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First Read’s Morning Clips: A ‘Pretty Severe’ Response to North Korea

TRUMP AGENDA: “Pretty severe” thoughts on North Korea

From NBC’s Ali Vitali in Warsaw: “President Donald Trump promised Thursday to “confront very strongly” the issue of North Korea’s “very, very bad behavior” in test-launching missiles. “I have some pretty severe things that we’re thinking about,” he told reporters in Poland, where he was making an official visit ahead of the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, on Friday.”

In Poland, Trump refused to say he believes Russia is solely responsible for U.S. election interference, saying “nobody really knows for sure.”

Nikki Haley says the chance for a diplomatic solution in North Korea is “quickly closing.”

Rex Tillerson says that the U.S. is ready to discuss no-fly zones in Syria with Russia.

NBC’s Dartunorro Clark has the latest on how states are responding to the Trump administration’s request for voter data.

Michael Chertoff, in a Washington Post op-ed: “[W]hatever the political, legal and constitutional issues raised by this data request, one issue has barely been part of the public discussion: national security. If this sensitive data is to be collected and aggregated by the federal government, then the administration should honor its own recent cybersecurity executive order and ensure that the data is not stolen by hackers or insiders.”

POLITICO: “President Donald Trump won office on promises to shake up how Washington works, and so far that’s been most apparent in his own West Wing, where his top advisers have built up personal staffs to support their own agendas instead of using a traditional White House policy and messaging operation. Chief strategist Steve Bannon has two special assistants, a deputy assistant, an executive assistant and a body man working in his “war room”—plus his external press hand, something his predecessors under President Barack Obama, David Axelrod and David Plouffe, never had while working in the White House. Senior adviser Jared Kushner has seven staffers below him, including his own communications adviser, a former Hollywood PR exec who previously repped Kushner’s real estate work.”

The New York Times writes that hopes for an economic “Trump bump” are fading.

The Wall Street Journal: “International students accepted to U.S. schools are planning to enroll at a similar rate as last year in most areas except the southern part of the country, especially Texas, according to data from 165 U.S. colleges and universities…. In Texas, one of four states that enroll the most international students, the rate, known as yield, fell by 9 percentage points. Dr. Goodman of the IIE believes the declines are rooted in a perception of religious and racial intolerance and in some cases, gun policies.”

Rep. Steve Scalise is back in intensive care amid concerns about infection.

OFF TO THE RACES: Northam camp seizes on health care issue against Gillespie

POLITICO previews a Washington state Senate race with big implications.

The Washington Post asks if Senate Republicans are hitting a recruiting wall.

CA-GOV: The crowded gubernatorial GOP primary has a new candidate: former Assemblyman David Hadley.

GA-GOV: “Secretary of State Brian Kemp raised about $1.7 million in the opening months of his campaign for governor, a strong initial showing in the wide-open 2018 contest,” writes the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Kemp was the first candidate to formally announce for governor, entering the race in late March, and he’s running as a pro-Donald Trump candidate who aims to rally the state GOP’s rural base with a “Georgia First” campaign.”

IA-GOV: Gov. Kim Reynolds’ campaign manager is apologizing after an arrest for public intoxication.

The crowded Iowa race for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination has lost a candidate.

IL-GOV: Don’t sleep on the drama going on in Springfield. From the Chicago Tribune: “Comparing the state income tax hike he'd vetoed a day earlier to a "two-by-four smacked across the forehead," Gov. Bruce Rauner on Wednesday warned lawmakers not to override him and said he would do "everything possible" to try to make sure they don't. That admonishment soon could be put to the test, as Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan announced plans to attempt the override Thursday afternoon. But it's an open question whether enough lawmakers will be on hand, given that only half the House showed up the last two days.”

OK-2: Markwayne Mullin will run for another term in Congress, reversing his campaign promise to only serve six years.

NJ-GOV: “Both Republican nominee Kim Guadagno and Democratic nominee Phil Murphy claimed Wednesday they've reached a key mark in the race to succeed Chris Christie as New Jersey's governor: raising enough money to qualify for matching funds in the general election,” writes NJ.com. “The Garden State has a program in which gubernatorial candidates who raise more than $430,000 can qualify to receive $2 in public money for every $1 they raise.”

VA-GOV: The Northam campaign is reading the entire Senate health care bill on Facebook Live today in an effort to get Ed Gillespie to weigh in on the plan.

WI-1: The Democrat challenging Paul Ryan is raising money at an impressive clip.