russia

7 Ways the Senate Can Spend the Rest of August
A few real problems have bubbled up while senators were away

There’s no shortage of things for senators to do while in town this month, Murphy writes. Above, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., arrives at the Capitol for a vote in April. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

OPINION — Welcome back to the grind, senators and staff. If you were only watching cable news over your abridged recess, you might have been lulled into the idea that the only messes in Washington you would come back to were Omarosa’s habit of recording conversations in the Situation Room and what we’ve learned so far about Paul Manafort’s choice of outerwear from his trial — ostrich. So gross.

But while some in the D.C. media were caught up in the Trump train wrecks of the day, a few real problems bubbled up while you were gone. Somebody has to deal with them, so as long as you’re here — why not you?

3 Takeaways as Prosecution Rests Case in Paul Manafort Trial
Trial has put potential tax reporting loophole under the microscope

Media outlets set up microphones on July 31 in front of the United States District Court in Alexandria, Va., where President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, is standing trial. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s prosecution team on Monday rested its case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, wrapping up its evidence and witness testimony in just 10 days.

The defense will decide whether it will call any witnesses Tuesday morning. If it does not, both sides are expected to deliver closing arguments. Then the jury will decide Manafort’s fate.

Goodlatte’s Son Says Father’s ‘Political Grandstanding’ Ruined Strzok’s Career
Bobby Goodlatte calls hearing over Strzok’s text messages ‘a low point for Congress’

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte, R-Va., conducts a committee markup of the so-called POLICE Act of 2017 in May. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte’s son on Monday criticized the firing of former FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok, blaming his father’s “political grandstanding.”

Bobby Goodlatte tweeted that Strzok was “a patriot” and called the joint hearing for Stzrok that his father chaired last month a “low point for Congress.”

FBI Agent Peter Strzok Fired For Anti-Trump Texts
Counterterrorism official had been in the hot seat since anti-Trump texts with alleged mistress were discovered

FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok was fired for his text messages criticizing President Donald Trump. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Peter Strzok, the senior FBI counterintelligence official who has been in the hot seat since the Justice Department’s inspector general discovered his anti-Trump text messages with DOJ lawyer Lisa Page, has been fired from the bureau, his lawyer told multiple news outlets.

Strzok, 48, was one of the main targets of a faction of House Republicans who have sought information on anti-Trump bias in the upper reaches of the DOJ.

3 Takeaways From Day 8 of the Paul Manafort Trial
Who lied on a bank loan application? Was it Manafort, Gates or both?

A protester on July 31 outside the United States District Court in Alexandria, Va., where Paul Manafort is standing trial. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Day Eight of the Paul Manafort trial brought special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s prosecution team closer to the finish line of its case against the former Trump campaign chairman.

Prosecutors zeroed in on the loan fraud charges against Manafort, who faces 18 total counts of tax evasion and bank fraud and a maximum 305-year prison sentence if the Eastern Virginia jury finds him guilty.

Bill Nelson Says Florida Election Systems Compromised by Russians
Senate Intelligence Committee avoids confirming or denying Democratic senator’s statement

Sen. Bill Nelson, right said he and fellow Florida Sen. Marco Rubio were made aware of Russian penetration of Florida election systems. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

If the leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee told Sen. Bill Nelson to alert Florida election officials about Russian interference in their systems, they aren’t saying.

Nelson, a Florida Democrat on the ballot in 2018, was quoted by the Tampa Bay Times Wednesday saying that, “We were requested by the chairman and vice chairman of the Intelligence Committee to let the supervisors of election in Florida know that the Russians are in their records.”

Senate SCOTUS Confirmation Preventing Rosenstein Impeachment, Nunes Says
Leaked audio from a Republican fundraiser also warns of Trump impeachment risk

Audio was leaked of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif. revealing why the House has not impeached Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House chosing to refrain from impeaching Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein could have more to do with the Supreme Court than anything else.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes said the reason the House has not voted to impeach Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is because of the Senate’s need to confirm a Supreme Court justice.

Trump’s Foreign Trips Get Low Marks New Poll Shows
Less than a third of Americans see success in Russia, North Korea summits

President Donald Trump’s foreign trips received tepid support from Americans in a new poll. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump’s summits in North Korea and Russia have received tepid support at home, with less than a third of Americans saying the trips were a success in an Economist/YouGov poll released Wednesday.

The June 12 meeting between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un was successful 28 percent of respondents said, while 33 percent said it was unsuccessful and 39 percent said they were not sure.

Lindsey Graham Quips That Trump Brought Up Mueller and Russia ‘About 20 Times’
South Carolina senator said he told Trump that ending the Mueller probe would undermine GOP in November

Sen. Lindsey Graham said he told the president to just ride out the Russia investigation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Lindsey Graham said Monday night that he has told President Donald Trump that ending the special counsel investigation of Robert S. Mueller III would undermine GOP chances in November.

The South Carolina Republican, who played golf with Trump on Sunday in New Jersey and discussed several issues with the president, was asked about the investigation of Russian efforts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election at a Monday evening event hosted by the Greenville County Republican Party.

Paul Manafort Prosecution Could End This Week, U.S. Attorney Says
Prosecutor responds to judge’s urging amid Rick Gates’ testimony

Kevin Downing arrives to the United States District Court in Alexandria, Virginia where he will represent President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

The tax evasion and bank fraud prosecution of Paul Manafort could draw to a close as early as the end of the week, prosecutors said Tuesday before Judge T.S. Ellis III recessed the court for lunch.

Ellis has hounded special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s prosecution team to sideline evidence and witnesses that are not directly related to the charges against Manafort.