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5:25 AM ET, September 20, 2017


 Top Items: 
Trump using campaign, RNC funds to pay Russia probe legal bills: Reuters, citing sources  — The U.S. Federal Election Commission allows the use of private campaign funds to pay legal bills arising from being a candidate or elected official.  — Trump would be the first U.S. president …
Exclusive: Mueller team's focus on Manafort spans 11 years  —  Washington (CNN)Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team is reaching back more than a decade in its investigation of Paul Manafort, a sign of the pressure Mueller is placing on President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman.
Matea Gold / Washington Post:   RNC taps legal account to help pay for President Trump's lawyers in Russia probes
The Daily Beast:   Michael Flynn Prepping for a $1 Million Legal Tab
Rich Lowry / National Review:
‘Holy Sh**’: Trump at the U.N.  —  A Jacksonian speech in Turtle Bay  —  As someone said on Twitter, never before has been there so much murmuring of “holy sh**” in so many different languages.  Donald Trump's speech at the United Nations was a sometimes awkward marriage …
Discussion: New Republic
Full text: Trump's 2017 U.N. speech transcript  —  President Donald Trump's statement to the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 19, 2017, as prepared for delivery.  —  Mr. Secretary General, Mr. President, world leaders, and distinguished delegates: Welcome to New York.
Spencer Ackerman / The Daily Beast:
Trump Uses Putin's Arguments to Undermine the World … The leader stepped to the podium of the United Nations General Assembly, as close to a literal world stage as exists, and issued a stringent defense of the principle of national sovereignty.  —  “What is the state sovereignty, after all …
Discussion: Raw Story
Olivier Knox / Yahoo:
World leaders' faces react to Trump's U.N. speech
Associated Press:
In stark UN speech, Trump threatens to destroy North Korea
Kelly Swanson / Vox:
Read: Trump's full speech to the UN General Assembly
What's missing from the latest ACA repeal bill  —  Throughout this summer's effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, Republican senators outlined a treasury of specific provisions they needed to see tweaked, added or eliminated in order to win their support.
Caitlin Owens / Axios:
Senate likely to start voting on GOP health plan next Wednesday  —  Senate leadership is aiming to start voting on the Cassidy-Graham health care plan next Wednesday.  “I think so.  I think that's the likely thing,” Sen. Roy Blunt, a member of leadership, told me.
Miranda Green / CNN:
Why Rand Paul opposes the GOP Obamacare repeal bill  —  STORY HIGHLIGHTS  —  Washington (CNN)Sen. Rand Paul continues to attack the latest Republican attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare — the Graham-Cassidy bill — calling it “another big government boondoggle.”
Rachael Bade / Politico:
Ryan, White House reject bipartisan health fix
Dylan Scott / Vox:
Jimmy Kimmel: new Obamacare repeal bill flunks the Jimmy Kimmel Test
Discussion: Shareblue and Mediaite
Wall Street Journal:
Special Counsel's Office Interviewed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein  —  Interview could be a sign that Rosenstein isn't seen as a central witness, as he hasn't withdrawn himself from his oversight role  —  Special Counsel Robert Mueller's office has interviewed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein …
Discussion: Raw Story and The Week
Claire Atkinson / NBC News:
Networks Pass on Sean Spicer for Paid Contributor Role  —  The big five news organizations have passed on offering former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer a job as an exclusive paid contributor, network sources confirmed to NBC News Tuesday.  —  Since Spicer exited the White House …
Discussion: Mediaite and Political Wire
Rachana Pradhan / Politico:
Price's private-jet travel breaks precedent  —  In a sharp departure from his predecessors, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price last week took private jets on five separate flights for official business, at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars more than commercial travel.
Discussion: Raw Story and Axios
Jerrod Laber / The Federalist:
Your Refusal To Date Conservatives Is One Reason We Have Donald Trump  —  The popular dating website OkCupid announced Wednesday that it would make the online dating scene a little easier for progressives who can't risk interacting with someone with whom they disagree (imagine the horror!).
