Breaking. The British ambassador to the U.S. resigned after leaked memos revealed he called President Donald Trump "insecure" and "inept." On Tuesday, Trump called Ambassador Kim Darroch a "pompous fool" [WaPo].
Acosta under fire
- Labor Secretary Alex Acosta is defending himself over a controversial 2008 plea deal he reached with Jeffrey Epstein. The agreement with Epstein allowed him to avoid jail time in a case where he allegedly assaulted 36 underage girls. Acosta was the US Attorney in Miami at the time. Epstein was arrested Monday on sex trafficking charges [CNN].
- President Trump defended Alex Acosta on Tuesday, saying he felt "very badly" for him [AP].
Obamacare on the ropes. A panel of federal judges seemed skeptical of arguments defending the Affordable Care Act's mandate that most people carry health insurance in a court case questioning the constitutionality of the healthcare law [NYT].
- President Trump could issue an executive order to include a citizenship question on the 2020 census as early as today [Axios].
- A federal judge rejected a bid by the Justice Department to replace their legal team in the court battle over adding a citizenship question to the census [NYT].
- Democrats in Congress plan to move forward with criminal contempt proceedings against Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross for refusing to turn over documents related to the 2020 census [Politico].
- Some migrant children being held in a border facility in Arizona allege they were sexually assaulted by guards. There are also claims of retaliation by officials after they complained about conditions in the detention center [NBC News].
- The number of arrests of migrants attempting to illegally cross the border dropped by 28 percent in June [WaPo].
A win for the "haters." A federal court rules President Trump is violating the constitution by blocking his critics on Twitter [NYT].
- Christopher Steele, the former British spy behind the infamous "dossier" on President Trump's ties to Russia was questioned for 16 hours in June by the Justice Department as part of an investigation into the origins of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation [Politico].
- The Justice Department is prepping to deliver the results of an internal investigation into how the Russia investigation began [NYT].
Whoa! A new investigation shows Russian intelligence agents were responsible for the now-debunked story that Democratic staffer Seth Rich was murdered by associates of Hillary Clinton. The fake story was hyped on Fox News and other right-wing media outlets during the 2016 presidential race [Yahoo News].
- Billionaire Tom Steyer is the newest Democrat running for president. He pledged to spend $100 million of his own money on his White House bid [NYT].
Rapinoe vs. Trump. Soccer superstar Megan Rapinoe blasted President Trump in a televised interview on Tuesday, saying his message "is excluding people" [CNN].
Ted Cruz vs. Fox News. A new book says Sen. Ted Cruz exploded over Fox News' bias toward Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential race [Guardian].
What century is this? A Republican candidate for governor in Mississippi refused to let a reporter shadow him on the campaign trail because she is a woman [Mississippi Today].