Morning Must Reads: July 31

In the news: the Bradley Manning verdict, Larry Summers' Fed Chairman chances, Syria, Zimbabwe's election, shutting down the government, and the Hill's 50 Most Beautiful People.

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Mark Wilson / Getty Images

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

  • Bradley Manning faces life in prison after being found guilty on six counts of violating the Espionage Act of 1917. Manning released hundreds of thousands of military and diplomatic documents to WikiLeaks for publication on the Internet.
    • Loner had turned to the Internet for solace.
  • While a grand-bargain deficit-reduction plan seems out of reach, Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and other Republican senators believe a compromise that would end or reduce the sequester and increase agency budgets is possible.
  • Iran has agreed to supply Damascus with $3.6 billion in oil in exchange for the right to invest in the country.
  • Zimbabwe votes in pivotal election today.
  • Obama has asked Senators McCain and Lindsey Graham to travel to Egypt to meet with its military leaders and the opposition.
  • New Republic interviews McCain. They discuss Fox News, the Tea Party, and choosing between Hillary Clinton and Rand Paul in 2016. “Am I happy? I’d like to be president of the United States,” says McCain at one point.
  • Ben White deconstructs the arguments against Larry Summers for Fed Chairman.
    • WSJ: “Summers has been skeptical about the benefits of the Fed’s huge bond-buying programs, known as ‘quantitative easing,’ but he also has said he sees few harmful side effects stemming from them.”
  • Home prices shot up in America’s largest cities in May, rising at a pace not seen since the bubble days.
  • Peter Orzag defends the Medicare payment board.
  • The Justice Department said for the first time it needs to tell defendants when sweeping surveillance is used to build a criminal case against them.
  • The average Frenchman these days eats only half a baguette a day compared with almost a whole baguette in 1970 and more than three in 1900.
  • The Hill releases its annual “50 Most Beautiful People” list.