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Incoming: More “Veep” Than Actual “Veep”

A watchdog tries to preserve Trump's records, Georgia's abortion law blocked, Facebook's "I voted" button. Your BuzzFeed News newsletter, Oct. 2.

Posted on October 2, 2019, at 7:50 a.m. ET

A judge wants assurances the Trump administration won’t destroy records of the president’s calls with foreign leaders. The Justice Department is hesitating

In May, a government watchdog group accused the Trump administration of failing to meet its legal obligations to create — and properly save — records of President Donald Trump’s and other officials’ conversations with foreign leaders. In May.

Last week, more information came to light about Trump’s calls with foreign leaders. This includes a whistleblower complaint about a July call with the Ukrainian president, when Trump asked for help investigating Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. The complaint says the White House sought to keep the call secret.

The watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, asked a federal judge to issue an emergency order requiring the White House to preserve records of all of Trump’s calls with foreign leaders.

As you can imagine, the request has taken on more urgency. This week, new reporting uncovered the Trump administration’s appeals to Australia and Italy to help with efforts to discredit the Mueller investigation.

Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Georgia’s law banning abortion after six weeks has been blocked

Georgia was one of several states to pass highly-restrictive abortion laws this summer. The law, which bans abortion after six weeks and defines a fetus as a “natural person,” was signed by Gov. Brian Kemp in May and was slated to go into effect in January 2020.

After it was challenged by several organizations, including the American Civil Liberties Union, a federal judge blocked the law.

Most of the anti-abortion politicians pushing and passing these laws are counting on them being challenged and blocked in court. The goal is to appeal until they reach the Supreme Court.

SNAPSHOTS

The Sunrise Movement is building an army in the early 2020 states. The major climate group on the left is scaling up operations in Iowa and New Hampshire to mobilize young people demanding climate action to the polls.

Harvard University is allowed to use race as a factor in its admissions process, a judge ruled. A federal lawsuit accused the Ivy League school of discriminating against Asian American students by considering race in its admissions standards. The judge sided with Harvard.

A teen died saving his 5-year-old sister from a burglar. Khyler Edman, 15, died protecting his younger sister from an intruder who broke into their Florida home. Edman is being remembered as a hero. Police arrested the suspect, 27-year-old Ryan Cole.

Prince Harry is suing the Mail On Sunday for its “false” and “derogatory” coverage of Meghan Markle. The Duke of Sussex filed a legal complaint against the paper and its publisher, Associated Newspapers. In a blistering statement that directly referenced the memory of his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, he said, “I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditized to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person.”

Facebook’s “I Voted” button could be Trump’s secret weapon in 2020

Facebook’s cheerful “I Voted” button seems neutral and non-partisan enough. But it isn’t turning out a cross section of Americans.

It’s been scientifically proven that the button can drive people to the polls. But it’s turning out only the cross section of people who use Facebook. And Facebook’s demographics have changed a lot.

As Facebook’s user base morphs into the Trump coalition — older, less-educated, and more Republican — the platform's get-out-the-vote efforts could become a powerful element of the president's reelection campaign, one that could tip the vote in battleground states in the general election.

The company hasn’t decided whether it’s going to run a get-out-the-vote campaign in 2020. Scott Lucas looks at how Facebook’s voter button could tilt the election toward Donald Trump.

This disposable coffee cup drama between Boris Johnson’s aides is lighting up the internet

Who says politics can’t be fun, huh?

Cameras captured British Prime Minister Boris Johnson arriving at an event, flanked by two aides. One aide hands him a coffee. Immediately, another aide snatches it from Johnson’s hands while pressing her words: “No. Disposable. Cups.”

The aide was presumably trying to preserve Johnson’s green credentials by not having him appear with a disposable coffee cup. Instead, the moment gave the internet great delight, with many comparing it to a Veep moment.

I will confess: I’ve watched the video of the tense interaction a good six or seven times.

Channel 4


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