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8:20 PM ET, January 24, 2022

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 Top Items: 
Tamar Hallerman / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
BREAKING: Fulton judges greenlight special grand jury for Trump probe  —  A panel of Fulton County judges on Monday cleared the way for a special grand jury to be used as part of District Attorney Fani Willis' investigation of former President Donald Trump and his efforts to overturn Georgia's 2020 election results.
RELATED:
Priya Krishna / New York Times:
Sarah Palin, who is unvaccinated, recently dined indoors in New York City before testing positive.  —  Sarah Palin, who is not vaccinated against the coronavirus, dined indoors Saturday night at Elio's, an Italian restaurant on the Upper East Side of Manhattan that regularly draws celebrities …
RELATED:
Dan Mangan / CNBC:
Unvaccinated Sarah Palin tests positive for Covid, delays New York Times defamation trial
Francis Fukuyama / American Purpose:
Why Ukraine Matters  —  This past week, Russia has continued to move men and materials to the borders of Ukraine, and has not backed down from its threats to take direct action if its demands on the United States and NATO are not met.  The Biden administration has engaged President Putin …
RELATED:
Fiona Hill / New York Times:
It's Not Just About Ukraine.  Putin Wants to Evict the U.S. From Europe.  —  Ms. Hill was an intelligence officer on Russia and Eurasian affairs for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama and served on the National Security Council under President Donald Trump.  —  We knew this was coming.
Christopher Miller / BuzzFeed News:
Some Ukrainians Are Angry About Washington Ordering Diplomats' Families To Leave The US Embassy
Lorne Cook / Associated Press:
US puts 8,500 troops on heightened alert amid Russia tension
Jason DeParle / New York Times:
Cash Aid to Poor Mothers Increases Brain Activity in Babies, Study Finds  —  The research could have policy implications as President Biden pushes to revive his proposal to expand the child tax credit.  —  WASHINGTON — An experiment that provided poor mothers with cash stipends for the first year …
Discussion: Vox, Forbes, Kevin Drum, UPI and Political Wire
Spencer Brown / Townhall:
Joe Biden Snaps, Calls Reporter ‘Stupid Son of a Bitch’  —  In a major hot mic gaffe for President Biden on Monday, the leader of the free world got caught calling Fox News' Peter Doocy a “stupid son of a bitch.”  —  The comment from Biden came after the official White House video feed …
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Hannah Natanson / Washington Post:
Seven school boards sue to stop Gov. Youngkin's mask-optional order on the day it takes effect  —  Seven school boards — including one overseeing the largest and most prominent district in the state — are suing to stop Gov. Glenn Youngkin's (R) mask-optional order on the day it is supposed to take effect …
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Luke Rosiak / The Daily Wire:
EXCLUSIVE: Standoff In Virginia As Schools Defy Governor's Order Making Masks Optional
Allahpundit / HotAir:
Wow: Virginia senate Dem sides with Youngkin, GOP in pushing for end to school mask mandate
Michael Tomasky / New Republic:
The Case for Impeaching Clarence Thomas  —  In a sane world, Jane Mayer's excellent piece on Ginni Thomas in The New Yorker would set off a series of events that would lead to her husband Clarence Thomas's impeachment and removal from the Supreme Court.  Ginni is involved with numerous far …
RELATED:
Mark Paoletta / The Federalist:   The New Yorker Lies Again In Hit On Clarence Thomas And Wife That Falsely Claims He Attended A DC Event
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
Supreme Court Will Hear Challenge to Affirmative Action at Harvard and U.N.C.
Viola Zhou / VICE:
Cult Classic ‘Fight Club’ Gets a Very Different Ending in China  —  Someone tried very hard to please Chinese movie censors.  —  VZ  —  Fight Club is getting an entirely different ending in a new online release in China, where imported films are often altered to show that the law enforcement …
Bryan Metzger / Insider:
Rep. Marie Newman of Illinois may have bribed a primary opponent to stay out of the race in exchange for a job in her office, House ethics body unanimously finds  — The Office of Congressional Ethics voted 6-0 to find reason to believe Rep. Newman bribed a political opponent.
Sean Davis / The Federalist:
The Federalist Names Mollie Hemingway As Editor In Chief  —  In this new role, Hemingway — who has been The Federalist's senior editor since its founding in 2013 -will now oversee all of The Federalist's editorial operations.  —  Mollie Ziegler Hemingway has been named editor in chief of The Federalist …
New York Post:
Disgraced NY political powerhouse Sheldon Silver dies in prison  —  Sheldon Silver, the Democratic powerhouse who ruled Albanyuntil he was convicted on federal corruption charges in a stunning fall from grace, has died.  He was 77.  —  Silver died in prison while serving out a six …
Discussion: Political Wire
RELATED:
Jan Wolfe / Reuters:
U.S. Supreme Court rejects House Republicans' challenge to pandemic-era voting rules  —  The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge by Republican lawmakers to pandemic-related proxy voting rules set by Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the Democratic-led House of Representatives that were tailored to limit exposure to COVID-19.
