IVANKA AND JARED’S DATE NIGHT — The couple was spotted walking on Florida Avenue near 18th Street Saturday evening, with two bodyguards walking a few steps behind. Pic via Playbooker Angelique Bautista, who’s in 9th grade at the School Without Walls High School http://bit.ly/2qiQBqg
Happy Mother’s Day! The weather has turned and it’s going to be 77 degrees today in the nation’s capital. Right now, the forecast shows sun all week long. The president is at Trump National Golf Club today in Sterling, Virginia, per a pool report from Tom DeFrank of National Journal.
FIRST IN PLAYBOOK — TRUMP’S WEEK — MONDAY: The president is speaking at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service and is meeting with the crown prince of Abu Dhabi. TUESDAY: Trump meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and HHS Secretary Tom Price.WEDNESDAY: The president goes to New London, Connecticut, to speak at the Coast Guard Academy commencement. THURSDAY: Trump meets with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. FRIDAY: Trump leaves for his first trip overseas.
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ABOUT LAST NIGHT … S.N.L. — THE SPICER SKIT: SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS (played by Aidy Bryant): “I’m filling in for Sean today because as you know Sean is fulfilling his duty as an officer in the Naval reserve and that is why he cannot be here.” Reporter: “I’m pretty sure I can see him in those bushes” right next to the briefing room. SANDERS: “I believe that is a naval exercise. He’s trying to blend in with his surroundings.” … Reporter: “You are clearly articulate and charming whereas Sean is bullish …” SEAN SPICER(played by Melissa McCarthy) then sprays that reporter with a fire extinguisher and pushes Sanders off the podium. “Move, move. When you lie all the time your pants get on fire, liar liar pants on fire. That’s why you put them out. That’s right. Spicey’s back, Sarah’s out. Booyah! Let’s do this. First question, Michelin Man. Oh I’m sorry I meant Glenn.” 8-min. video http://bit.ly/2qFOaAX
–“Lester Holt Cold Open” – TRUMP (played by Alec Baldwin): “Nothing’s going to stop me because I have the Republicans in the palm of my hand. Look at this.” Trump rings a bell. “PAUL RYAN” quickly arrives: “You called for ice-cream sir? Here’s two scoops.” LESTER HOLT (played by Michael Che): “Paul Ryan?” RYAN: “Yes sir. I am so excited to be working with President Trump on an agenda that benefits …” TRUMP: “Beat it nerd. Just get the hell out of here.”RYAN: “Whatever you say Mr. Trump. He feeds me dog food.” 5-min. video http://bit.ly/2rf8K8g
WAPO A1 — PHIL RUCKER: “White House ‘systems failed’ with Comey firing, but Trump pushed the buttons”: “Across Washington, Trump’s allies have been buzzing about the staff’s competence as well as the president’s state of mind. One GOP figure close to the White House mused privately about whether Trump was ‘in the grip of some kind of paranoid delusion.’ Trump has been stewing all week, aggrieved by sharp media scrutiny of his decision to fire Comey and of his and his aides’ ever-shifting explanations, and has been quick to blame his staff, according to several people who have spoken with him.
“Privately, Trump has lashed out at the communications office — led by press secretary Sean Spicer and communications director Michael Dubke — and has spoken candidly with advisers about a broad shake-up that could include demotions or dismissals. The president personally has conducted postmortem interviews with aides about the Comey saga, investigating the unending stream of headlines he considers unfairly negative … ‘This was the first major crisis or test they’ve had, and it looks like a lot of systems failed,’ said Chris Ruddy … ‘My experience with the president is when he sees failure, he quickly adapts and tries new things. He’s not a guy that keeps the same ol’.” http://wapo.st/2qgk6dW
THE PRESIDENT’S OBSESSION — PETER BAKER and MAGGIE HABERMAN in the NYT, “The Election Is Over, But Trump Can’t Seem to Get Past It”: “In the small dining room next to the Oval Office where he works much of the time, President Trump keeps a stack of color-coded maps of the United States representing the results of the 2016 election. The counties he won are blotchy red and span most of the nation. Mr. Trump sometimes hands the maps out to visitors as a kind of parting gift, and a framed portrait-size version was hung on a wall in the West Wing last week. In conversations, the president dwells on the map and its import, reminding visitors about how wrong the polls were and inflating the scope of his victory. At the root of Mr. Trump’s unpredictable presidency, according to people close to him, is a deep frustration about attacks on his legitimacy, and a worry that Washington does not see him as he sees himself.” http://nyti.ms/2pw4l3C
THE COMING FIGHT — “Republicans plan massive cuts to programs for the poor,” by Rachael Bade and Sarah Ferris: “House Republicans just voted to slash hundreds of billions of dollars in health care for the poor as part of their Obamacare replacement. Now, they’re weighing a plan to take the scalpel to programs that provide meals to needy kids and housing and education assistance for low-income families.
