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1:15 PM ET, August 2, 2021

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 Top Items: 
Jane Mayer / New Yorker:
The Big Money Behind the Big Lie  —  Donald Trump's attacks on democracy are being promoted by rich and powerful conservative groups that are determined to win at all costs. … It was tempting to dismiss the show unfolding inside the Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona, as an unintended comedy.
Sarah Mucha / Axios:
Obama plans Martha's Vineyard birthday bash as Delta variant rages on  —  The party will be held outdoors, all guests are asked to be vaccinated and there will be a COVID-coordinator.
RELATED:
Melissa Koenig / Daily Mail:
Obama defies CDC guidance by inviting 500 people to his celebrity-studded 60th birthday party at his $12m mansion on Martha's Vineyard: Pearl Jam will perform and guests including Steven Spielberg will be served by 200 staff  — Former President Barack Obama is planning to celebrate …
Discussion: Althouse
Alex Gangitano / The Hill:
Biden not attending Obama's 60th birthday party
Discussion: CNN and Fox News
Politico:
Jihadists flood pro-Trump social network with propaganda  —  Just weeks after its launch, the pro-Trump social network GETTR is inundated with terrorist propaganda spread by supporters of Islamic State, according to a POLITICO review of online activity on the fledgling platform.
Josh Siegel / Washington Examiner:
Daily on Energy: Infrastructure nuclear aid too late for Illinois' at-risk plants  —  TIME IS TIGHT FOR ILLINOIS NUCLEAR PLANTS: The bipartisan Senate infrastructure bill, officially out last night, strives to save economically struggling nuclear plants from closing, but it's very likely …
RELATED:
Lindsey McPherson / Roll Call:
House moderates may oppose budget without infrastructure vote  —  Speaker Nancy Pelosi's plan to link the Senate's $550 billion bipartisan infrastructure plan to a $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package is starting to backfire, as moderate Democrats warn they may not vote …
Tony Romm / Washington Post:
Senate finishing crafting $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure proposal, setting delicate debate in motion
David Brooks / The Atlantic:
How the Bobos Broke America  —  This article was published online on August 2, 2021.  —  The dispossessed set out early in the mornings.  They were the outsiders, the scorned, the voiceless.  But weekend after weekend—unbowed and undeterred—they rallied together.
Discussion: Althouse
USA Today:
Florida breaks record in cases, hospitalizations; over 1M vaccine doses thrown away in 10 states: Latest COVID-19 news  —  Florida on Sunday broke its record for coronavirus hospitalizations a day after the state recorded the most daily COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic in early 2020.
Discussion: WHDH-TV, Politico and abc7NY
RELATED:
Miranda Devine / New York Post:
It's Democrats, Biden admin's border policies spreading COVID
Justin Fox / Bloomberg:
GDP Growth Under Trump Was the Worst Since Hoover  —  The pandemic was partly to blame, and there are some measures that make his record look better.  But it was not a stellar performance.  —  It was the whopping-yet-still-disappointing 6.5% annualized growth number for the second quarter …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Federalist
Ashley Rindsberg / UnHerd:
Did the New York Times stifle lab leak debate?  —  The world's verdict on the lab leak seems to be shifting.  The Biden Administration now thinks there is a credible possibility that Covid-19 leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.  WHO chief Tedros Adhanome Ghebreyesus has admitted …
RELATED:
John Ratcliffe / Fox News:
China Olympics 2022 - COVID cover up by country's leaders means they should forfeit games
Discussion: New York Post and The Federalist
Mike Schneider / Associated Press:
Florida breaks record for COVID-19 hospitalizations  —  ORLANDO, Fla. - A day after it recorded the most new daily cases since the start of the pandemic, Florida on Sunday broke a previous record for current hospitalizations set more than a year ago before vaccines were available.
RELATED:
Mary Papenfuss / HuffPost:
Miami Beach Mayor Rips Ron DeSantis As ‘Pied Piper’ Of COVID-19, Leading State ‘Off A Cliff’
Discussion: Washington Examiner
Stephen Collinson / CNN:
Trump's $100 million threat to democracy  —  (CNN)Donald Trump now has a $100 million weapon to wield against US democracy.  —  The defeated and disgraced ex-President's huge war chest, nearly all amassed within six months of leaving office, was built on his ravenous calls for cash …
Discussion: POLITICUSUSA, Ledger and ABC7
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Americans' Optimism About COVID-19 Dashed as Cases Surge  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a dramatic shift from last month, more Americans now say the coronavirus situation in the U.S. is getting worse (45%) rather than better (40%).  In June, a record 89% said the situation was getting better, while only 3% said it was getting worse.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi:
Dear Colleague: ‘The War Has Changed!’  —  “The War has Changed!”  With these words, the CDC cautioned the difference that the delta variant has made on the pandemic.  As they have called upon the American people to mask up, to be vaccinated and to take other public health precautions …
Discussion: ABC News, NBC News and The Hill
RELATED:
Thomas Franck / CNBC:
Treasury Dept to invoke ‘extraordinary measures’ as Congress misses debt-ceiling deadline  — The Treasury Department will begin conducting emergency cash-conservation steps.  — Economists say those so-called extraordinary measures will allow Treasury to pay off the government's bills without issuing …
RELATED:
Jonathan Lemire / Associated Press:   Pro-Biden groups to spend $100 million on August ad blitz
Sidney Blumenthal / The Guardian:
Want to make Jim Jordan sing about the Capitol attack?  Ask Jefferson Davis  —  The Ohio Republican admits he spoke to Trump the day the Confederate flag flew in Congress.  Aptly, the investigation of John Brown's raid sets precedent for what must happen next
Discussion: Raw Story
The Guardian:
100-year-old former Nazi concentration camp guard to be tried  —  Man deemed fit to stand trial in Germany and is accused of complicity in murder of more than 3,500 people  —  A 100-year-old former concentration camp guard will stand trial in Germany in October accused of complicity in 3,518 murders, public prosecutors have announced.
