First Read's Morning Clips: Whose GOP Is It?

Image: Trum and Ryan
Republican U.S. presidential candidate and businessman Donald Trump | Republican Speaker of the House from Wisconsin Paul RyanReuters file | EPA file

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OFF TO THE RACES: Whose GOP is it – Ryan’s or Trump’s?

The Washington Post asks if Donald Trump has stolen the Republican Party out from under Paul Ryan.

Here's our preview of the big meeting between Paul Ryan and Donald Trump today.

And the New York Times notes: "While Mr. Ryan has repeatedly cited his desire to unify his party and to reject the nasty tone of the Republican primary campaign, he appears to have complex motivations. He and his staff play down talk of a 2020 run for the White House, but how Mr. Ryan manages Mr. Trump over the next six months will play a major role in shaping Mr. Ryan’s future. Many of his colleagues are uneasy about Mr. Trump and grateful that the speaker is at least buying them time to determine how to handle the political equivalent of a live grenade."

The AP's lede: "Donald Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan are sitting down face-to-face for the first time, a week after Ryan stunned Republicans by refusing to back the mercurial billionaire for president. The much-anticipated meeting Thursday morning will play out as polls suggest Republican voters are getting behind Trump, who effectively clinched the nomination last week. GOP lawmakers are increasingly calling for the party to end its embarrassing bout of infighting and unite to beat likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in November, and many want to see Ryan get on board."

POLITICO scoops: Joe Biden wanted Elizabeth Warren as his VP if he ran for president, while the Massachusetts senator was "noncommittal."

Well, this sounds dramatic. Rep. Alan Grayson blew up at Harry Reid in a closed-door meeting, demanding that he "say my name."

CLINTON: The LA Times writes on her plan to capture the center, including the strategy of targeting independents and Republican women.

From the New York Times: "The director of the F.B.I. said Wednesday that he would not be rushed into finishing his agency’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails on an election timetable. And he would not say whether the inquiry would be wrapped up by the November presidential election."

She says she will be a "champion" of DC voting rights.

SANDERS: NBC's Alex Seitz-Wald writes that California is far from a slam dunk for him: "The state has a history of progressive insurgents upsetting expectations, such as when Gary Hart beat then-presumptive nominee Walter Mondale in 1984, and Sanders could still be latest. With less than a month to go, though, it's an uphill climb."

TRUMP: Here's all the latest on the debate over his tax returns.

Is it true that there's "nothing to learn" from his tax returns? Er, no.

His candidacy is prompting a surge in citizenship applications.

The New York Times checks out Trump’s history of visits to the Hill.

Spanish-language radio ads in Arizona are using Donald Trump to target John McCain.

POLITICO, on Trump's policy philosophy: "Trump bounces across the political spectrum, sounding like John McCain on defense spending, Ross Perot on trade, Joe Biden on crumbling roads and bridges, and, well, Donald Trump on border security. He even has a little bit of Bernie Sanders in him when it comes to prescription drug prices. On other issues like Common Core, his ideas are disconnected from reality, since the federal government doesn’t have any say over the educational standards. But there’s also a tougher takeaway on Trump’s policies: Many of his proposals are either unrealistic in terms of executive power or would run into a brick wall with Congress, making a Trump administration borderline impotent on the very issues that are driving his supporters to the polls."

He made an appearance at a party fundraiser on Long Island.

The Wall Street Journal looks at how the cadre of early Trump supporters are now enjoying access to the candidate.

T. Boone Pickens will host a fundraiser for a pro-Trump super PAC.

Newt Gingrich isn't ruling out serving as Trump's VP.