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7:25 PM ET, September 23, 2023


 Top Items: 
McCarthy reverses on Ukraine aid as GOP scrambles on funding bills  —  The backtrack comes as Republicans try to shore up votes to move forward after two setbacks.  —  Speaker Kevin McCarthy is backtracking on his plan to remove Ukraine aid from a massive military spending bill …
Mychael Schnell / The Hill:
McCarthy backtracks, says he will keep Ukraine aid in Pentagon funding bill  —  Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Saturday said he will keep Ukraine aid in the Pentagon funding bill, a reversal from his announcement one day earlier that he would strip the money out due to opposition from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.).
Paul Kane / Washington Post:
Was McCarthy distracted from governing by impeachment inquiry?  —  House Republicans pledge a slow, methodical pace on the Biden impeachment inquiry, but some rank-and-file believe that their leaders have missed the target on priorities  —  Congressional bureau chief
Discussion: Raw Story
McCarthy works through weekend but no progress on short-term fix with just one week until shutdown  —  House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Saturday he still lacks support from a handful of GOP hardliners to put a Republican stopgap measure on the floor next week, making a government shutdown likely with just one week until the deadline.
Discussion: ABC News, Mediaite and The Daily Beast
Clarence Thomas' Latest Pay-to-Play Scandal Finally Connects All the Dots  —  ProPublica released a new report on Friday detailing Justice Clarence Thomas' close relationship with the Koch brothers with previously undisclosed and extraordinarily damning new details.
Shan Wu / The Daily Beast:
Clarence Thomas' Koch Party Is Latest Shocking Ethics Breach  —  Thomas should be forced to recuse himself from hearing cases brought by groups that he helps fundraise for and who fly him on private jets. … Justice Clarence Thomas once championed the Supreme Court line of precedent giving deference …
Discussion: Raw Story and Twitchy
Washington Post:
Misinformation research is buckling under GOP legal attacks  —  An escalating campaign, led by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and other Republicans, has cast a pall over programs that study political disinformation and the quality of medical information online  —  Academics, universities …
Mia McCarthy / Politico:
Fetterman calls for Menendez to resign  —  Menendez was indicted for accepting bribes Friday.  —  Sen. John Fetterman (D-Penn.) called for Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) to resign from the Senate on Saturday, making him the first Democratic senator to call for his resignation.
Nick Robertson / The Hill:
New Jersey rep. announces challenge to unseat Menendez following indictment
Governor Phil Murphy / State of New Jersey:
Statement by Governor Murphy on Today's Indictment Against U.S. Senator Robert Menendez
Tim Murphy / Mother Jones:
Joe Biden Is About to Go Where No President Has Gone Before  —  A picket line.  —  On September 15, the United Auto Workers began a targeted strike against Ford, GM, and Stellantis (the conglomerate that includes Chrysler) in an effort to secure higher wages, a four-day work week, and other protections in the union's next contract.
Carl Hulse / New York Times:
The Wrecking-Ball Caucus: How the Far Right Brought Washington to Its Knees  —  Right-wing Republicans who represent a minority in their party and in Congress have succeeded in sowing mass dysfunction, spoiling for a shutdown, an impeachment and a House coup.
Discussion: Politico and Raw Story
Carter Sherman / The Guardian:
US mother sentenced to two years in prison for giving daughter abortion pills  —  Jessica Burgess pleaded guilty in July to providing an abortion after 20 weeks and tampering with human remains  —  Jessica Burgess, a Nebraska mother accused of helping her teenage daughter use pills to end her pregnancy …
New York Times:
U.S. Provided Canada With Intelligence on Killing of Sikh Leader  —  American intelligence gave assistance, but communications intercepted by Canada were more definitive in linking India to the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar.  —  American spy agencies provided information to Ottawa …
Nicholas Nehamas / New York Times:
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Flirts With the Libertarian Party  —  Mr. Kennedy sat down with the party's chair in July, a previously undisclosed meeting, as Democrats fret about a third party bid.  —  For months, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has said he plans to continue his long-shot challenge …
Robert Draper / New York Times:
Cassidy Hutchinson Reappears.  She Has More Trump Stories to Tell.  —  “I would like not to be a hermit,” the former White House aide says upon the publication of a memoir about her journey down a political rabbit hole.  —  Cassidy Hutchinson dropped out of sight last year after she testified …
Discussion: CBS News, Insider and Political Wire
Lauren Irwin / The Hill:
Richard Branson to climate change deniers: 'it's a fact of life'  —  While in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, Virgin Group founder Richard Branson shared details of his next endeavor: combating climate change.  —  The billionaire British businessman announced Monday …
Discussion: NBC News
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 More Items: 
Landon Mion / Fox News:
Newsom vetoes bill that would require parents to affirm child's gender identity in custody battles
 Earlier Items: 
Coast Guard Academy banned a retired captain from its grounds after CNN reported he sexted a student. Now more allegations are surfacing.

From Techmeme:

Meta plans to deprecate the Facebook News tab in the US and Australia in early April 2024 and stop signing deals for traditional news content in those countries

Candace Cheung / Courthouse News Service:
Elon Musk sues OpenAI and Sam Altman, accusing them of betraying an agreement from OpenAI's founding to develop AI toward the “benefit of humanity” over profits

Jason Schreier / Bloomberg:
Source: Embracer plans to sell its subsidiary Saber Interactive to private investors in a $500M deal, making Saber a privately-owned company with ~3,500 staff

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