The Presidential Daily Brief


  1. Hillary Clinton Donald Trump buttons shutterstock 386557372

    Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton Clash in Spirited First Debate

    In a deadlocked race, last night could make the difference. Interrupting and often defensive, the Republican declared he was “smart” for paying zero federal income taxes, but said he won’t release his returns unless his opponent releases 30,000 deleted emails. Clinton attacked Trump for “the racist lie” of birtherism and acknowledged she “made a mistake” using a private email server while secretary of state. Early reactions gave the round to Clinton for hitting Trump’s weak spots, but the coming days will show whether she gets a polling bounce.

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    FARC Rebels, Colombian Government Sign Peace Deal

    It’s in ink. Before a Cartagena crowd of 2,500 dressed in white, President Juan Manuel Santos and FARC leader Timoleon Jimenez signed the historic 297-page agreement to end a half-century of combat. The deal, which still must be ratified in an Oct. 2 public referendum, requires the rebels to hand over their weapons to the United Nations, then gives them six months to form a political party. Critics have said it’s too soft on guerrilla leaders, who will be able to avoid jail time by confessing war crimes.

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    Gunman Shot by Police After Opening Fire in Texas Mall

    Six injured victims are still in the hospital after an as-yet-unidentified gunman opened fire and was shot down by responding police. Witnesses reported that the man had been firing at passing cars. Authorities now say the shooter has been killed, and that a bomb squad has checked the man’s vehicle as a safety measure. This is the third major act of violence near a mall in the U.S. in the past nine days. Police are now investigating the man’s potential motive — but they say they believe he acted alone. 

  4. calais jungle protest london shutterstock 438878140

    French President Calls Out British Authorities on Migration

    Treaties are a two-way street. While visiting the Calais migrant camp — the location of Britain’s border with France according to an agreement between the two nations — President François Hollande called for the dismantling of ‘The Jungle,’ home to 10,000 refugees hoping to cross the channel and claim asylum in Britain. France is trying to relocate the camp’s population, but Hollande says Britain will have to contribute as well, while human rights activists called for Britain to pay special attention to the welfare of the 1,000 unaccompanied children in the camp.

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    Russia Accused of War Crimes During UN Session

    “What Russia is sponsoring and doing is not counterterrorism. It is barbarism.” So said U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power at a U.N. Security Council meeting yesterday. Russia tried to shift the blame for last week’s cease-fire breakdown onto Syrian rebels, but British, French and American officials railed against the use of bunker-busting bombs in the Russia-backed bombardment of besieged Aleppo. Later, representatives of the three nations walked out in protest, in what many see as the beginning of a new phase of relations with Russia over Syria.

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    Police Still Seeking Motive in Washington State Mall Massacre

    The shooter is in custody. Though Arcan Cetin, 20, has been arrested — and police say they’re confident he’s the perpetrator, though they haven’t determined if he had accomplices — he hasn’t yet been formally charged with the five deaths that resulted from Saturday’s gun rampage at Burlington’s Cascade Mall. The Turkish-born permanent U.S. resident has reportedly been arrested before, for drunken driving and domestic violence, but Washington police are still struggling to understand the motive for five murders. Cetin is set to appear in court today.

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    Dread Grows Among UK Financiers Over Potential ‘Hard’ Brexit

    Just take your pounds and go. Though negotiations on Britain’s split from the EU haven’t begun yet, London’s financial district is increasingly worried about a “hard” Brexit. The loss of access to Europe’s single market would almost certainly be a casualty of axing the right to free movement of people. An arrangement allowing bankers to make deals in the single market accounts for as much as 25 percent of business for London’s international investment giants, and some CEOs warn that even uncertainty about Brexit terms could send businesses fleeing.

  8. Presidential debate podiums red blue shutterstock 479315989

    Anticipation for Tonight’s Presidential Debate at Fever Pitch

    It’s finally here. The hype is reaching Super Bowl proportions for the first debate, and ratings could hit Big Game levels, too, with 100 million predicted to watch the 90-minute face-off. The combatants are expected to battle over racial and gender issues, with Black Lives Matter protests in the news, and Donald Trump threatened to invite former Bill Clinton paramour Gennifer Flowers as revenge for Hillary Clinton bringing Trump antagonist Mark Cuban. Moderated by NBC’s Lester Holt at Hofstra University, the fun begins at 9 p.m. Eastern.

  9. A Peace Deal With FARC, Early Voting Kicks Off and Pitch Warms Up

    Know This: Colombia’s president is signing a peace deal with FARC rebels today. Star Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, 24, was killed in a boating accident. And early voting has already begun in the U.S. presidential election.

    Read This: An investigation of the multimillion-dollar cross-Mediterranean people smuggling trade.  

    Watch This: A League of Their Own is 24 years old — about time for another female-focused baseball drama. Enter Pitch, Fox’s scripted show about a fictional first female player in the MLB, which premiered last week.


  1. Arnold Palmer thumbs up shutterstock 74228626

    Golfing Legend Arnold Palmer Dead at 87

    Farewell to The King. The gentlemanly Pennsylvanian won 62 PGA Tour titles and ushered in an era of power golf, but was better known for an engaging personality that courted fans and made golf a TV sport. Ruggedly handsome and beloved by American viewers, he was an ambassador for the sport long after his peak playing years, when he became a prolific advertising pitchman and golf course designer. While fabulously wealthy, Palmer reportedly remained down-to-earth, and will be remembered as a pal to both presidents and passersby.

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    China Powers Up World’s Largest Radio Telescope

    The truth is out there — and they’re gonna find it. The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (dubbed FAST), which is 200 meters larger than the next-biggest single-aperture telescope, switched on Sunday in the Guizhou Province mountains. Installation of the 4.450-panel dish took five years and cost an estimated $180 million. FAST is meant to put China out in front of the hunt for alien life, but it’ll also search deep space for gravitational waves while keeping an ear out for radio bleeps from faraway galaxies.

  3. Gas pump nozzle in tank shutterstock 332932247

    AAA: Americans Wasted $2.1 Billion on Premium Gas

    This’ll go down like an unleaded balloon. A new American Automobile Association report shows that 16.5 million U.S. drivers spent more on “plus” or “premium” gasoline, even when their cars saw no benefits to horsepower, fuel economy or tailpipe emissions. While there are advantages to feeding higher octane to certain sports cars, for most vehicles “premium” doesn’t mean “better” at all — just money wasted at the pump. AAA hopes the study will help drivers make more frugal choices, even though oil’s continuing price slump has already slashed expenses.

  4. Kim kardashian

    Kim Kardashian Dispels Rumors That She’s Voting for Trump

    She’s with her. A Wonderland Magazine interview in which Kardashian described herself as “on the fence” had tongues wagging that she’d cast her vote for the Donald in November. But now the reality TV star’s made her loyalties clear. ”Without a doubt, I stand with Hillary,” she wrote, after describing her process of asking questions and considering the candidates’ policies on gun control and abortion. Now Wonderland is disputing whether it ever published the quote, even as the interview’s author says it will appear in print.

  5. India soccer ball goal shutterstock 145111927

    India’s New-Money Soccer League Tramples on History

    Money talks. The 2-year-old Indian Super League has surged past the historic I-League by encouraging investment from cricket stars and celebrities, and attracting a $300 million television contract. Critics say it’s only “whitewashing” the country’s struggling soccer scene, but ISL was a quick success, with attendance third in the world behind leagues in Germany and England. India has never been to the World Cup, and the ISL’s grassroots investment could be a kick-start to develop the beautiful game — at the expense of century-old clubs.