CNN reported late Friday that a federal grand jury in Washington has approved the first charges in pursuance of the investigation being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian interference in the 2016 elections. It’s unclear at this point who is being charged with what, and Mueller’s office is refusing comment and because the indictments are under seal by a court order. The only people who would know about this is Mueller’s office and, as CNN notes, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. So he or his office most likely leaked this.
So shit just go real. Someone is about to be arrested. Probably Flynn or Manafort. Maybe Jared or Don Jr.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) “has privately told allies in Utah that he is planning to retire at the end of his term next year, and if he does, Mitt Romney intends to run for his seat,” The Atlantic reports.
“Sources close to both men said plans have already been set in motion for Hatch to retire and for Romney to run, but they cautioned that the timing of the announcements has not yet been finalized, and that either man could still change his mind. They spoke on condition of anonymity, because the plans are not yet public, and the subject is sensitive to Hatch.”
President Trump with trick-or-treaters in Oval Office: "I cannot believe the media produced such beautiful children." pic.twitter.com/wDRD8Nb9Uc
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 27, 2017
“You have no weight problems; that’s the good news.” He says it. To a little girl. In the Oval Office. While giving her candy. He is such a piece of shit.
— Kenneth P. Vogel (@kenvogel) October 27, 2017
Amy Walter: “One thing that should scare Republicans—and make them think that the 2016 strategy may not be sufficient in 2018—is the enthusiasm gap. Back in 2016, Republicans were wary of Trump but they turned out and voted for him because they didn’t like the alternative and they were willing to accept the half-good versus the awful. Their ambivalence with Trump was outweighed by their disdain for Clinton. Two years later, they don’t have Obamacare repeal, a GOP-led Congress is getting little accomplished and the president continues to behave in a non-presidential way. With Hillary Clinton no longer on the ballot, the incentive to turn out is no longer quite as immediate or intense.”
“Meanwhile, Democrats, who were also less than thrilled about their nominee in 2016, are totally united in their disdain for Trump.”
Red America's top problem can only be solved with liberal policies https://t.co/F2UiF2ugpr
— Daily Intelligencer (@intelligencer) October 26, 2017
First Read: “But there are two consequences of a Trump-led Republican Party that no longer has room for the Bob Corkers and Jeff Flakes. One, it means a smaller party. This isn’t a big-tent GOP that’s adding more converts (though West Virginia’s governor is a clear exception); rather, it’s shunning the heretics.”
“Two, as we wrote earlier this week, it could hurt Trump and the GOP with the middle of the electorate, which still matters in American politics. The president’s job-approval rating among independents was already in the 30s and 40s. Do the criticisms that Trump took from his own party members like Corker and Flake make those numbers worse? We’ll find out.”
“In a major escalation of Spain’s territorial conflict, Catalan lawmakers declared independence on Friday, setting up a showdown with the central government in coming days,” the New York Times reports.
“Undeterred by the government’s threat to seize control of Catalonia, separatists in the region’s Parliament passed a resolution to “create a Catalan republic as an independent state.” In protest, lawmakers opposed to independence walked out of the chamber before the vote.”
One of the most exciting bills I've ever seen in my time covering Congress https://t.co/eTWsCe2QIN
— Foppish Vox Hipster (@dylanmatt) October 26, 2017
Andrew Sullivan: “The past week was another watershed, it seems to me, in the rising power of Donald Trump. Flake is quitting; Corker is retiring; McCain is mortal. Sasse, Murkowski, Collins, and Paul remain, but the odds are mounting against them. A new slew of Bannonite candidates is emerging from under various rocks and crannies to take their places. The Trump propaganda machine was given a chance to turn the Russia story into a Clinton scandal – lowering even further the possibility of impeachment – and gleefully took it. The FBI is the next target for a barrage of hostile propaganda, since it might expose the Supreme Leader. Mueller is being daily savaged in the right wing press. Outside Washington, Trump’s targets are faltering. The NFL is reeling; a Gold Star widow is attacked; Obamacare is at risk of being sabotaged to death; the EPA is castrated.”
“This time last year, I warned about an abyss. This is what it looks like.”
“Republican lawmakers say they’re approaching the end of their investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election even though the most politically explosive issue — whether associates of President Trump colluded with the Kremlin — remains unresolved,” Politico reports.
“That will present Democrats who have spent a year amplifying suspicions about Trump’s own ties to Russia with a wrenching choice: to join Republicans and set aside the most momentous aspect of their probes — or to break from the GOP and end any chance of presenting a united front against a continuing Russian threat.”
Obama-like biography and political style/Sanders-like politics and policy ideas sounds like the fusion the Democratic Party is searching for: https://t.co/KZnFuIJAUL
— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) October 27, 2017
“Congress makes its own rules about the handling of sexual complaints against members and staff, passing laws exempting it from practices that apply to other employers. The result is a culture in which some lawmakers suspect harassment is rampant. Yet victims are unlikely to come forward,” the Washington Postreports.
“Under a law in place since 1995, accusers may file lawsuits only if they first agree to go through months of counseling and mediation. A special congressional office is charged with trying to resolve the cases out of court. When settlements do occur, members do not pay them from their own office funds, a requirement in other federal agencies. Instead, the confidential payments come out of a special U.S. Treasury fund. Congressional employees have received small settlements compared to the amounts some public figures pay out. Between 1997 and 2014, the U.S. Treasury has paid $15.2 million in 235 awards and settlements for Capitol Hill workplace violations.”
David Brooks: “The Republican senators went to the White House and saw a president so repetitive and rambling, some thought he might be suffering from early Alzheimer’s.”
Puerto Rico is burning the bodies of people who died because of Maria, not counting them in the official death toll. https://t.co/eFV84XVJOg
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) October 27, 2017
Natalia Veselnitskaya “arrived at a meeting at Trump Tower in June 2016 hoping to interest top Trump campaign officials in the contents of a memo she believed contained information damaging to the Democratic Party and, by extension, Hillary Clinton. The material was the fruit of her research as a private lawyer, she has repeatedly said, and any suggestion that she was acting at the Kremlin’s behest that day is anti-Russia ‘hysteria,’” the New York Times reports.
“But interviews and records show that in the months before the meeting, Ms. Veselnitskaya had discussed the allegations with one of Russia’s most powerful officials, the prosecutor general, Yuri Y. Chaika. And the memo she brought with her closely followed a document that Mr. Chaika’s office had given to an American congressman two months earlier, incorporating some paragraphs verbatim.”
“The coordination between the Trump Tower visitor and the Russian prosecutor general undercuts Ms. Veselnitskaya’s account that she was a purely independent actor when she sat down with Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, and Paul J. Manafort, then the Trump campaign chairman.”
‘The United States has been screwing Puerto Rico for over a hundred years and this is just the latest, most disgusting chapter.’ pic.twitter.com/8w6md44p8P
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) October 27, 2017
“President Trump delights in making spectacles out of personnel decisions. He conducted cabinet interviews at his New Jersey golf club, inviting members to gather and gawk. He summoned both finalists for a Supreme Court seat to the White House on the day of the announcement. And now he is conducting the most dramatic and drawn-out search for a Federal Reserve chairman in the long history of the stolid institution,” the New York Times reports.
“Mr. Trump is very publicly deliberating between two candidates with strikingly different views about the practice and purpose of monetary policy: Jerome H. Powell, a Fed governor who has voted in favor of every Fed policy decision since 2012, and John B. Taylor, a Stanford economist who is among the Fed’s most vocal critics.”
Politico: Trump leaning toward Powell for Fed chairman.
WHO IS MISSING FROM THAT GRAPHIC?