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9:40 AM ET, October 1, 2020

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 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Belligerent Trump debate performance stokes fears among Republicans about November  —  The aftermath of the first presidential debate between President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden triggered a reckoning among Republicans on Wednesday about the incumbent's incendiary remarks …
RELATED:
Gabby Orr / Politico:
‘A huge misstep’: Trump allies see a lost opportunity in first debate  —  President Donald Trump spent his first 2020 presidential debate heckling his opponent at every turn.  His supporters are hoping he got it out of his system — for good.  —  Trump aides and allies saw Tuesday night's event …
New York Times:
A Debate That Can't Be Ignored  —  Americans need to face the man who is their president.  —  The editorial board is a group of opinion journalists whose views are informed by expertise, research, debate and certain longstanding values.  It is separate from the newsroom.
Alexi McCammond / Axios:
Focus group: Ohio swing voters unhappy but unmoved by debate  —  YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — The chaotic first presidential debate didn't do much to change some voters' minds here, with several voters who previously supported President Trump deciding to stick with him, even if they were embarrassed by his debate performance.
New York Times:
G.O.P. Alarmed by Trump's Comments on Extremist Group, Fearing a Drag on the Party
Robert Tracinski / The Bulwark:
The “Very Fine People” President
Discussion: New York Times, The Triad and Newsweek
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Trump backs violent white supremacists. There's no way around it.
National Review:
Voters Deserve to Know Where Joe Biden Stands on Court-Packing
Discussion: The Week
Kelly Weill / The Daily Beast:
Trump's Crew of Far-Right Vigilante Poll Watchers Is Coming
Julia Ainsley / NBC News:
Internal document shows Trump officials were told to make comments sympathetic to Kyle Rittenhouse  —  WASHINGTON — Federal law enforcement officials were directed to make public comments sympathetic to Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenager charged with fatally shooting two protesters in Kenosha …
RELATED:
Politico:
Parscale steps away from Trump campaign as wife denies physical abuse  —  Brad Parscale, a senior adviser to Donald Trump's campaign who was involuntarily detained by police this weekend, said he is stepping away from the reelection effort and seeking help for what he called “overwhelming stress” on him and his family.
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times:
Chris Wallace Calls Debate ‘a Terrible Missed Opportunity’  —  The veteran anchor conceded he was initially “reluctant” to step in during the Trump-Biden matchup.  “I've never been through anything like this,” he said.  —  “I'm just sad with the way last night turned out.”
RELATED:
CBS News:
Debates commission plans to cut off mics if Trump or Biden break rules
Helena Bottemiller Evich / Politico:
Trump requires food aid boxes to come with a letter from him  —  The Agriculture Department last week began mandating that millions of boxes of surplus food for needy families include a letter from President Donald Trump claiming credit for the program.  —  The USDA's $4 billion Farmers …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Guardian
Wall Street Journal:
Pre-Existing Condition Fiction  —  Biden repeats the same false claims about ObamaCare that Democrats use every election.  —  By The Editorial Board  —  Joe Biden claimed at Tuesday's debate that “100 million people who have pre-existing conditions” will lose insurance if the Trump Administration wins …
RELATED:
Matthew Chapman / Raw Story:
Ted Cruz blocks pre-existing conditions bill — two days after saying his party would always protect them
Discussion: New York Times
CBS News:
Kentucky attorney general says he never recommended murder charges in Breonna Taylor case  —  Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Tuesday that he never recommended murder charges against police officers for Breonna Taylor's death.  The grand jury handed down no charges in connection with Taylor's death.
New York Times:
Covid-19 Live Updates: Trump Is ‘Single Largest Driver’ of Virus Misinformation, Study Finds  —  An analysis by Cornell University researchers found that President Trump was the largest driver of falsehoods involving the pandemic.  —  RIGHT NOW Unemployment claims in the U.S. show little relief from pandemic layoffs.
