1/ Trump’s lawyer paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 out of his own pocket in order to buy the porn star’s silence about Trump’s alleged affair with her. “Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. [Daniels],” Michael Cohen said in a statement, adding: “And neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly.” Cohen made the October 2016 payment through his LLC in exchange for the adult-movie star signing a nondisclosure agreement about her allegations of an affair that took place shortly after Melania gave birth to Barron. (New York Times / Wall Street Journal)

  • Stormy Daniels believes she can now discuss her alleged sexual encounter with Trump after Michael Cohen invalidated her non-disclosure agreement. Cohen told the New York Times he paid her $130,000 in exchange for her signing an NDA. He’s also shopped a book proposal that would detail her relationship with Trump. (Associated Press / The Blast)

2/ Trump doesn’t believe Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election, even though the heads of U.S. intelligence agencies testified to the Senate Intelligence Committee that Russia meddled in 2016 and is planning to do so again in 2018. (CNN)

  • Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats doesn’t think Jared Kushner should have full access to classified information. The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, meanwhile, accused the White House of “showing a blatant disregard for national security.” (Washington Post / ABC News)

  • A former senior FBI official is leading BuzzFeed’s effort to verify the Trump dossier and defend itself from a Russian billionaire’s lawsuit. BuzzFeed in turn is suing the DNC for information the publisher believes could show a link between the Russian billionaire and the e-mail hacking, which would undercut his libel claim. (Foreign Policy / Vanity Fair)

  • Democrats have had “good discussions” with the FBI on declassifying their memo and hope to resolve the issue “very soon.” Adam Schiff the White House and FBI initially wanted too much information kept from the public. (Reuters)

3/ The House Oversight Committee is investigating the White House’s handling of the Rob Porter scandal and who knew what and when about the accusations of domestic violence. “I’m troubled by almost every aspect of this,” House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy said. “How in the hell was he still employed?” (NPR / CNN / Politico)

4/ Scott Pruitt has a “blanket waiver” to book first-class flights using taxpayer funds because past interactions that have “not been the best.” The EPA says concerns about Pruitt’s safety have required him to travel first and business class. (The Hill / CNBC)

5/ A bipartisan group of senators have reached an immigration deal that would include $25 billion for border security, provide a path to citizenship for 1.8 million Dreamers, and change the visa lottery program to a merit based system. The White House wants any immigration legislation to include the “four pillars” agreed to during a January meeting: A fix for DACA, border security, and changes to family-based immigration, and the Diversity Visa Lottery. (Politico / The Hill)

6/ Trump, meanwhile, called on lawmakers to oppose the bipartisan effort to address immigration and protections for Dreamers. Trump urged the Senate to support legislation offered by Republican Chuck Grassley, which would provide a path to citizenship for 1.8 million young immigrants, end the visa lottery program, build a border wall, and end what he calls “chain migration,” which is family-based immigration. (New York Times / Reuters)

poll/ On a generic ballot, 39% of voters say they’ll support the GOP candidate for Congress in their district. 38% say they’ll support the Democratic candidate. 23% are undecided. (Politico)

poll/ Voters favor Democrats 49-41 on a generic Congressional ballot. 65% of Clinton voters say they’re “very excited” to vote in the election this fall, compared to 58% of Trump voters. (Public Policy Polling)


  1. A suspected shooter is in custody and as many as 7 people are dead after a school shooting at a South Florida high school. The authorities said there were 14 victims, but did not say if they were injured or dead. *[Developing…] *(CBS Miami / New York Times)

  2. The Veterans Affairs secretary had his chief of staff doctor an email and make false statements in order to justify the cost of his wife’s travel on a 10-day trip to Europe last summer. David Shulkin ordered the VA’s third-most-senior official to alter an email to make it appear that he was receiving an award from the Danish government. The VA paid more than $4,300 for his wife’s airfare. (Washington Post)

  3. Refugee resettlement agencies are preparing to close more than 20 offices across the U.S. and cut back operations in more than 40 other offices after the State Department told them to pare down their operations. (Reuters)

  4. Trump’s military parade would cost between $10 million and $30 million. The White House hasn’t budgeted for the parade, which would require Congress to appropriate the funds, or use money that already has been approved. (Washington Post)

  5. A third White House official resigned after being informed that he would not receive a permanent security clearance due to his past use of marijuana. (Politico)

  6. Trump wants a 25-cent hike to the federal gas tax in order to pay for the White House infrastructure plan. The current federal levy is 18.4 cents a gallon on retail gasoline and 24.4 cents a gallon for diesel. The increase floated by the president would presumably put the gasoline tax at 43.4 cents and diesel tax at just under 50 cents. (CNBC)

  7. Democrats flipped a Republican seat in Florida’s special election. Margaret Good beat the Republican by 7 percentage points in a district that President Trump won two years ago by a 5-point margin. (NPR)