10.1.2016 - 2:37 PM EDT

In a totally unexpected development, we learn today that back in the early 90s Donald Trump pressured his then-girlfriend, future wife and futurer ex-wife to pose nude in Playboy. Trump even negotiated a mega payday for the nude photo shoot. In the end, Maples refused.

10.1.2016 - 10:32 AM EDT

Is Donald Trump's downfall with Alicia Machado tied to not having her shackled with the standard Trump non-disclosure agreement? TPM Reader GP writes in with what seems like some pretty solid inferences about the backstory of Trump's relationship with Machado, which has been bad and public for 20 years.

10.1.2016 - 9:41 AM EDT

Because of bonds of culture, language and governmental systems it's been standard for decades for British Tories and American Republicans to collaborate informally on political campaigns, just as Labour and Democrats have done the same. So it's not terribly surprising that racist, nationalist 'Brexit' leader Nigel Farage is working with American racist, nationalist leader Donald Trump, even going to so far as to appear with him at a campaign event in Mississippi in August. But after Trump's Monday debate face-plant, Farage is making an emergency visit to the US to prep Trump for the next debate on October 9th.

10.1.2016 - 3:02 AM EDT

“She’s nasty, but I can be nastier than she ever can be."

That's the takeaway quote from a disturbing article in the Times out tonight, describing an agitated, febrile Donald Trump, off the high of his overnight Twitter rampage but settled into a steady rage over a week of humiliations and electoral reverses. Trump's biggest liability and weakness through his eighteen months as a politician has been his inability to focus or rule his emotions. He goes off on jags in which he seems to forget what he's at least notionally trying to do: win an election. In the quotation above, his rage against Clinton and Alicia Machado appears to have deluded him into believing that the election is a contest to see who can be the bigger monster. There is little basis to believe that this is how most voters judge the race.

09.30.2016 - 11:21 PM EDT

I sense this has gotten little attention given all that's happened in the news today. But it seems both a revealing and embarrassing nugget of news. So I wanted to share it with you. Last week Rudy Giuliani gave a speech at an awards dinner for a financial services trade group in New York City. The event was the 40 under 40 Dinner hosted by the Commercial Finance Association at the Waldorf Astoria hotel. So far nothing too surprising. But on Monday the CFA felt compelled to send out an email to attendees and members apologizing for Giuliani's “unscripted personal opinions.” Less delicately, the apology was required because what CFA CEO Bob Trojan delicately termed 'unscripted personal opinions' would more frankly be called racist digressions, jokes and jabs.

09.30.2016 - 4:34 PM EDT

This week's episode of my new podcast is a treat. I talk to Professor Charles Franklin, one of the nation's top polling experts. Charles is also the outside consultant we work with for statistical and methodology questions tied to PollTracker. We're now in the thick of a presidential campaign. Everybody's obsessing about polls, everybody gets worried about polls and everybody - at least real political junkies - knows some of the basics of how polls work. But I thought it would be interesting and helpful to run some basic questions by a true expert. That way you and I could both get a really grounded understanding. Should you try to un-skew polls if the crosstabs look weird? How do pollsters "weight" samples? Are the online polls as good as the traditional phone polls? We get into all of that and more in this week's podcast. I hope you enjoy it.

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