Good Thursday morning. His fave city: President and First Lady arrive in Paris for Bastille Day, celebrating French national pride.
lf you're in downtown D.C. this morning, please join us at 8 (doors open 7:30) for a live roundtable by "Meet the Press" moderator Chuck Todd and Axios CEO Jim VandeHei, plus conversations on the economy with Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan and House Financial Services Chair Jeb Hensarling. AJAX, 1011 4th Street NW (near L Street). Deets here.
One of the casualties of the first six months of the Trump presidency is a common understanding of what is normal in our politics. It's easy to grow numb to abnormal actions, words and tactics. But even our readers who love or feel loyalty to Trump need to remember:
Be smart: It's just not normal.
Why it matters: We're getting inured to the daily whirlwind. Each day's jaw drop or outrage seems to be topped by tomorrow's. Keep your head, even if all about you are losing theirs.
Trump interview with Reuters' Steve Holland ... "Seated at his Oval Office desk, Trump said he did not fault his son for holding the meeting, writing it off as a decision made in the heat of an upstart ... campaign."
Don Jr. on the cover of TIME, where David Von Drehle writes: "The most pressing question of our time might be: How bad is it?"
Trump will get his wall ... "Scoop: Trump lawyers want wall between Kushner, president," by Jonathan Swan: "Trump's outside legal team wants to wall off Jared Kushner from discussing the Russia investigation with his father-in-law."
P.S. Tracy Sefl for WashPost, "I've done political opposition research. Donald Trump Jr. has no idea what it is": "When done well, it's a thoughtful, directed process of compiling known facts and figures about relevant life and career elements of an opponent to bolster an argument. ... There are lines that trained and talented political operatives wouldn't cross."
N.Y. Times Quote of the Day ... Adrian Luckman, a lead researcher for a team monitoring the Larsen C ice shelf in Antarctica, which lost a chunk of ice the size of Delaware this week. Scientists fear that continued warming threatens the rest of the ice shelf: "This is a big change. Maps will need to be redrawn."
"Warnings from Antarctica," by Fen Montaigne, the senior editor at Yale Environment 360 and the author of "Fraser's Penguins: A Journey to the Future in Antarctica," on NYTimes.com: "[T]he destabilization of the Larsen C Ice Shelf ... pales in comparison with the threat from the increasing instability of the glaciers and ice shelves holding back the enormous West Antarctic Ice Sheet. If much of that ice sheet thaws and slides into the sea this century or next, global sea levels could rise by up to 17 feet."
"One important thing to keep in mind as Senate Republicans unveil their revised health-care bill today: This is not necessarily the final bill," Axios' Sam Baker writes. "The parliamentarian could still change it. Negotiations with individual senators could still change it."
Our field guide to Version 1.1.
New Republic's September cover story, "Trump's Russian Laundromat," by Craig Unger:
"The very nature of Trump's businesses — all of which are privately held, with few reporting requirements — makes it difficult to root out the truth about his financial deals. ... For the past three decades, state and federal investigators, as well as some of America's best investigative journalists, have sifted through mountains of real estate records, tax filings, civil lawsuits ...
"[N]o one has documented that Trump was even aware of any suspicious entanglements ... Taken together, the flow of money from Russia provided Trump with a crucial infusion of financing that helped rescue his empire from ruin, burnish his image, and launch his career in television and politics."
"Behind the Scenes at 'Fox & Friends,' America's Most Influential Morning Show (Seriously)," by Hollywood Reporter's Marisa Guthrie:
"It's possible the show has had as much influence on Trump as he seems to have had on it. 'We were doing Donald Trump issues before Donald Trump was Donald Trump," says [co-host Steve] Doocy. 'I mean, we were doing immigration, we were doing sanctuary cities, we were doing terrorism, all that stuff years before he was interested in running for president. We're pretty much just doing the exact same stuff for 20 years.'"
A standing ovation for Michelle Obama as takes the stage of the ESPY Awards in L.A. to honor the late Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver. PEOPLE magazine's account:
"The former first lady ... presented the Arthur Ashe Courage Award to Shriver's son, Timothy Shriver, who now chairs the Special Olympics."
Mrs. Obama, before being joined by Special Olympians: "I am here tonight to honor a remarkable woman, a woman who believed that everyone has something to contribute and everyone deserves a chance. When we give others the chance to fulfill their greatest potential, we all win ... Through her passionate service, she made our world more welcoming, inclusive and fair."
P.S. L.A. Times front page, "Disneyland can't work its magic on wait times: It tries to ease crowding but lines keep growing," by Hugo Martin and Ben Poston: "Disney has faced queuing problems for so long that it has become a pioneer in line management, dating back to the early days of the park when it used stanchions and tape to create switchbacks that are now widely used at airports."
"A Times analysis found that the average wait time for the resort's most popular rides in the first six months of the year was 24.4 minutes, a 28% increase over the same period in 2015 ... [T]he ride with the longest average wait time ... was Space Mountain, at 65 minutes."