“President Donald Trump’s refusal to overhaul Social Security and Medicare— and his pricey wish-list for infrastructure, a border wall and tax cuts — is sending House budget writers scouring for pennies in politically-sensitive places: safety-net programs for the most vulnerable. Under enormous internal pressure to quickly balance the budget, Republicans are considering slashing more than $400 billion in spending through a process to evade Democratic filibusters in the Senate, multiple sources told POLITICO.” http://politi.co/2pKV0Rr
TRUMP INC. — “At Mar-a-Lago, the star power of the presidency helps charities — and Trump — make more money,” by WaPo’s Drew Harwell and Dave Fahrenthold: “Mar-a-Lago will soon close for the season, as Palm Beach’s wealthy snowbirds return north. That will bring an end to one of the oddest experiments in modern American politics — in which a sitting president has become a moneymaking attraction for his own private business. …
“The Washington Post identified more than 45 events since Election Day in which outside groups paid to rent space at Mar-a-Lago. Hedge-fund investors noshed by the pool. Zoo animals prowled for the entertainment of donors. Men in military gear dropped from a helicopter near the lakefront cocktail bar and stormed a lawn full of socialites as part of a benefit for the Navy SEAL Foundation. In at least 10 of those cases, the events turned out to be a little bigger, and to raise a little more money, than in past years, according to interviews with event organizers. That often meant that they paid Trump’s club a little more money.
“The reason, some organizers said, was that Trump’s event customers could offer the grandeur of the presidency as an added attraction for potential attendees. The trend is likely to continue next year, as some charities planning Mar-a-Lago events for the 2018 season are hoping the dates they book coincide with times that Trump is staying at the club.” http://wapo.st/2qFAllY
FASCINATING MOVE — JOSH HOLMES, a longtime adviser to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell who now runs Cavalry LLC, said on “Fox News Sunday” that McConnell thinks Merrick Garland for FBI director is a “fantastic idea.” Of course, Garland holds a prize judgeship — the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia — and Republicans would love to have the opportunity to fill it. NOTABLE: Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), the No. 2 Senate Republican, is also up for FBI director.
SUNDAY BEST — CHUCK TODD speaks with REX TILLERSON on NBC’S “MEET THE PRESS”: TILLERSON frames Trump’s trip abroad: TODD: “I know there’s a big trip, President Trump’s first foreign trip to the Middle East. The president was pretty tough on all things Saudi Arabia in various interviews that I had with him during the campaign. At one point candidate Donald Trump said it’s ridiculous that the United States gives so much assistance to the Saudis, who wouldn’t be there except for us.”
“He even questioned how the Saudis treat women. How the Saudis treat gay people. Now he’s going to go there, give a speech in Riyadh. Is he going to bring these issues up? Are you going to bring these issues up? Of human rights issues with Saudi Arabia and with their, let’s shall we say, weak democratic reforms?”
TILLERSON: “Well, Chuck, this is a very important trip that the president will be embarking on later in the week. I think, as you know, he’s going to visit, on the first half of the trip, three countries. Great centers that represent important religions in the world. The Muslim faith in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Judaism when he visits Israel, and Christianity when he visits the pope in the Vatican. And I think the important aspect to this visit that the president is making is to bring a message of unity among all of these people of faith, among these great religions. That he strongly believes that it is the strength of the faith of people in these religions that will stand up and ultimately be victorious over these forces of terrorism.
“The terrible faces of violence that we see in ISIL, Daesh and al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations around the world. And so I think it is a very important trip on the president’s part to call upon all people of faith in these religions to stand together for peace and stand up to this face of terrorism, wherever it shows itself anywhere in the world.”
