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August 7, 2018

This November, voters in Missouri will choose between incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and Republican Josh Hawley, the state's attorney general.

In Tuesday's Republican primary, Hawley, who had the backing of President Trump, defeated 10 other candidates. McCaskill easily won her Democratic primary, and is vying for a third term. On Tuesday night, McCaskill said she would "never stop being an independent voice for Missouri." Catherine Garcia

2:09p.m.

The stars have aligned for physics fans hoping to get their hands on a Stephen Hawking relic.

Wheelchairs, scientific papers, and even a script from The Simpsons once belonging to the late physicist will be auctioned off starting Oct. 31, The Associated Press reports. Proceeds from the online sale will benefit Hawking's foundation and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

Hawking was given just a few months to live when he was diagnosed with ALS at age 22, but famously produced cosmological theories from a wheelchair until he died at 76 in March. His oldest chair will be up for auction, as well as a newer motorized model expected to fetch up to $19,500, per AP.

The auction's premier item is expected to be a signed copy of Hawking's doctoral thesis, "Properties of Expanding Universes." It's estimated to fetch up to $195,000, AP says. Lower-budget items include a bomber jacket, a copy of A Brief History of Time signed with Hawkings' thumbprint, and a script from one of Hawkings' several Simpsons appearances. The rest of Hawkings' scientific archive will be preserved by the British government.

Papers by Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, and other science legends will all be up for grabs at the same auction, CNBC says. If old-school physics is more your thing, drop a bid on a script explaining Isaac Newton's love of alchemy that's expected to go for at least $100,000. Kathryn Krawczyk

1:12p.m.

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner may be the Trump administration's closest link to Saudi Arabia. So when CNN host Van Jones sat down with Kushner on Monday, he just had to ask: How did Kushner get "the dopest job in the world?"

Kushner's interview with Jones at CNN's Citizen political forum was his first public interview since December 2017, Politico's Annie Karni pointed out. It seemingly would've been a good time to ask about the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey's Saudi consulate, considering Kushner's reportedly friendly relationship with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Instead, Jones spent much of the interview discussing whether President Trump is a good grandfather, calling Kushner and his wife Ivanka Trump "extraordinary," and asking if Kushner is "having fun" in the White House.

Jones did eventually ask whether Kushner "trust[ed] the Saudis to investigate themselves," seeing as bin Salman is both the "prime suspect" and the "prime investigator" in Khashoggi's death. Kushner simply urged bin Salman to "be fully transparent" as the investigation continues, then pivoted back to talking about the Middle East in general.

Kushner and Jones originally planned to discuss prison reform during the interview, The New York Times' Maggie Haberman acknowledged. But, as Karni put it, the conversation's lack of Khashoggi questions made for one big "elephant in the room."

12:58p.m.

Since winning the Academy Award for Best Director this year, Guillermo del Toro's career has just kept growing.

The Shape of Water director is set to helm a new stop-motion animated musical version of Pinocchio for Netflix, which will be set in Italy during the rise of fascism, writes The Hollywood Reporter. Del Toro says Pinocchio will be portrayed as an innocent soul who embarks on a journey in a world he does not understand, and along the way learns to understand his uncaring father. Del Toro also said in a statement that he feels a deeper personal connection with Pinocchio than with any other fictional character.

In fact, del Toro has been trying to make this movie for many, many years, but as recently as last November, he said it wasn't happening anymore. Then, a few months later, he won the Oscar for Best Director, and his film The Shape of Water won Best Picture, allowing him to leverage this success into financing his dream project. In his statement, del Toro emphasized that he's excited to direct an animated film for the first time, though he has previously produced stop-motion films like The Book of Life. Del Toro has hired the company that made the puppets for Tim Burton's Corpse Bride to make figurines for Pinocchio, and the Jim Henson Company will produce.

This del Toro film is completely unrelated to the live-action version of Pinocchio that Disney is currently making as part of its new slate of live-action remakes including The Lion King and Aladdin. The Disney version will be directed by Paddington's Paul King. Del Toro's Pinocchio is expected to begin production this fall, while Disney's reportedly won't start shooting until next year, so it looks like Netflix might beat Disney to the punch. Brendan Morrow

10:53a.m.

