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11:50 AM ET, June 30, 2020

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 Top Items: 
James Laporta / Associated Press:
AP sources: White House aware of Russian bounties in 2019  —  Top officials in the White House were aware in early 2019 of classified intelligence indicating Russia was secretly offering bounties to the Taliban for the deaths of Americans, a full year earlier than has been previously reported …
RELATED:
Carl Bernstein / CNN:
From pandering to Putin to abusing allies and ignoring his own advisers, Trump's phone calls alarm US officials  —  (CNN)In hundreds of highly classified phone calls with foreign heads of state, President Donald Trump was so consistently unprepared for discussion of serious issues …
New York Times:
Lawmakers Press for Answers on Russian Bounty Offers to Taliban to Kill U.S. Troops  —  The investigation into Russia's suspected operation is said to focus in part on the killings of three Marines in a truck bombing last year, officials said.  —  American officials provided a written briefing …
David Ignatius / Washington Post:
Trump doesn't understand that Putin is in the payback business
Discussion: New York Magazine and IJR
TMZ.com:
Carl Reiner Dead at 98  —  REMEMBERING CARL REINER  —  Carl Reiner, one of the most prolific entertainers in the history of show business has died ... TMZ has learned.  —  We're told Reiner died Monday night at his Beverly Hills home.  We're told his family was with him when he passed.
Kevin Liptak / CNN:
Trump hoping for Supreme Court vacancy as way to boost a flagging campaign  —  (CNN)As the Supreme Court hands his administration successive defeats at the same time his political standing craters, President Donald Trump has begun to raise both publicly and privately the potential boon another nomination …
RELATED:
Washington Examiner:   John Roberts proves he's nothing more than an empty robe
NBC News:
Trump's ‘white power’ retweet set off ‘five alarm fire’ in White House  —  President Donald Trump set off a “five alarm fire” in the White House Sunday morning after he retweeted a video of one of his supporters saying “white power,” according to two White House officials.
RELATED:
Jonathan Swan / Axios:
Panic sets in at White House over Trump's re-election prospects  —  President Trump's advisers are sounding alarms about his re-election prospects to a degree not heard since the president entered the White House three and a half years ago.  —  The state of play: Over the past week, widespread panic and pessimism have set in.
Discussion: Raw Story
Olivia Nuzzi / New York Magazine:
Remembering My Friend Betsy Rothstein  —  I don't know what I expected Betsy Rothstein to look like, but I guess I wasn't expecting a woman who made her living filleting media personalities and nurturing feuds to be so tiny in stature.  When she approached me on the grass outside …
RELATED:
Tucker Carlson / The Daily Caller:
In Memory Of Betsy Rothstein
Discussion: CNN and Twitchy
Elaina Plott / New York Times:
The Fall of Jeff Sessions, and What Came After  —  The former attorney general is fighting for his political life in Alabama's Senate race, in the shadow of a president who still despises him.  —  To hear more audio stories from publishers like The New York Times, download Audm for iPhone or Android.
Fox News:
RNC reacts to Jacksonville ordering mask-wearing ahead of GOP convention  —  RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel tells ‘Fox & Friends’ that the RNC will abide by what the mayor and governor are saying to have the convention in a healthy and safe way.
Discussion: The US Sun and POLITICUSUSA
RELATED:
Quint Forgey / Politico:   ‘Fox & Friends’ host: Trump should wear a mask
Robert Barnes / Washington Post:
Supreme Court says Montana program aiding private schools must be open to religious schools  —  A divided Supreme Court on Tuesday endorsed a Montana tax incentive program that indirectly helps private religious schools, a major victory for those who want to see more public funding of religious institutions.
Discussion: NBC News, MSNBC and Althouse
RELATED:
Mark Sherman / Associated Press:
Supreme Court lifts ban on state aid to religious schooling
Discussion: Politico
Ronald Brownstein / CNN:
The white-collar revolt against Trump is peaking  —  (CNN)From his open defiance of public health officials when holding rallies to his increasingly explicit embrace of White racial backlash, President Donald Trump has set a course for his reelection campaign that could produce the GOP's largest deficit …
Discussion: Alternet.org and The Atlantic
Michelle Roberts / BBC:
Flu virus with ‘pandemic potential’ found in China  —  A new strain of flu that has the potential to become pandemic has been identified in China by scientists.  —  It emerged recently and is carried by pigs, but can infect humans, they say.  —  The researchers are concerned …
Rebecca Shabad / NBC News:
S. Dakota Gov. Noem says ‘we will not be social distancing’ at July 3 celebration with Trump at Mount Rushmore  —  Thousands of people are expected for the event.  Masks are optional, too.  —  WASHINGTON — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem says the thousands of people who attend the July 3 celebration …
Victor Davis Hanson / National Review:
The Strategies of Dementia Politics  —  Stoke chaos, obstruct economic recovery, and hide Biden in the basement till Election Day.  —  Joe Biden is tragically suffering a mental eclipse and sliding away at a geometric rate.  Understandably, his handlers have kept him out of sight.
RELATED:
Michael Scherer / Washington Post:   Joe Biden rises with a less-is-more campaign
Martin Matishak / Politico:
Republicans have been skipping House Intelligence meetings for months  —  Democrats see a boycott motivated by partisan politics.  Republicans argue they have legitimate security concerns.  —  Either way, GOP members of the House Intelligence Committee have skipped all but one of the panel's proceedings …
William Feuer / CNBC:
CDC says U.S. has ‘way too much virus’ to control pandemic as cases surge across country  — The coronavirus is spreading too rapidly and too broadly for the U.S. to get it under control as some other countries have, Dr. Anne Schuchat, principal deputy director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Monday.