— ROBERT GATES speaks with JOHN DICKERSON on CBS’S “FACE THE NATION”: DICKERSON: “Friday we traveled to William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, to speak with former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. We began by asking him about FBI Director Comey’s firing. … What does that say to you, based on your experience?” GATES: “Not terribly well done. You know, I fired a lot of senior people myself and I think the key, when you feel compelled to remove a senior official, is essentially to have all your ducks in a row at the beginning. Have everybody understand what the rationale was.” …
DICKERSON: “What advice would you give the president before his first big foreign trip that he’s about to take?” GATES: “That’s a good question. I think that the key will be to limit spontaneity to areas that are fun or that sort of say something about you as a real person. I think when it comes to the issues, I’d advise him to stick to the script. But, I mean, he is going to have some very tough conversations and he’s going to be talking about some very tough and complicated issues in all of the places that he visits. And — but I think — I think anytime a president does things that are humanizing, I think it’s – it’s good.”
— JAKE TAPPER speaks with SENATE MINORITY LEADER CHUCK SCHUMER on CNN’S “STATE OF THE UNION” — TAPPER: “Now, Sen. Mark Warner, he is the top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee. He wants the Democratic Party to refuse to vote on the nomination of a new FBI director until a special prosecutor is appointed. Do you support that move?”
SCHUMER: “Yes, I think there are a lot of Democrats who feel that way. We will have to discuss it as a caucus, but I would support that move, because who the FBI director is, is related to who the special prosecutor is.”
“Remember, the criteria for a special prosecutor, independent in making day-to-day decisions from the hierarchy in the Justice Department and the White House, can only be fired for cause, has to report to Congress, and, very importantly, can look into any attempts to thwart the investigation, are all really important criteria.
“And to have that special prosecutor, people would breathe a sigh of relief, because then there would be a real independent person overlooking the FBI director. So, I think the two are related. I think Mark Warner’s idea is a good idea. And I think it will get some broad support in our caucus.”
— CHRIS WALLACE interviews SEN. MARK WARNER (D-Va.) on “FOX NEWS SUNDAY” (via Louis Nelson): “The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee said Sunday that President Donald Trump’s suggestion that there may be secret recordings of his conversations with fired FBI Director James Comey is ‘outrageous’ and is reminiscent of the scandal that forced former President Richard Nixon to resign.
“‘I am by no means a legal expert, but this sure seems to have reverberations of past history. When we’ve seen presidents who secretly tape, that usually does not end up being a good outcome for a president,’ said Sen. Mark Warner. [PLAYBOOK NOTE: Warner went to Harvard Law School.] …
“‘The whole notion that the president can throw out these kind of claims and then not either confirm or deny them is outrageous in my mind,’ Warner said. ‘And if there is the existence of tapes I want to make sure, one, they’re preserved are not mysteriously destroyed in the coming days, and then two, one way or the other, Congress will have to get a look at those tapes.’”
— SEN. MIKE LEE (R-UTAH) to Wallace: “If, in fact, there are such recordings. I think those recordings will be subpoenaed and I think they’ll probably have to turn them over.” WALLACE: “What do you think of the fact that he may have set up a taping system?” LEE: “I don’t know. You know, we know that there have been instances in the past in which other presidents have made recordings of conversations that have taken place at the White House. And as was made clear earlier in the show, it doesn’t always turn out well, it’s not necessarily the best idea.” (also via Louis Nelson)
ON THE WORLD STAGE — “In testing missile, N. Korea challenges South’s new leader,” by AP’s Foster Klug and Hyung-Jin Kim in Seoul: “North Korea on Sunday test-launched a ballistic missile that flew for half an hour and reached an unusually high altitude before landing in the Sea of Japan … The launch, which Tokyo said could be of a new type of missile, is a direct challenge to the new South Korean president and comes as U.S., Japanese and European navies gather for joint war games in the Pacific. … Japanese officials, however, said the missile flew for about 30 minutes, traveling about 800 kilometers (500 miles) and reaching an altitude of 2,000 kilometers (1,240 miles) — a flight pattern that could indicate a new type of missile.” http://apne.ws/2pL1wHW
— WHITE HOUSE statement on the launch: “With the missile impacting so close to Russian soil – in fact, closer to Russia than to Japan – the President cannot imagine that Russia is pleased. North Korea has been a flagrant menace for far too long. … Let this latest provocation serve as a call for all nations to implement far stronger sanctions against North Korea.”
