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What DeSantis could lose at the upcoming GOP debate and August's rare blue moon: Morning Rundown

Many are looking at Aug. 23, the night of the first Republican presidential debate.
An airplane flies past a super full moon called a Buck moon over Los Angeles in July 2023.
An airplane flies past the super full moon known as buck moon rising over Los Angeles on July 2, 2023.Ringo Chiu / AP

In today’s newsletter: Mar-a-Lago's property manager is expected to make his first court appearance today after his indictment in the Trump classified docs case. Pro-coup protesters waving Russian flags attacked the French embassy in Niger. And when to spot August's spectacular supermoons. 

Here’s what to know today.

Protesters attack French embassy in Niger, our team was in the capital as it unfolded 

Thousands of protesters supporting a coup in Niger took to the streets and attacked the French embassy as West African governments warned of possible military action to restore democratic rule.

Protesters, some waving Russian flags, filled the streets in the capital, some running, others riding motorcycles, and many packed into vehicles. They blocked cars at traffic circles, backing up traffic on side streets.  

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As the demonstrations unfolded in Niger, West African nations held an emergency summit in Nigeria and announced sweeping sanctions on Niger unless President Mohammed Bazoum was released from detention and returned to power.

An NBC News team reported from Niamey, Niger as it unfolded. NBC News is the only American television news organization with reporters on the ground in the capital.

Further down: When to catch a glimpse of the two supermoons in August. 

Newly indicted Trump employee doesn’t have a Florida lawyer ahead of his first court appearance

Carlos De Oliveria, who was charged in a new indictment alongside former President Donald Trump, has not secured a Florida-based lawyer ahead of his first court appearance today. 

Prosecutors charge that the Mar-a-Lago property manager attempted to delete surveillance footage at the former president’s Palm Beach club after the Justice Department sought to obtain it. But without a lawyer who can practice in Florida, the judge may not proceed with De Oliveira’s arraignment.

What does Ron DeSantis have riding on the debates? Maybe everything.

Many are looking at Aug. 23, the night of the first Republican presidential debate in Milwaukee, as the event that could re-establish Ron DeSantis as a strong alternative to Trump — or, if things go poorly, deliver a death blow to an already ailing campaign.

DeSantis’ campaign has taken a beating since his official launch in May. His performance has not met the early hype and high expectations that he was the best GOP contender to beat Trump. 

Today’s Talker

Supermoons to serve up a double treat for stargazers…

…as a rare blue moon is expected in August. The first supermoon will be seen Tuesday evening as it rises from the southeast, appearing slightly bigger and brighter than normal. At the end of the month, the second supermoon will be even closer.  We won’t see two supermoons in one month again until 2037, according to Italian astronomer Gianluca Masi.

Politics in Brief

GOP congressman condemned: A freshman Republican lawmaker received bipartisan condemnation after he allegedly yelled at a group of high- school-age Senate pages for “defiling” the Capitol on Wednesday. New details shared with NBC News paint an even more disturbing picture of what took place that night. 

The White House: Joe Biden’s campaign co-chair, Sen. Chris Coons, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that it “may be worth looking at” a congressional code of ethics for presidential family members.

Trump’s defamation lawsuit: A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit Trump filed against CNN in which he claimed that references in news articles or by the network’s hosts to his efforts to overturn the 2020 election as “the Big Lie” was tantamount to comparing him to Adolf Hitler. 

Staff Pick: One doctor’s tie to Ukraine 

Connor Berlin's ancestors fled Ukraine over 100 years ago after an antisemetic pogrom. Today, he is using his vacation time to return to the country and use his skills as a brain surgeon to help the war effort. Despite an overbearing workload and having to treat ''haunting'' injuries with outmoded tools, he says the work of his local team and the sacrifice of the soldiers he treats is an inspiration. He hopes his tale of return after his family's tragedy will inspire others to do the same-  Elizabeth Both, associate platforms editor

In Case You Missed It

Idaho mother Lori Vallow faces up to life in prisonas she is sentenced in the murders of her two youngest children and a romantic rival in a bizarre case.

A federal lawsuit was filed against Delta accusing flight attendants of failing to intervene after a male passenger was served at least 10 alcoholic drinks and then groped a mother and her 16-year-old daughter.

Pakistan’s government has vowed to hunt down those behind a massive suicide bombing that targeted a rally of a pro-Taliban cleric yesterday.

A 6-year-old girl died in Arizona in a boating accident after her mother accidentally struck her with a boat propeller.

The operator of an Ohio animal rescue organization face felony allegations after authorities said they discovered 30 dead dogs and 90 more malnourished dogs.

Madonna said she feels “lucky” to be alive after she was hospitalized for a bacterial infection that forced her to postpone an international tour.

A Georgia resident has died from a rare brain-eating amoeba after they were likely infected while swimming in a freshwater lake or pond.

Select: Online Shopping, Simplified

 Looking to beat the heat while enjoying the sand and the surf? A quality beach umbrella is essential. To help you navigate the many choices out there and determine the best beach umbrella for your needs, Select spoke to experts about the different types available and what to consider when shopping for one. 

 Sign up to The Selection newsletter for exclusive reviews and shopping content from NBC Select.

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