice President Mike Pence.
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 More Items: 
Nasser Karimi / Sydney Morning Herald:
Iran issues arrest warrant for Donald Trump, requests help from Interpol
Ashley Balcerzak / Center for Public Integrity:
Local developer, wealthy investors pave different paths in Opportunity Zones
John Lucas / The Federalist:
DC Court Of Appeals Blasts Judge Sullivan For Michael Flynn Power Grabs
Richard L. Hasen / New York Times:
If We Don't Fix Voting, It Will Be Hard to Fix Anything
Pam Belluck / New York Times:
‘They Want to Kill Me’: Many Covid Patients Have Terrifying Delirium
Discussion: The Week
Deb Riechmann / Associated Press:
Beyond ‘love,’ Trump has little to show from N Korea talks
New York Times:
Three Words. 70 Cases. The Tragic History of 'I Can't Breathe.'
Sarah Rumpf / Mediaite:
Trump's Message to African-Americans Unhappy With Monuments to Slave Owners: ‘You Have to Learn’ History
 Earlier Items: 
Nancy Levine / Rantt Media:
Trump Masks His Real Racism Under False Patriotism
Asawin Suebsaeng / The Daily Beast:
Trump's Real Reason for Running for a Second Term: Fear of Being Remembered as a One-Term ‘Loser’
Discussion: Raw Story
Louisa Loveluck / Washington Post:
In Syrian camp for women and children who left ISIS caliphate, a struggle even to register names
David Harrison / Wall Street Journal:
Public Transit Use Is Associated With Higher Coronavirus Death Rates, Researchers Find
Bill Whitaker / CBS News:
How the coronavirus and politics could impact voting in the 2020 general election
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Scoop: Trump to put loyalist in charge of government's HR department
Discussion: The Hill
Danica Kirka / Associated Press:
Rolling Stones threaten to sue Trump over using their songs