FUN READ — BEN TERRIS’ LATEST — “George Conway is the man at the center of everything”: “He had friends everywhere, but it took time for George — pudgy, soft-spoken and borderline shy — to find love. Not that he didn’t have a type. He became friends with Laura Ingraham, often inviting her to the ski slopes or the beach. And while nothing ever happened between him and [Ann] Coulter, she was responsible for him meeting the other blonde Republican It Girl who would become his wife. He was familiar with Kellyanne from her television punditry spots. But inspiration struck one day in the late 1990s when he spotted her on the cover of a society magazine. He called Coulter and asked for an introduction. …
“He courted her with trips to his Hamptons beach rental and tickets to baseball playoffs. And at some point, Kellyanne remembers telling a friend: ‘I find that his near-constant presence doesn’t annoy me.’ Their wedding, at Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia was a decadent affair. The cake was so big it had to be cut into pieces to fit in the door. … There has been no official nomination announcement, but the Conways hope to close this month on an $8 million home in the District.” http://wapo.st/2pLw1wP
FBI AGENTS FOR ROGERS — “FBI agents group endorses Mike Rogers for FBI director,” by Rebecca Morin: FBI Agents Association “President Thomas F. O’Connor said in a statement that Rogers, who was formerly chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, ‘exemplifies the principles that should be possessed by the next FBI Director.’ ‘It is essential that the next FBI Director understand the details of how Agents do their important work,’ O’Connor said. ‘Mike Rogers’ background as a Special Agent, veteran of the armed forces and former member of Congress sets him apart as someone capable of confronting the wide array of challenges facing our help ensure that the Bureau remains the world’s premiere law enforcement agency.’” http://politi.co/2qjtfAR
WHAT THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION IS READING (AND SHARING) — “Signs of oil boomlet in North Dakota after pipeline finished,” by AP’s James MacPherson in Bismarck, North Dakota: “More than two years after the state’s unprecedented oil bonanza fizzled to a lull, North Dakota — the nation’s No. 2 oil producer behind Texas — is experiencing a sort of boomlet that has pushed daily production back above 1 million barrels daily. … Industry officials and others say the uptick comes from a bump in crude prices, regulatory certainty with the more drill-friendly Trump administration, better technology, and the prospect of nearly half of the state’s crude coursing through the disputed Dakota Access Pipeline, which could open markets abroad where top prices are typically fetched.” http://apne.ws/2pwkgyM
SNEAK PEEK — JEFFREY TOOBIN with the Comment in The New Yorker’s Talk of the Town section, “Firing Comey Was a Grave Abuse of Power: In 1974, Republicans put country before Party and told Nixon it was time to go. Today’s G.O.P. seems unlikely to live up to its predecessor’s example” (print headline: “The Silent Majority”): “Republicans alone have the power to impose limits on this Presidency or to end it altogether. To date, however, no one in the leadership, or even in the rank and file, has displayed the courage to live up to the example set by the honorable Republicans of the past. Daily, and conspicuously, Trump proves the danger of his continued service. His party’s stalwarts won’t be able to say that they weren’t warned.” http://bit.ly/2rdUPyk
BENJAMIN WITTES in the NYT, “What We’re Losing in James Comey”:“Full disclosure: James Comey is a friend. I won’t pretend to neutrality about him. He is a highly honorable and decent person, and I have no doubt that he made the many judgments for which people loathe him in good faith. … First, Mr. Comey is without subtext. He’s the only truly subtextless man I’ve met working in senior levels of government in Washington. If you want to know why he’s doing something, you just ask him — in an open congressional hearing, in a news conference, in the Q. and A. at a speech at a college. … Second, Mr. Comey has an unfailing instinct to fall on every grenade. This is a highly unusual trait in Washington, a town where lots of people dodge responsibility for everything. … Third, Mr. Comey is genuinely fixated on independence and doing the right thing.” http://nyti.ms/2pJWieG
EVEN FOOD & WINE MAGAZINE IS COVERING COMEY! – “James Comey’s 9-Year-Old Neighbor Baked Him Chocolate Chip Cookies,” by Rebekah Lowin: “As reported by WUSA Channel 9 … Comey’s 9-year-old neighbor, Abby Grace, decided to take matters into her own hands after seeing a large crowd of reporters waiting at the end of his driveway. … Naturally, she had to do something—and fast. So she got to work baking some chocolate chip cookies, likely with the help of her parents, and, armed with a dozen of them, she walked over to his home. … She began by introducing herself at the front door…and even went so far as to shake hands with Comey’s security detail.” http://bit.ly/2pJmTtb