RELATED:
New York Times:
Study Finds ‘Single Largest Driver’ of Coronavirus Misinformation: Trump
Discussion: Political Wire
Wall Street Journal:
Intelligence Officials Urged Trump Spy Chief Not to Disclose Unverified Russian Claims About Clinton  —  Officials at CIA, NSA, Office of Director of National Intelligence warned disclosure to Congress would give credibility to Kremlin-backed material  —  WASHINGTON—Senior U.S. officials urged Director …
Discussion: OpsLens
United States Department of State:
Transmission of the President's Report to Congress on the Proposed Refugee Admissions for Fiscal Year 2021  —  Today, the Department of State, together with the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Health and Human Services, submitted the President's Report to Congress …
Discussion: CNN
RELATED:
New York Times:
Ski, Party, Seed a Pandemic: The Travel Rules That Let Covid-19 Take Flight  —  The World Health Organization said open borders would help fight disease.  Experts, and a global treaty, emphatically agreed.  But the scientific evidence was never behind them.
Sarah Longwell / The Bulwark:
Listen to What Trump 2016 Swing-State Voters Had to Say About the Debate  —  Nine women.  All from swing states.  All 2016 Trump voters.  And they have thoughts about Trump's debate meltdown.  —  On Wednesday night I checked back in with a focus group of female 2016 Trump voters …
Mary Spicuzza / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
MARY SPICUZZA  —  President Donald Trump is planning a pair of Saturday campaign rallies in Green Bay and La Crosse, areas currently labeled by the White House Coronavirus Task Force as “red zones,” the highest level of COVID-19 community spread.  —  The task force's report says the state overall …
RELATED:
Tony Romm / Washington Post:
Millions of Americans risk losing power and water as massive, unpaid utility bills pile up  —  More than 179 million people may be at risk for shut-offs as many state protections end  —  This Tuesday marked 67 days of darkness for Kenneth Parson.  He fell behind on his utility bills in the spring …
Spiegel Online:
“I Assert that Putin Was Behind the Crime”  —  Interview Conducted by Benjamin Bidder und Christian Esch  —  It's six o'clock in the morning on Wednesday when Alexei Navalny shows up at the Berlin editorial office of DER SPIEGEL for an interview.  The office is located a few hundred meters …
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Trump's Chances Are Dwindling.  That Could Make Him Dangerous.  —  President Trump's quest to win a second term is not in good shape.  He entered Tuesday night's debate with roughly a 7- or 8-point deficit in national polls, putting him further behind at this stage of the race than any other candidate since Bob Dole in 1996.11
Discussion: Bloomberg, Bulwark+ and myfox8.com
BBC:
Pope rejects US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meeting  —  The Vatican has denied US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo an audience with Pope Francis.  —  The Holy See said the Pontiff does not receive politicians during an election period.  —  The move adds to a diplomatic row following comments …
John O. Brennan / The Atlantic:
The Day I Met Donald Trump  —  The digital clock next to my bed showed 4:06 a.m. As usual, my body clock had stirred me awake before my bedside radio alarm was set to go off, nine minutes later.  I stared motionless at the pitch-black ceiling for a few minutes.
Ezra Klein / Vox:
The definitive case for ending the filibuster  —  Every argument for the filibuster, considered and debunked.  —  SHARE All sharing options  —  If Joe Biden wins the White House, and Democrats take back the Senate, there is one decision that will loom over every other.
Discussion: New York Times
Tim Alberta / Politico:
Trump Is Not the Man He Used to Be  —  Donald Trump believes, to his core, that a single event in 2016 clinched him the presidency.  —  It wasn't the FBI reopening its investigation into Hillary Clinton.  It wasn't the Wikileaks dump of hacked DNC emails.
Discussion: LewRockwell, Redstate and TASS
Politico:
Americans Increasingly Believe Violence is Justified if the Other Side Wins  —  At the presidential debate this week, the Republican candidate voiced his concern about political violence—left-wing political violence.  And the Democratic candidate likewise voiced concern about political violence—right-wing political violence.
