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1:45 PM ET, September 29, 2020

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 Top Items: 
Mike McIntire / New York Times:
HOW REALITY-TV FAME HANDED TRUMP A $427 MILLION LIFELINE  —  Tax records show that “The Apprentice” rescued Donald J. Trump, bringing him new sources of cash and a myth that would propel him to the White House.  —  From the back seat of a stretch limousine heading to meet the first contestants …
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Aaron Rupar / Vox:
Trump's adversarial relationship with presidential debate moderator Chris Wallace, explained  —  Trump and Chris Wallace shake hands after a presidential debate in October 2016.  Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images  —  Trump expects total loyalty from Fox News.  He doesn't like Chris Wallace because Wallace won't give it to him.
Wall Street Journal:
Biden Releases Tax Returns Ahead of Debate With Trump  —  The Democratic nominee paid nearly $300,000 in federal taxes for 2019, drawing a tax-disclosure contrast with the president  —  Former Vice President Joe Biden released his 2019 tax returns on Tuesday, showing that he paid nearly $300,000 …
Annie Linskey / Washington Post:
Inside Joe Biden's whistle-stop tour of Ohio and Pennsylvania
McKay Coppins / The Atlantic:
Trump Secretly Mocks His Christian Supporters  —  One day in 2015, Donald Trump beckoned Michael Cohen, his longtime confidant and personal attorney, into his office.  Trump was brandishing a printout of an article about an Atlanta-based megachurch pastor trying to raise $60 million from his flock to buy a private jet.
Patricia Kelly Yeo / The Daily Beast:
Schumer Refuses to Meet With Amy Coney Barrett, Calls Process ‘Illegitimate’  —  BARRETT, SPURNED  —  Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said he doesn't plan to meet with Amy Coney Barrett, Trump's Supreme Court nominee officially announced Saturday.
RELATED:
Andrew Perez / The Daily Poster:
We Still Don't Know Who Is Paying For Trump's SCOTUS Seats
Discussion: Raw Story
Associated Press:
Barrett tied to faith group ex-members say subjugates women
Discussion: Townhall and Bangor Daily News
Amy Walter / The Cook Political Report:
Electoral College Rating Changes: Ohio and Iowa Move to Toss Up  —  In mid-June, we moved both Iowa and Ohio from Likely Republican to Lean Republican.  At the time, we noted that while the polls were looking shaky for Pres. Trump, they were also catching him at what could be his lowest point of the cycle.
Discussion: The Hill, Washington Post and Vox
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Trump's Pennsylvania problem  —  With the first general election presidential debate set for Tuesday night, state polls are coming thick and fast.  And perhaps none of them speak to how much President Trump has his work cut out for him than Pennsylvania.  —  Two new polls released Monday …
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Washington Post:
Post-ABC poll: Biden leads Trump in battleground state of Pennsylvania
Discussion: Bloomberg and American Greatness
Judd Legum / Popular Information:
The art of diversion  —  On Sunday, the New York Times obtained Trump's tax returns, which revealed that he paid just $750 in federal income taxes in 2016 and 2017.  But wait, look over there!  —  Project Veritas, an organization run by right-wing polemicist James O'Keefe, claims it has …
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Ryan Lizza / Politico:
Trump — not Biden — is being underestimated going into the debate  —  In 2016, during one of her first prep sessions for the presidential debates with Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton listened to a litany of attacks from Philippe Reines, a longtime aide who was playing the role of Trump …
Martyn Mclaughlin / Scotsman:
Analysis: Question of how Donald Trump's Scottish resorts are financed even more urgent  —  The revelatory reporting by the New York Times into Donald Trump's taxes shines a light on an area of the US president's finances that has long been shrouded in mystery, and with mere weeks to go until …
New York Times:
Trump Has Sold Off America's Credibility for His Personal Gain  —  From China to Ukraine, this president has acted at odds with American foreign policy.  Imagine what he could do with four more years.  —  Lt. Col. Vindman served on the National Security Council.
Discussion: Washington Post and CNN
New York Times:
Behind the White House Effort to Pressure the C.D.C. on School Openings  —  Documents and interviews show how senior officials sought to play down the risks of sending children back to the classroom, alarming public health experts.  —  WASHINGTON — Top White House officials pressured …
Jacob Bogage / Washington Post:
Postal Service workers quietly resist DeJoy's changes with eye on election  —  Many USPS employees see recent cost-cutting changes that have slowed mail delivery as violating the spirit, if not the letter, of the law.  —  This summer, as controversial new procedures at the U.S. Postal Service snarled …
Tamara Lush / Associated Press:
They wanted disruption in 2016.  Now they're Trump defectors  —  Shawna Jensen's moment of reckoning came in March, as she sat in her suburban Fort Worth, Texas, living room next to her fireplace.  Her laptop was open to a Zoom happy hour with five girlfriends.  She sucked in a breath, gripping her glass of red wine.
