1/ A federal appeals court revived a previously-dismissed lawsuit that accused Trump of violating the Constitution's emoluments clause. The lawsuit claimed that Trump's "vast, complicated and secret" business arrangements violate the Emoluments Clause, which bars presidents from accepting gifts from foreign governments without the permission of Congress. The case was originally dismissed by a lower-level federal judge in December 2017. Earlier this year, Trump won a separate emoluments suit by the Democratic attorneys general of Maryland and the District of Columbia when the case was dismissed by another federal appeals court's. (Bloomberg / Washington Post / Politico / CNN / Axios)

  • πŸ“Œ Day 902: A federal appeals court dismissed an emoluments lawsuit against Trump. The judges rejected the premise of the case that the Trump International Hotel – blocks from the White House – had violated the domestic and foreign emoluments clauses of the Constitution by accepting money from state and foreign governments at Trump's hotel in downtown Washington. While Trump stepped back from day-to-day management of the businesses, he still maintains ownership. "Even if government officials were patronizing the hotel to curry the president's favor," the court said, "there is no reason to conclude that they would cease doing so were the president enjoined from receiving income from the hotel. After all, the hotel would still be publicly associated with the president, would still bear his name, and would still financially benefit members of his family." All three judges on the panel were appointed by Republican presidents. (NPR / New York Times / Washington Post / NBC News / CNBC)

  • πŸ“Œ Day 144: In a separate case, the Justice Department argued that Trump can accept payments from foreign governments while he is in office. Advocates from the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington brought the suit against Trump in January, asserting that because Trump-owned buildings take in rent, room rentals and other payments from foreign governments he breached the emoluments clause. (Washington Post / Politico / The Hill)

2/ Trump plans to pay for his border wall using funds from more than four dozen Air Force construction projects poses a variety national security risks, according to a report composed by the Air Force. Some of the affected Air Force projects include money for a project to build facilities to store more than $1 billion in munitions at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam, replacing a boiler at a base in Alaska, "whose failure is 'imminent'" and could result in the evacuation of the base, a new entry-control point at the Incirlik Air Base in Turkey to protect troops, and construction in support of the European Defense Initiative, a program to boost U.S. military presence and discourage Russian aggression. (NBC News / Axios)

  • πŸ“Œ Day 959: The Pentagon will divert funding from military construction projects in 23 states, three territories, and 19 countries to pay for Trump's border wall. Among the projects being defunded to pay for Trump's border wall, include nine schools for military children on bases in the U.S. and abroad, a daycare center at Joint Base Andrews, Hurricane Maria recovery projects at military installations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, construction projects in Europe designed to help allies deter Russia. In total, $3.6 billion will be taken from 127 projects to fund 11 border barrier projects in Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. (New York Times / Washington Post / Reuters)

  • πŸ“Œ Day 957: The Trump administration will divert $3.6 billion this week from 127 military construction projects to build to build 175 miles of Trump's border wall. Trump declared a national emergency in February to draw funding from federal accounts to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said about half of the funding will come from military construction projects outside the United States and half will come from projects within the country. (Politico / Washington Post)

3/ The Air Force sent crews to Trump's Turnberry resort in Scotland on 40 different occasions since 2015. That number is much higher than previously known, and it represents the preliminary results of an Air Force review launched last week after news reports about the Air Force sending crews to Trump's properties. The preliminary tally does not indicate how many of the stays at Trump properties occurred since Trump became president, but the Air Force significantly increased the number of stops in Scotland under Trump after signing a deal with the Prestwick Airport at the end of the Obama administration. (Politico)

4/ Trump is not planning to name Mike Pompeo as national security adviser while also keeping him as Secretary of State. Trump confirmed that he spoke to Pompeo about the idea, but said that Pompeo "likes the idea of having somebody in there with him, and I do, too." Trump said he has 15 other candidates in mind to replace John Bolton, who Trump fired as national security adviser earlier this week. (Politico)

5/ The U.S. is preparing to send 150 troops to patrol northeastern Syria. Trump announced a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria last December, but the new troop deployment is part of an expanding series of military and diplomatic steps the U.S. has taken in recent weeks to defuse tensions with Turkey, which opposes U.S. support for the Syrian Kurdish fighters. The U.S. currently has around 1,000 troops in Syria. (New York Times / The Hill)

6/ Ivanka Trump told a crowd of high-end donors that she got her moral compass from her father after being asked to name the personality traits she inherited from her parents. Ivanka said that Melania gave her an example of how to be a powerful, successful woman. (Politico)

7/ Trump complained that energy efficient light bulbs make him "always look orange." Trump also complained that energy-efficient light bulbs are "many times more expensive than that old incandescent bulb." (CNN / Mediaite)

  • πŸ“Œ Day 958: The Trump administration relaxed requirements for energy efficient light bulbs that Congress passed in 2007. The Energy Department's filing in the Federal Register will now prevent new efficiency standards for inefficient incandescent and halogen bulbs from going into effect on Jan. 1st. (New York Times)

poll/ 38% of Americans say climate change is a "crisis" – up from 23% five years ago. Another 38% say climate change is a "major problem." (Washington Post)


πŸ“Ί Dept. of Dem Debates:

  1. Trump gave a bizarre speech during the Democratic debate. Trump talked about fake tax cuts while Democrats debated how to pay for their ambitious policies. (Vox / Politico)

  2. Andrew Yang announced a $120,000 giveaway during last night's Democratic primary debate. Yang said his campaign plans to randomly select 10 families and give them a total of $120,000 over the next year as part of a pilot program for his universal basic income plan. (Politico)

  3. Biden incorrectly claimed that the Obama administration didn't separate families at the border. The Obama administration did not separate families as a matter of policy, as the Trump administration did as part of its "zero tolerance" border policy in 2018, but separations occurred on a case-by-case basis for parents being prosecuted on more serious charges than illegally crossing the border or in cases when an adult was suspected of not being a child’s parent. (CNN / The Hill)

  4. Biden tried to clarify his record on Iraq War during Democratic debate. Biden is still struggling to explain his vote for the war and when his feelings about intervention evolved. (NPR)

  5. Beto O'Rourke: "Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47." O'Rourke said that as president, he would prioritize mandatory buybacks of assault-style weapons. (NPR / CNN)

  6. Fact-checking Democratic candidates on the issues at the ABC News debate in Houston. (ABC News)

  7. Bernie Sanders said his administration will "cancel all student debt in this country." Sanders also pledged that under his administration every teacher in America will make at least $60,000 a year. (ABC7)


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