Skimm'd with a new TV obsession

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Skimm'd with a new TV obsession

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Quote of the Day

"Cannot risk missing" – An astronaut, who withdrew from going to the International Space Station so he can go to his daughter's wedding. Love this to the moon and back.


The Story

The FBI foiled a plot to kidnap a US governor.

Did I read that correctly?

You did. Yesterday, federal officials said six men were arrested and charged with conspiring to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D). And another seven men – linked to a militia group called Wolverine Watchmen – face state charges for allegedly trying to target police, attack the Capitol building in Lansing, and instigate a "civil war." The FBI caught on early and stopped them. Now, the men charged in the kidnapping plot face life in prison.

And what was the plot exactly?

According to the FBI, the men allegedly took part in firearms training and combat drills over the summer. They also met in secret several times (including in a basement accessed through a trap door) to discuss their plans. The FBI said one of the men purchased a Taser and others were planning to buy explosives this week. Some also allegedly surveilled Whitmer's vacation home and detonated an explosive device wrapped in shrapnel as a test. They had planned to kidnap the governor and try her for "treason." And some of the men suggested killing her.

I'm speechless. Is she ok?

Whitmer said she knew her job as governor would be hard, but she "never could have imagined anything like this." As a Democratic leader in a purple state, she's been praised by the left for her swift response to COVID-19 but has also been criticized by the Republican-controlled Legislature and conservatives in the state. Especially by right-wing groups who've denounced her strict coronavirus restrictions (think: statewide mask mandates and stay-at-home orders). And she's no stranger to being threatened.

What do you mean?

Whitmer's faced online threats, and back in May, armed protesters charged the state capitol because of her policies. At the time, President Trump seemingly encouraged the protests tweeting, "LIBERATE MICHIGAN!" Authorities haven't said if the men charged were inspired by Trump. But yesterday, Whitmer denounced the president's actions (and words). She called him out for refusing to condemn white supremacists, and for "stoking distrust and fomenting anger." Trump responded, saying he doesn't tolerate violence, but that Whitmer has "done a terrible job." Meanwhile, Whitmer thanked law enforcement and the FBI for keeping her safe and called for unity, reminding everyone that "we are not one another's enemy. The virus is our enemy."


Anti-government and violent extremist groups are a growing concern in the US – a country that's already facing a contentious election. And with just 25 days until Nov 3, many are echoing Gov. Whitmer's calls for unity.

And Also...This

What's up in the air...

The presidential debates. Yesterday, the Commission on Presidential Debates said the next showdown between President Trump and former VP Joe Biden would be virtual to protect "the health and safety of all involved." That's because of the president's coronavirus diagnosis and the lack of transparency surrounding his health. Trump called the decision "ridiculous" and bowed out. Instead of turning on Zoom, he wants the next debate to take place on October 22 – the date of the previously scheduled third (and final) debate. Now, it's unclear if the two will get the chance to battle it out a third time – something the Trump campaign wants but has Biden saying 'you don't get to rewrite the cal.' Here's a quick recap in case you're just as lost as we are:

  • October 15: Trump's apparently holding a rally and Biden's holding a town hall.

  • October 22: The debate is on as an in-person event.

  • Last week of October: Halloween. And maybe a third debate. No one knows.

...Oh and speaking of schedules, President Trump could be out and about this weekend – with approval from his doctor.

What's on people's radar...

Hurricane Delta. Today, the Cat 3 storm is expected to make landfall along the Gulf Coast – bringing a potential life-threatening storm surge, damaging winds, and flooding. Delta hit Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula earlier this week, knocking out power and damaging buildings. Louisiana and Alabama declared states of emergency in anticipation of the storm – the sixth one to take aim at the Gulf Coast in the last several months. Experts say these more frequent and dangerous hurricanes are part of a larger trend caused by global warming.

Who's won a Nobel Prize...

The World Food Program. Today, the UN agency won the Nobel Peace Prize for its efforts to combat hunger and food insecurity around the world. Last year, the WFP provided help to nearly 100 million people in 88 countries. The Nobel Committee said war, armed conflict, and the coronavirus pandemic have led to an increase in global food insecurity. And called on governments to help the WFP and other orgs as the world faces a worsening "hunger crisis." The WFP said the award was a "powerful reminder" that peace and zero hunger go hand-in-hand.

Louise Glück. Yesterday, the American poet was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. Glück has published 12 poetry collections on topics like family life and growing older. In 1993, she won the Pulitzer Prize for "The Wild Iris." And a decade later, she was named the US's poet laureate. The committee called her work "candid and uncompromising." She said the prize was a "great honor."

Whose case has updates...

