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Official: Tillerson 'not really speaking' for Trump anymore

(The Hill) A White House official sharply rebuked Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Thursday, telling The Washington Post that President Trump's Cabinet member no longer speaks for the administration.

“I think our allies know at this point he’s not really speaking for the administration,” the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told the newspaper. The same person described Tillerson as "irrelevant" due to the influence of other diplomats and Cabinet officials.


Poll: Trump favorability declines among those who say Fox is their most trusted news network

(The Hill) People who say Fox News is their most-trusted news network have been losing confidence in President Trump, according to new data from Suffolk University.

Trump’s favorability rating has dropped 32 points between June and December among respondents who said they trust Fox over any other news network. In June, the number was 90 percent, and in December, just 58 percent, according to the data first reported by The Washington Post.


Once Unthinkable, Senate Looks Like a Tossup in 2018

(NY Times) At this time last year, the Democratic path to Senate control seemed impossible: Hold all of the Democratic seats, flip Arizona and Nevada, then hope for a miracle.

The Democrats got the political version of a miracle on Tuesday. Doug Jones’s victory in Alabama means Democrats have accomplished the most difficult item on their checklist in pursuit of the Senate. A Democratic path is now obvious, and the race for control is basically a tossup, perhaps with a Republican advantage.


White House spokeswoman warns CNN: Ask Trump a question, it could cost you

(MSN/CNN) The White House's top spokesperson had a warning for a CNN reporter on Tuesday: Ask President Trump a question at an event you're about to attend, and you may not be allowed into similar events.

The strange moment came before a presidential bill signing ceremony in the morning. Events like that often include what's known as a "pool spray," a brief opportunity for a small group of reporters and photographers to take photos and, when possible, ask questions. The White House "pool" is comprised of a few members of the press corps who are assigned on a rotating basis to cover presidential events and file reports to be used by other media outlets when it would be impractical for the entire press corps to attend those events. When journalists are on pool duty, they are working not just on behalf of themselves and their employers but for all the journalists and outlets that receive pool reports.

On Tuesday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders gave CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta, who had drawn pool duty, an unusual warning.


Wow! USA Today editorial: "Trump not fit to clean the toilets in the Obama Presidential Library..."

(USA TOday) With his latest tweet, clearly implying that a United States senator would trade sexual favors for campaign cash, President Trump has shown he is not fit for office. Rock bottom is no impediment for a president who can always find room for a new low.

A president who would all but call Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand a whore is not fit to clean the toilets in the Barack Obama Presidential Library or to shine the shoes of George W. Bush.


RNC member resigns over party's support for Roy Moore

(The Hill) A member of the Republican National Committee resigned over the weekend, citing her disgust with the RNC’s support for embattled GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore, according to multiple reports.

Joyce Simmons, a RNC member from Nebraska, informed RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel of her resignation on Dec. 8. In a Monday statement, Simmons said she was driven to cut ties with the national party over its continued support for Moore after he was accused of molesting teenaged girls.

“I strongly disagree with the recent RNC financial support directed to the Alabama Republican Party for use in the Roy Moore race,” Simmons said in a statement.


Schiff: Evidence of coordination between Trump campaign and Russia 'pretty damning'

(The Hill) Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said Sunday the evidence of coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia is "pretty damning."

"The Russians offered help. The campaign accepted help. The Russians gave help. And the president made full use of that help," Schiff said during an interview on CNN's "State of the Union."

"And that's pretty damning, whether it is proof beyond a reasonable doubt of conspiracy or not," he continued. Schiff, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee which is conducting a probe into possible Russian election hacking, said people need to look at the "pattern of chronology."


Email shows effort to give Trump campaign WikiLeaks documents

(CNN) Candidate Donald Trump, his son Donald Trump Jr. and others in the Trump Organization received an email in September 2016 offering a decryption key and website address for hacked WikiLeaks documents, according to an email provided to congressional investigators.

The September 4 email was sent during the final stretch of the 2016 presidential race -- two months after the hacked emails of the Democratic National Committee were made public and one month before WikiLeaks began leaking the contents of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta's hacked emails.

The email came less than three weeks before WikiLeaks itself messaged Trump Jr. and began an exchange of direct messages on Twitter. Trump Jr. told investigators he had no recollection of the September email.

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