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1:15 PM ET, September 18, 2020

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 Top Items: 
Jamie Ross / The Daily Beast:
U.S. Admits That Congressman Offered Pardon to Assange If He Covered Up Russia Links  —  Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher offered Assange the deal in 2017, a year after the emails that damaged Hillary Clinton had been published.  —  LONDON—Lawyers representing the United States …
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit and Raw Story
RELATED:
Andrew MacAskill / Reuters:
Trump offered to pardon Assange if he provided source for Democratic emails, lawyer says  —  LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump offered to pardon Julian Assange if the WikiLeaks founder provided the source for the hacking of Democratic National Committee emails …
New York Times:
Virus Pulls Down Trump, Poll Shows, and G.O.P. Senators Suffer With Him  —  A New York Times/Siena College survey showed Joe Biden leading President Trump by wide margins in Maine and Arizona, and effectively tied in North Carolina.  Susan Collins trailed her Democratic rival in Maine's Senate race.
RELATED:
NPR:
Poll: Biden Maintains Lead Over Trump With Likely Voters  —  Former Vice President Joe Biden continues to lead President Trump in the 2020 presidential election nationally by a substantial margin, according to the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.  —  Biden leads Trump by 9 points, 52% to 43%, among likely voters, the survey finds.
Kaleigh Rogers / FiveThirtyEight:
North Carolina Is Already Rejecting Black Voters' Mail-In Ballots More Often Than White Voters'
Discussion: Politico and Raw Story
Christopher Cadelago / Politico:
‘Talk about losers’: The top moments from CNN's kid-gloves town hall with Biden  —  On Tuesday, voters got in Trump's face for the first time.  On Thursday, they practically gave Biden a hero's welcome in Scranton, Pa.  —  Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden speaks …
RELATED:
Mollie Hemingway / The Federalist:
Joe Biden Resurrects False College Claim That Helped Ruin His 1988 Presidential Run  —  Joe Biden is not the first person in his family to attend college.  But he has a lengthy history of claiming otherwise, no matter how much the lie gets him in trouble.  —  Joe Biden is not the first person in his family to have gone to college.
Discussion: Redstate
Stephen Collinson / CNN:
Biden shows the qualities Trump lacks at CNN town hall
Discussion: Raw Story and IJR
Washington Post:
Joe Biden's CNN town hall: An occasional whopper
Wilbur Ross / U.S. Department of Commerce:
Commerce Department Prohibits WeChat and TikTok Transactions to Protect the National Security of the United States  —  In response to President Trump's Executive Orders signed August 6, 2020, the Department of Commerce (Commerce) today announced prohibitions on transactions relating to mobile applications …
RELATED:
David Shepardson / Reuters:
Exclusive: Trump to block U.S. downloads of TikTok, WeChat on Sunday - officials
Katie Shepherd / Washington Post:
An Idaho ‘no-masker’ pastor prayed against a mask mandate.  He's now in intensive care for covid-19.  —  When coronavirus cases began increasing in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, in late July, Pastor Paul Van Noy prayed with his congregation that the city council would not pass a mask mandate.
Discussion: Mediaite
RELATED:
David Wasserman / The Cook Political Report:
Rating Change: Republicans Sound Alarm, Riggleman's VA-05 Moves to Toss Up  —  Is it deja vu all over again?  In 2008, Virginia's 5th District was the site of a gigantic upset when tireless 34-year-old Democrat Tom Perriello unseated GOP Rep. Virgil Goode by 727 votes.
Discussion: Blue Virginia
Igor Bobic / HuffPost:
Alabama Senate Candidate Tommy Tuberville Struggles To Discuss Voting Rights Act  —  The Republican and former college football coach stumbled when asked his position on the landmark 1965 civil rights law.  —  Alabama Republican Senate candidate Tommy Tuberville struggled to explain …
RELATED:
Ian Millhiser / Vox:
Chief Justice Roberts's lifelong crusade against voting rights, explained
Discussion: Raw Story
Susan B. Glasser / New Yorker:
“It Was All About the Election”: The Ex-White House Aide Olivia Troye on Trump's Narcissistic Mishandling of COVID-19  —  The first staffer on the coronavirus task force to go public tells The New Yorker that America's pandemic response was “derailed by the person at the very top.”
Washington Post:
The Falwells, the pool attendant and the double life that brought them all down  —  For 2½ years, Giancarlo Granda had been telling his family about the generosity of his business partners.  The wealthy couple from out of town had taken him under their wing, he said …
Discussion: HuffPost
Devlin Barrett / Washington Post:
Book excerpt: An FBI sex crimes investigator helped trigger 2016's ‘October Surprise’  —  This article is adapted from “October Surprise: How the FBI Tried to Save Itself and Crashed an Election,” which will be published Sept. 22 by PublicAffairs.  The book is a comprehensive …
Discussion: The Hill and Political Wire
Igor Derysh / Yahoo News:
Mitch McConnell rams through six Trump judges in 30 hours after blocking coronavirus aid for months  —  U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images  —  The Republican-led Senate confirmed six of  —  President Donald Trump's judicial nominees to lifetime appointments …
Discussion: The Daily Caller
RELATED:
Colby Itkowitz / Washington Post:
Trump campaign manager didn't vote for his boss in 2016 — or at all  —  President Trump's campaign manager didn't vote for his boss in the last presidential election.  He didn't vote at all.  —  The last time Bill Stepien voted, according to public records, was in 2015, when he lived in New Jersey and was registered there.
