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Today: Trump Makes a Deal ... With ‘Chuck and Nancy’

Today: Trump Makes a Deal ... With ‘Chuck and Nancy’
Vice President Mike Pence, left, and President Trump meet with Democratic and Republican leaders of Congress in the Oval Office. (Evan Vucci / Associated Press)

President Trump's abrupt bargain with Democrats sidesteps an immediate budget and debt crisis, offers money for hurricane victims — and throws Republicans for a loop. That wasn't the only surprise he had up his sleeve. Here are the stories you shouldn't miss today:

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Trump Makes a Deal … With 'Chuck and Nancy'

It was the three-for-one deal seemingly no one saw coming: To avert a fiscal crisis at the end of this month, President Trump agreed with top congressional Democrats to keep the government going through mid-December, avoid a default and provide relief for hurricane victims. Trump's siding with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, whom Trump collegially referred to as "Chuck and Nancy," rather than Republicans during an Oval Office meeting left many in the GOP feeling furious that the president had given in too easily and undercut their strategy going forward. But some in the White House characterized it as a way to clear the decks for issues such as tax reform.

Sen. Charles Schumer, left, with President Trump in the Oval Office.
Sen. Charles Schumer, left, with President Trump in the Oval Office. (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

More Politics

-- Trump spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping on how to constrain North Korea.

-- Donald Trump Jr. is expected to meet privately today with a Senate committee investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

-- Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is among about three dozen prominent Republicans who are calling for the Supreme Court to end gerrymandering.

Dreaming On

The funding deal wasn't the only surprise after that big Oval Office meeting. Trump suggested he'd back legislation to put the nearly 800,000 recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program on a path to legal status, as long as it's combined with increased border security. Of course, that's far from a done deal, and many "Dreamers" aren't planning on sitting idly by. Some see a revival of activism to fight the demise of DACA, which is set to phase out in March unless Congress takes action.

More About DACA

-- Lawyers for 15 states, led by New York and Washington, have filed suit against Trump over his planned repeal of the program.

-- Who are the "Dreamers" whose dreams have been deferred? You might be surprised.

-- What the DACA phase-out means for workers and employers.

Hurricane Irma Hits the Caribbean With Deadly Force

Hurricane Irma, one of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded, has turned deadly after making landfall in the Caribbean with battering waves and 185-mph winds. The storm could hit the U.S. mainland by the weekend. Residents of the Florida Keys have been ordered to evacuate, and in Miami-Dade County, authorities closed schools and urged people to stock up on enough food and water to last three days.

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Should This Manson Follower Go Free?

As a member of one of history's most notorious cults, Leslie Van Houten was convicted in the 1969 killings of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca. After spending decades behind bars, should this onetime associate of Charles Manson be released from prison? A parole board in Chino said yes — and it's the second time that commissioners have found her suitable for release. The first time, Gov. Jerry Brown said no. After a 120-day state review process, Brown will once again decide her fate.

A Dust-Up Over Fingerprints When Celebrity Homes Are Burglarized

The words on the LAPD's cruisers say "to protect and to serve," but with a shortage of crime lab analysts, there's one more verb: "to prioritize." For burglary calls, that means only 21% result in dusting for fingerprints. What gets priority? LAPD officials say the factors include whether the crime is believed to be part of a series, carried out by pros or involves expensive, unique items. But that's also led some to wonder if celebrities are getting special privileges amid a string of big-ticket break-ins over the last several months.

A Muslim Savior for Christians in the Philippines

The southern Philippine city of Marawi has been under siege as the government fights Islamic State-affiliated rebels in a devastating battle evocative of Mosul in Iraq and Aleppo in Syria. When the violence broke out in May, dozens of people sought refuge at the house of Norodin Lucman, a 61-year-old Muslim community leader. More than half of them were Christian. Lucman knew extremists would soon come knocking at his door. "I'll die first before you do," he told the Christians. Here is how he got them to safety.

MUST-WATCH VIDEO

-- Hurricane Irma makes landfall on St. Maarten.

-- Before DACA, this "Dreamer" worked the graveyard shift. He earned an electrical engineering degree at Cal State L.A. and now works for an aerospace company.

-- The Rams play the Indianapolis Colts in their season opener Sunday, but star defensive lineman Aaron Donald continues to hold out.

CALIFORNIA

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-- The city of L.A. has settled with hundreds of victims of an LAPD officer who snooped for celebrity private eye Anthony Pellicano.

-- Authorities say a man who followed a worker into the Ronald Reagan State Building in downtown L.A. was shot and killed by a California Highway Patrol officer.

-- Los Angeles will pay $6.5 million to settle a lawsuit from a man who suffered severe injuries after his bicycle hit a pothole in Sherman Oaks.

-- A study has found major philanthropic gifts by Chinese Americans have surged nearly fivefold; much of the money goes to higher education, including California universities.

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

-- The film adaptation of Stephen King's "It" is expected to set a box-office record and jolt Hollywood's slow year.

-- "I was humiliated by what I didn't know": In this podcast with columnist Patt Morrison, Ken Burns discusses making his Vietnam War documentary.

-- The Toronto International Film Festival starts tonight with the tennis drama "Borg/McEnroe" and features movies about race, environmentalism, globalism, feminism and politics.

-- The merger of two noncommercial radio stations in Southern California is aimed at creating a public radio powerhouse.

CLASSIC HOLLYWOOD

A kiss is just a kiss, but in Alfred Hitchcock's "Notorious," Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant had an extra-long smooch that got around the censors by interspersing dialogue. The film hit theaters 71 years ago this week.

NATION-WORLD

-- Pending the outcome of a court case, Kentucky could become the first state with no abortion clinics.

-- Bribes or just gifts between pals? That's the question as the trial of Sen. Robert Menendez, a Democrat from New Jersey, begins.

-- Jim Bridenstine, Trump's pick to lead NASA, is a congressman who wants to mine fuel from the moon and has denied human activity's role in climate change

-- The U.S. military in Afghanistan has apologized for distributing leaflets featuring an image deemed highly offensive to Muslims: the Shahada, the Muslim profession of faith, printed on the image of a dog.

-- A recording accidentally attached to an email is the latest twist in Brazil's big corruption scandal.

BUSINESS

-- United Airlines won't be punished by the federal government over a passenger's forced removal by dragging from a flight in April.

-- At a hearing in Washington, D.C., dozens of people blasted a Trump administration plan to consider cutbacks in pollution and fuel economy standards for autos and light trucks.

SPORTS

-- Not long ago, observers lamented the decline of American women's tennis at the elite level. At the U.S. Open, the semifinals will be an all-American event.

-- Commissioner Roger Goodell gets candid on the NFL's future … and what it's like to be booed by fans.

OPINION

-- North Korea's nukes call for concerted action, not loose talk.

-- If teenagers get more sleep, California could gain billions.

WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING

-- USA Today pieced together who is paying President Trump's companies for membership in his private golf clubs. It turns out they include dozens of lobbyists, contractors and others who make their living influencing the government.

-- Alex Wong, the photographer who took the through-the-window picture of Schumer and Trump near the top of this newsletter, explains the story behind the shot. (Time)

-- The art and science of drawing prehistoric sharks from fossil records. (Atlas Obscura)

ONLY IN L.A.

The Beatles, the Doors and the Jimi Hendrix Experience were some of the legendary acts to play the Hollywood Bowl in the 1960s, but another supergroup has never played the venue — until now. The Muppets will do a live show there this weekend, complete with the new voice of Kermit the Frog. In the 101-degree heat, he and Miss Piggy recently talked about what it means … without breaking a sweat, oddly enough.

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