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After Trump's Twitter tantrums yesterday — calling for the jailing of a political opponent and bragging his nuclear button is bigger than North Korea's — CNN used its powerful platforms and people to suggest the president is mentally unstable.

The big picture: 2018 is off with a familiar bang, with the president trashing the media, and the media trashing him.

  • Jake Tapper started his 4 p.m. show, "The Lead": "President Trump is kicking off 2018 by going on Twitter, blasting Democrats, calling for a political opponent to be thrown in jail, demanding a potential witness be investigated, and praising himself. So, no New Year's pivot, apparently."
  • Brian Stelter opened his late-night media newsletter, Reliable Sources (which had the subject line "Trump's fitness"): "There's a word for this. Madness."
  • Stelter on "Anderson Cooper 360": "What would we say if the leader of Germany or China or Brazil posted tweets like Trump's? How would we cover it? We'd say: That person is not well. We'd wonder whether that person is fit to hold office."
  • And a banner on a special 10 p.m. Tapper edition asked: "ARE WE CLOSER TO NUCLEAR WAR THAN EVER?"
  • Tapper: "None of this [is] normal, none of this [is] acceptable, none of this [is] frankly stable behavior."

Why it matters: Trump has been known to watch CNN at that hour, and Stelter ended his item: "Was Trump watching?"

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In her first week on the job, Amy Coney Barrett may be deciding which votes to count in the presidential election. By her third week, she’ll be deciding the fate of the Affordable Care Act.

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