Good Tuesday morning. WELCOME TO FALL, FOR NOW — It was a brisk 43 degrees in D.C. early this morning as we started Playbook, and the forecast shows it will climb to just 62 today.
IN MISSISSIPPI — CHRIS MCDANIEL, the GOP state senator who challenged Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran in 2014, told us that he has had several conversations with Steve Bannon about his political future over the last month, including meetings at Breitbart’s headquarters on Capitol Hill. McDaniel said Bannon told him he would “love to see me enter the U.S. Senate race, and that he’ll support me in whatever race I would run.” McDaniel has been toying with primarying Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker.
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MCDANIEL SAID MONDAY NIGHT that Cochran’s illness and absence from the Senate hasn’t changed his thinking about the Wicker race, saying that he is “praying for his full recovery so he can get back to work.” McDaniel said Wicker has “failed the people of Mississippi” and that he plans to make a decision by the end of the month on whether to challenge him. McDaniel said entering the race is “much more compelling than even a month ago” after seeing Roy Moore win in Alabama.
— KEVIN MCCARTHY AND STEVE BANNON ON THE SAME PAGE — THE JOURNAL GAZETTE, of Fort Wayne, Indiana: House Majority Leader Kevin “McCarthy did not mention any GOP senators by name when he said, ‘But if you’re not strong enough to say you’re going to repeal Obamacare and then vote that way, you don’t deserve to stay in the office.’ The line drew applause.” http://bit.ly/2yvxak8
— BREITBART: “Stephen K. Bannon to Attend Kelli Ward Event with Laura Ingraham in Arizona” http://bit.ly/2zgnKpx
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THE MCCAIN SPEECH EVERYONE IS BUZZING ABOUT — ISAAC DOVERE: “Sen. John McCain delivered a condemnation of ‘spurious nationalism’ on Monday night in Philadelphia, using his acceptance speech for the National Constitution Center’s Liberty Medal to issue a call to American ideals. …
“‘To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain ‘the last best hope of earth’ for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems,’ McCain said, ‘is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.’” http://politi.co/2kUx1l6
ABOUT THAT KUMBAYA MOMENT … — “Trump White House fed up with the Senate,” by Burgess Everett and Josh Dawsey: “President Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell stood side-by-side at the White House Monday afternoon to declare they’re ‘together totally’ and ‘very united’ heading into this fall’s tax reform battle. But behind the scenes, Trump, his administration and even some senators are increasingly worried that taxes will go the way of Obamacare repeal in the Senate: Months of bickering ending in extreme embarrassment.
“The debate hasn’t even started on the GOP’s plan, yet some senators are pushing their own tax proposals, while others are increasingly emboldened to defy the Republican president. It’s a dangerous mix considering that McConnell can only lose two votes assuming Democrats band together in opposition. ‘We look at the Senate and go: “What the hell is going on?”’ White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said in an interview Friday.
“‘The House passed health care, the House has already passed its budget, which is the first step of tax reform. The Senate hasn’t done any of that. Hell, the Senate can’t pass any of our confirmations,’ Mulvaney fumed in an interview, slapping a table for emphasis. ‘You ask me if the Republican-controlled Senate is an impediment to the administration’s agenda: All I can tell you is so far, the answer’s yes.’” http://politi.co/2kVbWXr
— IF YOU’RE just realizing the Senate is slow acting, then you’ve not been watching Congress for the last decade or so.
