Morning Reads

Good morning! Here’s your daily digest of money-and-politics news and the headlines of the day, compiled by’s John Light. (You can sign up to receive Morning Reads daily in your inbox!)

Hostage crisis in Mali –> Two gunman took control of a Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, the capital of Mali, that is popular with foreigners working in the country. They’ve killed at least three people, and are holding hostages. But at this writing, CNN reports, “Security forces had begun a counter-assault” and, “At least 80 of roughly 170 hostages have been freed… the country’s state broadcaster, ORTM, said Friday.”

Perfecting the art of fundraising –> A major investigation by Matea Gold, Tom Hamburger and Anu Narayanswamy at The Washington Post dives deep into the Clintons’ donor network. Over four decades, donations have netted the Clinton family’s political campaigns and charitable initiatives at least $3 billion, two-thirds of which went to the Clinton Foundation. Tens of millions of dollars came from wealthy foreign sources.

Plan to gut public financing bombs –> In Connecticut, “Under pressure from liberals and Republicans, Senate Democrats on Thursday dropped plans to cut funding for publicly financed political campaigns.” Christopher Keating reports for the Hartford Courant.

Montana moves to increase transparency –> Matt Volz at AP: “The regulations will require more financial reporting by candidates and organizations, tighten restrictions on candidate coordination and require same-day electronic reporting of contributions.”

Proud to be a democratic socialist –> Embracing a label that is usually used to attack politicians, Bernie Sanders gave a speech at Georgetown University Thursday to explain why he calls himself a democratic socialist. In the speech, writes Ed Kilgore at Washington Monthly, Sanders used a kind of “transitive defense” of the term, explaining that revered Americans like FDR constantly found their policies decried as “socialist.” At Mother Jones, Tim Murphy has some key excerpts.

Crackdown passes vote –> Andrew Griffin at The Independent: “Police in France have been given huge new powers including the ability to put people under house arrest without trial and to block websites. France’s parliament has extended the country’s state of emergency for three months, allowing authorities to get access to huge powers that date back to 1955.”

Can Dems block the SAFE Act? –> A bill that effectively would make it impossible for Syrian refugees to enter America passed the House yesterday and is headed to the Senate. Harry Reid has promised to stop it. At The Washington Post’s PlumLine blog, Paul Waldman looks at whether the minority leader is likely to succeed. And at Vox, Dara Lind writes, “Even if Senate Democrats hold the line against a veto override, that won’t permanently solve the problem.”

But facts are so much less interesting… –> Headline at WaPo’s FactChecker blog: “Repeat after me: Obama is not admitting 100,000, 200,000 or 250,000 Syrian refugees.” Glenn Kessler reports that Republican presidential candidates Carson, Fiorina and Trump have been ratcheting up their figures. The actual number of Syrian refugees Obama has agreed to accept is 10,000.

Plans to derail Paris climate deal –> “Re­pub­lic­ans are furi­ous that Pres­id­ent Obama plans to join a sweep­ing new glob­al cli­mate-change pact that will prob­ably leave Con­gress on the out­side look­ing in. So they’re try­ing to find polit­ic­al lever­age where they can,” writes Ben Geman for National Journal. Samantha Page at ThinkProgress: “At a hearing Wednesday, Senate Republicans said that any financial commitments made by the United States to help other countries curb carbon emissions would not be approved by Congress, effectively promising to undercut the Paris negotiations before they even begin.”

Trump strongarms the media –> Members of the media covering Trump’s events must stay in their media “pen.” If they don’t, they face verbal abuse by the Donald’s campaign manager. But it’s not just Trump. The Clinton campaign has also tried to rope off media at events. Erik Wemple reports at his WaPo media blog.

Story of a modern-day lynching –> It happened in Jackson, Mississippi, BuzzFeed’s Albert Samaha writes. “‘What disturbed so many people was the ages of the kids,’ said Charles Bolton, a history professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro who has written extensively about 19th- and 20th-century Mississippi. ‘These kids had supposedly grown up in this integrated generation.’ Instead they had shown that sons and daughters had inherited the sins of their parents and grandparents.”

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