- But there was no collusion. None. CNBC reports that Russian tankers have provided fuel to the North Korean regime in recent months, in violation of UN sanctions.
- So many bizarre things from Trump’s interview with the NY Times, but this is at the top of the list:
TRUMP: Yeah. Virtually every Democrat has said there is no collusion. There is no collusion. And even these committees that have been set up. If you look at what’s going on — and in fact, what it’s done is, it’s really angered the base and made the base stronger. My base is stronger than it’s ever been. Great congressmen, in particular, some of the congressmen have been unbelievable in pointing out what a witch hunt the whole thing is. So, I think it’s been proven that there is no collusion.
- White House staff is freaking out about the interview- apparently it was arranged by a Mar-a-Lago club member. WaPo describes an aide: “What interview? Today?” Another frustrated aide called it “embarrassing.”
- Warriors Coach Steve Kerr spoke with USA Today and gave his rationale for speaking out against Trump:” That’s one of the reasons our country has been so successful is we have these institutions in place to protect us from ourselves, and so the institutions have to win out. The only way that’s going to happen is if we keep calling b——-, so that’s my approach. I just have to join the coalition that’s calling b——-. “
- AP reports that the Trump Administration is working to roll back regulations on off-shore drilling. You know, the ones that were in response to explosion at Deepwater Horizon (I do recommend the Marky Mark movie). “The Obama rules targeted blowout preventers, massive valve-like devices designed to prevent spills from wells on the ocean floor. The preventer used by BP failed. The rules required more frequent inspections of those and other devices and dictated that experts onshore monitor drilling of highly complex wells in real time.”
- Post Doug Jones, the next targeted race is a Pennsylvania special election to replace GOP Rep. Tim Murphy. Murphy is the charming, ultra pro-life guy who resigned when it came out he was trying to force his pregnant mistress to have an abortion. Conor Lamb is the Democratic candidate trying to win a Trump-leaning, blue collar district.
- Matt Yglesias argues that the resistance is working- Trump’s worst efforts have been largely blocked: “Trump has signed fewer bills than any of his recent predecessors, and has gotten nothing at all done that requires 60 votes to overcome a filibuster. That’s despite the numerous Democratic senators holding down seats in red states who might be persuaded to back a nominally bipartisan bill.”
- And in a reminder that there are still massive loopholes in campaign finance laws, corporations are able to dump unlimited money in to gubernatorial races via the Governors Associations. WSJ reports that when Maryland Republican Larry Hogan needed money for his race, chicken processor Mountaire funneled $250,000 for him through the RGA. It paid off: “On inauguration day, Mr. Hogan blocked the proposal opposed by the poultry industry.”