• 🔥 Daily Damage Report.

  • 🌍 Global: Total confirmed cases ~5,648,000; Total deaths: ~353,000; Total recoveries: ~2,325,000. (Johns Hopkins University)

  • 🇺🇸 U.S.: Total confirmed cases ~1,695,000; Total deaths: ~100,000; Total recoveries: ~385,000

  • 💰 Markets: Dow 📈; S&P 500 📈; Nasdaq 📈

  • Coronavirus deaths in the U.S. have passed 100,000. The toll exceeds the number of U.S. military combat fatalities in every conflict since the Korean War. The U.S. has recorded more COVID-19 deaths than any other country in the pandemic, and almost three times as many as the second-ranking country, Britain, which has recorded more than 37,000 deaths. Trump, meanwhile, has encouraged state governors to reopen businesses in order to boost the economy. (New York Times / NBC News / Washington Post / The Guardian / NPR / Politico / CNBC)

  • Antibody tests used to identify people who have been infected with the coronavirus might be wrong up to half the time. New CDC guidance says the results from antibody test are not accurate enough to be used to make important policy decisions, including “decisions about grouping persons residing in or being admitted to congregate settings, such as schools, dormitories, or correctional facilities.” The guidance also says the results should not be used to make “decisions about returning persons to the workplace.” (CNN)

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci: Hydroxychloroquine is not an effective treatment for the coronavirus. “The scientific data is really quite evident now about the lack of efficacy,” Fauci said. (Politico)

  • 💻 Live blogs: New York Times / Washington Post / CNN / The Guardian / CNBC / NBC News


1/ Twitter added a fact-check label to two of Trump’s tweets, marking them as “potentially misleading.” Trump falsely claimed that mail-in voting leads to widespread voter fraud. In response, Twitter – for the first time – added a banner notification underneath each tweet that reads, “Get the facts about mail-in ballots,” and brings the user to news articles about mail-in voting and Trump’s claims when clicked. Trump’s tweets, according to a spokesperson for Twitter, “contain potentially misleading information about voting processes and have been labeled to provide additional context around mail-in ballots.” There is no evidence that mail-in ballots result in higher rates of voter fraud. (Washington Post / The Verge / NPR)

  • [OPINION] Twitter must cleanse the Trump stain. Trump is spreading a vile conspiracy theory on the platform. Maybe Twitter should finally hold him to its rules. (New York Times)

  • [OPINION] Trump’s slanderous attack on Joe Scarborough is incompatible with leadership. Whatever his issues with Scarborough, President Trump’s crazed Twitter rant on this subject was vile and unworthy of his office. (Washington Examiner)

  • [OPINION] The hidden risk in Donald Trump’s tweets. Again Tuesday, the president of the United States decided to suggest that a TV morning-show host committed murder. (New York Post)

  • [OPINION] A presidential smear. Trump imitates the Steele dossier in attacks on Joe Scarborough. (Wall Street Journal)

2/ Trump threatened to “close” Twitter and other social media platforms after Twitter labeled two of his tweets about unsubstantiated claims about widespread mail-in voting fraud as “potentially misleading.” Trump tweeted that social media platforms “totally silence conservatives voices” and that he would “strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen.” Hours later, Trump continued, singling out Twitter, and claiming that everything “we have being saying about them (and their other compatriots) is correct” and that there will be “Big action to follow.” Trump can’t unilaterally regulate or close public companies, and any effort would likely require action by Congress. (Axios / ABC News / NPR / Associated Press / Business Insider / Politico)

  • Trump has considered establishing a panel that would look into complaints of bias against conservatives on social media and other online platforms. While plans are still under discussion, they may include establishing a “White House-created commission” that would work in conjunction with the Federal Elections Commission and Federal Communications Commission to examine bias and censorship online. (Wall Street Journal / The Verge)

3/ A conservative organization working to restrict voting in the 2020 election is part of a dark money network that has been helping Trump remake the U.S. federal court system. The Honest Elections Project announced in April that it planned to spend $250,000 on ads warning of the dangers of mail-in voting, accusing Democrats of cheating, and using misleading data to accuse states of having bloated voter rolls while threatening them with lawsuits. HEP has also filed briefs in favor of voting restrictions in several states and is often represented by the same law firm that represents Trump. Despite presenting itself as a distinct entity, HEP is a legal alias for the Judicial Election Project, a conservative group that has played an instrumental role in Trump’s unprecedented effort to reshape the federal judiciary by appointing scores of conservative judges. (The Guardian)

4/ Trump’s press secretary has voted by mail in every Florida election she has participated in since 2010 but insists that mail-in voting is rife with fraud. Kayleigh McEnany defended Trump’s unsubstantiated claims about mail-in voting fraud, saying: “Absentee voting has the word absent in it for a reason. It means you’re absent from the jurisdiction or unable to vote in person. President Trump is against the Democrat plan to politicize the coronavirus and expand mass mail-in voting without a reason, which has a high propensity for voter fraud. This is a simple distinction.” Florida, however, does not have absentee voting. Anyone can vote by mail without a reason. (Tampa Bay Times)

5/ Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Congress that the Trump administration no longer regards Hong Kong as autonomous from mainland China after the Chinese Communist Party unveiled a new security law that will criminalize sedition, foreign influence, and secession in Hong Kong. Pompeo’s pronouncement could trigger sanctions or other punitive measures against Beijing. Revoking Hong Kong’s preferential trade status would also hasten its economic and financial decline. The 1992 Hong Kong Policy Act allowed the U.S. to treat Hong Kong as a separate entity from mainland China and required the State Department to assess its autonomy from China. (Wall Street Journal / New York Times / Washington Post / ABC News / Axios)


✏️ Notables.

  1. White House counsel Pat Cipollone “failed to address” why Trump removed inspectors general for the intelligence community and the State Department. Instead of providing an explanation for the dismissals, Cipollone’s letter to Sen. Chuck Grassley emphasized Trump’s “constitutional right and duty” to remove inspectors general when he “loses confidence” in them. Grassley, responded, saying that there “ought to be a good reason” for the dismissals of State Department IG Steve Linick and Intelligence Community IG Michael Atkinson. “I don’t dispute the president’s authority under the Constitution,” Grassley said in his response, “but without sufficient explanation, it’s fair to question the president’s rationale for removing an inspector general. If the president has a good reason to remove an inspector general, just tell Congress what it is.” (CNN / Washington Post)

  2. The Trump administration is preparing a new sale of precision-guided weapons to Saudi Arabia, similar to the package that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo approved in 2019, which Congress voted to condemn. The proposed sale comes less than two weeks after Trump fired State Department inspector general Steve Linick, who was investigating Pompeo’s decision to invoke emergency authorization to circumvent legislators. (Daily Beast)

  3. The Trump administration is ending sanctions waivers that allow Russian, Chinese, and European companies to work at Iranian nuclear sites. Nonproliferation experts say the waivers reduce Tehran’s incentive to enrich uranium and provide a view into the country’s atomic program. (Washington Post)

  4. Former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will testify next week as part of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s probe into the origins of the FBI’s Russia investigation. Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller in May 2017 as special counsel to investigate potential ties between Russia and Trump’s campaign after then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself due to his role as an adviser to the Trump campaign. Rosenstein also signed off on renewing the final application to monitor Carter Page. (Axios / Politico / Associated Press / The Hill)

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