January 19, 2016

Starting on Wednesday, for the first time in more than a decade, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter will be visible to the naked eye all at the same time.

Jason Kendall of the Amateur Astronomers Association of New York told The New York Times in order to get the best view from the Northern Hemisphere, people should get up 45 minutes before sunrise and look to the east. "For Mercury you will need binoculars," he said. "It will not jump out at you, but everybody should be able to see Venus and Jupiter." Kendall also shared with the Times a way for people to determine if they're looking at a star or a planet: Close one eye, stretch your arm out, then slowly move your thumb over a bright dot in the sky. If it slowly dims when your thumb passes over, you're looking at a planet. If it blinks out quickly, it's a far away star.

The five planets will be visible before sunrise from Jan. 20 to Feb. 20. "It's not super often you get to see them all at the same time in the sky," Jackie Faherty, an astronomer from the American Museum of Natural History, told the Times. "It's like seeing all of your friends at once. There they are, the other rocks or balls of gas that are running around the sun." Catherine Garcia

9:45 a.m. ET

Samantha Bee sat down with "fellow nasty woman" Madeleine Albright in Monday night's episode of Full Frontal, in the hopes that the first female secretary of state could help her figure out why everyone is so hung up on Hillary Clinton's gender. After playing a montage of people criticizing everything from Clinton's voice to her facial expressions, Bee asked Albright, "So, does playing into her womanness help Hillary, or does reminding people that she's a woman hurt her chances of winning the election?"

Albright wasn't quite sure, but she did have a theory for why men like Donald Trump are so afraid of powerful women. "I think we're seen in whatever previous relationship they have had, like the third-grade teacher that told Johnny to be nicer — or Donald," Albright said.

As for Bee's question about whether this "pulsing cancer of misogyny" ever goes away, Albright deferred to woman leaders across the globe. Watch everyone from the president of Croatia to the prime minister of Norway counsel Bee on the difficulties of leading while female, below. Becca Stanek

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
Alex Wong/Getty Images

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
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

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

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