Kate Linthicum / Los Angeles Times:
At least 105 killed as powerful 7.1 earthquake strikes central Mexico  —  A powerful earthquake shook central Mexico on Tuesday, crumbling buildings and sending thousands of people in Mexico City fleeing into the streets screaming.  —  A powerful 7.1 earthquake shook central Mexico on Tuesday …
Gabriella Paiella / thecut:
The Story Behind the Greatest Internet Recipe Comment of All Time  —  Two years ago, below a New York Times recipe for Katharine Hepburn's brownies, a woman named Sydne Newberry left what is perhaps the greatest recipe comment of all time, in a genre known for excellence.
Tara Bahrampour / Washington Post:
Not drinking or driving, teens increasingly put off traditional markers of adulthood  —  When 17-year-old Quattro Musser hangs out with friends, they don't drink beer or cruise around in cars with their dates.  Rather, they stick to G-rated activities such as rock-climbing or talking about books.
Jean M. Twenge / Wiley Online Library:   The Decline in Adult Activities Among U.S. Adolescents, 1976-2016
Dana Ferguson / Argus Leader:
S.D. GOP whip shares meme endorsing vehicular assault on protesters  —  RAPID CITY — A Republican state lawmaker faced calls to apologize Tuesday after she shared an image on Facebook depicting protesters being hit by a vehicle under the caption, “All Lives Splatter.”
Brian Lyman / The Montgomery Advertiser:
Bentley notes reveal thinking of governor, candidates in U.S. Senate appointment  —  Where were the three leading Republican candidates strongest?  We look at their best results — and where Luther Strange and Roy Moore might need to improve.  Brian Lyman / Advertiser
Emily C. Singer / Mic:
Exclusive: Hillary Clinton says, “No one, including me, is saying we will contest the election”  —  Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she's not going to contest the results of the election, clarifying a comment she made Monday on NPR in which she said wouldn't rule out questioning …
Tony Blair Puts Chances of Brexit Being Reversed at 30 Percent  —  Former prime minister calls for second vote on terms of split  —  Warns that May might not be able to get parliament's backing  —  Former Prime Minister Tony Blair said there is a 30 percent chance that Britain's decision to quit the European Union will be reversed.
Discussion: Political Wire
Oliver Darcy / CNNMoney:
Bannon orders Breitbart to step up negative coverage of Trump-backed candidate  —  What you need to know about Steve Bannon  —  Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon on Tuesday morning ordered top editors at Breitbart to step up its overwhelmingly negative coverage …
Discussion: Raw Story and Mediaite
Dave Lawler / Axios:
Erdogan claims Trump apologized over bodyguard attack, White House denies  —  Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoan told PBS NewsHour that President Trump apologized to him about the May incident in which Turkish security personnel beat peaceful protesters in Washington, D.C.
Discussion: The Week
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Jean M. Twenge / Wiley Online Library:
The Decline in Adult Activities Among U.S. Adolescents, 1976-2016   Find
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 More Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Senate Republicans Reach a Deal on Budget
Adam Taylor / Washington Post:
There are an estimated 40 million slaves in the world. Where do they live and what do they do?
Discussion: Daily Wire and Cafe Hayek
Tim McManusESPN / ESPN:
Eagles' Chris Long to fund Charlottesville scholarships
Discussion: IJR and WTVR-TV
Dallas Morning News:
School officials apologize after Texas actress distributes materials mentioning sex-trafficking, abortion to kids
Discussion: The Daily Caller and
Sam Levine / HuffPost:
Kris Kobach Defends Using A Private Email For Government Business
 Earlier Items: 
Page Six:
Billy Bush and wife splitting after 20 years
Discussion: AOL and Washington Post
Ted Johnson / Variety:
Rob Reiner Helps Launch Committee to Investigate Russia
Eric Boehlert / Shareblue:
Senator warns White House press secretary she could be indicted for obstruction of justice
Mary Katharine Ham / The Federalist:
After My Husband's Death, I'm Learning To Steward The Light He Left Behind
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
The fight over Jemele Hill's tweets won't go away. It's about truth and race in the Trump era.