–THE NOTE WITH HER COOKIES READ: “We are proud to be your neighbor and thank you for all you have done for America. Love: Abby Grace.”See the note http://on.wusa9.com/2rfB5ez
THE RUSSIA INVESTIGATION — SHOT on NYT A1, “Richard Burr Leads Russia Inquiry, Whether He Likes It or Not,” by Matt Flegenheimer: “[T]he unobtrusive Mr. Burr is shrugging into a spotlight he never expected and does not especially seem to relish. The senator’s thorny position — a Republican lawmaker investigating the Republican president, whom he embraced last year on the campaign trail in his own re-election bid — has grown more trying by the day. …
“Mr. Burr’s distaste for the news media is well known at the Capitol. On at least one occasion, he climbed out of an office window to avoid reporters, while carrying his dry cleaning, according to a senior Republican aide who has spoken to him about the episode. ‘It was further than I thought,’ Mr. Burr remembered of the descent, according to the aide. He now occupies a second-floor space in the Russell Senate Office Building. It is not clear precisely how or why he chose to take this escape route — or, in fact, if this was the office in question. ‘I understand from him that he did jump out a window once with his dry cleaning,’ a Burr spokeswoman, Becca Glover, said in an email, ‘but I don’t know the circumstances.’” http://nyti.ms/2pJLIoN
CHASER on A1 of the BOSTON GLOBE (above the fold) — “Democrats lack strong voice amid Trump’s Russia investigation meltdown,” by Annie Linskey and Matt Viser: “News broke by the second. The nightly TV upended programming. The White House press secretary briefed reporters in the dark by the West Wing shrubbery. Russian photographers outwitted the White House and ended up filing dispatches from the Oval Office.
“In a string of tumultuous weeks in the Trump administration, the week that FBI Director James Comey was fired by the president of the United States for investigating his own campaign was by far the most bizarre and, for many, the most alarming.
“As the White House swirled with conflicting narratives on the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue, Democrats, who are in the minority in both chambers of Congress, tried to focus their fury and marshal all their muscle. The result? The party’s Senate leaders invoked an obscure parliamentary rule that bars committee meetings after the Senate has been in session for two hours — unless all 100 senators agree. It meant several hearings were postponed. That’ll show ’em.” http://bit.ly/2qjlGd3
BEN SCHRECKINGER in POLITICO Magazine, “The Widening Blast Radius of the Fox News Scandal: The metastasizing Ailes affair is spilling over into the politics of New York, Virginia and the White House”: “Beyond the rough-and-tumble of New York politics and media, [Andrea] Tantaros’ suit also drags the more genteel, blazer-and-khakis world of northern Virginia’s establishment Republican politics into the Fox News fray. In the suit, Tantaros … claims that operatives working on behalf of Fox hacked her computer and eavesdropped on her phone calls and then used private information to harass and intimidate her over social media. Much of her complaint revolves around allegations against former Fox contributor Pete Snyder, an investor and aspiring Republican politician in Virginia, where he unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor in 2013. … Snyder [has] retained the high-powered public relations specialist Stephanie Cutter … to handle media inquiries related to the suit. …
“The network of operatives allegedly used by Ailes and other Fox executives to monitor and demean perceived threats also extends to Trump’s inner circle, according to several people with knowledge of those relationships. Trump’s longtime confidant Stone, a veteran practitioner of political dark arts, was paid for off-air work that included keeping tabs on [Gabe] Sherman and publicly criticizing Newsmax CEO Chris Ruddy … [Ailes] had become ‘obsessed’ with Ruddy and the possibility that his plans to launch Newsmax TV would present a threat to Fox’s conservative news hegemony.” http://politi.co/2rfvRiX
MEGATRENDS — “How Google Took Over the Classroom: The tech giant is transforming public education with low-cost laptops and free apps. But schools may be giving Google more than they are getting,” by NYT’s Natasha Singer: “In the space of just five years, Google has helped upend the sales methods companies use to place their products in classrooms. It has enlisted teachers and administrators to promote Google’s products to other schools. It has directly reached out to educators to test its products — effectively bypassing senior district officials.
