April 24, 2014
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The Israeli government on Thursday announced that it was backing out of American-brokered peace negotiations so long as the talks involve Palestine's militant group, Hamas. The decision came one day after Hamas and its rival party, Fatah, announced that they were working toward forming a united government.

"Instead of choosing peace, [Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas] formed an alliance with a murderous terrorist organization that calls for the destruction of Israel," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said. "Whoever chooses the terrorism of Hamas does not want peace." Jon Terbush

9:29 a.m. ET

There was a big, green, gaping lawn visible at Tim Kaine's rally in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Monday, where Hillary Clinton's vice presidential candidate didn't exactly draw massive crowds:

In a raspy, campaign trail-worn voice, Kaine still managed to work up enthusiasm for the few who turned out. "You really are a checkmate state," he said. "That's more than a battleground state … If we win for Hillary here, it's over. She's going to be president." Still, as CNN noted, Kaine was very much suffering from a case of the Mondays:

Admittedly, vice presidents don't have the same draw as the tops of their tickets. But for comparison, Mike Pence also hosted a rally on Monday:

This much is good news for Kaine, at least: Clinton leads in the Sunshine State by as many as 5 points. Jeva Lange

9:05 a.m. ET
Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images

The Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians meet for the first game of the 2016 World Series on Tuesday at Progressive Field in Ohio, with the two teams carrying a combined 176-year championship drought.

The Cubs have widely been considered World Series favorites since Opening Day, and are headed by GM Theo Epstein, who assembled the also curse-breaking 2004 Boston Red Sox. In the other dugout is Indians manager Terry Francona, another fixture of the 2004 Red Sox; he will be tasked with outmaneuvering Cubs manager Joe Maddon. Playoff-tested leftie Jon Lester will lead off on the mound for the Cubs, while the Indians will start their ace, Corey Kluber.

"The baseball gods are really happy right now," said Indians first baseman Mike Napoli of the World Series matchup between the two long-suffering teams. "I wanted the Cubs to win [the NLCS], just because I knew how cool it would be to be a part of it. I think it's going to be a special World Series. There's two droughts, and there's going to be a winner."

The first pitch is at 8:08 p.m. ET on FOX, with streaming options on Sling TV and postseason.TV. Jeva Lange

8:29 a.m. ET
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Liberal activist Aaron Black — a former Occupy Wall Street organizer and associate with Democracy Partners — allegedly tipped off conservative website Breitbart ahead of his disruptions in order to coordinate coverage, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told Politico. Black harassed candidates in the primaries, reportedly alerting Breitbart by phone, email, and in person about protests, such as when he dressed up as a robot for one of Marco Rubio's rallies.

"[Black] worked directly with Breitbart's political team on the ground in the primary states to sabotage Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, and elect Trump as nominee of [the Republican] party," the person familiar with Black's alleged involvement said. "[Black] was coordinating with [Breitbart's] top staff to rabble rouse against Rubio at rallies."

Black also recently showed up in an undercover Project Veritas video, in which he claimed to work for the Democratic National Committee although he does not appear on its payroll. Black claims in the video he was the architect of protests in Chicago that resulted in Trump canceling a rally in the city; Trump touted the video as evidence of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama meddling in the election during the final presidential debate.

When reached for comment, Breitbart editor-in-chief Alex Marlow told Politico, "Breitbart News Network is proud to work with sources from across the political spectrum to cover important and breaking news stories so that we may bring the most informative reporting to our readers." Jeva Lange

8:19 a.m. ET
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Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Michigan Democratic Party are hosting a big watch party at the MGM Grand casino in Detroit on Election Night, but the Michigan Republican Party has decided to sit this year out. "It is a costly endeavor and we are using all available resources to elect Republicans," Sarah Anderson, communications director for the Michigan GOP, told The Detroit News. These parties are typically events to showcase the party's winners and give campaign volunteers, the media, and political activists and candidates a place to watch election results trickle in.

In 2012, with Michigan native Mitt Romney on the presidential ticket and a U.S. Senate race, the state GOP hosted a big party in Lansing, notes Chad Livengood at The Detroit News, but this year there's no statewide race and no special connection to either Donald Trump or his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. It's not clear if the Trump campaign will host its own party in Michigan. FiveThirtyEight gives Hillary Clinton a 91.8 percent chance of winning Michigan, a state she narrowly lost to Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primary and Donald Trump easily won in his GOP primary race. Peter Weber

7:51 a.m. ET

Twitter is preparing to cut an estimated 8 percent of its workforce this week, people familiar with the decision told Bloomberg. The reduction of approximately 300 people comes ahead of Twitter's third-quarter earnings report, expected at 7 a.m. ET on Thursday.

