Wednesday’s Mini-Report, 7.17.19

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* This is a story worth watching closely: “A federal judge disclosed Wednesday that prosecutors had concluded their probe into Michael Cohen’s campaign finance crimes as he ordered the release of search warrants tied to the case.”

* After Turkey’s recent purchase from Russia, this was inevitable: “In a significant break with a longtime NATO ally, the Trump administration on Wednesday said Turkey can no longer be part of the American F-35 fighter jet program.”

* This is an excellent and well-reported article: “America’s largest drug companies saturated the country with 76 billion oxycodone and hydrocodone pain pills from 2006 through 2012 as the nation’s deadliest drug epidemic spun out of control, according to previously undisclosed company data released as part of the largest civil action in U.S. history.”

* Census case: “Critics who sued to block the Trump administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census asked a federal judge on Tuesday to punish administration officials, saying the officials had deliberately delayed the lawsuit in order to hide damning evidence – conduct they called ‘nothing less than a fraud on the court.’”

* Trump’s failing policy: “North Korea on Tuesday suggested it might call off its 20-month suspension of nuclear and missile tests because of summertime U.S.-South Korean military drills that the North calls preparation for an eventual invasion.”

* Keep expectations low: “White House senior adviser Jared Kushner pitched President Donald Trump’s Cabinet members Tuesday on a 600-page immigration proposal that he and some congressional Republicans are urging their colleagues to consider before Congress leaves Washington for its monthlong August recess, according to three people involved in discussions.”

* Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.): “I served on active duty in the U.S. Air Force and currently serve in the U.S. House of Representatives. Yet I still experience people telling me to “go back” to China or North Korea or Japan. Like many immigrants, I have learned to brush off this racist insult. I never thought the president of the United States would tell members of Congress to ‘go back’ to another country.”

* A step in the right direction in Tennessee: “On Monday, Gov. Bill Lee said he hopes to work with the legislature to change the law about Nathan Bedford Forrest Day in the next session.”

* I’d love to know why the White House is effectively running Lockheed Martin ads.

* RIP: “John Paul Stevens, the third-longest-serving associate justice in the history of the Supreme Court, died Tuesday of complications following a stroke, the court announced. Stevens, who retired in 2010, was 99 and had served on the court for 35 years.”

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.