“And it has outmaneuvered Apple and Microsoft with a powerful combination of low-cost laptops, called Chromebooks, and free classroom apps. Today, more than half the nation’s primary- and secondary-school students — more than 30 million children — use Google education apps like Gmail and Docs … And Chromebooks, Google-powered laptops that initially struggled to find a purpose, are now a powerhouse in America’s schools. Today they account for more than half the mobile devices shipped to schools.” http://nyti.ms/2pwxBHD
BONUS GREAT WEEKEND READS, curated by Daniel Lippman:
–“Johnny Depp: A Star in Crisis and the Insane Story of His ‘Missing’ Millions,” by Stephen Galloway and Ashley Cullins in the Hollywood Reporter: “What happened to $650 million? An explosive legal battle between one of Hollywood’s best-paid actors and the business managers he fired has laid bare tumultuous finances, outrageous spending and troubling behavior on Disney’s new ‘Pirates’ movie in a case that could even change how the industry does business.” http://bit.ly/2qaZHqt
–“Playboy Interview: Steve Jobs,” by David Sheff in the Feb. 1985 issue of Playboy: “People get stuck as they get older. Our minds are sort of electrochemical computers. Your thoughts construct patterns like scaffolding in your mind. You are really etching chemical patterns. … It’s rare that you see an artist in his 30s or 40s able to really contribute something amazing. Of course, there are some people who are innately curious, forever little kids in their awe of life, but they’re rare.” http://bit.ly/2qdA1bf
–“The Billionaire and the Flood: How a Tragedy Transformed the Greenbrier Resort and the Blue-Collar Town that Depended on It,” by Washingtonian’s Elaina Plott: “One year ago this June, a historic flood lashed West Virginia, killing 23 people and crumpling homes. It also exposed the complicated relationship between a resort that draws Washington’s rich and powerful and the blue-collar town that houses the hotel’s staff. What happened afterward surprised everyone.” http://bit.ly/2r9TTMj
–“The great British Brexit robbery: how our democracy was hijacked,” by Carole Cadwalladr in The Guardian: “This is Britain in 2017. A Britain that increasingly looks like a ‘managed’ democracy. Paid for by a US billionaire. Using military-style technology. Delivered by Facebook. And enabled by us.” http://bit.ly/2r8zyGo
–“What the last Nuremberg prosecutor alive wants the world to know,” by 60 Minutes’ Lesley Stahl: “At 97, Ben Ferencz is the last Nuremberg prosecutor alive and he has a far-reaching message for today’s world.” http://cbsn.ws/2qbcxVK
–“Pilgrim at Tinder Creek,” by Andrew Kay in the Point Magazine: “In 2013 I found myself simultaneously single and on the academic job market for the first time. I was thirty, several years into graduate school and at work on a dissertation about nineteenth-century poetry and pleasure.” http://bit.ly/2qa6mkZ (h/t Longreads.com)
–“The Doomsday Glacier,” by Rolling Stone’s Jeff Goodell: “In the farthest reaches of Antarctica, a nightmare scenario of crumbling ice – and rapidly rising seas – could spell disaster for a warming planet.” http://rol.st/2r8WF3s
–“How One Startup Built Better Health Insurance With the Magic of Data,”by Megan Molteni in Wired: “Yes, technically Oscar is in the insurance business. But it’s really a technology company. Its CEO, Mario Schlosser, is a Stanford-trained data scientist who has built Oscar’s core business by extracting insights from the flood of existing health care data—insurance claims and doctor directories and electronic medical records. It was a move straight out of the Silicon Valley playbook: limit choice, and deliver a better user experience instead.” http://bit.ly/2qdQCM2
–“The Amazing Dinosaur Found (Accidentally) by Miners in Canada,” by Michael Greshko in the June issue of NatGeo: “Known as a nodosaur, this 110 million-year-old, armored plant-eater is the best preserved fossil of its kind ever found.” http://on.natgeo.com/2r1UqTx
–“How a Half-Deaf Outfielder, a One-Legged Pitcher, and a Team of Misfits Made a Run for the World Series,” by Frederic J. Frommer in Washingtonian: “Washington hasn’t won a World Series in 93 years. But in the waning days of World War II, an unlikely team came surprisingly close.” http://bit.ly/2ra6gb8
