The Presidential Daily Brief


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    GOP Convention Begins, Melania Trump Accused of Plagiarism

    Monday night’s Cleveland convention opener featured TV stars, the mother of a Benghazi Marine, a Black sheriff proclaiming “All Lives Matter,” and a fiery call for “one America” from former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani. The potential first lady recited her first major speech with Trumpian flourish, saying her husband “will do this better than anyone else can.” But accusations of plagiarism quickly arose as portions appeared to be lifted from Michelle Obama’s 2008 convention speech. A Trump campaign statement calling the speech a “success” suggested Melania didn’t write it.

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    North Korea Fires Three More Rockets Into Sea

    They’re at it again. The rogue nuclear nation, which has been stepping up tests of its weapons programs under Kim Jong Un, fired three more missiles into the sea early Tuesday, according to South Korea, which keeps a close tab on its belligerent neighbor. South Korea this month agreed to deploy a new anti-missile system in partnership with the United States, causing the North to warn of a “physical counter-action.” Japan declared today’s launch “an act of provocation,” while China agreed that it’d likely destabilize the region.

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    With Three Dead, Police Probe Baton Rouge Shooter

    Three officers are dead and three wounded after shootings yesterday in Louisiana’s capital, where a July 5 police shooting of a subdued Black man preceded two weeks of protest, violence and the July 7 killings of five policemen in Dallas. Authorities say Baton Rouge police responded yesterday to a report of a “suspicious person” walking down a highway with an assault rifle. They’ve identified the shooter, who was also killed, as former Marine Gavin Long, and are investigating his history of posting videos urging people to “fight back” against police.

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    Turkey Purges Ranks of Dissenters After Failed Coup

    Funerals have begun for the hundreds killed in this weekend’s attempted coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who told mourners that Turkey must “cleanse the virus from all state institutions.” That appears to include arresting 6,000 people, suspending 8,000 police officers and possibly reinstating the death penalty, despite the EU urging restraint. Erdogan’s blaming the failed mutiny on cleric Fethullah Gulen, a former ally who now lives in exile in Pennsylvania, and is calling for Gulen to be returned to Turkey — putting pressure on the U.S., which depends on Turkish military bases.

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    SoftBank to Buy ARM Holdings for More Than $32 Billion

    This could be a shot in the arm. The Japanese bank picked the right time to buy a British company: Sterling has fallen nearly 30 percent against the yen in the past year, offsetting ARM’s rising share prices. It’s the largest ever Asian investment in Britain, and some are taking this as an optimistic sign for post-Brexit business prospects. But others warn that buying ARM, a chip designer, is a big bet on the Internet of Things rather than a vote of confidence for Britain’s economy.

  6. Officer in Freddie Gray Case Acquitted, Suspect in Ax Attack Shot by Police

    Highest-ranking officer in Freddie Gray case acquitted on all charges. (The Guardian)

    German police shoot teenager who attacked four people with an ax. (BBC)

    Morocco wants to rejoin the African Union after 32 years. (BBC)

    Irish opposition leader calls for Ireland “reunification referendum.” (The Guardian)

    Several detained over truck attack in Nice. (France 24)

    Karl Rove joins on NY festival line-up. (OZY)


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    Women Battle to Redefine Conservatism in the Trump Era

    He’s not the only one making waves in the GOP. Right-leaning women, half of this week’s Cleveland convention delegates, are some of the loudest — and most effective — voices in the Republican Party. Some conservative congresswomen are translating traditional party lines for the 21st century, while others are pushing back against the Christian right and challenging the party’s future direction. And though many are concerned about Donald Trump’s statements on women, some worry more about Hillary Clinton, emphasizing that policy is more important than gender.

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    Emojis Have Changed Communication for Good

    They’re not just another pretty face. Emojis, the modern equivalent of painting a buffalo on a cave wall, have only been around since the late ’90s. Today, the pictographic language has nearly 2,000 officially recognized symbols. An emoji movie will hit theaters in 2017, and last year the Oxford English Dictionary named the kissy-face symbol its word of the year. Now Unicode has promised to roll out 11 new emojis focused on racial and gender diversity, adding female chefs, scientists and rock stars to the keyboard later this year.

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    The Two Reasons Americans Are Not Good Savers

    The future’s getting shortchanged. A new paper finds that Americans tend to carry two biases that prevent them from saving money well. First, there’s “present bias” toward spending money now rather than hoarding it for an unknown future. Second, there’s “exponential growth bias,” which leads Americans to underestimate the value of compound interest in retirement savings. Consumers are also nudged in the wrong direction by credit card companies and lax rules on 401(k)s, meaning it could take strong government action to right the ship.

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    Pakistani Man Murders Social Media Star Sister in ‘Honor Killing’

    There’s no honor here. Qandeel Baloch, 26, the so-called Kim Kardashian of Pakistan, pushed boundaries in the mostly conservative nation with provocative social media posts. Her brother, Waseem Azeem, told the press after his arrest that he strangled his sister, whose modeling income supported the family, because “money matters, but family honor is more important.” The perpetrators of “honor killings” can escape prosecution if the victim’s family pardons the killer — a law many Pakistanis are pushing to change in light of the shocking murder.

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    Stenson Outduels Mickelson for British Open Title

    It was an unprecedented shootout. Henrik Stenson notched a 20 under par for the lowest aggregate total in a major championship after a thrilling Sunday. The Swede and Phil Mickelson watched the lead change hands seven times in the first 14 holes, the rest of the field far behind. But with a spectacular 51-foot putt on the 15th hole Stenson took control and ended up winning by three — finally breaking through for his first major after finishing in the top five seven times and enduring career-rattling slumps.