Discussion: The Local and Associated Press
Timothy Noah / Washington Monthly:
Bidenizing the Democrats  —  The president scores a victory against his party's Sanders wing.  —  Donald Trump's effort to maintain his grip on the Republican Party is so transfixingly weird that it obscures a more ordinary and perhaps more politically relevant one about whether Joe Biden …
Zusha Elinson / Wall Street Journal:
Portland, Ore., Can't Find Police for Unit to Fight Rising Murder Rate  —  Few volunteer for new gun-violence team that comes with more oversight and a mission to combat racism after a history of profiling  —  Leaders in Portland, Ore., are looking to combat the city's rising homicide rate …
CNN:
Mark Meadows: Trump meeting with his ‘cabinet’ (despite not having one)  —  Former Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows told Newsmax that the former president has been holding meetings with his “cabinet” despite not being president.  New York Times reporter and CNN political analyst Maggie Haberman has the details.
Matthew Lee / Associated Press:
Citing Taliban violence, US expands Afghan refugee program  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration on Monday expanded its efforts to evacuate at-risk Afghan citizens from Afghanistan as Taliban violence increases ahead there of the U.S. military pullout at the end of the month.
Vicky Prodeline / Monmouth University Polling …:
Federal Health Agencies Get Good Marks, But Give Mixed Messages on Covid  —  Majority support return of mask guidelines as worries tick back up  —  West Long Branch, NJ - A bare majority of Americans, driven by Democrats, support bringing back masking and social distancing guidelines …
Albert Hunt / The Hill:
‘Freedom-loving’ conservatives stoked latest round of infection and death  —  I write columns about politics and government, occasionally indulging as a frustrated sports writer; I don't write about business or leisure activities except:  — I would avoid any cruise ships embarking from Florida.
Alexander Vindman / The Atlantic:
What I Heard in the White House Basement  —  One phone call changed my life.  —  On Thursday, July 25, 2019, I was seated at the table in one of the two Situation Rooms in the basement of the West Wing.  The bigger room is famous from movies and TV shows, but this room is smaller …
Discussion: Raw Story and CBS News
Politico:
Tensions rise within Biden team over mask reversal  —  CHICAGO - A sea of maskless, sweaty, thrashing bodies filled Chicago's Grant Park, pushing up against the performance stage as acts like Miley Cyrus screamed into the microphone.  —  Roughly 100,000 people a night poured into the four …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
The GOP scamming of rural Trump voters continues. A new study shows the latest.
Discussion: POLITICUSUSA
Mona Charen / The Bulwark:
Vaccinate the World.  Now.  —  An opportunity for indisputable American greatness
Rosalind English / UK Human Rights Blog:
Germany's federal court declares Facebook's hate speech curbs to be in breach of citizens' constitutional rights
Associated Press:
Biden's judges: More diverse and more of them
Discussion: Common Dreams
Washington Examiner:
Dr. Rochelle Walensky has made a mockery of the CDC
 Earlier Items: 
American Greatness:
Incompetence + Arrogance = Woke
Betsy Woodruff Swan / Politico:
CIA feud complicates Jan. 6 probe
Discussion: Raw Story
John Kruzel / The Hill:
Threats of violence spark fear of election worker exodus
Discussion: BizPac Review and POLITICUSUSA
Karol Markowicz / New York Post:
Masking kids and closing schools is irrational, unscientific child abuse
Barbara McQuade / MSNBC:
Trump and the Capitol riot ‘hitman’ analogy
Discussion: New Yorker
Ed Kilgore / New York Magazine:
Will Republicans Gerrymander Their Way to a House Majority?
New York Times:
Biden's Climate Plans Are Stunted After Dejected Experts Fled Trump
Discussion: CNN
Will Sommer / The Daily Beast:
He Repped Kyle Rittenhouse, MAGA Monkey Owners... and Capitol Rioters
Discussion: Raw Story