RELATED:
John Fritze / USA Today:
Supreme Court turns away Rep. Kevin McCarthy challenge to House proxy voting during COVID-19
NBC News:
Florida school district cancels professor's civil rights lecture over critical race theory concerns  —  MIAMI — A Florida school district canceled a professor's civil rights history seminar for teachers, citing in part concerns over “critical race theory” — even though his lecture had nothing to do with the topic.
Timothy Noah / New Republic:
No, Democracy Isn't About to Die  —  We're fast approaching the point where a subscription to The Atlantic is a risk factor for suicide.  “January 6 Was Practice,” announces the cover of the current issue, flagging a story by Barton Gellman headlined, “Trump's Next Coup Has Already Begun.”
Discussion: Backbencher
Gabriel Sherman / Vanity Fair:
Inside Jerry Falwell Jr.'s Unlikely Rise and Precipitous Fall at Liberty University  —  Jerry Falwell Jr. was the Trump-anointing dark prince of the Christian right.  Then a sex scandal rocked his marriage and ended his lucrative stewardship of the evangelical education empire founded by his father.
Discussion: Raw Story
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
Republicans are embarrassed to tell us what they are for  —  President Biden at his news conference last week asked the question that the media should have been asking Republicans for months: “What are they for?”  —  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) won't say.
Discussion: Raw Story
RELATED:
Chad Pergram / Fox News:
GOP playing the long game, with hopes of reclaiming control of Congress
Todd Neikirk / HillReporter.com:
Rudy Giuliani is Selling Autographed 9/11 Shirts for $911.00  —  Rudy Giuliani has faced an incredible fall from grace since 2001.  Back then, he was America's Mayor, presiding over New York City following the September 11th attacks.  And for the people who still see Giuliani positively, it is probably because of 9/11.
Nicholas Wade / City Journal:
A Covid Origin Conspiracy?  —  Newly released emails make more plausible the contention that Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins presided over the suppression of the lab-leak theory for political reasons.  —  Covid-19  —  Politics and law  —  From almost the moment the Covid-19 pandemic broke …
Ryan J. Reilly / HuffPost:
Trump Influencer Brandon Straka Walks Away From Jan. 6 Case With Home Detention  —  Citing his cooperation, the feds wanted the president of the “Walk Away” campaign to serve four months of home detention.  He got three.  —  Brandon Straka, a 45-year-old former hairstylist who morphed …
Dánica Coto / Associated Press:
Statue toppled in Puerto Rico before Spanish king's visit  —  SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Unknown people toppled a statue of Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León in the pre-dawn hours of Monday ahead of a visit of King Felipe VI to the U.S. Caribbean territory of Puerto Rico.
Discussion: WTOP News
Politico:
Capitol Police examines backgrounds, social media feeds of some who meet with lawmakers  —  After the Jan. 6 insurrection, the Capitol Police's intelligence unit quietly started scrutinizing the backgrounds of people who meet with lawmakers, according to three people familiar with the matter.
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Raw Story
James Webb Space Telescope:
Orbital Insertion Burn a Success, Webb Arrives at L2  —  Today, at 2 p.m. EST, Webb fired its onboard thrusters for nearly five minutes (297 seconds) to complete the final postlaunch course correction to Webb's trajectory.  This mid-course correction burn inserted Webb toward its final orbit around …
Ellen Barry / New York Times:
'In the End, You're Treated Like a Spy,' Says M.I.T. Scientist  —  Gang Chen was arrested a year ago on charges of hiding his links to China.  The charges were dismissed, but he said the damage — to him, and to American science — has lingered.  —  CAMBRIDGE, Mass. …
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Behind the latest GOP restrictions on race teaching: A hidden, toxic goal  —  Glenn Youngkin's victory in the Virginia gubernatorial election persuaded Republicans that there's political gold in attacking teachers for supposedly indoctrinating the nation's children about race.
 
 
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 More Items: 
U.S. Department of Justice:
Man Convicted of Abusive Sexual Contact of a Minor at Quantico
Discussion: Breitbart
Joseph Simonson / Washington Free Beacon:
Biden Withholds December Border Crossing Numbers
Discussion: Washington Examiner and Townhall
Elliot Smith / CNBC:
Russian stocks sink 8%, ruble plunges to 14-month low as conflict fears intensify
Patrick Marley / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
An appeals court has reinstated absentee ballot drop boxes for the Feb. 15 Wisconsin primary election
Discussion: NPR and Ineptocracy Chronicles
Yonah Jeremy Bob / Jerusalem Post:
Netanyahu rejects plea deal with clause that would ban him from politics
 Earlier Items: 
Geoffrey Skelley / FiveThirtyEight:
Why More Inexperienced Candidates Are Running — And Winning
Alex Griffing / Mediaite:
J.D. Vance Defends Bombastic Rhetoric: ‘Our Country is Kind of a Joke’
Discussion: IJR and Political Wire
Joshua Tait / The Bulwark:
Long Before Hungary, the Right Was Fixated on Another Country
Discussion: Overtime
Eric Levitz / New York Magazine:
Was Larry Summers Right All Along?
Jane C. Timm / NBC News:
Arizona Republicans propose major changes to elections after GOP review finds no fraud