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9:20 PM ET, June 16, 2021


 Top Items: 
The Intercept:
Leaked Audio of Sen. Joe Manchin Call With Billionaire Donors Provides Rare Glimpse of Dealmaking on Filibuster and January 6 Commission … West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, in a private call on Monday with a group of major donors, provided a revealing look at his political approach to the most thorny issues confronting lawmakers.
Richard L. Hasen / Slate:
Democrats Should Leap at the Chance to Take Joe Manchin's Deal  —  Sen. Joe Manchin, who thus far has opposed Democrats' big election reform bill, has finally made his counteroffer.  On Wednesday, the West Virginian proposed a series of changes to the “For the People Act” that could win his vote.
Mike DeBonis / Washington Post:
Manchin outlines demands on voting legislation, creating an opening for potential Democratic compromise  —  Sen. Joe Manchin III, the sole Senate Democrat who is not sponsoring a sweeping voting rights and campaign finance bill, has outlined for the first time a list of policy demands …
NBC News:
Manchin proposes compromise on voting bills
Discussion: Raw Story and The Hill
Max Boot / Washington Post:
Biden wiped the smirk off Putin's face  —  Seasoning and sobriety are underappreciated virtues in politics.  Voters normally opt for novelty and excitement when choosing a president.  The result is that we usually wind up with foreign policy neophytes in the Oval Office.
Benjamin Siegel / ABC News:
Still a summit secret: What happened in Helsinki between Putin and Trump?
Anita Kumar / Politico:
Media melee leaves journalists outside during Biden-Putin summit
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Trump has become a cancerous tumor that neither party is willing to excise
Discussion: Truthout, Hackwhackers, HotAir and Politico
U.S. Representative Matt Rosendale:
Rep. Rosendale Statement on Juneteenth Vote  —  Washington, D.C. — Rep. Rosendale issued the following statement opposing a bill to make Juneteenth a federal holiday:  —  “Let's call an ace an ace.  This is an effort by the Left to create a day out of whole cloth to celebrate identity politics …
NBC News:
House passes bill to make Juneteenth a federal holiday … The House on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly in favor of making Juneteenth a national federal holiday with a 415-14 tally, and Democrats are hopeful President Joe Biden will sign the measure into law by Saturday.
Mike DeBonis / Washington Post:
Congress votes overwhelmingly to make Juneteenth a federal holiday.  The day commemorates the end of slavery in Texas in 1865.  —  Congress on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to establish Juneteenth as a federal holiday, elevating the day marking the end of slavery in Texas to a national commemoration …
Andrew Solender / Forbes:
House Overwhelmingly Approves Senate Bill Making Juneteenth A Federal Holiday
Discussion: The Hill, BuzzFeed News and Roll Call
New York Times:
Justice Dept. Ends Criminal Inquiry, Lawsuit on John Bolton's Book  —  President Donald J. Trump had pressured the department to use its legal powers to stop his former national security adviser from publishing embarrassing details about him.  —  The Justice Department has closed …
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Democrats turn up the heat on DOJ for burying a key Trump document
Discussion: Raw Story
Josh Boswell / Daily Mail:
EXCLUSIVE: ‘No yellow!’  Hunter Biden used slur to refer to Asians in 2019 texts with his cousin Caroline who asked if he preferred ‘foreign or domestic’ women - as he's already been blasted as racist for using the n-word  — Hunter Biden referred to Asians with the offensive term 'yellow …
Michelle Liu / Associated Press:
2 South Carolina executions halted until firing squad formed  —  COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Supreme Court on Wednesday blocked the planned executions of two inmates by electrocution, saying they cannot be put to death until they truly have the choice of the firing squad option set …
ADF Media:
Scardina v. Masterpiece Cakeshop  —  Description: The same attorney who filed an unsuccessful complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission in 2017 commenced a lawsuit in state court over the same custom cake request the attorney made at that time.  The request was for a custom-designed cake …
Becket Adams / Washington Examiner:
Colorado just won't leave baker Jack Phillips alone
Discussion: The Federalist
IT IS OBSCENE: A TRUE REFLECTION IN THREE PARTS  —  When you are a public figure, people will write and say false things about you.  It comes with the territory.  Many of those things you brush aside.  Many you ignore.  The people close to you advise you that silence is best.  And it often is.
Discussion: HotAir and Eduwonk
Rebecca Ballhaus / Wall Street Journal:
Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, Forceful on Jan. 6, Privately Are in Turmoil  —  The far-right groups face a cash squeeze, internal discord, social-media cutoff and isolation from the financial system  —  The far-right group the Oath Keepers is splintering after board members accused the founder …
American College Student Freedom, Progress and Flourishing Survey  —  The American College Student Freedom, Progress and Flourishing Survey is an annual survey conducted by the Sheila and Robert Challey Institute for Global Innovation and Growth.  The survey assesses student perceptions …
Associated Press:
Aide says former Homeland Security head Tom Ridge had stroke  —  HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Former U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge suffered a stroke Wednesday at his home in suburban Washington, D.C., a longtime aide to the former Pennsylvania governor said.