Joseph Simonson / Washington Examiner:
Senior Biden campaign cybersecurity expert participated in racist internet troll group  —  A senior cybersecurity adviser to Joe Biden's presidential campaign spent years affiliating with a hacking organization and boasted on a personal blog about breaking into her neighbor's computers.
Discussion: Twitchy
Nomaan Merchant / Associated Press:
AP Exclusive: More migrant women say they didn't OK surgery  —  HOUSTON (AP) — Sitting across from her lawyer at an immigration detention center in rural Georgia, Mileidy Cardentey Fernandez unbuttoned her jail jumpsuit to show the scars on her abdomen.  There were three small, circular marks.
Discussion: INDIVISIBLE VENTURA
Abigail Abrams / TIME:
Donald Trump Is Losing On An Issue Voters Care A Lot About.  Here's How He's Trying to Change That  —  With nearly 200,000 Americans dead from COVID-19 and millions more who lost their health insurance when they lost their jobs this year, President Donald Trump tried this week …
Discussion: New York Times
RELATED:
Catherine Rampell / Washington Post:
Trump says his terrific health-care plan is finally here. That would be news to his health advisers.
Discussion: Raw Story
David Segal / New York Times:
Housekeepers Face a Disaster Generations in the Making  —  Ghosted by their employers, members of the profession are facing “a full-blown humanitarian crisis — a Depression-level situation.”  —  The scariest day of Maria Del Carmen's life started with a phone call that initially cheered her up.
New York Times:
This Is How Biden Should Approach the Latino Vote  —  Some ways of talking about race and class are more effective politically.  And not just with Hispanics.  —  Mr. Haney López is the author of “Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections and Saving America.”
RELATED:
Politico:
Biden's weakness with Black and Latino men creates an opening for Trump
Discussion: Florida Politics and The Atlantic
David Harsanyi / National Review:
The Secret Life of Joe Biden  —  It's not a lie if you believe it.  —  In a classic episode of “Seinfeld,” Jerry is accused by his new girlfriend, a police officer, of being a fan of the tacky 1990s soap opera Melrose Place.  When Jerry lies and denies it, she suggests putting him on a polygraph to find the truth.
Christopher Ingraham / Washington Post:
The United States is backsliding into autocracy under Trump, scholars warn  —  The weakening of democratic values — a path that's difficult to reverse — has accelerated, according to hundreds of indicators assessed each year  —  Three years into the Trump administration …
ProPublica:
Poorly Protected Postal Workers Are Catching COVID-19 by the Thousands.  It's One More Threat to Voting by Mail.  —  More than 50,000 workers have taken time off for virus-related reasons, slowing mail delivery.  The Postal Service doesn't test employees or check their temperatures, and its contact tracing is erratic.
Discussion: Washington Post
Associated Press:
Judge blocks Michigan's ban on transporting voters to polls  —  LANSING, Mich. — A federal judge has blocked Michigan's longstanding ban on transporting voters to the polls, ruling it conflicts with U.S. election law.  —  District Judge Stephanie Dawkins Davis in Detroit issued …
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Geoffrey Fowler / Washington Post:
How to track your ballot like a UPS package  —  Worried about Election Day?  Now if you vote by mail, you can obsessively track your ballot's every move online.  —  Want to make sure your ballot counts?  Track it online like a UPS delivery.  —  That's now possible across much of America …
Matthias Gafni / San Francisco Chronicle:
Exclusive: Capt. Brett Crozier explains why he sent email warning of Roosevelt coronavirus outbreak  —  FILE — A photo provided by the U.S. Navy shows Capt. Brett Crozier, then commanding officer of the USS Theodore Roosevelt, addressing his crew during the aircraft carrier's operations in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, Nov. 15, 2019.
Mike Allen / Axios:
Michael Bloomberg unleashes $100 million “wall to wall” ad blitz to take down Trump in Florida  —  Mike Bloomberg's $100 million Florida blitz begins today and will continue “wall to wall” in all 10 TV markets through Election Day, advisers tell me.  —  Why it matters: Bloomberg thinks …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Orion Rummler / Axios:
House Democrats ask DOJ watchdog to probe Durham's Trump-Russia investigation
Discussion: Politico
Anita Kumar / Politico:
Trump's bluster and millions haven't stopped universal mail-in voting plans
Discussion: Reuters and CNBC
Tony Plohetski / Austin American-Statesman:
Officers rewarded for use of force with steakhouse gift cards, former Williamson deputies say
Discussion: The Hill
Anna North / Vox:
How #SaveTheChildren is pulling American moms into QAnon
Discussion: The Hill
New York Times:
Iranian Hackers Can Now Beat Encrypted Apps, Researchers Say
Alana Goodman / Washington Free Beacon:
Hunter Biden Offered D.C. Access to Chinese Company in Exchange for Investments
Sarah Kliff / New York Times:
Republicans Killed the Obamacare Mandate. New Data Shows It Didn't Really Matter.
Discussion: Balloon Juice
 Earlier Items: 
Mike Allen / Axios:
Michael Schmidt: Private eye rummaged Bolton's trash for book drafts
Thomas Colt / Medium:
U.S. Generals are raising the alarm
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Apoorva Mandavilli / New York Times:
C.D.C. Testing Guidance Was Published Against Scientists' Objections
Associated Press:
Trump downplays legacy of slavery in appeal to white voters
Discussion: Spectator USA and The Hill