One of the most consistent things about the Trump/Russia story is the way that what we might call "the evidence" is so frequently outstripped by the explanations for it and reactions to it in driving a fair-minded person's suspicion that something just ain't right. This isn't to say "the evidence" doesn't hold its own weight; it does just fine. But the inability to give even remotely straight answers, the need for deflections and subterfuges that are demonstrably preposterous (Manafort was a marginal figure in the campaign) keeps coming up again and again.
We had glimpses of it yesterday, but this morning the House GOP’s approach to the Obamacare repeal debacle came into full view, and it is … amazing!
The gist: Obamacare repeal is not dead yet! We promise! No, really!
Perhaps the White House had planned all along for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to make an appearance at today's press briefing to rail against sanctuary cities. But the timing is consistent with what I've long feared will be the impulse for the Trump administration: When the going gets rough (failed Obamacare repeal, low poll numbers, etc), it will fall back on appeals to racism and xenophobia to regain political footing.
With so much incompetence taking root, it's not difficult to envision a scenario where those base appeals must become more amped up, extreme, and scurrilous to be "effective." It threatens to turn into a vicious cycle the likes of which we've never seen in this country.
The adventures of Devin Nunes keep getting more bizarre and hard to figure. To be clear, the same can be said for the entire l'affaire russe, but the sideshow that Nunes has become really has no recent parallels. Now we've got the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee confirming that he met with an anonymous source at the White House complex last week so that he could review the source's information in a secure location. This meeting came the day before Nunes' bizarre announcements to the press and briefing of President Trump that the communications of some members of the transition team had been picked up incidentally by American intelligence surveilling foreign nationals.
Adam Cancryn, health care reporter for POLITICO Pro in Washington, D.C. will join us in the Hive to discuss issues relating to health care. He previously was the senior financial services and insurance reporter for S&P Global Market Intelligence (formerly SNL Financial), and ran the sports site "Began in '96." He's written for The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones Newswires and the Philadelphia Business Journal.
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