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As President Trump continued his war against fake news this week, reporters around the country produced groundbreaking investigative reporting from the halls of nursing homes to the halls of power. Three longform reads that you should spend some time with this weekend:

  • The New Yorker's Rachel Aviv exposed the world of elder abuse via guardianships in Clark County, Nevada, detailing how seniors can lose control of their homes, assets, and livelihoods — all by a very legal process. It's commonly practiced in areas known for their extensive retirement communities, allowing lightly-trained legal guardians to sell off seniors' estates for extensive profit while providing them with a minimum of care.
  • BuzzFeed News' Joseph Bernstein obtained emails and documents from Breitbart News and examined how the right-wing news site's most popular personality interacted and worked to bring alt-right ideas into the public sphere. Come for Steve Bannon texting Milo Yiannopoulos "Dude!!! LMAO!" but stay for the revelation of Yiannopoulos' passwords, which are riddled with anti-Semitic and Nazi references.
  • The Atlantic's Caitlin Flanagan produced a harrowing account of the hazing death of Tim Piazza, a fraternity pledge at Penn State University, all while systemically exposing the procedures in place to shield the larger fraternity industry from similar incidents. While the minute-by-minute account of Piazza's abuse compiled via a grand jury presentment is terrifying enough, it's Flanagan's interview with his parents that might linger the longest.

Go deeper

Inside Trump's hunt for "disloyal" Republicans

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Donald Trump and his associates are systematically reshaping the Republican Party, working to install hand-picked loyalists across federal and state governments and destroy those he feels have been disloyal, sources close to the former president tell Axios.

Why it matters: If most or all of Trump’s candidates win, he will go into the 2024 election cycle with far more people willing to do his bidding who run the elections in key states.

48 mins ago - Politics & Policy

CPI: The new jobs number

Grocery shoppers in Washington, D.C., last month. Photo: Ting Shen/Xinhua via Getty Images

The Consumer Price Index has replaced the jobs report as the most anticipated data drop by the U.S. government.

Why it matters: Rising prices tend to lower political fortunes. Washington and Wall Street are now waiting for the CPI number to flash at 8:30am ET around the 10th day of each month. This month's report — due Friday morning — will give a reading of how hot inflation ran in November.

COVID cases and deaths are on the rise

Expand chart
Data: N.Y. Times; Cartogram: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

COVID-19 cases and deaths are rising all across the U.S. even before the Omicron variant takes hold.

Why it matters: The holidays — and the inevitable spread of Omicron — will only heighten the risks that unvaccinated Americans face from COVID, in all its forms.

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