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12:15 PM ET, September 18, 2023


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Could McCarthy really lose his job?  —  Good morning, Early Birds.  If you're looking to brush up on Bibi ahead of President Biden's meeting with him in New York on Wednesday, allow us to suggest David Remnick's 1998 profile in which Benjamin Netanyahu smokes a Davidoff in his office without offering Remnick one.
Playbook: McCarthy's latest gambit falls flat  —  Presented by With help from Eli Okun and Garrett Ross  —  DRIVING THE DAY  —  BREAKING OVERNIGHT — “Iran-US prisoner swap likely set in motion as $6 billion of once-frozen Iranian assets reaches Qatar,” by AP's Jon Gambrell …
Discussion: CNN, The Hill and Reuters
Jenna Portnoy / Washington Post:
Rep. Jennifer Wexton will not seek reelection as diagnosis changes  —  Wexton was diagnosed this summer with progressive supranuclear palsy, a rare neurological condition for which there is no cure  —  Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.) promised this spring to persevere as she revealed …
Jennifer Wexton will not seek reelection, citing health concerns
Discussion: Blue Virginia
Aaron Rupar / Public Notice:
How not to interview Trump  —  This free edition of Public Notice is made possible by paid subscribers.  If you aren't one already, please sign up to support our work.  We're currently offering free trials for all new signups.  Just click the button below.  —  Subscribe now
Sarah K. Burris / Raw Story:
Rhetoric expert explains why there's no way to fact-check Trump's ‘layers of lies’
Discussion: CNN
Corbin Bolies / The Daily Beast:
Kristen Welker's ‘Meet the Press’ Debut Derailed by Trump Derangement
Jane C. Timm / NBC News:
Fact-checking Trump's ‘Meet the Press’ interview
Yoel Roth / New York Times:
I Was Attacked by Trump and Musk.  It Was a Strategy to Change What You See Online.  —  When I worked at Twitter, I led the team that placed a fact-checking label on one of Donald Trump's tweets for the first time.  Following the violence of Jan. 6, I helped make the call to ban his account from Twitter altogether.
Five Americans freed from Iran land in Qatar before flying to the US  —  Doha and Washington CNN —  Five Americans who had been imprisoned in Iran have been freed and have landed in Doha, Qatar, before flying to the United States later on Monday.  —  The five, all of whom had been designated …
Associated Press:
Officials say 5 prisoners sought by the US in a swap with Iran have flown out of Tehran
Brian Schwartz / CNBC:
Billionaire Ken Griffin, former DeSantis donor, on sidelines for GOP presidential primary  — Billionaire and Citadel CEO Ken Griffin says he is sitting on the sidelines for the 2024 Republican presidential primary.  — Griffin explained that so far he's not impressed with what he's seeing …
Discussion: Florida Politics
Trump moves to put the nail in DeSantis' campaign coffin  —  The ex-president is upping his presence in Iowa in an attempt to close any door on a comeback by the Florida governor.  —  Donald Trump's campaign believes Ron DeSantis is flatlining.  Now, they want to bury him.
New York Times:
‘A Terrible Mistake’: Trump Criticizes DeSantis on Abortion Ban
Brett Samuels / The Hill:
Trump shares post bashing ‘liberal Jews who voted to destroy America’  —  Former President Donald Trump late Sunday shared an image on Truth Social telling “liberal Jews” to “make better choices” amid celebrations of the Jewish New Year.  —  Trump shared a photo on Sunday evening without any caption of his own.
Chantal Da Silva / NBC News:
U.S. asks for help finding missing F-35 fighter jet after pilot ejects during ‘mishap’  —  Joint Base Charleston in South Carolina appealed to the public for information in its bid to “locate an F-35 that was involved in a mishap” on Sunday afternoon.  —  A U.S. fighter jet's stealth abilities appear …
Devlin Barrett / Washington Post:
Hunter Biden sues IRS over disclosures  —  The lawsuit over IRS agent interviews with Congress and the press comes as a special counsel weighs charging him with tax crimes  —  President Biden's son Hunter Biden filed a lawsuit Monday against the Internal Revenue Service …
Hannah Natanson / Washington Post:
Her students reported her for a lesson on race.  Can she trust them again?  —  Mary Wood's school reprimanded her for teaching a book by Ta-Nehisi Coates.  Now she hopes her bond with students can survive South Carolina's politics.  —  CHAPIN, S.C. — As gold sunlight filtered into her kitchen …
Discussion: Raw Story
New York Times:
Mark Meadows's Testimony in Georgia Case May Have Done Him No Favors  —  Mark Meadows, a former top Trump aide, took the witness stand in hopes of having his election interference case moved to federal court.  So far, the strategy has not paid off.  —  One morning last month …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Mike Allen / Axios:
Scoop: How GOP pressured Texas senators over Paxton's impeachment trial  —  Following a secret campaign coordinated by top Trump allies, Texas state senators yesterday acquitted Attorney General Ken Paxton of all impeachment charges, allowing him to return to his post.
Patrick Svitek / The Texas Tribune:
Ken Paxton emerges victorious from yet another career scandal
Discussion: The Hill and Diane Ravitch's blog
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 More Items: 
Sahil Kapur / NBC News:
Republicans who objected to a Biden impeachment inquiry now say they're fine with it
Discussion: Bloomberg
Andrew E. Kramer / New York Times:
In U.S. Visit, Zelensky to Make a Case for More Aid, and Say Thank You
Washington Post:
Lawmakers are spending way more to keep themselves safe. Is it enough?
 Earlier Items: 
Miranda Nazzaro / The Hill:
Two pilots killed in crash at National Championship Races in Reno
Timothy Snyder / The Guardian:
Elon Musk likes to think he saved us from Armageddon. He's just brought it closer
Scoop: Schumer ditches Senate's informal dress code