Discussion: The Hill and Fox News
Warren P. Strobel / Wall Street Journal:
CIA Names David Marlowe to Run Espionage Operations  —  Will oversee undercover officers who recruit foreign spies, from foreign government officials to members of terrorist networks  —  WASHINGTON—In his first major personnel move, CIA Director William Burns has tapped a 30-year agency veteran …
Andy Kroll / Rolling Stone:
The Forever-Trump Movement Has Won  —  The 45th president lost an election and incited a failed insurrection, but his grip on the GOP is absolute.  What's next for a party at war with democracy — and the future?  —  The heretics left the champagne and orange juice untouched, but the conversation flowed freely all the same.
Discussion: FiveThirtyEight
Henry Olsen / Washington Post:
How Democrats could win Alaska's Senate seat thanks to ranked-choice voting  —  Republicans need to keep all of their current Senate seats to have a shot at regaining control of the Senate in the 2022 midterms.  A conservative insurgency combined with a new ranked-choice voting system may put GOP control of Alaska in doubt.
Jacob Pramuk / CNBC:
11 GOP senators back bipartisan infrastructure plan, boosting its chances of moving forward  — Eleven Republican senators now support a bipartisan infrastructure framework, which would give a bill enough votes to pass the Senate if all Democrats get on board.
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Tucker Carlson's wild, baseless theory blaming the FBI for organizing the Jan. 6 Capitol riot  —  It's been more than five months since President Donald Trump's supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, and those seeking to deflect blame still can't figure out exactly how to do so.
Lelac Almagor / New York Times:
Why Remote Learning Is a Failure  —  Ms. Almagor teaches fourth grade at a public charter school in Washington, D.C.  —  Our prepandemic public school system was imperfect, surely, clumsy and test-crazed and plagued with inequities.  But it was also a little miraculous …
Discussion: HotAir and Twitchy
Vicky Prodeline / Monmouth University Polling …:
Biden Spending Plans Remain Popular  —  But presidential job rating takes a dip  —  West Long Branch, NJ - Joe Biden's job rating has taken a dip as progress on his spending plans has stalled.  The latest Monmouth ("Mon-muth") University Poll finds a majority of the American public continues …
The White House:
U.S.-Russia Presidential Joint Statement on Strategic Stability  —  We, President of the United States of America Joseph R. Biden and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, note the United States and Russia have demonstrated that, even in periods of tension …
Leading Manhattan DA Candidate Has Repeatedly Paid Virtually No Federal Income Taxes  —  Tali Farhadian Weinstein, who donated $8 million to her own campaign, and her hedge fund manager husband paid nothing (or almost nothing) to the IRS four times in six years.  —  The Secret IRS Files
Josh Kovensky / Talking Points Memo:
Inside Tom Cotton's Insane World Of DNA Theft, Olympic Athletes, And Anti-China Conspiracies  —  In the minds of the right, the international communist threat is back.  And this time, it's not just personal — it's genetic.  —  At least, that's according to a letter that Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) sent to President Biden this week.
Martin Austermuhle / DCist:
In A First, A Man At The D.C. Jail Just Won A Local Election  —  There's a new elected official in D.C. — and he lives inside the D.C. Jail.  —  Joel Caston won an unprecedented election on Tuesday for a seat on a Ward 7 Advisory Neighborhood Commission, besting four other candidates who are also incarcerated in the jail.
Wilson Wong / NBC News:
Royal Caribbean delays cruise ship after 8 crew members test positive for Covid … Royal Caribbean International is delaying the inaugural sailing of its Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship after eight crew members tested positive for Covid-19, officials said Tuesday.
John McCormick / Wall Street Journal:
Obama Presidential Center Delay to Set Modern Record  —  Activists have slowed construction of $700 million campus that could see late-summer groundbreaking  —  CHICAGO—Former President Barack Obama, once a community organizer, has gotten a taste of community organizing himself as preservationists …
Discussion: The Hill
Rachel M. Cohen / The Intercept:
School Privatization Lobby Places Fake News on Local Stations … On a weekly basis over the last three years, an arm of the national school privatization lobbying group the American Federation for Children has been producing fake news segments and distributing them to local news stations.
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 More Items: 
Aruna Viswanatha / Wall Street Journal:
Trial of Scientist Accused of Hiding China Work Ends in Hung Jury
Discussion: HotAir, WBIR-TV and WTOP
Katie Robertson / New York Times:
New Yorker Union Reaches Deal With Condé Nast After Threatening to Strike
Michael Lee / Washington Examiner:
Majority has an unfavorable view of critical race theory: Poll
Discussion: New York Times, The Hill and RedState
Christian Datoc / Washington Examiner:
'We're not old friends': Biden says his relationship with China's Xi is ‘pure business’
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Fox News
Roland Betancourt / Washington Post:
Anti-Blackness and transphobia are older than we thought
Discussion: Twitchy
Mario H. Lopez / The Hill:
Catchy slogans can't improve the harmful effects at the heart of the PRO Act
Discussion: Reason and Vox
 Earlier Items: 
Danielle Ong / International Business Times:
Woman Who Hunter Biden Fathered Child With Was Sasha Obama's ‘Basketball Mentor’: Report
Discussion: The Western Journal
Jeff Jacoby Globe / The Boston Globe:
Biden stays out of our face. Isn't it great?
Katie Rogers / New York Times:
Title IX Protections Extend to Transgender Students, Education Dept. Says
Julian Mark / Washington Post:
Paul Gosar demands name of Capitol officer who killed rioter Ashli Babbitt, saying she was ‘executed’
Peter Nicholas / The Atlantic:
Who Is Trump Reaching?  —  “The Republican Party is just a name,” Steve Bannon told me last week.