The company has faced continued struggles to turn itself around, with a 40 percent fall in its share price in the past year making it tempting for engineers to exit for rivals like Google and Facebook. Twitter has also explored a sale, although Walt Disney Co., Alphabet Inc., and others eventually withdrew from the talks.

Without an obvious suitor, Twitter's going to need to figure out a way to be more forward-looking and hopeful to Wall Street. Starting off with layoffs to make the business more efficient is sometimes where things go.

But it's still going to come down to actually improving the product. Trolls aside, [co-founder and CEO Jack] Dorsey has actually not made any dramatic sweeping changes to the service other than adding more of an algorithmic touch to the feed. And attempts to make it less confusing, like removing contributions to character limits for kinds of media and trying to fix @replies (and "canoes"), still haven't helped make the service more sticky and attract new users. (There's also Moments, but that story still hasn't seemingly played out yet.) [TechCrunch]

Twitter also dropped 8 percent of its employees a year ago, when Dorsey rejoined as CEO. Jeva Lange

7:33 a.m. ET
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Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are both in Florida on Tuesday making aggressive pushes in the final days of the presidential election cycle. The state is an essential win for Trump, who would face a highly improbable path to the White House if he were to lose it.

But unfortunately for Trump, it could be an uphill battle. "This is in all reality a landslide in our great state," Ryan D. Tyson, the vice president of political operations for the Associated Industries of Florida business group, wrote in a confidential memo obtained by Politico. Tyson noted that Clinton has a 3 to 5 percent edge in polls that are adjusted to reflect Florida's electorate: "Based on [Trump's] consistent failure to improve his standing with non-white voters, voters under 50, and females, it seems fairly obvious to us that Mr. Trump's only hope left in Florida is a low turnout."

Trump has denied reports that he is down in Florida; his visit Tuesday comes in the middle of a seven-city tour of the Sunshine State.

The RealClearPolitics average shows Clinton up 3.8 percent in Florida between Oct. 10 and Oct. 21. Jeva Lange

7:08 a.m. ET

On Wednesday, Donald Trump is taking a short break from the campaign trail to cut the ribbon and officially open his new Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., but the luxury hotel appears to be off to a rocky start, with empty rooms and slashed prices despite its prime location. Residents of Trump Place, a large residential complex on Manhattan's Upper West Side, are in open revolt over Trump's name being emblazoned all over their building, even though most of the complex is now owned and managed by Equity Residential.

The mayor of Vancouver, Canada, has requested a name change for his city's Trump International Hotel, scheduled to open next year. Trump values his brand alone at about $3 billion, but billionaire Richard Branson told CNN on Monday that Trump's "brand has been very badly damaged," and while "he's not going to go hungry," because of "many things he's said, his brand is very, very different today that it was six months ago."

Though it doesn't say so, Trump Hotels appears to agree. Its newest hotels will be called Scion, which Trump Hotels CEO Eric Danziger called "a name that would be a nod to the Trump family" while "allowing for a clear distinction between our luxury and lifestyle brands." Scion means "descendant of a notable family," Trump Hotels said, not a recently defunct Toyota brand also geared toward millennials.

The residents of Trump Place would probably take it. "It's embarrassing to tell people where you live," Marjorie Jacobs, a Trump Place resident, told The New York Times. "It used to be that we were embarrassed because he was tacky," added Erin Kelly. "Now he's shown himself to be despicable on every level." Equity spokesman Martin McKenna said that his firm has "a contractual obligation on the use of the name," but the doormats, awnings, and doorman uniforms are reportedly being stripped of the word Trump.

Trump press secretary Hope Hicks told The Times that removing Trump's name would be "an inappropriate thing to do," adding, "If the name comes off, the building will lose tremendous value." Travel site Hipmunk reported over the summer that bookings at Trump Hotels dropped 58 percent in the first half of the year, but a Trump spokesperson disputed those numbers, saying Hipmunk's data "is manipulated to appear meaningful, when, in reality, the information is inconsequential and does not provide an accurate representation of our performance." In other words, rigged. Peter Weber

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