Skimm'd while talking about "Scandal" with the real-life Olivia Pope, Judy Smith

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Skimm'd while talking about "Scandal" with the real-life Olivia Pope, Judy Smith

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Quote of the Day

"We should all be popping bottles of champagne" – A biologist on the first genetically-modified squid. Inkredible stuff.

Save the Date

The Story

Election Day is still on for November 3rd.

I...wouldn't have thought otherwise.

Great, put it in your cal. Yesterday, President Trump caused a stir when he floated delaying it. His reason: states are considering expanding mail-in voting options to provide Americans with a variety of ways to vote safely during the coronavirus pandemic. But Trump isn't a fan. He said the trend will lead to "the most inaccurate and fraudulent election in history."

Will it?

If so, Trump didn't provide the evidence. There have been instances of mail-in voting fraud in the past. But to date, evidence of mail-in voting fraud is extremely rare, despite nearly one in four Americans reportedly using the system in 2016. The president himself has apparently voted by mail at least three times – and he wasn't the only one in his admin either.


So is this: One recent study also found mail-in voting doesn't benefit one party over another. It's worth noting: Trump didn't imply that he personally would delay the election – legally he can't do that (only Congress can). But many on both sides of the aisle pushed back at the suggestion anyway. And some noted the US has never before delayed a federal election – even through wars and the Great Depression.

So nothing to do until November?

Not exactly. Every state has its own deadline for when you need to request an absentee or mail-in ballot...if those options are even available. And with more mail-in voting options this year, the US Postal Service is encouraging voters to plan ahead. If you wait until the last minute to decide how to vote, you could be cutting it close. We're now less than 100 days away from the election – time to make a game plan.


Over 180 million Americans will reportedly have the opportunity to mail in their ballots this fall. This produces real challenges for postal workers and election officials as they work to ensure all votes are counted. But it's also an opportunity to expand voting accessibility and enable Americans to safely exercise their right to vote. Make sure you're all set.

Skimm More: Election Day's less than 100 days away. Everything you need to get ready – from checking your registration, to registration deadlines, and voter ID requirements is here.

And Also...This

What has economists scrambling…

The US economy. Yesterday, the Commerce Department said the GDP (the value of goods and services produced in a certain time frame) shrank 9.5% in the second quarter of 2020 – the greatest drop ever. Analysts are pointing the finger at COVID-19 and things like stay-at-home orders and concerns over safety shuttering businesses and slowing the economy. There was some good news: personal income was much higher, in part thanks to federal stimulus checks. But the Fed chair is saying the US can't recover from the economic fall until the pandemic is under control.

  • Speaking of benefits: Looks like Congress is nowhere near a deal to extend the $600 unemployment bonus that expires today. Meaning, people who have depended on that money for things like rent and groceries may not see even a portion of it until both sides of the aisle come to an agreement.

What has an update…

The Michael Brown case. Yesterday, St.Louis County's prosecutor said former officer Darren Wilson would not be charged for killing the 18-year-old Black man in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014. This is the third investigation into Brown's death, and the third time Wilson left without charges. Brown's family had hoped the county's first Black prosecutor would look at the case differently, but this latest investigation could not determine "beyond a reasonable doubt" that Wilson committed murder or manslaughter. The county prosecutor said his heart "breaks" for Brown's parents and that the investigation "does not exonerate" former officer Wilson.

  • Old wounds: Brown's death sparked protests in Ferguson that spread nationwide and – along with Trayvon Martin's death – gave rise to the Black Lives Matter movement. This news comes amid nationwide protests over police brutality and racism.

What's getting attention…

Ghislaine Maxwell. Yesterday, a US court released documents from a lawsuit against Maxwell – the former girlfriend and longtime associate of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. They include a deposition from one of Epstein's accusers – Virginia Giuffre. And emails between Maxwell and Epstein from 2015. Some documents from the case – including transcripts of a deposition with Maxwell herself – are still sealed. Maxwell is currently facing federal charges of recruiting and grooming underage girls for sexual abuse. She's pleaded not guilty.

Who people are remembering…

Herman Cain. The business executive and former Republican presidential candidate has died of complications from COVID-19. He was 74. Cain – a cancer survivor – had attended President Trump's indoor rally in Tulsa, OK, on June 20 and was diagnosed with the virus a little over a week later. It's not clear where he contracted the virus. In the 2012 election, Cain called himself an ABC candidate (American Black Conservative) and pitched a simplified tax plan for businesses, personal income, and sales. He dropped out of the race after he was accused of sexual misconduct, which he denied. Trump honored Cain's life and called him "an American Patriot and great friend." RIP.

