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First Read's Morning Clips: More Dem candidates abandon Pelosi

A roundup of the most important political news stories of the day
Image: House Minority Speaker Nancy Pelosi
House Minority Speaker Nancy Pelosi waits before speaking to reporters regarding the Russia investigation on Capitol Hill in Washington on Jan. 9, 2018.Andrew Caballero-Reynolds / AFP - Getty Images file

MIDTERM MADNESS: Democratic candidates increasingly abandoning Pelosi

From NBC’s Alex Seitz-Wald and Jonathan Allen: “A growing number of Democratic congressional candidates are bailing out on Nancy Pelosi as they try to inoculate themselves against Republican attacks on the House Minority Leader.”

Potential White House hopefuls in 2020 are going on the offensive against some in their own party, NBC’s Leigh Ann Caldwell reports. And some vulnerable Democrats up for re-election this year are worried.

What looked like an orchestrated attack on Robert Mueller from Trump allies may be a preview of what the president’s 2020 re-election bid could look like, Politico writes.

Billionaire Tom Steyer’s campaign to impeach Trump provides an outlet to liberals hoping to oust the president, the Washington Post reports.

GOP donors are worried about what’s coming in the November midterms, The Hill writes.

Millennial Democrats with military backgrounds are challenging Republicans across the country, Politico writes.

FL-SEN: Republican Sen. Marco Rubio told reporters Tuesday he does not campaign against his Democratic colleague Bill Nelson.

ND-SEN: Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp defended the Second Amendment in an interview with Politico. Vice President Mike Pence laid into the vulnerable Democrat at a private fundraiser Tuesday, NBC’s Jonathan Allen reports.

SC-5: Most Americans wouldn’t consider it news that a clown is running for Congress, but this candidate was an actual, real clown.

TRUMP AGENDA: Kim Jong-Un will ‘do what is right’

The president is tweeting he believes North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un will “do what is right” after his surprise meeting with Chinese leader Xi Jinping.

Democrats are ready to fight Trump over the Census question, NBC’s Jane Timm reports. At least 12 states have said they will oppose the administration’s move to add a citizenship question to the survey.

The U.S. and South Korea have reached a bilateral trade agreement.

The Washington Post reports the president is privately pushing the military to fund the wall.

Trump is apparently way more interested in going after Amazon than Facebook, Axios reports.

The president is seeing an uptick in his approval rating, according to an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll. But it’s still at just 42 percent.

Trump tweeted a full-throated defense of the Second Amendment early Wednesday, one day after former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens suggested it should be repealed.

Stormy Daniels’ lawyer has filed a motion to depose the president and his lawyer.