Discussion: Daily Kos, IJR, The Week, Axios and Instapundit
The New York Times Company:
Uppercasing ‘Black’  —  The Times will start using uppercase “Black” to describe people and cultures of African origin, both in the U.S. and elsewhere.  Read more in this note from Dean Baquet and Phil Corbett.  —  Dear Colleagues,  —  At The Times and elsewhere, the nationwide protests …
Politico:
Publisher's wife played undisclosed role for Melania Trump  —  The owner of the news outlet that published the columns at the center of the Ukraine scandal helped secure an unpaid White House position for his wife — a fact the publication did not disclose to readers.
Discussion: Raw Story
Paul Begala / CNN:
This has got to be the worst of Trump's outrages  —  Paul Begala, a Democratic strategist and CNN political commentator, was a political consultant for Bill Clinton's presidential campaign in 1992 and served as a counselor to Clinton in the White House.  The opinions expressed in this commentary are his.
Jonathan D. Karl / The Atlantic:
The Second Battle of Charlottesville  —  The image of President Donald Trump holding aloft a Bible in front of St. John's Episcopal Church is destined to be a defining image of his presidency.  The events that led up to that moment reveal the essential elements of his rise to power.
Andrea González-Ramírez / GEN:
In Puerto Rico, an Epidemic of Domestic Violence Hides in Plain Sight  —  After Hurricane Maria, the number of women killed by their partners doubled.  Survivors say the government's misguided response has put more lives in danger. … The night before Suliani Calderón Nieves was murdered …
Danielle Wallace / Fox News:
Latest Seattle CHOP shooting sees at least 2 injured, police say  —  Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best said both victims were African-American  —  A 16-year-old boy has died and a 14-year-old boy has been hospitalized in critical condition Monday following the latest shooting at the Seattle area known …
Kevin Breuninger / CNBC:
Biden tells donors: I'm going to get rid of most of Trump's tax cuts ‘and a lot of you may not like that’  — Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden told potential donors to his campaign that he would roll back most of President Donald Trump's multitrillion-dollar tax cuts - even though “a lot of you may not like that.”
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
Trump Isn't Even Good at Inventing Mean Nicknames Anymore  —  Unable to manage an escalating pandemic, an economic crisis, and social unrest, and finding himself sinking farther behind in the polls, President Trump has reexamined his operations and arrived at the Trumpiest possible conclusion …
Eliana Dockterman / TIME:
Cops with capes  —  Superheroes have dominated popular culture for the last decade—they are fixtures of the highest-grossing movies and icons to more than just our children.  They are beacons of inspiration: protesters dressed as Spider-Man and Batman have turned up at recent Black Lives Matter demonstrations.
Allison Kaplan Sommer / Haaretz:
SodaStream Becomes First Israel-based Company to Join Facebook Boycott  —  Firm is joining over 100 others in America to support ADL, NAACP campaign protesting social media site's promotion of ‘hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence’ on its platform
Michelle Goldberg / New York Times:
Three Families.  Nine Weeks.  ‘Things Are Getting Annoying.’  —  There we go.  Good.  There we go.  Yay.  Yay.  [MUSIC PLAYING] We're the Pauls.  We're the Orangos.  We are at the Carter-McLaughlin-Milstein family.  Or Mill Carterstein McDonlaughlinsons.  We spent the first three weeks just butting heads.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Bloomberg:
U.S. Jobless-Claims Figures Inflated by States' Backlog-Clearing
Rory Smith / New York Times:
‘Intelligent’ or ‘Strong’: Study Finds Bias in Soccer Broadcasts
USA Today:
European Union says it will bar Americans when bloc reopens to international visitors July 1
Stacy Cowley / New York Times:
Paycheck Program Ends With $130 Billion Unspent, and Uncertainty Ahead
Joe Concha / The Hill:
Ryan Lizza to McEnany: Does Trump believe ‘it was a good thing that the South lost the Civil War?’
Discussion: The Federalist
Mark Hemingway / RealClearInvestigations:
Momentum Building in States to Require Campus ‘Intellectual Diversity’
Discussion: Real Clear Politics
Nathan Stone / The Federalist:
Why Rioters Will Eventually Turn Their Rage On Christianity If Not Stopped
 Earlier Items: 
Sky Palma / DeadState:
Christian activist: I'd rather be ‘beheaded’ than be a ‘slave’ who wears a mask
Discussion: Right Wing Watch
Sarah Kliff / New York Times:
Two Friends in Texas Were Tested for Coronavirus. One Bill Was $199. The Other? $6,408.
Discussion: Observer
Rich Lowry / New York Post:
Woke censorship is basically a superstitious cult
Michael Flynn / The Western Journal:
Exclusive from Gen. Flynn: If We Don't Act, 2% of the People Are About To Control the Other 98%
New York Times:
‘Our Luck May Have Run Out’: California's Case Count Explodes
Josh Feldman / Mediaite:
Grassley Hits Hannity For Interview Question Trump Whiffed On: ‘You Assume Fox News Wants Him to Get Reelected’
Anne Allred / KSDK-TV:
‘The only thing that stopped the crowd was my rifle’ |  Interview with man who pulled out gun amid protest