Whose legacy will be remembered...

John Lewis'. Yesterday, former Presidents Barack Obama, George W Bush, and Bill Clinton paid their respects to the late congressman and civil rights icon. Obama gave the eulogy before Lewis' body was laid to rest in Atlanta, GA. He called on Americans to expand voting rights, saying it would honor Lewis by "revitalizing the law that he was willing to die for." And drew comparisons between the civil rights movement Lewis helped lead in the 1960s and the current protests for racial justice happening across the US. Before his death, Lewis wrote an op-ed encouraging this generation to be the one "who laid down the heavy burdens of hate at last" so that peace could finally triumph.

Who's stepping aside to demand justice...

Oprah. For the first time ever, her magazine will not have her on the cover. Instead, the September issue showcases Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old EMT fatally shot at home by Louisville police. It has been 140 days since her death and no one has been prosecuted.

When NASA's launching to Mars...

Beyoncé already runs the world.

Skimm Reads

"Writers & Lovers" by Lily King

Raise your hand if you're just trying to make your dreams come true. So is Casey. She's a 31-year-old aspiring novelist who's working as a waitress while trying to get over the sudden death of her mother. As she tries to finish her novel, she gets involved with two very different men at the same time...and you'll get involved with trying to figure out what she should do.


Summer is here. Check out our fave picks for the season…

1. The best Black movies of the last 30 years. From "What's Love Got to Do With It?" to "Love & Basketball," we've got a whole lot of love for the films on this list.

2. Subscription boxes you'll actually want. Like ice cream clubs, coffees of the month, plants, and more. You get a box, you get a box.

3. 11 beauty brands that you can try virtually. So you can see what you'd look like as a blonde. Or with entirely new eyebrows. The future is here.

PS: Want more? Sign up to get weekly recs in your inbox.


For when you spoke your own made up language as a kid…

Time for the real thing. This language learning app gives you bite-sized, manageable lessons in a variety of languages. So you can be speaking the basics in three weeks. Psst...for their 13th birthday, they're offering 50% off six months, 12 months, or 24 months. Talk about savings.*

For when you're trying to order in less and cook more...

Get tools to make it easier. This list has gadgets that'll make your time in the kitchen a bit more enjoyable. Like a garlic peeler, multi-blade chopper, and sauce spoon clip. Bon appétit.

*PS: This is a sponsored post.

Skimm More

1. Recently, all eyes have been on Portland, Oregon – the site of increased tensions between protesters and federal agents. On this week's episode of "Skimm This" we explain whether the tactics federal agents have used are legal, and what to expect next.

2. Where you live plays a big part in how much you spend. And sometimes, moving is the best move for your budget. Meet Audrey. We spoke to the 29-year-old about how and why she left NYC for Atlanta. All while growing her family.

3. Home-cooked meals have made a major comeback these days. But nobody wants to deal with a messy kitchen. We've got some recs to help make cooking a bit more fun (and easy).


In times like these, community matters more than ever. Let us know how you (or someone you know) is making an impact by helping others.

Shoutout to...these scientists. They started the #Masks4All campaign, which calls on government and business leaders to require people to wear masks when in a public building or using public transit. The goal: end the spread of COVID-19. To get involved, sign the petition here.

(Some) Birthdays...Rory Greebel (NY), theSkimm's Michelle Simon (NY), Elena Gallo (IL), Andrea Lubel (NY), Matt Stuczynski (OH), Maureen Cronin (NH), Jason Rasmussen (NY), Alisa Sutton (PA), Taylor Turner (IL), Annie Ouzts (AZ), Jenny Zirinsky (NY), Kristyn Monaghan (NC), Alanna Schloss (MD), Jenny Zirinsky (NY), Sarah Spiel (NY), Taylor Turner (IL), Makra Brannon (FL), Hina Patel (CA)

*Paging all members of theSkimm. Reach out here for a chance to be featured.

Skimm’d by Maria del Carmen Corpus, Mariza Smajlaj, Ellen Burke, Niven McCall-Mazza, Clem Robineau, and Julie Shain