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1:50 PM ET, December 2, 2021


 Top Items: 
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
Covid Live Updates: Biden to Announce New Virus Plan as Omicron Reaches U.S.  —  Here's what you need to know:  —  Biden's winter Covid plan includes insurance reimbursement for at-home tests.  —  President Biden will announce Thursday that the more than 150 million Americans …
Minnesota Department of Health:
Lab testing confirms state's first COVID-19 case involving Omicron variant  —  Infected Minnesota resident recently returned from domestic travel; variant was found through MDH variant surveillance program, which is one of the strongest surveillance programs in the nation
The White House:
President Biden Announces New Actions to Protect Americans Against the Delta and Omicron Variants as We Battle COVID-19 this Winter  —  New Actions Aim to Get Americans Boosted for Even Greater Protection Against the Delta and Omicron Variants, Keep Schools and Businesses Open …
Andrew Joseph / STAT:
Second U.S. case of Omicron variant indicates domestic transmission
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
Why a Pollster is Warning Democrats About the 2022 Midterm Elections  —  Focus groups with Virginia voters led to a bluntly worded memo on what Democrats need to do going into the midterms.  —  Brian Stryker, a Democratic pollster, didn't work for Terry McAuliffe's campaign in the Virginia governor's race.
Martin Pengelly / The Guardian:
‘Handful of fanatics’ to blame for Capitol riot, Trump ally Meadows says in book  —  Ex-chief of staff downplays Trump involvement in insurrection and says mob had ‘absolutely no urging’ from the president  —  In his new memoir, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows blames just …
Discussion: Washington Post and Insider
Jose Pagliery / The Daily Beast:
Steve Bannon's Jan. 6 Legal Strategy: ‘Blowing Up the Whole System’  —  Steve Bannon isn't just trying to troll the Biden administration and the Justice Department.  He's creating a playbook for other resistant witnesses to the Jan. 6 probe.  —  Steve Bannon—the right-wing media personality turned adviser …
Symone Sanders to leave the VP's office  —  Symone Sanders, the senior adviser and chief spokesperson for Vice President Kamala Harris, is expected to leave the White House at the end of the year, according to five administration officials familiar with the matter.
Brett Samuels / The Hill:   Two more Harris press aides leaving in addition to Sanders
Philip Bump / Washington Post:
The minoritarian third of the Supreme Court  —  The Supreme Court seems likely to significantly scale back access to abortion when it rules on a Mississippi law that sharply limits the procedure — if the court doesn't overturn Roe v. Wade entirely.  That's a function of the court's shift …
Washington Post:
Potential collapse of Roe shakes up political landscape
Dahlia Lithwick / Slate:
SCOTUS Will Gaslight Us Until the End
Reid J. Epstein / New York Times:
Two Election Workers Targeted by Pro-Trump Media Sue for Defamation  —  The two Georgia workers were falsely accused of manipulating ballots by Trump allies and right-wing news sites.  Election officials said the workers did nothing wrong.  —  Two Georgia election workers who were the targets …
Ben Collins / NBC News:
Georgia election workers suing conspiracy website over ‘campaign of lies’
Discussion: Associated Press, Reuters and Raw Story
Mike Lillis / The Hill:
Pelosi hammers ‘anti-science, anti-vaccination’ Republicans for threatening shutdown  —  Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Thursday ripped into the Republican lawmakers threatening a government shutdown over President Biden's coronavirus vaccine mandate, accusing them of promoting a dual crisis of the economy and public health.
Tony Romm / Washington Post:
House, Senate leaders announce government funding deal as they race to avert shutdown
Lauren Effron / ABC News:
Alec Baldwin exclusive: 'The trigger wasn't pulled.  I didn't pull the trigger'  —  George Stephanopoulos' exclusive interview airs Thursday on ABC, streams on Hulu  —  Actor Alec Baldwin told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos in an exclusive interview that he had “no idea” …
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
If Trump Voters Lived in Germany, They'd Be in the Fascist Party … A recent global poll, which came to my attention via the Liberal Patriot, framed the political choice facing the public in an interesting way.  It asked which position comes closest to the poll taker's own belief …
Discussion: The Liberal Patriot
Perry Bacon Jr / Washington Post:   We may have already missed our last, best chance to bolster American democracy
Brandy Zadrozny / NBC News:
‘Magic dirt’: How the internet fueled, and defeated, the pandemic's weirdest MLM  —  The social media posts started in May: photos and videos of smiling people, mostly women, drinking Mason jars of black liquid, slathering black paste on their faces and feet, or dipping babies and dogs in tubs of the black water.
