👋 Away Message: Hi there! Matt is currently out on parental leave. He'll return August 30th-ish. More details can be found here. In the meantime, Joe (the voice of the newscast/podcast) will be publishing an abridged version of WTF Just Happened Today? every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. You can expect 5-7 news items covering a slightly wider range of political news in about two sentences each. We'll return to our regularly scheduled WTFJHT programming when Matt returns in late August.
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1/ The head of the House Intelligence Committee said there is no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Rep. Devin Nunes wants to focus the committee on the alleged espionage and leaks of classified information, such as releasing information about Michael Flynn speaking to the Russian ambassador. (NPR)
2/ Schiff: “Circumstantial evidence of collusion” exists between the Trump campaign and Russia despite denials from top intelligence officials that Russian operatives tried to interfere with the 2016 election. Schiff defended the House Intelligence Committee continuing to look into the matter. (NBC News)
3/ Five things to watch at Monday’s House Intelligence Committee’s Russia hearing. Both the FBI director and the director of the NSA will speak about alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 elections, including potential connections between Trump’s inner circle and the Kremlin. (Washington Post)
4/ Top NSA official ridicules allegations that Britain spied on Trump, calling the claim “arrant nonsense.” Richard Ledgett, deputy director of the NSA, said the idea that Britain had a hand in spying on Trump was “just crazy” and that “it belies a complete lack of understanding of how the relationship works between the intel community agencies, it completely ignores the political reality of ‘would the UK government agree to do that?’” (Reuters)
5/ Ryan plans tweaks to the health care bill in order to help people in their 50s and 60s buy insurance. Ryan said he would “most likely” bring a health care bill forward for a floor vote on Thursday. (Bloomberg)
6/ Tom Price says Trump’s health care promises will be true down the line. Meaning, the government would pay for health care for those who need it and everyone would be covered. Price said the passage of the health care bill is just one of three steps. The second two being administrative reforms and the passage of other legislation dealing with health care outside of the American Health Care Act. (CNN)
7/ Trump administration is asking the federal judge in Hawaii to limit the scope of his ruling so the U.S. can immediately stop taking in refugees worldwide. The judge temporarily halted Trump’s new travel ban. (Fox News)
8/ Trump’s budget director says Meals on Wheels is not being gutted. The funding source Trump seeks to eliminate — the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s community development block grants — accounts for 3% of Meals on Wheels’ overall funding. (Washington Post)
9/ Trump continues the use of Special Forces to keep war against the Islamic State and terrorist groups at arm’s length. Trump has maintained the strategy of training and supporting local forces to fight their own wars instead of deploying large American forces to far-flung hot spots in an effort to minimize the American military’s footprint overseas. (New York Times)
10/ Despite millions of dollars being spent on security for Trump’s trips to Mar-a-Lago, Mulvaney says the president is cutting costs in the administration budget. Trump’s first three Mar-a-Lago weekends cost taxpayers an estimated $10 million. (CBS News)
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