1 big thing: The president's "friend"
President Trump held a surprise press conference with Mitch McConnell today — and the pair were all unity and good cheer, despite Trump having bashed McConnell for months over failed bids to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
- On his "friend" Mitch: "We're probably now, despite what you read, closer than ever before."
- On his agenda: Trump said he wants tax reform "this year," backed a "short-term" health care fix, and said Democrats are bad politicians but good obstructionists.
- On the Russia probe: Trump said he won't fire Bob Mueller, but insisted the American people were "sick" of the investigation.
- Asked about his public silence on the deaths of four U.S. service members in Niger, Trump said he has made a point to call the families of troops that die on his watch, and claimed Barack Obama didn't do so. (Actually, Obama met the coffins of soldiers killed in Afghanistan and met with their families.)
2. What you missed
- Weinstein fallout: More accusers have come forward, and a Trump confidant is bailing out the producer's former company. Catch up.
- Fellow Americans update: Puerto Ricans continue to lack needed supplies, and Californians are returning to destroyed neighborhoods. P.R. update, Calif. latest.
- When stars collide: In a first, scientists have detected the collision of two neutron stars, which produced gold and platinum. Gaze.
- Kirkuk dispute: Civilians are fleeing the disputed area as Iraqi troops flood in, with Trump staying neutral. Go deeper.
- Hello, Ruby Tuesday: The struggling restaurant chain has sold for $146 million, and will go private. Dig in.
- North Korea's terms: An official says they won't engage in diplomacy until they have missiles that can reach the U.S. East Coast. Read.
3. One last sale
Elwood Adams hardware, established in Worcester, Mass. in 1782, survived two wars on U.S. soil, the Great Depression and the Great Recession. But those were less damaging than the shift to online shopping.