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5:10 PM ET, September 30, 2022

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 Top Items: 
Associated Press:
New U.S. Sanctions on Russia Hits Top Officials, Defense and Tech Sectors … Despite international condemnation, Putin signs decrees declaring four regions of Ukraine part of Russia.  —  President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia signed decrees on Friday to declare four Ukrainian regions part …
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Jonathan V. Last / The Triad:
Welcome to Cold War 2  —  Putin declares war on the West.  —  Last night's TNB was awesome.  Just two buddies, hanging out, talking about the end of democracy and playing AMA.  —  You can watch the replay here or listen to the podcast version here.  —  1. Cold War 2
Alexei Navalny / Washington Post:
This is what a post-Putin Russia should look like  —  Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is serving a nine-year sentence in a maximum-security penal colony.  This essay was conveyed to The Post by his legal team.  —  What does a desirable and realistic end to the criminal war unleashed …
Anne Applebaum / The Atlantic:
Putin's Newest Annexation Is Dire for Russia Too  —  His baldly illegitimate claim to four Ukrainian provinces shows contempt for the global order—and his own subjects.  —  Vladimir Putin today announced his annexation of four provinces of Ukraine—four provinces that he does not fully control …
Associated Press:
Russian strike kills 25 as Kremlin to annex Ukraine regions  —  Russia pounded Ukrainian cities with missiles, rockets and suicide drones, with one strike reported to have killed 25 people, as it moved Friday to annex Ukrainian territory into Russia and put it under the protection …
Fatima Hussein / Associated Press:
US hits Russia with sanctions for annexing Ukrainian regions
Nate Cohn / New York Times:
Gerrymandering Isn't Giving Republicans the Advantage You Might Expect  —  Yes, the G.O.P. has a structural edge in the House, but it isn't anything near insurmountable for Democrats.  —  There is no shortage of reasons Republicans are expected to retake the House this year …
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Ewan Palmer / Newsweek:
List of 49 Republicans Who Voted Against Food Security Help for Veterans  —  The House of Representatives passed a bill to establish an Office of Food Security at the Department of Veterans Affairs, with 49 Republicans voting against the proposal.  —  The Food Security for All Veterans Act …
Discussion: Alaska Public Media and Raw Story
Benjamin Wallace-Wells / New Yorker:
The Curious Case of Donald Bolduc
Discussion: HotAir
Punchbowl News:
9/30/22 ☀️ Punchbowl News AM
Discussion: National Review and NRCC
Andrew Solender / Axios:
GOP's impeachment zeal
Discussion: Forbes, The Daily Caller, Raw Story and CNN
Caitlin Emma / Politico:
House passes government funding, averting shutdown threat
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Gavin Newsom's trolling deftly unmasks Ron DeSantis's cruelty  —  It's hard to deny that Gov. Gavin Newsom harbors garish and even cringeworthy presidential ambitions.  The California Democrat regularly trolls Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, a top 2024 GOP contender, and Newsom surely knows playing foil …
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Mackenzie Mays / Los Angeles Times:
Newsom signs bill protecting transgender youths and families fleeing red-state policies
Ruth Marcus / Washington Post:
You thought the Supreme Court's last term was bad?  Brace yourself.  —  The cataclysmic Supreme Court term that included the unprecedented leak of a draft opinion and the end of constitutional protection for abortion would, in the normal ebb and flow, be followed by a period of quiet …
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Trump's legal team divided over how to handle Mar-a-Lago case  —  New lawyer's advice to seek an ‘off-ramp’ with Justice Department is not being heeded, people familiar with discussions say  —  After attorney Christopher Kise accepted $3 million to represent Donald Trump in the FBI's investigation …
Michael Kruse / Politico:
'It's My Curse and My Salvation': Trump's Most Famous Chronicler Opens Up  —  NEW YORK — Late one recent afternoon, Maggie Haberman pulled into a parking spot in the lot at Gargiulo's, the old-time Italian restaurant in Coney Island where Donald Trump's father used to eat lunch.
