“Federal prosecutors investigating President Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen are poised to receive on Wednesday one million files from three of his cellphones seized last month, according to a filing submitted to the court by special master Barbara Jones Tuesday night,” the Washington Post reports. “In her update to the court, Jones said investigators from the office of the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York have already been given access to nearly 300,000 pieces of potential evidence seized from Cohen’s office and residences in an April raid.”
“House Republican candidates are blanketing the airwaves with TV ads embracing a hard line on immigration — a dramatic shift from the midterm elections in 2014,” USA Today reports. “Republicans have aired more than 14,000 campaign ads touting a tough Trump-style immigration platform this year. The barrage underscores why House GOP leaders worry that passing a legislative fix for undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children, referred to as DREAMers, would put GOP candidates at risk heading into the fall election.”
In contrast, Democrats “bombard voters with ads that promise to protect Obamacare, shore up Social Security and expand Medicare.” “The competing messages demonstrate how far apart the two parties are. They’re not just talking about issues differently; they’re touting completely different issues to motivate activists and win hotly contested primaries.”
It's hardly the first time Trump has gone after his attorney general on Twitter. https://t.co/QKg2K03hRm
— Vox (@voxdotcom) May 30, 2018
President Trump tweeted that he wished he had picked someone other than Attorney General Jeff Sessions to oversee the Justice Department, The Hill reports. “I wish I did!” the president exclaimed in a tweet after quoting House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) saying the president “could have picked somebody else” to be the nation’s top cop.
New York Times: “In the weeks after Mr. Trump’s election, Mr. Obama went through multiple emotional stages, according to a new book by his longtime adviser Benjamin J. Rhodes. At times, the departing president took the long view, at other points, he flashed anger. He called Mr. Trump a ‘cartoon’ figure who cared more about his crowd sizes than any particular policy. And he expressed rare self-doubt, wondering whether he had misjudged his own influence on American history.”
“Set to be published next week by Random House, Mr. Rhodes’s memoir, The World as It Is, offers a peek into Mr. Obama’s tightly sealed inner sanctum from the perspective of one of the few people who saw him up close through all eight years of his presidency. Few moments shook Mr. Obama more than the decision by voters to replace him with a candidate who had questioned his very birth.”
“Rudy Giuliani said that he can fully understand why Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from investigations related to Russia and the presidential election and that he might have done the same, had he accepted that job, as Trump wanted,” the HuffPost reports. “Giuliani said he would have had the same conflict of interest as Sessions because they were both major players in Trump’s campaign, although, unlike Sessions, he never met with the Russian ambassador.”
Bob Iger of ABC called Valerie Jarrett to let her know that “ABC does not tolerate comments like those” made by Roseanne Barr. Gee, he never called President Donald J. Trump to apologize for the HORRIBLE statements made and said about me on ABC. Maybe I just didn’t get the call?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 30, 2018
People on ABC have said racist things about Donald Trump? Who? When? What a petulant racist bitch Donald Trump is.
Roseanne Barr said she was “Ambien tweeting” when she wrote racist remarks on Twitter that compared a black former Obama administration official to an ape, but the makers of Ambien “were having none of it,” the New York Times reports. Said the company: “People of all races, religions and nationalities work at Sanofi every day to improve the lives of people around the world. While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.”
Politico: “The White House has released almost no information about Melania Trump’s condition since May 14, when her spokeswoman said the first lady was undergoing a routine embolization procedure at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center ‘to treat a benign kidney condition.’”
“Her team chose to leave unexplained her extended five-day hospital stay for a procedure that is typically completed in one, or her subsequent disappearance from events at which the public has come to expect to see her next to her husband. The directive to reveal less, not more, has been coming straight from the first lady.”
“The Trump administration plans to shorten the length of validity for some visas issued to Chinese citizens… as President Donald Trump works to counter alleged theft of U.S. intellectual property by Beijing,” the AP reports. “According to instructions sent to U.S. embassies and consulates, Chinese graduate students will be limited to one-year visas if they are studying in fields like robotics, aviation and high-tech manufacturing.”
Playbook: “This is the precise opposite position most Republicans have taken for years. Many lawmakers have said if foreign students come here to study math and science, they should staple a green card to their diploma. Why educate people and then ship them out, many have asked.”
