Morning Must Reads: July 24

In the news: defense contractors, Anthony Weiner, 9,000 California inmates, insider trading, Wrigley Field, Bob McDonnell, and the ratio of royal babies to photographers.

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Mark Wilson / Getty Images

The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

  • Big defense contractors like Lockheed Mar­tin are weathering the federal budget sequester far more easily than they projected, in part because they have gradually eliminated jobs over the past few years in anticipation of spending cuts.
  • End the White House press briefing!
  • Wife at his side, NYC candidate for mayor Anthony Weiner admits to more online sex chats.
  • California Gov. Jerry Brown wants Justice Anthony Kennedy to block a release of more than 9,000 inmates.
  • Federal prosecutors are preparing to announce criminal charges as early as this week against SAC Capital Advisors LP, the hedge-fund giant that has been the target of a multiyear investigation into alleged insider trading.
  • Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel finally can call victory on a $500 million Wrigley Field renovation project that doesn’t rely on public financial support.
  • Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has apologized for the “embarrassment” that he and his family have caused Virginia over a gift scandal, and said he has repaid $124,000 in loans to the political donor chiefly involved.
  • The House is poised to vote on restricting the National Security Agency’s surveillance programs in what will be the first test of congressional support for the massive data collection activities that were revealed last month.
  • According to a new WSJ poll, Govs. Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Andrew Cuomo of New York would start campaigns for the Democratic presidential nomination with their public images almost entirely unformed.
  • Blanket coverage: One royal baby, 44 photographers