Discussion: Politico
Brigid Bergin / Gothamist:
Brooklyn Voters Receive Absentee Ballot Envelopes With Wrong Voter Names And Addresses  —  The New York City Board of Elections has mailed out nearly half a million absentee ballots ahead of Election Day this November, as many New Yorkers are opting to vote by mail during the pandemic.
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Brian Price / NBC New York:
Printing Error Responsible for NYC Absentee Voters Getting Wrong Return Envelopes, BOE Says
Discussion: Redstate
Victoria Albert / CBS News:
Grand jury proceedings in Breonna Taylor case will be released following judge's order, Kentucky attorney general says  —  Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Monday night that he will release the recording of the grand jury proceedings in the case of Breonna Taylor to the court on Wednesday.
Discussion: The Root, Courier-Journal and Axios
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Andrew Romano / Yahoo News:
Ohio could be Biden's best shot at keeping Trump from contesting the 2020 election  —  Typically, presidential elections are fought and won in the so-called tipping-point states — places such as Wisconsin or Pennsylvania that statisticians  —  consider most likely to put one candidate …
Rebecca Shabad / NBC News:
‘Deeply unpatriotic’: Mary Trump slams the president for not paying taxes for years … WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's niece, Mary Trump, say the topic of her uncle not paying income taxes for 10 of the last 15 years must be “hammered on” during the first general election debate Tuesday night.
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Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Senate Democrats want to avoid Kavanaugh 2.0  —  Senate Democrats say they want to avoid a replay of the bitter fighting that characterized Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's 2018 Senate confirmation hearings, which centrist former Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) …
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New York Times:
Immigrants Say They Were Pressured Into Unneeded Surgeries  —  Immigrants detained at an ICE-contracted center in Georgia said they had invasive gynecology procedures that they later learned might have been unnecessary.  —  Wendy Dowe was startled awake early one morning in January 2019 …
Kyle Cheney / Politico:
Barr's Justice Department serves up talking points for Trump  —  The prosecution of Michael Flynn.  A Senate investigation into the provenance of the Steele Dossier.  The nascent federal probe of discarded absentee ballots in Pennsylvania.  —  In recent days, the Justice Department …
Discussion: Raw Story and Reuters
Bret Stephens / New York Times:
Meet a Secret Trump Voter  —  'Being a lesbian who's voting for Trump is like coming out of the closet again.'  —  Chris is a registered Democrat in her 50s who lives in Manhattan.  She's well-educated, well-traveled and well-informed.  She has voted for candidates of both parties …
Bonchie / Redstate:
Jill Biden Is the Candidate Now, and Everyone Knows It  —  Yesterday, Joe Biden once again called a “lid” before most people in the country clock in for work.  That's become a pattern over the last month, with him taking off nearly half the days that a candidate would normally be campaigning their tail off.
Discussion: CANNONFIRE and Twitchy
Joy Pullmann / The Federalist:
Media Gunning For Scott Atlas Because He Keeps Exposing Coronavirus Lies  —  ‘Everything he says is false,’ NBC News quoted CDC Director Robert Redfield as saying of Atlas.  That's just not true, top epidemiologists told The Federalist.  —  Centers for Disease Control Director …
Matt Dixon / Politico:
‘He just lies’: Florida's senior voters suddenly are in play  —  TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida seniors, long an unflinching bloc of reliable GOP votes, are suddenly in play as President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus has his reelection campaign on the defensive.
Discussion: The Guardian and Raw Story
Ashton Pittman / Mississippi Free Press:
‘To Represent All Mississippians’: Hyde-Smith Ad Uses Russian, Canadian Footage  —  Canadian, Russian, South African and Ukrainian models appear in U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith's first 2020 campaign ad for her Mississippi campaigns—but no Mississippians.  Instead, the ad uses stock footage …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Donald G. McNeil Jr / New York Times:
Pandemic Is Far From Over, Experts Say, Despite Trump Allies' Claims
Discussion: Gizmodo
Rich Noyes / Newsbusters:
STUDY: Media Boost Biden With Softer Coverage than Clinton in '16
Discussion: Washington Times
Sara Fischer / Axios:
TikTok rolls out in-app elections guide
William Voegeli / Claremont Review of Books:
The Weak Leading the Woke
Discussion: Al Jazeera and JustOneMinute
Jay Rosen / PressThink:
“You might not like it, but it's smart politics.”
 Earlier Items: 
The Conversation:
Fox News uses the word ‘hate’ much more than MSNBC or CNN
Bloomberg:
Trump's Jobs Record Fell Short of Promises Even Before the Virus
Axios:
Bob Woodward: “I was not going to hide” my opinion on Trump
Hans Nichols / Axios:
Exclusive: Biden campaign blasts Facebook for “regression”
Andy Puzder / Fox Business:
The startling news about Trump's economy that mainstream media ignored
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Financial Times:
Chinese Communist party asserts greater control over private enterprise