****** A message from Chevron: When an endangered butterfly was found near a Chevron refinery, we protected the habitat and still plant the only thing they eat—buckwheat. Watch the video: http://politi.co/2y4Q3vf ******
JOSH DAWSEY: “Trump gives his own performance a Trump-sized endorsement”: “Friends say President Donald Trump has grown frustrated that his greatness is not widely understood, that his critics are fierce and on TV every morning, that his poll numbers are both low and ‘fake,’ and that his White House is caricatured as adrift. So on Monday, the consummate salesman … gave the Trump White House a Trump-sized dose of brand enhancement. … [H]e mixed facts and mirage, praise and perfidy in two head-spinning, sometimes contradictory performances designed to convince supporters and detractors alike that everything’s terrific, moving ahead of schedule and getting even better. His opponents were cast as misguided, deluded or even unpatriotic.” http://politi.co/2xKFfx6
— THE CLAIM INFURIATING OBAMA ALUMNI: “Trump Falsely Claims Obama Didn’t Contact Families of Fallen Troops,” by NYT’s Mark Landler: “President Trump falsely asserted on Monday that his predecessor, Barack Obama, and other presidents did not contact the families of American troops killed in duty, drawing a swift, angry rebuke from several of Mr. Obama’s former aides. Mr. Trump was responding to a question about why he had not spoken publicly about the killing of four Green Berets in an ambush in Niger two weeks ago when he made the assertion. Rather than answering the question, Mr. Trump said he had written personal letters to their families and planned to call them in the coming week.
“Then he pivoted to his predecessors. ‘If you look at President Obama and other presidents, most of them didn’t make calls,’ Mr. Trump said during a news conference in the Rose Garden with the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell. ‘A lot of them didn’t make calls. I like to call when it’s appropriate.’ Mr. Trump’s assertion belied a long record of meetings Mr. Obama held with the families of killed service people, as well as calls and letters, dating to the earliest days of his presidency. Before he decided to deploy 30,000 troops to Afghanistan, Mr. Obama traveled to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to greet the coffins of troops.” http://nyti.ms/2yOt5s2
— @ericholder: “Stop the damn lying – you’re the President. I went to Dover AFB with 44 and saw him comfort the families of both the fallen military & DEA.”
— Longtime Obama aide Alyssa Mastromonaco (@alyssamastromonaco): “that’s a f***ing lie. to say president obama (or past presidents) didn’t call the family members of soldiers KIA – he’s a deranged animal.”
— Former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (@martin_dempsey): “POTUS 43 & 44 and first ladies cared deeply, worked tirelessly for the serving, the fallen, and their families. Not politics. Sacred Trust.”
MCCONNELL’S LATEST PROBLEM — “Cochran’s absence creates unexpected budget hurdle,” by Seung Min Kim, Burgess Everett, and Sarah Ferris: “Senate Republicans are scrambling to lock down the necessary votes for a budget that would unlock the a tax overhaul — facing unforeseen absences and still-wavering GOP votes. The chamber is aiming for a vote on Thursday regardless of whether Sen. Thad Cochran, whose office announced Monday that he would not return to Washington as planned, remains absent, according to GOP sources.
“That means Senate Republicans have little room for error, and GOP leaders are laboring to win over both Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and John McCain of Arizona. Paul, who was the only Republican senator to vote against a budget that would fast-track an Obamacare repeal measure earlier this year, stressed Monday that he was still undecided on the Republican blueprint. ‘We’re in discussions on it,’ Paul told reporters on Monday. ‘We’re trying to get it to a document that we think represents what we stand for. I’m not gonna go into the details right now but I’m working with the White House on it.’
“A spokeswoman for McCain, who was not in Washington for votes on Monday night, did not respond to a request for comment on how he intends to vote on the budget. Passage of the long-delayed fiscal blueprint would mark a critical step for the GOP toward the first major tax rewrite in a generation. The Senate’s budget unlocks procedural powers to advance a tax plan without Democratic support. GOP leaders are aiming to pass tax reform by December.” http://politi.co/2xISX3q
WAPO/60 MINUTES GET RESULTS — “Trump declines to express confidence in drug czar nominee in wake of Post/‘60 Minutes’ probe,” by Ed O’Keefe, Scott Higham and Lenny Bernstein: “President Trump said Monday that he will declare a national emergency next week to address the opioid epidemic and declined to express confidence in Rep. Tom Marino (R-Pa.), his nominee for drug czar, in the wake of revelations that the lawmaker helped steer legislation making it harder to act against giant drug companies. …
“Trump said ‘we’re going to be looking into’ the [Washington Post/60 Minutes investigation], while many Democrats and at least one Republican called for modification or outright repeal of the law. Democrats also urged Trump to drop Marino as his pick to lead the Office of National Drug Control Policy. … Trump said he would have a ‘major announcement, probably next week’ about how his administration plans to tackle opioid addiction in the United States, a ‘massive problem’ that he wants to get ‘absolutely right.’” http://wapo.st/2xKBJCP … The WaPo piece http://wapo.st/2x0WFpz … The 60 Minutes segment http://cbsn.ws/2x0Jq8o
READY TO MAKE A DEAL? — “Trump said to want bipartisan Senate Obamacare deal,” by Jen Haberkorn: “President Donald Trump urged Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander to seek out an Obamacare deal with Democrats — encouragement that might help sway Republicans who are skeptical of a bipartisan agreement. Alexander said Trump told him by phone Oct. 14 he’d like to see a bill that funds the Obamacare cost-sharing subsidies that he abruptly cut off last week. In return, he wants to see ‘meaningful flexibility for the states in providing more choices,’ Alexander (R-Tenn.) said.
