Good morning, and happy Super Sunday! Kickoff is 6:30 p.m. Here's a cheat sheet for sounding like an NFL fan at your Super Bowl party, even if you're just there for the nachos and ads.
Every news outlet, us included, has done countless stories of jockeying, infighting and confusion inside this White House. Two weeks in, here's where things stand, based on the unvarnished view of Trump insiders:
Just before 4 a.m. ET, a federal appeals court in San Francisco turned down the Trump administration's request to immediately reinstate restrictions on travelers and refugees. AP says that means the legal battles over the ban will continue for days at least:
If you read only one thing ... The L.A. Times' Brian Bennett writes that Trump's order targets up to 8 million people for deportation -- any jobholder who lied on federal employment forms that they were legally allowed to work:
With his tweet attacking the "opinion of this so-called judge," Trump may have complicated efforts by his lawyers to defend the travel restrictions. University of Pittsburgh law professor Arthur Hellman told AP: "Either they have to defend the statements that Judge Robart is a 'so-called judge,' which you can't do, or they have to distance themselves from the president, who is their boss."
The #1 trending article on Apple News last night was a CNN opinion piece,"Trump's most bone-chilling tweet," arguing he was "apparently attempting to delegitimize our federal judiciary."
Profiles of the judge make the swipe look misplaced. Seattle Times front-pager: "Trump's 'so-called judge' is highly regarded Republican appointee" ... AP: "Seattle judge derided by Trump known as conservative jurist" ... N.Y. Times, "'So-Called' Judge Criticized by Trump Is Known as a Mainstream Republican."
Just the facts on U.S. District Judge James Robart, 69:
Speaker Paul Ryan defends Trump in his pre-tape with Chuck Todd for "Meet the Press," saying he's "hit the ground running extremely hard. He's doing a lot. And there's a lot that needs to be done."
Ryan also has a kind word for Steve Bannon: "I think there is a lot of hyperventilating. I've just gotten to know Steve since the election. I've had nothing but good relationship with him."
Chuck Todd: "His publication [Breitbart] did not have a good relationship with you."
Speaker Ryan: "That's for sure."
For months, Steve Bannon has been recommending "The Best and the Brightest," David Halberstam's devastating 1972 account of the self-regard, delusion, and tragic series of miscalculations that led America into Vietnam. Our Jonathan Swan says Bannon told Jared Kushner, Anthony Scaramucci, and other associates that the book is a warning against hubris.
Here are Swan's four takeaways from the book that help illuminate how Bannon processes the world:
New York Times sports reporter Marc Tracy spotted Bannon with the book in the Atlanta airport the day after Christmas, and recalls in today's paper that Bannon told him: "It's great for seeing how little mistakes early on can lead to big ones later."
From WashPost front-pager, "Trump team tries to regain its footing," by Phil Rucker and Ashley Parker: "Bannon's rising profile — captured on this week's cover of Time magazine ... — caught the attention of senior officials, as well as Trump, who takes pride in his own cover appearances and inquired about Bannon's Time debut with aides."
Steve Miller's White House title is senior adviser for policy, but his role is so outsized, and his direct access to the president so remarkable, that we call him "The Brain." The Raleigh News & Observer's Jane Stancill profiles Miller, 31, on the Sunday front page, "A path from Duke to the White House":
Maureen Dowd, "Free Melania – From Our Expectations: The Sphinx of Fifth Avenue skirts the Potomac": "As our omnipresent new president hijacked our reality, the first lady vanished, sparking headlines for nary a glimpse in D.C. since the inaugural."
Sean Spicer gets the "SNL" treatment, with a squeaky, ranting portrayal by Melissa McCarthy: "I'm not here to be your buddy. I'm here to swallow gum, and I'm here to take names. ... OK, now let me wave something SHINY In front of you monkeys."