By Zeke J Miller
August 15, 2016

Correction Appended August 15, 2016

If you only read one thing: After a miserable three weeks for his campaign, Donald Trump lashed out at the press Sunday in a series of tweets blaming perceived media bias for his struggles in the polls. In one instance, Trump claimed he’d be leading Hillary Clinton by 20 points if “if the disgusting and corrupt media covered me honestly and didn’t put false meaning into the words I say.” Meanwhile, senior aides did the round of Sunday morning shows to drive home the theme. Trump’s blame-the-press tactic is hardly new, especially for him, but it marks his latest attempt to delegitimize public institutions, who in this case, have committed the deadly sin of directly quoting him. As Trump searches for easy targets to offload the blame for his foundering campaign, the true responsibility lies squarely with the candidate, who has stepped on his own message time and again.

Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort is facing renewed scrutiny over his work for pro-Russian former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych, who was pushed from power in February 2014. A New York Times report alleges that handwritten ledgers found in Ukraine detail millions in cash payoffs said to have been delivered to Manafort, whose ties to the corrupt former leader remain murky. In a statement Monday, Manafort denied the latest allegations, but the controversy stands to be a sideshow to Trump’s foreign policy speech Monday. Trump is expected to announce a revision of his controversial Muslim ban, replacing it instead with an ideological test for entry to the U.S., while rejecting the Bush administration’s foreign policy.

Hillary Clinton is campaigning in Scranton, Pa. with Vice President Joe Biden Monday, as she seeks to shore up support in the white, working-class, part of the key swing state.

Obama releases a summer playlist. Young voters flee Trump. And how ScamPACs killed the tea party.

Here are your must reads:

Must Reads

Secret Ledger in Ukraine Lists Cash for Donald Trump’s Campaign Chief

Trump campaign boss under renewed scrutiny for ties to Putin ally [New York Times]

Donald Trump says media is out to get him

Facing a pivotal moment in his campaign, Trump blames the press [CNN]

Trump Campaign Looks to Evangelicals to Mobilize Hispanic Outreach

With 85 days remaining, the campaign organizes an advisory board, TIME’s Elizabeth Dias reports

Donald Trump Ohio speech preview: ‘Foreign policy realism’ to replace nation building

Trump to reject Bush doctrine and revise Muslim ban [Associated Press]

Sound Off

“It is not “freedom of the press” when newspapers and others are allowed to say and write whatever they want even if it is completely false!” —Donald Trump in a tweet Sunday.

“How dare we cover what he says” —CNN’s Jake Tapper to Trump surrogate and former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s complaints about the press

Bits and Bites

Young voters flee Donald Trump in what may be historic trouncing, poll shows [USA Today]

President Obama’s Emotional Spotify Playlist Is a Hit [New York Times]

The Bidens bump into the Bushes in the Hamptons [New York Post]

How Donald Trump Brought House Conservatives to Heel [National Review]

Manafort blasts NYT, denies he accepted Ukraine cash payments [Politico]

How We Killed the Tea Party [Politico]

Here’s How Much Hillary Clinton Paid in Taxes Last Year [Fortune]

Correction: The original version of this post misstated the nickname for the period of time that lead to the removal from power of Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych.

Write to Zeke J Miller at


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