“‘He said he wanted to make sure that in this interim period while we’re still arguing about the long-term direction of health care, that people aren’t hurt — those were his words,’ Alexander said of Trump. Alexander, the chairman of the Senate health committee, has been working with ranking Democrat Patty Murray for weeks on an Obamacare stabilization bill with similar parameters. But the talks had stalled over how to define state flexibility: Republicans want to let states modify their health systems under Obamacare, and Democrats are wary of anything that could unwind any of the consumer protections in the law.” http://politi.co/2yn54YF
TRADE WARS — “Canadian firm could dodge 300 percent tariff by building jets in Alabama,” by WaPo’s Aaron Gregg: “Canadian jet-maker Bombardier announced Monday that it is selling a controlling stake in its 100- to 150-seat C-series jetliner to European manufacturer Airbus, just weeks after the Commerce Department moved to impose 300 percent tariffs on the plane. The companies also said they will expand the plane’s production to a new facility in Mobile, Ala., a move that could help it avoid the import duty. Executives from Airbus and Bombardier touted the deal’s U.S. job-creation potential. ‘This is a win-win for everybody,’ Airbus chief executive Tom Enders said in a statement. ‘Not only will this partnership secure the C Series and its industrial operations in Canada, the U.K. and China, but we also bring new jobs to the U.S.’” http://wapo.st/2xKGRa0
BANNON WATCH — “Pro-Trump group endorses in key Senate primaries,” by McClatchy’s Katie Glueck: “A prominent pro-Donald Trump super PAC with ties to ex-White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is rolling out its official endorsements in the Wisconsin and Arizona GOP Senate primaries. Great America PAC will announce that in Wisconsin, it is supporting Kevin Nicholson, a Marine veteran running in a hotly contested primary to challenge Sen. Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat running for re-election in a state President Donald Trump won. … According to a Bannon source with direct knowledge of Nicholson’s conversation with Bannon, the Wisconsin candidate indicated that he would not support Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as leader.” http://bit.ly/2xLkAxG
TRUMP’S TUESDAY — Trump is meeting with Defense Secretary James Mattis. He is having a working lunch with Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and the two will hold a joint press conference. Trump will participate in a Diwali ceremonial lighting of the Diya. This evening he is scheduled to speak at the Heritage Foundation’s president’s club meeting at the Marriott Marquis in D.C.
THE JUICE …
— PENNY PRITZKER has been nominated to Microsoft’s board of directors. Directors at the company make roughly $325,000.
— SHELLING OUT BIG DOUGH: REP. DUNCAN HUNTER (R-CALIF.), under investigation by the FBI, shelled out $134,793 in legal fees last quarter, according to an FEC report.