Megan Thee Stallion's. Yesterday, rapper Tory Lanez was charged with assaulting the artist with a firearm. The Los Angeles DA's office said that Lanez shot her in the foot during an argument over the summer. Lanez hasn't commented on the charges. If convicted, he faces more than 22 years in prison.

What could be making a comeback...

"Coyote Ugly" and Deloris Van Cartier.

Fashion Forward

"Sustainable fashion" definitely sounds good. But what does it really mean?

Tommy Hilfiger has some experience putting it into practice. Case in point: in 2013, 13% of the cotton they used to make denim came from a sustainable source. By 2019, that was up to 72%. And in 2020, their spring collection used 100% recycled cotton. Making them the first brand to hit that milestone at such a large scale. Raised hands emoji.

Now, they're taking it even further. By 2025, 100% of their packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable. So Tommy Hilfiger will never send you single-use plastic packaging again. We love to see it. Find out more.

Skimm Reads

"Magic Lessons" by Alice Hoffman

This week, we're partnering with Book of the Month to bring you an exclusive Skimm Read. Join Book of the Month now to get a copy for only $9.99. And then pick from five books every month to get one delivered right to your door. Find out more here.

Calling all Alice Hoffman stans. The author of the "Practical Magic" series is back with another standalone prequel. It opens in 1664, and tells the story of matriarch Maria Owens. As Maria makes her way from England to Salem, Massachusetts, she deals with love, betrayals, and moral dilemmas. Along the way, her story shows us how smart, independent women were treated in the 17th century. Don't miss it.


Here are our favorite picks to help you take a break today...

1. How to curate your iPhone home screen based on the iOS updates. For those of us who have no idea what a widget is, here's an explainer on those new features. We're basically Tim Cook now.

2. The best drugstore face masks, according to dermatologists. If you didn't post a mirror selfie with it on, did you even #selfcare?

3. Three totally random things that make us happy: some monster bath bombs, a popcorn seasoning set, and a Jonathan Van Ness sticker.

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


For when you feel like you're always trying to prove yourself…

Queen Catherine can relate. In Part 2 of "The Spanish Princess," she's presiding over England with King Henry VIII. But she's struggling to produce an heir, and her marriage and her life hang in the balance. Talk about stress. The story continues on October 11th, only on STARZ.*

For when you're worried about job security…

Start planning ahead. In our Skimm Special podcast, sponsored by Northwestern Mutual, listen to a convo between a woman who lost her job due to COVID-19 – and is looking for ways to make the best of her situation – and a Northwestern Mutual advisor. And get lots of tips for making a financial plan that will keep you going, no matter what comes next. Find it here.*

For when your friend is having a baby…

Give the gift of 'me' time. CODDLE's Postpartum Recovery Self-care Kit comes with five soothing products to help a new mom heal after a little human arrives. Like tea and massage oil. Oh, and Skimm'rs get 15% off the box. Here you go.*

For when you somehow wake up more tired than the night before…

Uh, no thank you. Save some time and energy with things that'll do the work for you. Like a low-effort egg cooker, bands to keep your sheets in place, and something to organize your drawers. Phew.

*PS: This is a sponsored post.

Skimm More

1. Millions of Americans are already wearing their 'I voted' stickers. This week's episode of "Skimm This" explains how the vote-by-mail process is playing out so far. Plus, we spoke to a voting expert about how to track your ballot and make sure your vote is counted.

2. Meet Jenni. She set out to freeze her eggs as a plan B for her future. But then she was diagnosed with diminished ovarian reserve at age 30. We spoke to her about how her plan B turned to plan A and what she did next.

3. During this week's debate, VP Mike Pence questioned the Dems' view on court packing if Judge Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed. What's that? Our guide explains just that, and what the Constitution says about it.

Programming Note

Skimm HQ is honoring Indigenous Peoples Day on Monday. See you back in your inbox on Tuesday.


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.

Farm to table...Benjamin S (MA). He founded Central MA Food Rescue, an org focused on providing high-quality food directly from farms to food banks. So far, it's delivered 27,000 pounds of produce to help feed families. Learn more here.

Book it...Ashley W (MD). She started a fundraiser called "Amplify the Black Bookstore" to raise $500 by the end of the year for Black-owned bookstores in Maryland. She's already reached her goal but is hoping to raise more proceeds. Donate here.

(Some) Birthdays...theSkimm's Jana Pollack (MA), theSkimm's Kat Lim (NY), theSkimm's Cynthia Del Pozo (NY), Susan Riecher (IL), Robert Goodman (CT), Phyllis Mack (NY), Rachel Karnovsky (NY), Daniellah Davidson (NY), Raffi Grinberg (MA), Ronisha Broadnax (NY), Jeff Brown (IN), Katie Burke (NY), Brittany Meyer (TX), Katie Lehmann (MN), Alexandra Garro (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, and Clem Robineau