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8:50 AM ET, June 24, 2021


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
In sentencing regretful Capitol protester, federal judge rebukes Republicans  —  U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth castigated Republican lawmakers on Wednesday for downplaying the violence of the mob that stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, saying in handing down the first sentence …
Katelyn Polantz / CNN:
New videos show Capitol rioters attacking police line from officers' point of view
Discussion: NPR and Raw Story
Judge rebukes GOP for downplaying US Capitol riot as he hands out first sentence in insurrection
Discussion: UPI and NBC News
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Read Britney Spears' Full Statement Against Conservatorship: ‘I Am Traumatized’ … I just got a new phone, and I have a lot to say, so bear with me.  Basically, a lot has happened since two years ago, the last time — I wrote all this down — the last time I was in court.  —  I will be honest with you.
Joe Coscarelli / New York Times:
Britney Spears: ‘I Just Want My Life Back’  —  In a rare public appearance in court, the singer gave an impassioned speech about her treatment under the conservatorship that controls her life, telling the judge she would like it to end.  —  Britney Spears told a Los Angeles judge on Wednesday …
Sam Mintz / Politico:
Senators say a deal with the White House is in hand on infrastructure  —  A group of bipartisan senators said Wednesday evening that they had agreed with the White House on a framework for an infrastructure package and will brief President Joe Biden in person Thursday on the details.
Eric Kleefeld / Media Matters for America:
“From POTUS”: Trump wanted Justice Department to investigate a QAnon-linked election conspiracy theory
Discussion: Politico and National Review
Alexander Burns / New York Times:
Staving Off G.O.P. Attacks, Democrats Show New Urgency on Crime  —  A strong showing by Eric Adams in the New York mayoral race and President Biden's announcement of a new crime-fighting agenda signal a shift by Democrats toward themes of public safety.  —  Facing a surge in shootings …
Andy Newman / New York Times:
N.Y.C. Mayoral Race Live Updates: Ranked-Choice Could Give Wiley and Garcia a Win, But It Is an Uphill Battle
‘The Tea Party to the 10th power’: Trumpworld bets big on critical race theory  —  Former top aides to President Donald Trump have begun an aggressive push to combat the teaching of critical race theory and capitalize on the issue politically, confident that a backlash will vault them back into power.
Jennifer Steinhauer / New York Times:
General Milley pushes back on G.O.P. accusations of a ‘woke’ military.
Mike LaChance / Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion:   Sen. Josh Hawley Calls Critical Race Theory ‘State Sanctioned Racism’
POLITICO Playbook: Biden catches his white whale  —  DRIVING THE DAY  —  ENGAGED!  — EUGENE DANIELS, a POLITICO White House reporter and co-author of Playbook from South Carolina, and NATE STEPHENS, a social change facilitator from South Dakota.  Pic ... Another pic ... One more pic ... OK, a final pic
Bethany Brunelle / Newport Daily News:   U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse releases statement regarding membership to Bailey's Beach club
Ted Nesi / WPRI-TV:
Sen. Whitehouse's beach club says accusations of all-white membership are ‘inaccurate and false’
Discussion: CNN, National Review and The Hill
Selene San Felice / Axios:
DeSantis takes aim at student “indoctrination” in Florida  —  Following his successful effort to ban critical race theory in public schools, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis expanded his war against student “indoctrination” on Wednesday.  —  What's happening: DeSantis signed three pieces …
Joseph Guzman / The Hill:
Florida Gov signs law requiring students, faculty be asked to declare their political beliefs  —  The law goes into effect July 1.  —  Story at a glance  — Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) signed HB 233 Tuesday.  — The legislation will require public universities to survey students …
Lord of the Roths: How Tech Mogul Peter Thiel Turned a Retirement Account for the Middle Class Into a $5 Billion Tax-Free Piggy Bank  —  The Secret IRS Files  —  Billionaire Peter Thiel, a founder of PayPal, has publicly condemned “confiscatory taxes.”  He's been a major funder …
Nick Miroff / Washington Post:
Biden administration removes Rodney Scott as head of U.S. Border Patrol  —  The Biden administration has forced out the head of the U.S. Border Patrol, Rodney Scott, clearing a path for a leadership overhaul at an agency strained by a 20-year-high in illegal border crossings …
Eileen Sullivan / New York Times:
Biden administration forces out border patrol chief, a supporter of Trump's policies.
Discussion: NBC News and Los Angeles Times
Annie Karni / New York Times:
Cindy McCain is Biden's choice for ambassador to the U.N.'s food program.  —  President Biden announced Wednesday that he was nominating Cindy McCain, the widow of former Senator John McCain, as ambassador to the United Nations World Food Programme, giving the post to a longtime Republican friend …
Homer Wilkes / The White House:
President Biden Announces 17 Key Nominations
Discussion: UPI, Breitbart and Politico
Amber Jamieson / BuzzFeed News:
A Former NRA President Was Tricked Into Speaking At A Fake High School Graduation  —  In a speech to the James Madison Academy 2021 graduating class, David Keene, a former NRA president and current board member of the gun rights group, called on the teens to fight those looking to implement tighter gun restrictions.