— THE NFL is backing the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act. http://politi.co/2yOKqRK
— JOB CREATORS NETWORK is launching a six-figure ad campaign in D.C., North Dakota, Montana, and West Virginia pushing for tax reform. See the ad, which features JFK http://bit.ly/2gKlaBB
HQ2 — WSJ: “New Jersey Offers $7 Billion in Incentives to Lure Amazon to Newark,” by Keiko Morris and Mike Vilensky: “New Jersey is offering Amazon $5 billion in tax incentives over the next 10 years and upon the creation of 50,000 jobs, Mr. Christie said. In addition, Newark is offering a property-tax abatement potentially worth $1 billion and another $1 billion that Amazon’s new Newark workers would gain over 20 years from the city waiving its local wage tax, the governor said.” http://on.wsj.com/2kT0yeR
IN LAS VEGAS — “Jesus Campos, Vegas security guard shot before rampage, appears to have vanished,” by L.A. Times’ Melissa Etehad, Ruben Vives and Jaweed Kaleem: “The story seemed straightforward: The unarmed security guard approached Stephen Paddock’s room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, distracting the gunman and potentially saving lives. With a gunshot wound to his leg, he helped point officers to the gunman’s location and stayed behind to evacuate hotel guests. He was hailed a hero by many, even as the story changed. Twice.
“Now, the man that many want to honor and who can help bring clarity about the timeline of the shooting has vanished from the public eye, less than two weeks since the Oct. 1 massacre, which left 58 people dead and more than 500 others injured.” http://lat.ms/2zfa2DF
CRITICS NOTEBOOK — NYT’S ROBERTA SMITH: “Why the Obamas’ Portrait Choices Matter”: “In their selection of Kehinde Wiley, for Mr. Obama’s likeness, and Amy Sherald, for Mrs. Obama’s, announced Friday, the Obamas continue to highlight the work of contemporary and modern African-American artists, as they so often did with the artworks they chose to live with in the White House, by Glenn Ligon, Alma Thomas and William H. Johnson, among others. Their choices then and now reflect the Obamas’ instincts for balancing the expected and the surprising, and for being alert to painting’s pertinence to the moment.” http://nyti.ms/2hLN8MH
THE LATEST ON THE TRAVEL BAN — “Federal judge hears challenge to third version of Trump’s travel ban,” by Josh Gerstein: “A federal judge in Maryland is deciding whether the third time’s the charm for President Donald Trump’s travel ban. Judges blunted the impact of the first two executive orders Trump issued earlier this year, measures that critics said were thinly disguised versions of the Muslim ban he promised on the campaign trail. The latest iteration of the presidential proclamation dropped one majority Muslim country, Sudan, from an earlier list of countries that faced travel restrictions, added another largely Muslim nation, Chad, and included Venezuela and North Korea. The travel limits in the new policy are set to take effect early Wednesday morning.
“During a 90-minute session in a Greenbelt, Md., courtroom Monday, U.S. District Court Judge Theodore Chuang heard many of the same arguments that were leveled at the previous iterations of Trump’s policy: that it is premised on discrimination against Muslims and that it exceeds his authority under a complex set of immigration laws.” http://politi.co/2yov9Xg
ISAAC DOVERE emails us his latest “Off Message” Podcast: “‘Shocking’ is the word Puerto Rico Congresswoman Jenniffer Gonzalez used over and over about President Trump’s tweets, talking to Isaac Dovere for the latest Off Message podcast. Does the president get what is going on? ‘You know what?’ the first term Republican said. ‘Maybe I’m going to be nice here: I don’t know.’ She said the president’s hostile statements make even less sense in light of the action on the ground: ‘He’s sending the resources. He’s granting everything that has been asked. He’s having daily briefings on the island. He’s sending the troops.’