We regret to inform you that Anthony Scaramucci is at it again. And this time, he's dancing.

More than a year after being hired and quickly fired as White House communications director, Scaramucci has re-enacted his 11 days in office through interpretive dance in a video for the New York Post. Scaramucci refers to these dances as "Mooch moves," but they're more like a one-sided game of charades.

For example, take day one. Scaramucci devoted it to "cleaning house," he explains, and subsequently interprets cleaning like this.

(Screenshot/New York Post)

Scaramucci says he spent his second day "taking an axe to the tree of leaking" — a move that could also be called "the mixed metaphor." Day three involves some jazz hands that somehow evoke TV interviews, and day four is when Scaramucci misses the birth of his son. It's a "big bummer," Scaramucci laments, as you can see by the single tear he mimes below.

(Screenshot/New York Post)

The remaining days include acting out radio interviews with giant headphones, another hunt for leaks with an imaginary magnifying glass, and a mimed hanging to signify his firing. And once Scaramucci has left the White House? This is what he calls the "thank you God that it's over."

(Screenshot/New York Post)

Luckily, Scaramucci's limited tenure means you only have to experience 11 dance-like moves. Watch it all here. Kathryn Krawczyk

10:33a.m.

In a fresh sign of progress for inter-Korean relations, North and South Korea have agreed to remove all firearms from a Joint Security Area at Panmunjom, a former village in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) now used for diplomatic meetings. Both sides committed Monday to ceasing "all hostile acts" in the DMZ.

Guard postings will also be reduced in Panmunjom; land mines are already being removed from the area; and the two governments will share information on their surveillance equipment in the DMZ. "We discussed the timeline of the pullout of firearms and guard posts, as well as ways to adjust the number of guard personnel and conduct joint inspections," South Korea's defense ministry said in a statement Monday.

This is but the latest in a series of steps toward normalizing relations between North and South. Last week, the two Koreas agreed to reconnect some roads and railways separated by the DMZ, and on Friday the U.S. and South Korea canceled plans for a joint military exercise to ease diplomacy with North Korea. Bonnie Kristian

10:31a.m.

Fox News' narrative about the Central American migrant caravan doesn't seem to be resonating with independent voters.

At least, that's what a Fox & Friends discussion with four independents seemed to discover on Monday. Host Steve Doocy, along with his co-hosts and guests, have recently been promoting the idea that the approaching caravan of migrants from Central America is dangerous, with host Brian Kilmeade warning of "security issues" and nodding along as a guest described the caravan as "an act of war," and host Pete Hegseth calling for a military deployment to stop the migrants.

But when Doocy talked to a panel of voters about the caravan, the very first panelist didn't seem to agree with any of this. "This is the mightiest country on the planet," one voter said, per Mediaite. "I think we can handle a caravan of people, unarmed, coming to this country." The very next panelist decried the fact that immigration has been used as a "partisan football," and another pointed to the "humanitarian crisis taking place in Central America."

Finally, the last independent voter on the panel said that the caravan should not be treated as "an invasion," adding, "these are human beings coming here." This segment came during the very same show in which a Fox & Friends guest speculated without evidence that ISIS terrorists could be infiltrating the caravan, a theory that seemed to inspire a particularly inflammatory presidential tweet this morning. Watch a clip from the Fox & Friends panel below. Brendan Morrow

10:08a.m.

Whether journalist Jamal Khashoggi died in a gruesome assassination or, as Saudi Arabia has claimed to much skepticism, a brutal fist fight gone wrong, it may seem obvious he — and not, say, President Trump, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and other enthusiasts of the U.S.-Saudi alliance — is the victim here.

Rubio suggested otherwise in a Monday morning tweet:

The Florida senator did concede Khashoggi's violent death and dismemberment was "immoral" in its own right. But by word count, anyway, the great bulk of his concern was for himself, Trump, and others now suffering political opposition over their affection for a dictatorial monarchy. Bonnie Kristian

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