The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Trump Signs Government Funding Bill

    The daily grind continues. President Trump has signed a bill to fund the government following three days of shutdown. The Senate and House approved the short-term spending bill with a promise to Democrats of future debate over the fate of young undocumented immigrants. Still, about one-third of Democrats in the Senate and a majority in the House voted against the funding measure. Over the weekend, President Donald Trump, whose position on DACA legislation is hazy, tweeted that Republicans should simply alter procedural rules to subvert Democrats. The government is now funded through Feb. 8.

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    Over 1 Million Join Women’s Marches, With Focus on Voting

    They’ll stand up to be counted. On Saturday’s anniversary of President Trump’s inauguration, huge rallies were held in cities around the world. Hundreds of thousands turned out in New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles — but also in red states like Texas and Tennessee. Thousands gathered in Las Vegas Sunday for another march, this one focused on Democrats’ hope to inspire voters in time for November’s midterm elections. Activists urged women to run for office themselves — as a record number already are, according to multiple analyses.

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    Turkish Ground Troops Attack Kurdish Forces in Syria

    It’s a new war. The Turkish army and Syrian rebels moved into the Afrin region to attack an enclave of U.S.-backed Kurdish forces over the weekend. Turkey claims the targeted group — the YPG, which has spent years battling ISIS in the U.S.-led coalition — has ties to the Kurdistan Worker’s Party, designated a terror group by Ankara. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan predicted a quick victory, while the YPG said it had repelled the attackers. The U.N. Security Council will hold an emergency meeting today in response.

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    Vietnamese Exec Gets Harsh Sentence in Corruption Trial

    It’s a matter of life and death. Trinh Xuan Thanh, a former executive at state oil company PetroVietnam, was sentenced to life in prison today, while 20 other defendants were condemned to as much as 22 years in the country’s ongoing anti-corruption crackdown. The charges could have meant the death penalty for Trinh, who sought political asylum in Germany last year and was kidnapped by Vietnamese security agents there, sparking an international incident. But separate embezzlement charges he’ll face Wednesday could still see him put to death.

  5. A Hotel Attack, an Active Volcano and a Rebel’s Death

    Know This: At least 18 people died over the weekend when gunmen attacked Kabul’s Intercontinental Hotel. Activists say 387 Brazilians were killed by homophobic attacks in 2017, an all-time high. And the Philippines’ Mount Mayon volcano is expected to erupt, prompting tens of thousands to flee the area.

    Read This: Before Venezuelan rebel Óscar Pérez was killed by government troops last week, he managed to transmit messages and videos sharing his philosophy, hopes — and final moments.

    Give Us the Scoop: What do you know and what do you want to discover? If you’ve got an idea for an awesome story, we’d love to hear it. Send your pitches to and our reporters and editors will run them down.


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    Amazon’s Checkout-Free Grocery Store Opens in Seattle

    It’s all an express lane. At Amazon Go, the new grocery store in the company’s Seattle headquarters, human cashiers are gone. They’re replaced by cameras and algorithms that track customers, who scan in with an app and then leave with whatever they want, automatically charged to their account. The store’s been tested by Amazon employees for over a year, but finally opens to the public today. While humans still check IDs in a section selling alcohol, some see the automation as a threat to America’s 3.5 million cashier jobs.

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    Social Media Boosts Australia’s Labor Movement

    It’s their time now. Long under fire from conservative politicians, and losing members along the way, labor unions Down Under have seen better days. But young leftists are making a political comeback online, using social media to organize and discuss. The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union is leading the charge with its tech-savvy strategy, staging boycotts by appealing to Facebook and Twitter followers. Social media can’t quite replace traditional campaigning, but experts believe it’s the best way to get Australia’s younger generation more politically engaged.

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    Legendary Chef Paul Bocuse Dead at 91

    There’s a savory place in heaven for him. One of the world’s first celebrity chefs died Saturday, leaving behind an outsize legacy that helped define modern French cooking. Dubbed the “pope” of French gastronomy, Bocuse popularized nouvelle cuisine, a style focusing on light dishes with sophisticated presentation. His legacy lives on in the Bocuse d’Or, an international culinary contest that’s considered the Olympics of cooking. “To have spent time with him was an honor and a dream come true,” Anthony Bourdain tweeted upon hearing the news.

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    North Korean Pop Star Visits South Ahead of Olympics

    She stuck the landing. A delegation from Pyongyang arrived in South Korea Sunday led by singer Hyon Song Wol of the all-female Moranbong Band. The pop star, suspected of being Kim Jong Un’s ex-girlfriend, was previously rumored to have been executed along with other musicians in 2013. Hyon — whose song “Excellent Horse-like Lady” was a major hit in the 2000s — was mobbed by South Korean paparazzi. Meanwhile, the International Olympic Committee has announced that 22 North Korean athletes will participate in the Winter Games.

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    Patriots and Eagles Head to Super Bowl

    It’s a rematch. For the third time in four years, the Pats are Super Bowl-bound. Philadelphia, meanwhile, hasn’t seen a championship game since 2005 — when they lost to New England. Widely considered the underdog after star quarterback Carson Wentz’s season-ending injury, the Eagles dominated the Vikings 38-7 Sunday behind backup QB Nick Foles. Earlier, the Patriots rallied back to beat the Jaguars 24-20, despite losing Rob Gronkowski in the second quarter. The conference champs will meet in Minneapolis at Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4.