“‘This is not the time to be talking about withdrawing the help,’ she continued, a flash of anger in her voice. ‘This is not the time to talk about how much it’s costing the U.S., because we are American citizens.’ And she talked about her own experience living through Hurricane Maria and the continuing aftermath: ‘Your life,’ she said, with tears in her eyes, ‘is like stopping without knowing what is going to happen next.’” http://politi.co/2hLUSOQ
AP: “Me Too: Alyssa Milano elevates Harvey Weinstein conversation,” by Leanne Italie: http://bit.ly/2xKAe7U
****** A message from Chevron: This is a story about DOERS, butterflies, and buckwheat. In ’75, the endangered El Segundo Blue butterfly was found near a Chevron refinery. We protected the habitat and planted the only thing they eat—buckwheat. We’re still planting and keeping an eye on our littlest neighbor. Watch the video: http://politi.co/2lfOXGX ******
2018 WATCH — “Levin mum on re-election bid,” by Detroit News’ Melissa Nann Burke: “Longtime Rep. Sandy Levin has delayed announcing whether he’ll run for another term in Congress, fueling speculation that the 86-year-old Royal Oak Democrat might retire. Asked recently by The Detroit News about whether he’ll seek re-election, Levin did not answer directly. ‘I’m spending all my time right now on these issues,’ such as tax reform, negotiations about [NAFTA] and stabilizing the health insurance markets, said Levin, who has served in Congress since 1983. … That focus has perhaps affected Levin’s fund-raising efforts, judging by his receipts of $17,000 in the last reporting period and a total of $101,931 for the year.” http://detne.ws/2hKB66h
FOR YOUR RADAR — “U.S. Air Force Space Chief Sees Final Frontier as Battleground,” by Bloomberg’s Tony Capaccio: “Space, once seen as the benign final frontier, has evolved into a crowded potential battleground that the U.S. must defend as conflicts extend beyond Earth, according to the Air Force’s top military space official. While officials once aspired to treat space as a peaceful refuge from the strife on Earth, it’s now ‘congested, contested and competitive’ — and ‘all three of those trends are trending upward,’ General John W. ‘Jay’ Raymond, the head of the Air Force Space Command, said in an interview Monday.” https://bloom.bg/2goopl2
MEDIAWATCH — THE FUTURE — “Netflix Says It Will Spend Up to $8 Billion on Content Next Year,” by NYT’s John Koblin: “Netflix will spend between $7 billion and $8 billion on content in 2018, up from the roughly $6 billion it will spend this year, the streaming service said while announcing its third-quarter earnings on Monday. Netflix added 5.3 million subscribers in the quarter, surpassing expectations, and had revenue of nearly $3 billion, a 30 percent increase from the same period last year. The company also saw its net income rise to $130 million, well over last year’s third quarter total of $52 million but short of the $143 million that Wall Street expected.” http://nyti.ms/2yrVp0k
— “President Trump’s mysterious absence from conservative talk radio,” by CNN’s Oliver Darcy: “President Trump has invited The New York Times into the Oval Office. He’s granted behind-the-scenes White House access to Time magazine. And he’s sat for interviews with the network news. But there’s one medium the president has conspicuously ignored: conservative talk radio. If there were ever a medium built for Trump — besides Twitter — talk radio would be it. But in his first eight months as president, Trump did not do a single interview on talk radio. … On Monday, a White House official told CNN the president has carved time out of his schedule to participate in a talk radio event at the White House on Tuesday.” http://cnnmon.ie/2xJNEWl
— PETER HAMBY’S next episode of Snap’s “Good Luck America” looks at the opioid epidemic and the Trump administration’s approach to the war on drugs. Video http://bit.ly/2yttXBb
COMING ATTRACTIONS — “Revealed: New Lewandowski, Bossie book ‘Let Trump Be Trump,’” by Washington Examiner’s Paul Bedard: “Two of President Trump’s most influential advisors have revealed the title and cover image of their new insider account set for a pre-Christmas release, ‘Let Trump Be Trump: The inside Story of his Presidency.’ Corey R. Lewandowski and David N. Bossie said the book will document Trump’s successful 2016 presidential campaign, initially managed by Lewandowski.” http://washex.am/2yPh19U
DESSERT — FRANK BRUNI, MAGGIE HABERMAN and other NYT employees sing Stephen Sondheim’s “Broadway Baby,” as part of T Magazine’s Greats issue that was released yesterday. 2-min. video http://nyti.ms/2xJZriT … The issue http://nyti.ms/2kU3jwp
SPOTTED: Michigan Reps. John Moolenaar and Fred Upton having a late dinner on Monday night at Lucky’s Steakhouse in Midland, Michigan. Lucky’s is a new restaurant in Moolenaar’s district.
