The 'Boring Subjects.' Wonkagenda For Fri., Aug. 3, 2018

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

The heads of the NSC, NSA, DNI, FBI, and DHS came out and said Russia has been engaged in a "24-7 365-days-a-year" effort to sow division between Americans ahead of the November election, stressing that Russia gives zero fucks about political loyalties. They added most vulnerabilities are at the local level, and individual campaigns are more likely to allow themselves to be hacked, or become victims of social media stupidity than anything else.

Here's an infographic comparing Trump's pussyfooting on Russian fuckery, and the statements from the intel community fingering Russia over the past year. Fun Fact: Here's how Webster's defines "treason," and Article III, Section 3 of the US Constitution.

On Wednesday Senate Republicans voted down another $250 million to beef up election security, 50-47. Republicans argue they already gave $380 million to secure elections in bumblefuck rural areas that can barely figure out email, let alone e-voting.

Paul Manafort's bookkeeper testified that Manafort was broke in 2016, so he started lying about his income by forging documents to get loans from banks in order to pay his bills. Prosecutors are also hammering Manafort's defense by showing how he would wire millions of dollars from a strange bank in Cyprus to pay for luxury services, like a kickass sound system for his mansion in the Hamptons, and for gardeners to build and maintain a red and white flower bed in the shape of an "M."

ICE is holding a high-risk pregnant woman at facilities unequipped to handle pregnancies, a violation of ICE's new baby jail policies.

In new court filings Trump's DOJ says the ACLU should go look for all the migrant families they've broken apart if they're so concerned about Trump's baby jails.

Trump spent most of his rally in the Pennsylvania boonies shitting on the free press, straight-up lying about his tardiness in meeting the Queen of England, and encouraging people to ignore "boring subjects" like Trump-Russia. He then remembered to endorse the gubernatorial campaign of openly racist Republican Rep. Lou Barletta.

The National Archives have said they can't meet the GOP request for documents on Brett Kavanaugh until October, just days before the midterms, but Mitch McConnell doesn't give a shit. Yesterday McConnell held a press conference with a bunch of boxes, and said a document review by Bush 43 is proof that they're being as transparent as possible ... for Republicans.

Elizabeth Warren is leading a group of Democrats who want to know why Trump was giving Mar-a-Lago members a tour of Air Force One. It's not quid-pro-quo, it's just a perk.

Congress is promising to buck Trump if he tries to leave the WTO as foreign policy geeks fear it's the only thing keeping Trump from turning the dial on his trade war up to 11.

Ivanka Trump tells Axios that Trump's baby jails were a "low point" for her at Trump's White House, and that she kinda, sorta disagrees with her daddy on "fake news" stuff. Of course, Trump later mansplained Ivanka's comments in a tweet. Crisis averted!

CNN's Jim Acosta tried to get Sarah Huckabee Sanders to condemn Trump's continued attacks on the press. Instead she bitched out Acosta and dodged the question about the press being the "enemy of the people" by bemoaning all the mean things comedians and bloggers have said, like that time we made fun of her poot lips and tablecloth dresses.

Next week's special election in Ohio's suburban 12th is being seen as a bellwether for the midterms now that Democratic enthusiasm has thrown the race into toss-up status. In a last ditch effort to save a historically Republican seat, House Republicans are dumping millions into the race.

Tennessee Republican Rep. Diane Black lost her gubernatorial primary, coming in third behind businessman(/"political outsider") Bill Lee, and some nerd with a calculator. Black's loss has sent shockwaves through political circles this morning as Republicans wonder if they really want Trump to grab'em by the ballots.

The RNC is telling the Koch brothers to fuck off in a new memo by RNC head Ronna Romney McDaniel that calls it "unacceptable" not to support a political position that could damage a personal business. The irony here is that the RNC's political position is to support Trump's personal business over the party philosophy of appeasing corporate donors.

Arkansas just passed a new anti-abortion law that makes it a felony to have an abortion after 14 weeks, AND allows parents to stop minors from getting abortions and husbands to block termination of the pregnancy, along with giving them the ability to sue doctors for civil damages.

Despite the Pope saying the Church no longer supports the death penalty, Nebraska's ultra rich Roman Catholic Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts still wants to kill people. It's only the Pope, right?

Every day for the past three weeks DC residents have been protesting the Trump administration. KEEP IT UP!

Gabe Sherman gossips that Paul Manafort's trial has sent Trump into a frenzy, screaming that it only it shows "that Manafort is a sleeze." (Duh.) Bonus tidbits include Emmet Flood being a shitty lawyer, and John Kelly staying on through 2020 is just wishful thinking.

A terrible British tabloid got a copy of a book by former reality TV person/White House official/attention whore Omarosa, and it says Trump has degenerative poop brains. She is #Resisting just like you!

Back in 2016 Michael Cohen inked a $10 million deal to help push for a nuclear power plant in Alabama from a major Trump donor, contingent upon the plant's success. However, the power plant was stalled by the DOE, and it doesn't look like Cohen made much money. :( [Archive]

The FBI's cyber security division is hemorrhaging its top talent to the private sector thanks to better pay, benefits, and the ability to ignore Trump tweets about the "deep state."

The FCC's terribly named One-Touch Make-Ready rules are being opposed by Comcast and AT&T who would rather not share their infrastructure with low-cost municipal broadband projects. Don't worry, guys, Ajit Pai didn't exactly give anything away to the poors.

And here's your morning Nice Time! Panda Sexercise!

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Dominic Gwinn

Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or in a gutter taking photos.


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