— “Labor Days,” by Tony Wood in Cabinet Magazine: “Among the many things to disappear during the world-shaking turmoil of the Russian Revolution—along with czarism, the aristocracy, private banks, landownership—were the first 13 days of February. … The 1918 calendar reform [from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian] was an abrupt, one-off change, designed to signal the irreversibility of the leap from the ancien régime to the new. Undoing the revolution would now mean literally turning back time.” http://bit.ly/2qdvrJT
— “Garry Kasparov on AI, Chess, and the Future of Creativity,” by Tyler Cowen on Medium: “I understand that people today are concerned about self-driving cars. But there was a time when people were scared stiff of autopilots. Now, if you tell them that autopilot’s not working in the plane, they will not fly. There was a time when people didn’t trust elevators without operators. They thought it would be too dangerous … Compared to the fears that people had about machines in 19th and 20th century, we’re not pioneers.” http://bit.ly/2qb805v (h/t TheBrowser.com)
ENGAGED – Brent Scher of the Washington Free Beacon got engaged on Friday night to Cassie Williams, press secretary at FAIR, the Federation for American Immigration Reform. They met at bottomless brunch and he proposed at home with the help of their black lab, Abe. Pic http://bit.ly/2r4YkuC … Instapic http://bit.ly/2pw5Miw
WEEKEND WEDDINGS – “Sarah Fisher, Ricky Lu” – N.Y. Times: “Mrs. Lu, 32, is a diversity programs and communications manager in New York for Google, working to increase diversity and inclusivity at the company. She graduated from Columbia. … Mr. Lu, 31, is the associate director for strategic planning and mergers and acquisitions at Time, the New York magazine company. He graduated from Tufts and received an M.B.A. from N.Y.U.” With pic http://nyti.ms/2pyq5Mm
–“Amy Segal, Michael Guth”: “Ms. Segal, 45, is the managing director and the executive vice president for recruitment at Edelman, a public relations firm based in New York. She graduated from Arizona State. … Mr. Guth, 50, is the chief operating officer of Opry Entertainment Group, a division of Ryman Hospitality Properties in Nashville. He graduated cum laude from Harvard, from which he also received an M.B.A.” With pic http://nyti.ms/2pLu4Ae
BIRTHWEEK (was yesterday): Dan Cox, PRRI’s research director (hat tip: Bryan DeAngelis, who was on time)
BIRTHDAYS: Howard Wolfson is 5-0 … Mark Zuckerberg is 33 … J.B. Poersch, president of Senate Majority PAC … Tom Donilon, former Obama national security adviser now senior of counsel of O’Melveny & Myers … former Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) is 75 … USA Today’s Christine Brennan … Bloomberg Businessweek’s Josh Eidelson is 33 … CNN’s David Gelles … Lynn Bartels … Ryan Travers is 29 … Sam Newton, press secretary for the Missouri Democratic Party and a newly-minted STL Cardinals fan, celebrating with the MO Dems in downtown Columbia — Fireball sangria may be involved (h/ts Chris Ortman and TJ Ducklo) … Rep. Gary Palmer (R-Ala.) is 63 … Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.) is 52 … Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) is 67 … Rep. Mimi Walters (R-Calif.) is 55 (h/t T.W. Arrighi) … Dari Gessner, chief revenue officer for Politico’s operations in Europe (h/t Gabe Brotman) … Jon Vogel, managing partner at MVAR Media … WaPo’s Eva Rodriguez … Connie Lawn … Fiona Theobald, student at Stanford Law … Nicholas Pacilio, comms at Twitter … Alexandra Svokos … Sasha Rebecca Spielberg (h/t Jewish Insider) …
… Lenwood Brooks, VP at SIFMA … Dave Marchick, the pride of Orinda, Calif. …
Tyler Law, DCCC national press secretary … Boeing’s Steve Rice … Margaret Little … Politico alums Michael Williams and Julia Dyer … Patrick Derocher … Gordon James … Nellie Mitchell … Samuel Greer … Amanda Hurly … Alex Katz, senior aide and speechwriter to Leader Schumer … Brigit Helgen, head of comms at the Sheryl Sandberg and Dave Goldberg Family Foundation … Bloomberg’s Robert Levinson … Rebecca Adelman … Jocie Fong … Seamus Kraft … Bill Green … Deb Moore … Jim Andrews … Carter Link … Bonnie Feggestad … Casey Slaughter … Cindy Eisenhauer (h/ts Teresa Vilmain) … Sergio J. Grant … David Smith is 54 … Pranay Gupte … Ann Anooshian … Louisa Imperiale … Jeffrey Barrett is 67 … David Johnson … Ed Tydings … Sam Maverick Noble … Jon Pessah is 65 … Kara Allen … Judith Barnett … movie director and producer George Lucas is 73 … Cate Blanchett is 48 … movie writer-director Sofia Coppola is 46 (h/ts AP)