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Jason Leopold / Bloomberg:
For Obama, One Trump Term Wasn't a Big Worry, but ‘Eight Years Would Be a Problem’
Discussion: Raw Story and Political Wire
Philip Bump / Washington Post:
A new reminder that candidate quality matters  —  What's apparent at this point, just over a month before voting ends in the 2022 midterm election, is that nearly any national outcome is possible.  FiveThirtyEight's analysis of the state of play figures there's about a 3 in 10 chance …
RELATED:
Politico:
Georgia and Nevada on their minds: Senate watchers sweat two swing states
Discussion: Washington Examiner
Brian Schwartz / CNBC:
GOP billionaire donors direct cash to Senate leaders as Trump candidates lag Dems in fundraising
Discussion: Raw Story
Jake Bleiberg / Associated Press:
Dysfunction in Texas AG's office as Paxton seeks third term  —  Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's staff this month quietly dropped a series of human trafficking and child sexual assault cases after losing track of one of the victims, a stumble in open court emblematic of broader dysfunction inside …
Discussion: Off the Kuff
Jen Fifield / Votebeat:
Trump allies have interviewed nearly 200 election officials to probe for weaknesses  —  Volunteers for “Operation Eagles Wings” are using surveys in eight states to seek support for conspiracy theories.  —  Two of Donald Trump's most prominent allies in his fight to overturn the 2020 election …
CNN:
GOP congressional candidate Joe Kent's ties to white nationalists include interview with Nazi sympathizer  —  Despite disavowing White nationalism last spring when one of its adherents endorsed him, a US House candidate in Washington subsequently gave a previously unreported interview in June to a Nazi sympathizer and White nationalist.
Matt Lavietes / NBC News:
NYC human rights officials are ‘closely monitoring’ allegations against the owner of a gay bar  —  NBC News previously reported that Michael J. Cohen was accused of unwanted sexual conduct and discrimination.  Cohen's attorney said he is not under investigation.
Jesse Singal / Singal-Minded:
It Isn't Journalism's Job To Hand-Hold People To The Correct Moral Conclusions  —  Stop hating your readers  —  One of the silliest ideas to infect mainstream journalism in recent years is the notion that when journalists produce work about a bad person, they must signpost that work …
Lawrence Hurley / NBC News:
Supreme Court holds investiture ceremony for Ketanji Brown Jackson  —  Investiture ceremony held for Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson  —  The Supreme Court on Friday hosted a formal investiture ceremony for Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, the first Black woman to serve on the court …
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 More Items: 
Joseph Wulfsohn / Fox News:
CNN, MSNBC avoid Biden's 'Where's Jackie?' snafu after obsessing over Trump's ‘Tim Apple’ gaffe
Asawin Suebsaeng / Rolling Stone:
Tucker Carlson Secretly Tried to Get Jared Kushner to Broker Pardon for Roger Stone, Book Reveals
Mississippi Free Press:
Mississippi Welfare Scandal Timeline: Brett Favre and the Volleyball Stadium
Discussion: Daily Kos and Fox News
Natalie O'Neill / New York Post:
Dr. Fauci and wife's wealth ‘skyrocketed’ by $5 million during pandemic
Bloomberg:
NYC Proposal Offers Cash for Spotting Parking Violations in Bike Lanes
Discussion: New York Magazine
Martin Pengelly / The Guardian:
Trump made up audit excuse for not releasing tax returns on fly, book says
David Brooks / New York Times:
The Crisis of Men and Boys
Discussion: The Weekly Dish
David Wasserman / Cook Political Report:
It's “Oppo Dump” O'Clock: OH-09 Moves from Toss Up to Lean Democrat
Discussion: The Hill
 Earlier Items: 
Camille Mumford / Emerson Polling:
Pennsylvania 2022: Fetterman's Lead Shrinks in US Senate Race; Shapiro's Lead Expands For Governor's Seat
Laura Vozzella / Washington Post:
Youngkin, amid 2024 buzz, sidesteps question about completing term
Ed Yong / The Atlantic:
The Pandemic's Legacy Is Already Clear
Discussion: The Nation and I Might Be Wrong
John Burn-Murdoch / Financial Times:
The Tories have become unmoored from the British people
Discussion: Guido Fawkes and Corey's Blog
NBC News:
At least 12 confirmed dead as the scope of Hurricane Ian's devastation comes into focus
Variety:
Trevor Noah to Exit ‘Daily Show’ After Seven Years