Sam Meredith / CNBC:
Covid is already deadlier this year than all of 2020.  So why do many in U.S. think the problem's over?  — U.S. Covid cases have fallen far below the winter peak in recent weeks, with new diagnoses now down at a seven-day average of around 11,310 a day, compared to more than 250,000 at the start of the year.
Dan Mangan / CNBC:
John McAfee found dead of apparent suicide in Spanish jail after court approves his extradition for tax crimes  — Eccentric antivirus software company founder John McAfee was found dead of suspected suicide in a jail in Barcelona, Spain.  — McAfee died shortly after Spain's National Court approved …
Benjamin Mullin / Wall Street Journal:
BuzzFeed Nears Deal to Go Public Via SPAC, Eyeing Digital-Media Rollup  —  Company hopes scale will make it easier to compete for ad dollars with Google, Facebook and Amazon  —  BuzzFeed Inc. is close to a deal to go public through a merger with a special-purpose acquisition company …
Discussion: The Hill
Noah Kulwin / New Republic:
An Origin Story for the Netanyahus … Melekh Bibi—King Bibi—has been dethroned.  Usurped by his former deputy, Naftali Bennett, in early June, Netanyahu was finally dealt an election result with which he could not form a majority government.  For the time being, as of June 13 …
Discussion: Bookshop
Out-group animosity drives engagement on social media  —  aDepartment of Psychology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 3RQ, United Kingdom;  —  bDepartment of Psychology, Center for Neural Science, New York University, New York, NY 10003  — Edited by James N. Druckman …
The Hill:
Despite diverging economic views, we all support the Biden plan  —  We are not generally regarded as occupying the same position within economic policy debates.  We have had divergent views on issues relating to spending, taxes and deficits.  But we've come to the same conclusion …
Discussion: USA Today and Raw Story
David Siders / Politico:
‘A lot of people are jaded’: Dems despair amid D.C. gridlock  —  Efforts to forge a bipartisan gun control deal in the Senate have fallen apart.  A sweeping Democratic elections reform bill has failed.  A self-imposed White House deadline for a police reform bill has come and gone.
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Democrats hear calls to nix recess  —  Democratic senators are starting to say the August recess, or at least part of it, should be in peril as the party falls further behind on its legislative agenda.  —  Bipartisan infrastructure talks have bogged down, and Senate Democrats …
Discussion: Political Wire
New York Post:
Curtis Sliwa gives an inside look of what life is like with 15 cats  —  It's the purrrfect apartment.  —  The Post got an exclusive look inside Curtis Sliwa's tiny Upper West Side studio apartment Wednesday — after the newly minted GOP mayoral nominee revealed that he and his wife share the space with 15 rescue cats.
Discussion: Fox News
Charlie Sykes / Morning Shots:
The Shark Attack Party  —  How panic porn shapes our politics  —  In the Before Times, you could always tell that it was a slow news day when we got lots of stories about the crisis of shark attacks.  Even now, we have a taste for the panic porn.  —  Fox News News reports: “Shark attack prompts dramatic rescue at Florida beach.”
Jonathan D. Salant / New Jersey Online:
Secret Service paid Trump to stay at his N.J. golf club while protecting him as president.  Here's the total bill.  —  The U.S. Secret Service spent more than $500,000 over the last four years at Donald Trump's Bedminster golf club, taxpayer funds that went directly to the former president's business.
John D. McKinnon / Wall Street Journal:
Google, Facebook Pressure Falls Short as Antitrust Measures Advance in House Committee  —  Tech companies to take the battle over the proposed new regulations and oversight to the House floor and Senate  —  WASHINGTON—A House committee approved far-reaching legislation to curb the market dominance …
Ditas B Lopez / Bloomberg:
Benigno Aquino III, Who Led Philippine Growth Spurt, Dies at 61  — Son of the country's first female leader also become president  — Oversaw highest GDP growth in decades, stood up to China  —  Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, the former Philippine president who oversaw the fastest period …
Jack Jenkins / Religion News Service:
Jesse Jackson, William Barber arrested protesting filibuster and Manchin  —  The Rev. Jesse Jackson, right, was arrested alongside the Rev. William Barber II during the protest on June 23, 2021, outside the Hart Senate Building.  RNS photo by Jack Jenkins  —  WASHINGTON (RNS) …
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 More Items: 
Laura J. Nelson / Los Angeles Times:
California's yoga, wellness and spirituality community has a QAnon problem
Discussion: Los Angeles Magazine
Paul Waldman / Washington Post:
When will Biden realize that liberals won the marijuana debate?
Discussion: Breitbart
Jordan Lancaster / The Daily Caller:
REPORT: Brian Stelter's Wife Accused Of Workplace Bullying
 Earlier Items: 
Partisan war over teaching history and racism stokes tensions in U.S. schools
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Dana Blanton / Fox News:
Fox News Poll: Majority believes COVID-19 leaked from lab in China
Discussion: Power Line and The Hill
Dhruv Khullar / New Yorker:
The Delta Variant Is a Grave Danger to the Unvaccinated
Discussion: BBC, ScienceAlert, Quartz and Cyprus Mail
Brian Flood / Fox News:
Joy Reid's MSNBC show has worst week ever, sets viewership lows in multiple categories
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Jonathan V. Last / The Triad:
Flesh Peddling To Own the Libs
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
Merrick Garland is the wrong man for the job
Discussion: Twitchy and Townhall