Couple other tidbits from this. It's not just the post-2016 media underestimates how accurate polls are. It's also that the pre-2016 media *overestimated* it. Always been an up-and-down business. But polls get about 80% of elections right in the long run. https://t.co/tBrVTRYiDI
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) May 30, 2018
Nate Silver: “With the 2018 midterm elections approaching, we’ve updated FiveThirtyEight’s pollster ratingsfor the first time since the 2016 presidential primaries. Based on how the media portrayed the polls after President Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton later that year, you might expect pollsters to get a pretty disastrous report card.”
“But here’s a stubborn and surprising fact — and one to keep in mind as midterm polls really start rolling in: Over the past two years — meaning in the 2016 general election and then in the various gubernatorial elections and special elections that have taken place in 2017 and 2018 — the accuracy of polls has been pretty much average by historical standards.”
“Independents have surpassed Republicans to become the second-largest voting bloc in California, according to a firm that analyzes county voter registration information for campaigns,” the Sacramento Bee reports. “Political Data Inc. on Tuesday released its latest count showing that voters registered with no party preference now outnumber Republicans by about 73,000 in California. The company regularly collects raw voter files from county registrars to maintain an updated database of the state’s 19 million voters.”
Playbook: “California Republicans have been sliding into obscurity for some time. But this seems particularly ominous in the long term for House Republicans, who have 14 seats in California.”
“The number of migrant children held in U.S. government custody without their parents has surged 21 percent in the past month, according to the latest figures, an increase driven by the Trump administration’s ‘zero tolerance’ crackdown on families who cross the border illegally,” the Washington Post reports.
“Although the government has not disclosed how many children have been separated from their parents as a result of the new measures, the Department of Health and Human Services said Tuesday that it had 10,773 migrant children in its custody, up from 8,886 on April 29. … Those shelters are at 95 percent capacity, an HHS official said Tuesday, and the agency is preparing to add potentially thousands of new bed spaces in the coming weeks.”
— Jonathan Chait (@jonathanchait) May 30, 2018
Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who was part of a highly classified Justice Department briefing last week, said that the FBI “acted properly when it deployed an informant to gather information from advisers to President Trump’s campaign in 2016,” Politico reports.
Said Gowdy: “I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got.” He added that the information also suggested that the effort had “nothing to do with Donald Trump.”
“The White House has tried to avoid discussing a February skirmish between U.S. troops and Russian mercenaries in Syria, but that didn’t stop President Trump from bragging about the Pentagon’s performance at a recent closed-door fundraiser,” Politico reports.
“The details of the battle remain classified, but speaking to donors in midtown Manhattan last Wednesday, Trump said he was amazed by the performance of American F-18 pilots. He suggested that the strikes may have been as brief as “10 minutes” and taken out 100 to 300 Russians.”
As National Security Council chief of staff, John Bolton has picked a senior vice-president of the aggressively anti-Muslim, conspiracymongering “think tank” run by Frank Gaffney, who got barred from CPAC for several years for his bigotry. https://t.co/MpPXx27jN0
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) May 30, 2018
Vanity Fair: “While Mueller quietly builds what appears to be a legal case against members of the president’s campaign, Trump is already fighting any potential charges in the only arena where they will truly matter: the media.”
A prosperity gospel televangelist is asking his followers to “pray about becoming a partner” to his mission of obtaining a $54 million private jet, CBS News reports. The Louisiana-based ministry of Jesse Duplantis has already paid cash for three other private planes, but he says God told him, “I want you to believe in me for a Falcon 7X.”
The debate is over: Of course Trump obstructed justice.
I lay it out here: https://t.co/MuMs7dlx0s
— Paul Waldman (@paulwaldman1) May 30, 2018
The Hill: “Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that racism is still a major problem in American society and politics, according to a new NBC News–SurveyMonkey poll. Sixty-four percent of those surveyed said racism remains a major problem, while 30 percent said racism exists but is not a major public issue. Three percent said racism once existed but is no longer a problem, and 1 percent said racism has never been a crucial problem.”
"Roseanne [the show] brought the economically anxious Trump supporter of our culture’s self-soothing fantasies to life. Roseanne [the person] is the Trump supporter who shows up at Trump rallies." https://t.co/orvQiV5DJb
— Benjy Sarlin (@BenjySarlin) May 30, 2018