Discussion: Raw Story
Brian Lyman / Montgomery Advertiser:
BRIAN LYMAN  —  Gov. Kay Ivey on Wednesday offered a “sincere, heartfelt apology” to a survivor of the 1963 16th Street Baptist Church bombing, and offered to meet with her attorneys as she seeks compensation from the state.  —  The governor's letter to an attorney for Sarah Collins Rudolph …
Discussion: NPR
Amy Coney Barrett / Associated Press:
Religious group scrubs all references to Amy Coney Barrett from its website  —  People of Praise, a tiny charismatic Catholic organization, admits removing mentions and photos of Trump's supreme court pick  —  A tiny religious organization tied to Amy Coney Barrett, Donald Trump's supreme court nominee …
Edward Luce / Financial Times:
America's bleeding democratic image  —  The US brand is in measurable freefall, much to China's delight  —  In Tuesday's US presidential debate, Donald Trump said China had eaten Joe Biden's lunch when the latter was vice-president.  Mr Trump was referring to the rise of America's trade deficit …
Discussion: Vox
Jaime Lees / News Blog, Riverfront Times:
Veterans' Home Recently Visited by Governor Parson Has Outbreak of COVID-19  — Governor Mike Parson tweeted this photo of himself meeting with staff at Missouri Veterans Home, which is now dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak.  —  UPDATE 5:15 p.m.: We've updated this story to include a response from Governor Parson's spokeswoman below.
Discussion: FOX 2
USA Today:
Election forecasts helped elect Trump in 2016.  It could happen again in 2020.  —  Election forecasts can be wrong so don't rely on them.  You still need to go vote, even if your candidate is very likely to win.  —  Fall of 2020 will find many of us living in a state of fear and social isolation …
Shashank Bengali / Los Angeles Times:
Largest study of COVID-19 transmission highlights essential role of super-spreaders  —  In the bleak ranking of worst COVID-19 outbreaks, the United States, with 7.2 million infections, is likely to be eclipsed only by India, which has 1 million fewer cases but is catching up fast.
Discussion: The Week and Balloon Juice
Joseph Simonson / Washington Examiner:
Wife of Boston Marathon hero said Biden touched her in ‘an inappropriate and uncomfortable way’  —  The wife of a Massachusetts transit police officer who was injured in the manhunt for the Boston Marathon bombers accused Joe Biden of touching her inappropriately and making a suggestive comment in 2014.
Discussion: Redstate
The Nation:
Fire Donald Trump  —  We have no illusions about Biden, but we need him to win.  —  This is the most important election in our lifetimes—and one of the most consequential in The Nation's 155-year history.  Accepting his party's nomination in 2016, Donald Trump promised to …
Jack Stubbs / Reuters:
Exclusive: Russian operation masqueraded as right-wing news site to target U.S. voters - sources  —  LONDON (Reuters) - The Russian group accused of meddling in the 2016 U.S. election has posed as an independent news outlet to target right-wing social media users ahead of this year's vote …
Sabato's Crystal Ball:
Biden Lead Looks Firmer as Midwest Moves His Way  —  Dear Readers: Join us today at 2 p.m. eastern for our latest episode of Sabato's Crystal Ball: America Votes.  We'll be reacting to the first debate and going over the state of the race, including the many rating changes we made today (see below).
Discussion: Washington Times
 
 
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 More Items: 
Associated Press:
Former President Jimmy Carter celebrates 96th birthday
Peter Nicholas / The Atlantic:
H. R. McMaster: ‘Condemning White Supremacists Should Be a Layup’
Adam Serwer / The Atlantic:
The Most Illuminating Moment of the Debate
Washington Post:
U.S. push for Sudan to recognize Israel falters — and puts Khartoum in a tight spot
Kate Ackley / Roll Call:
Republican super PAC to spend $9 million in Michigan Senate race
Discussion: Political Wire
The Federalist:
Davis: CIA Director Gina Haspel Is Blocking Declassification Of Remaining Russigate Documents
Discussion: Townhall
ABC News:
CDC places ‘moratorium’ on releasing new coronavirus health guidance
Jill Serjeant / Reuters:
Scorsese, Eastwood say U.S. movie theaters may not survive pandemic
 Earlier Items: 
Anton Troianovski / New York Times:
Russians Were Urged to Return to Normal Life. Except for Putin.
Washington Post:
As Kim wooed Trump with ‘love letters,’ he kept building his nuclear capability, intelligence shows
Yair Rosenberg / Tablet Magazine:
Exclusive Social Media App ‘Clubhouse’ Had an Anti-Semitic Meltdown Over Yom Kippur