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How to watch the Biden-Trump debate. And, your brain's waste removal system

Good morning. You're reading the Up First newsletter. Subscribe here to get it delivered to your inbox, and listen to the Up First podcast for all the news you need to start your day.

Today's top stories

Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate moderated by Fox News anchor Chris Wallace in Cleveland on Tuesday.
Scott Olson / Getty Images
Getty Images
Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate moderated by Fox News anchor Chris Wallace in Cleveland on Tuesday.

President Biden and former President Donald Trump will face off tonight in Atlanta in their first debate of the 2024 campaign for the White House. The candidates are expected to discuss an array of issues, including inflation, immigration, abortion and the wars in Gaza and Ukraine.

  • 🎧 On Up First, NPR’s Franco Ordoñez talks about the politics, policy and personalities that will be on display. He says both will try to shake up the trajectory of an election that many Americans seem pretty unenthusiastic about. Ordoñez says most political strategists agree that the new format with no live audience and muted microphones could largely hurt Trump because of how he feeds off large crowds. But some Republicans say the mute button could help Trump temper some of his worst instincts.

For analysis, context and color during the CNN presidential debate, head to our liveblog starting at 5 p.m. ET at NPR.org. You can also tune into the debate at 9 p.m. ET on NPR — stream it on many public radio stations, listen on the NPR app or on NPR.org.

The White House and federal agencies can urge social media platforms to remove content they consider misinformation, The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday. The ruling is a major victory to the Biden administration.

  • 🎧 NPR’s Shannon Bond reports that the ruling answers a pressing question in an election year about the extent to which the government and tech firms can share information about foreign influence campaigns intended to sway American voters. But even as the case brings clarity heading into the presidential election, it's just one element in a right-wing legal and political campaign that frames efforts to combat false and misleading information about consequential topics, including voting and health, as censorship.
  • 🎧 Meanwhile, we're still waiting for the court to give a highly anticipated ruling about whether abortions would be allowed in Idaho in medical emergencies, a document briefly posted on the court's website yesterday said that justices will rule that Idaho cannot deny emergency abortions to women whose health is in danger.

A chaotic scene unfolded in Bolivia yesterday as president Luis Arce appears to have staved off an attempt to topple his government. Soldiers filled the main plaza in La Paz and an armored vehicle breached a government palace, before withdrawing in what officials warned was a coup attempt by elements of the military. Arce vowed to stand firm and named a new army commander who ordered troops to stand down. The Bolivian general who appeared to be behind the rebellion, Juan José Zúñiga, was arrested after the attorney general opened an investigation and said more arrests are likely.

  • 🎧 NPR’s Carrie Kahn tells Up First that the Zúñiga was stripped off the command, and when asked if he was overthrowing the government, he spoke about saving the country, releasing political prisoners, and promising a real democracy. Protests over the country’s economic struggles, due to a shortage of dollars and imports, and alleged undemocratic actions by President Arce, have racked the country recently, Kahn explains. Eduardo Gamarra, a Bolivia expert at Florida International University, tells her this brief coup will also probably boost the president's popularity, but only temporarily.

Deep dive

New insights into the brain's waste-removal system could one day help researchers better understand and prevent many brain disorders.
Andriy Onufriyenko / Getty Images
Getty Images
New insights into the brain's waste-removal system could one day help researchers better understand and prevent many different brain disorders.

Your brain makes a lot of waste, and scientists now think they know where it goes. Two research teams published insights about the brain's waste-removal system and the findings could help better understand, treat and perhaps prevent various brain disorders. Here are some of the takeaways:

  • 🧠 The papers, published in the journal Nature, suggest that during sleep, slow electrical waves push the fluid around cells from deep in the brain to its surface. There, the fluids make their way into the bloodstream, which takes them to the liver and kidneys to be removed from the body.
  • 🧠 One of the waste products carried away is amyloid, the substance that forms sticky plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease.
  • 🧠 The new studies suggest that keeping the brain's waste-clearance system functioning requires two distinct steps: pushing waste into the fluid that surrounds the brain and moving it into the lymphatic system and eventually out of the body.

3 things to know before you go

Alex Morgan celebrates during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup semifinal.
Maja Hitij / Getty Images
Getty Images
Alex Morgan celebrates during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup semifinal.

  1. Two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup winner Alex Morgan won’t represent Team USA at this summer's Olympic Games in Paris. Morgan, who is almost 35, appeared in three U.S. Olympic teams, including the 2012 gold medal squad.
  2. A Maryland-based food manufacturer is recalling several ice cream brands sold nationwide due to possible contamination with listeria, a potentially fatal bacteria. The FDA says no illnesses have been reported so far.
  3. Can't get enough of Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce? The Kansas City Chiefs and Hallmark are teaming up to produce a movie inspired by (but not about) the couples' romance.

This newsletter was edited by Obed Manuel.

Copyright 2024 NPR

Majd Al-Waheidi
Majd Al-Waheidi is the digital editor on Morning Edition, where she brings the show's journalism to online audiences. Previously, Al-Waheidi was a reporter for the New York Times in the Gaza Strip, where she reported about a first-of-its-kind Islamic dating site, and documented the human impact of the 2014 Israel-Gaza war in a collaborative visual project nominated for an Emmy Award. She also reported about Wikipedia censorship in Arabic for Rest of World magazine, and investigated the abusive working conditions of TikTok content moderators for Business Insider. Al-Waheidi has worked at the International Center for Religion & Diplomacy, and holds a master's degree in Arab Studies from the Georgetown School of Foreign Service. A native of Gaza, she speaks Arabic and some French, and is studying Farsi.