Aaron E. Carroll / The Atlantic:
We Opened the Schools and ... It Was Fine  —  When the coronavirus pandemic first hit, many states and towns closed everything, including schools.  Public-health experts didn't know enough about how COVID was spread or how contagious it was, and the health-care system was overwhelmed in parts of the country.
Discussion: Twitchy
Germany imposes curbs on unvaccinated, to make shots mandatory … Germany on Thursday imposed restrictions on the unvaccinated as it sought to break a dramatic surge in daily coronavirus infections exacerbated by the discovery of the Omicron strain.  —  Outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel …
Discussion: Twitchy and Mediaite
Germany to ban unvaccinated people from shops and bars
Discussion: Bloomberg
Alex Isenstadt / Politico:
Trump intervenes in Ohio Senate primary — for himself  —  The Ohio Senate race is turning into one of the most brutal contests of next year's midterm elections — and former President Donald Trump is worried it could hurt him if he waged a 2024 comeback bid.
Murray Waas / The Guardian:
Revealed: how Sidney Powell could be disbarred for lying in court for Trump  —  The former lawyer filed cases across America for the former president, hoping to overturn the results of the 2020 election  —  Sidney Powell, the former lawyer for Donald Trump who filed lawsuits across America …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Washington Post:
U.S. and Mexico reach deal to restart Trump-era ‘Remain in Mexico’ program along border  —  The Biden administration has reached a deal with the Mexican government to restart the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” program that requires asylum seekers to wait outside U.S. territory while their claims are processed …
New York Times:
I.O.C. Says It Held Second Call With Peng Shuai  —  Olympic officials insisted they “shared the same concern as many” about the safety of the Chinese tennis star but offered no details of what they discussed with her.  —  The International Olympic Committee said Thursday that it had held …
Fox News:
Waukesha parade suspect Darrell Brooks says he feels ‘dehumanized,’ ‘demonized’ in first jailhouse interview  —  Darrell Brooks Jr. spoke to Fox News Digital on Wednesday in Waukesha County Jail  —  The latest on Waukesha parade tragedy  —  WAUKESHA, Wis. - EXCLUSIVE …
Washington Post:
Trump could pocket $100 million in deal for money-losing D.C. hotel  —  He lost millions running his D.C. hotel, according to financial documents, but could set a record with a $375 million sale  —  When Donald Trump offered to spend $200 million overhauling one of Washington's …
Discussion: Insider
Rick Noack / Washington Post:
Sebastian Kurz, former conservative wunderkind and Austrian chancellor, quits politics in shocking fall  —  VIENNA — Former Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz, once hailed as Europe's political wunderkind, announced his departure from politics Thursday, sidelined — at least for now — at the age of 35.
Orlando Sentinel:
Florida Power & Light execs worked closely with consultants behind ‘ghost’ candidate scheme, records reveal |  Special Report  —  Top executives at utility giant Florida Power & Light worked closely with the political consultants who orchestrated a scheme to promote spoiler candidates …
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 More Items: 
KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: November 2021
Discussion: CNN
Jeff Ernst / The Guardian:
Honduras president-elect's China pledge puts Taiwan and US on edge
The White House:
Remarks by President Biden During a Menorah Lighting in Celebration of Hanukkah
Discussion: National Review and Power Line
Dan Froomkin / Press Watch:
Will the end of abortion rights rouse the political press from its everything's-fine stupor?
Scott Wong / The Hill:
Mace chief of staff steps down
Ian Millhiser / Vox:
The religious right wants states' tax dollars, and the Supreme Court is likely to agree
Discussion: Raw Story
 Earlier Items: 
Megan Fox /
‘Gutfeld!’ Ratings Explosion Beats Late-Night Giants Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon
Discussion: Ace of Spades HQ
Patrick Marley / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Gableman hires investigator who has brought legal challenges seeking to overturn Wisconsin's presidential results
A Fauci no longer in the Fox house
Discussion: Mediaite and Twitchy
The American Mind:
Own Nothing and Love It
Associated Press:
AP: US military explosives vanish, emerge in civilian world
Majority blues: House Dems not done limping for the exit