OUT AND ABOUT – Pool report: “Vice President Mike Pence joined Hollywood A-lister Josh Brolin at a special DC screening of his new movie ‘Only The Brave’ last night at Landmark E Street Cinema. … ‘Only The Brave’ [produced by Molly Smith] retells the story of the real-life Granite Mountain Hotshots, the elite forest fire crew that saw 19 of its members killed while fighting the Yarnell Hill wildfire that blazed near Prescott, AZ in June 2013.” Pic of Pence and Sen. Jeff Flake in the audience http://bit.ly/2igXxEa … More pics via Sony Pictures Entertainment http://politi.co/2ypLafo … http://politi.co/2yuL9pM … Trailer http://bit.ly/2xKfdih
SPOTTED: Second Lady Karen Pence, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.), Fred Smith, Samantha Smith, Igor Bobic, Zeke Miller, Marcy Stech, Brendan McDonough and Mike Menchel
— Joyce and Bruce Gates hosted a reception yesterday at their Alexandria, Virginia, home with special guest former President George W. Bush supporting Ed Gillespie for Virginia governor. Pics http://bit.ly/2gokll0 … http://bit.ly/2xJV0ob SPOTTED: Former Gov. Jim Gilmore, former Sen. John Warner, Rep. Rob Wittman, Josh Bolten, Joel Kaplan, Gillespie for Governor Chairman Pete Snyder, Matt Schlapp, Jay Nelson, Liz Williams, Ed Cash, Brian Dodge, Caroline Poe, Kendall Jennings, Katlin McInnis, Caitlin Schroder
BIRTHWEEK (was yesterday): Chris Faile, PR leader in financial services at Deloitte, turned 4-0
BIRTHDAY OF THE DAY: Ken Baer, founder of Crosscut Strategies, co-founder of Democracy Journal and former Obama WH OMB associate director. How he got his start in politics: “Not counting volunteering for Mike Dukakis’ South Jersey operation in 1988, my first campaign job was when Jake Tapper hired me for the Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky congressional race in 1992. I did the clips (with actual scissors!), wrote policy papers, and worked with one of the greatest campaign teams to pull off a historic win. I was hooked.” Read his Playbook Plus Q&A: http://politi.co/2yR0C4M
BIRTHDAYS: former N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory is 61 … Michael Beckerman, president and CEO of the Internet Association (hat tip: Noah Theran) … Julie Rovner, chief Washington correspondent at Kaiser Health News … Bloomberg LP Chairman Peter Grauer is 72 … Politico’s Angela Greiling Keane and Martin Matishak … Marcus Alexander Gadson … Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) is 46 … Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) is 56 … Rep. Gene Green (D-Tex.) is 7-0 … former Rep. Virgil Goode (R-Va.) is 71 … Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.) is 59 … William Haseltine … Sean Harrison … Jared Edy … Morgan O’Brien, press attaché at U.S. Embassy Kuala Lumpur, host of the “DiploSport” podcast, former Air Force, and loyal Tarheel (h/t Ben Chang) … Briggs DeLoach … John Monsif, VP of gov’t relations at First Focus (h/t Jon Haber) … Adrienne Petz, EVP at Edelman …
… Rich Thomas, partner at Monument Policy Group … Adam Greenspan of NGP VAN … Katey McGettrick … Clay Robinson … Robert Schwartz … Jethro Ward … Diana Gourlay Hamilton … Bill Steiger … NBC News’ Rob Rivas … Michael Shayan, media strategy lead at Google … Alex Youn … Matthew Hennessy, managing partner at Tremont Public Advisors … Jacquie Brown … Scott McCabe … Colleen King … John Weiner … Google’s Sean Harrison … Marcus Alexander Gadson … Chicago movie critic Richard Roeper is 58 … … Scott Darling … Fred Yang (h/ts Teresa Vilmain)
****** A message from Chevron: This is a story about DOERS, butterflies, and buckwheat. In ’75, the endangered El Segundo Blue butterfly was found near a Chevron refinery. We protected the habitat and planted the only thing they eat—buckwheat. We’re still planting and keeping an eye on our littlest neighbor. Watch the video: http://politi.co/2y7rSHn ******
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