1/ Roger Stone was arrested on seven counts of obstruction, lying to Congress and witness tampering as part of Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the election. Between June and July of 2016, Stone told a "senior Trump Campaign official" that he had information that WikiLeaks would release documents that would hurt the Clinton campaign. On July 22, 2016, WikiLeaks released its first batch of Democratic emails. After that the "senior Trump Campaign official was directed to contact Stone about any additional releases and what other damaging information" that WikiLeaks had about the Clinton campaign. Then, in October of 2016, a "high-ranking Trump Campaign official" asked Stone about "future releases by" WikiLeaks. Stone replied that WikiLeaks would release "a load every week going forward." In total, Stone interacted with at least four people close to the Trump campaign about WikiLeaks. The indictment also accused Stone of attempting to intimidate Randy Credico, who was in contact with Julian Assange in 2016. Separately, FBI agents were seen carrying hard drives and other evidence from Stone's apartment in New York City. (Washington Post / New York Times / CNBC / The Guardian / Politico / CNN / NBC News / Washington Post / Department of Justice)

  • Stone was released on $250,000 bond, denied working with Russia, and declared he would not "bear false witness" by testifying against Trump. (CBS News)

  • Everyone who's been charged in investigations related to the 2016 election and how they're connected to Trump. (New York Times)

  • 4 takeaways from the Stone indictment, including repeated references to the Trump campaign's contacts about WikiLeaks and a possible reference to Trump. (Washington Post)

  • 3 takeaways from the Stone indictment: WikiLeaks, dog threats, and Godfather references. (Vox)

  • What we learned from Stone's indictment. The longtime adviser to Trump said he had been falsely accused and "will plead not guilty." He also called the investigation by the special counsel "politically motivated." (New York Times)

2/ Steve Bannon is the unidentified "high-ranking Trump campaign official" in Mueller's indictment. Bannon has also spoken with Mueller's team and the Senate Intelligence Committee about the exchange. The indictment said the campaign official (Bannon) reached out to Stone in October 2016 – a month before Trump was elected – "about the status of future releases by Organization 1," which refers to WikiLeaks and Julian Assange. (CNBC / Bloomberg)

3/ Sarah Huckabee Sanders claimed Stone's arrest "has nothing to do with the president and certainly nothing to do with the White House." Trump, meanwhile, tweeted: "Greatest Witch Hunt in the History of our Country! NO COLLUSION!" (The Hill)

4/ Trump agreed to reopen the government for three weeks without border wall funding, bringing an end to the 35-day shutdown – the longest ever – which 800,000 federal workers without pay. Negotiations over a border security package will continue until Feb. 15. Speaking from the Rose Garden, Trump said he was "very proud" to end the shutdown after previously claiming that he'd be "proud to shut down the government" if his demand for $5 billion in border wall funding wasn't met. Trump threatened that there could be another government shutdown or he could declare a national emergency if a "fair deal" doesn't emerge, saying "I have a very powerful alternative, but I didn't want to use it at this time." Federal workers will receive their backpay "very quickly, or as soon as possible." After the announcement, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump's State of the Union would not be held next Tuesday as originally scheduled. (Politico / The Guardian / New York Times / Washington Post / CNN / NBC News)

  • The Senate passed the bill by voice vote and sent it to the House. The bill could be on Trump's desk by the end of the day. (Washington Post)

  • The shutdown caused flight delays at airports in New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Orlando and Atlanta, due to staffing shortages at air traffic control centers. Three unions for air traffic control workers issued a statement yesterday urging Congress and the White House to fund the government due to "unprecedented" risks to the air safety environment. (CNN / The Guardian / New York Times / NPR / CNBC / NBC New York)

  • At least 14,000 unpaid IRS workers did not show up for work this week despite the Trump administration ordering more than 30,000 employees back to work, unpaid, to prepare for tax season. (Washington Post)

  • How Trump could use a national emergency to get his border wall. Beyond the legal questions around what Trump can do and how he can do it, there's no new emergency at the border. (Vox)

poll/ 55% of Americans disapprove of Trump's job performance, while 39% approve. (FiveThirtyEight)

poll/ 53% of Americans blame Trump and Republicans for the government shutdown. More than 1 in 5 Americans say they have been inconvenienced by the shutdown. (Washington Post)

poll/ 45% of Florida voters say Trump should be re-elected in 2020 with 46% saying he should be replaced. (Mason-Dixon Polling and Strategy)

poll/ 38% of voters gave Trump a failing grade for his first two years as president. 10% gave Trump a D, 13% gave him a C, and 17% each gave him a B or an A. Trump, meanwhile, gave himself an A+. (Politico)


Notables.

  1. A Trump appointee approved Jared Kushner's top secret security clearance application after it was initially rejected by two career White House security specialists. Kushner's background check included concerns about potential foreign influence over him. The supervisor, Carl Kline, also overruled the recommendations of career security specialists and approved top secret security clearances for at least 30 incoming Trump officials, despite unfavorable information. (NBC News)

  2. The United Nations humans rights office will investigate the killing of Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey. Agnès Callamard will "review and evaluate, from a human rights perspective, the circumstances surrounding the killing of Khashoggi" and "will assess the steps taken by governments to address and respond to the killing, and the nature and extent of states’ and individuals’ responsibilities for the killing." (New York Times)

  3. EPA civil penalties for polluters under the Trump administration have fallen to the lowest average level since 1994. Civil fines have averaged more than $500 million a year, when adjusted for inflation, over the past two decades. Last year's total was 85% below that amount – or about $72 million. (Washington Post)

  4. Mueller's office suggested that Paul Manafort should not get credit for his cooperation when he's sentenced next month. Mueller's prosecutors said Manafort told "multiple discernible lies" that were not "mere memory lapses." At the hearing, Judge Amy Berman Jackson ordered lawyers to appear Feb. 4 for a closed hearing on whether Manafort breached his plea deal by lying to investigators. (NBC News / Reuters / ABC News / Washington Post)


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