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Jonathan Swan 3 hours ago
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Scoop: Skirmish in Beijing over the nuclear football
The president and first lady arrive at the Great Hall of the People. Photo: THOMAS PETER/AFP/Getty Images

On Thursday Nov. 9, when President Trump and his team visited Beijing's Great Hall of the People, Chief of Staff John Kelly and a U.S. Secret Service agent skirmished with Chinese security officials over the nuclear football.

I've spoken to five sources familiar with the events. Here's what happened, as they describe it:

Axios 2 hours ago
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Rex Tillerson on 60 Minutes: 5 key quotes
Tillerson. Photo: Mateusz Wlodarczyk / NurPhoto via Getty Images

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson appeared on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday evening, where he fielded questions about the North Korean nuclear threat and his relationship with the president.

QuoteWe're not using a carrot to convince [North Korea] to talk. We're using large sticks.
— Rex Tillerson
Jonathan Swan 2 hours ago
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Kelly skeptical of Ivanka's paid family leave push
Donald and Ivanka Trump at a White House meeting last week. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Ivanka Trump continues to advocate internally for a paid family leave policy — though conservatives inside the administration have told me she's getting some high-level blowback.

In conversations with associates, John Kelly has dismissively described paid family leave as one of Ivanka's "pet projects" and said he doesn't understand how it fits into the White House's agenda.

Khorri Atkinson 3 hours ago
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Brazil seeks to fight fake news ahead of divisive election
A demonstrators in support of presidential candiate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Photo: Cris Faga / NurPhoto via Getty Images

Officials in Brazil are growing wary of fake news flooding into Facebook timelines and other online outlets, both from domestic and foreign actors, ahead of October's presidential election. They're now trying to crack down on organized attempts to mislead voters, The New York Times reports.

Why it matters: Americans got a detailed picture of election meddling and misinformation in Robert Mueller's indictments on Friday — and the U.S. isn't the only country dealing with these issues.

Jonathan Swan 3 hours ago
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The facts on Kelly's future
Kelly testifies before Congress in July. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Anyone who claims to have gnostic wisdom about John Kelly's future in the White House should prepare to be embarrassed. Not even Donald Trump knows what will happen.

That said, I've chatted with people close to every part of this saga. And I've learned four facts that I hope will help you make sense of all the messy reporting, gossip, innuendo, and Beltway speculation about the president’s chief of staff.

Jonathan Swan 3 hours ago
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Midterm migraines for the Democrats
Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer at the State of the Union. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Democrats have more midterm anxiety than you might think, given most pundits are confidently predicting Republicans will lose the House.

Two sources with direct knowledge tell me that at the recent Democratic Senate retreat at Mount Vernon, they invited a focus group of voters to discuss the issues they care about and the political landscape.

What the voters kept saying: "Republicans have the wrong agenda; Democrats have no agenda."
Jonathan Swan 3 hours ago
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What to watch on guns
The Florida high school where a mass shooting took place last week. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A senior administration official tells me he expects Congress will "take another look" at background check legislation that John Cornyn pushed late last year.

Khorri Atkinson 4 hours ago
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Report: Rick Gates to plead guilty "within days," testify against Manafort
Then-Republican nominee Donald Trump with Rick Gates at the Republican Convention in July 2016. Photo:
Brooks Kraft / Getty Images

Former top Trump campaign aide Rick Gates will plead guilty on fraud-related charges in coming days, the Los Angeles Times reports. Sources tell the Times Gates has told prosecutors that he would testify against his former business partner and Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort.

Why it matters: Gates pleaded not guilty last October to charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, but there have been reports he's trying to strike a deal. Unnamed sources told the Times that Gates' plea will be presented in federal court in Washington "within the next few days.''

Khorri Atkinson 4 hours ago
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Pope revives lapsed sex abuse commission amid criticism
Pope Francis leads the Ash Wednesday procession and mass at Santa Sabina Church. Photo: Giuseppe Ciccia / Pacific Press / LightRocket via Getty Images

Pope Francis on Saturday revived a sex abuse advisory commission that had lapsed into dormancy, the AP reports, amid mounting criticism over his support for a Chilean bishop accused of witnessing sexual abuses and ignored them. The initial three-year mandate of the commission ended in December, per the AP.

Why it matters: The controversy in Chile is making life difficult for the first South American pope. The announcement of new members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors came the same day when a Vatican sex-crimes expert was in New York at Francis' request to speak with one of the main whistleblowers in the Chilean cover-up scandal.

Axios 5 hours ago
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Trump to meet with high school students after shooting
President Donald Trump arrives a press conference at the White House speak on the Florida school shooting. Photo: JIM WATSON / AFP / Getty Images

President Trump will hold a listening session with teachers and students on Wednesday following last week's massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Florida, per the AP. He also will meet with state and local officials the next day to discuss school safety.

The backdrop: The White House didn't say who the students and teachers would be. Five students from Stoneman Douglas made the rounds on the Sunday talk shows today and were sharply critical of Trump and other Republicans. One student, addressing Trump directly over his position on gun control, said "you make me sick."