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Pruitt Only Used His Secret, Super-Expensive Phone Booth Once, And Other News: Your Prime Week In Review

UNITED STATES - APRIL 26: EPA Director Scott Pruitt  testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Environment Subcommittee hearing in Rayburn Building titled "The FY2019 Environmental Protection Agency Budget," on April 26, 2018. In addition to the budget, Pruitt faced questions about controversies that have occurred at the agency during his tenure. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
UNITED STATES - APRIL 26: EPA Director Scott Pruitt testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Environment Subcommittee hearing in Rayburn Building titled "The FY2019 Environmental Protection Agency Budget," on Ap... UNITED STATES - APRIL 26: EPA Director Scott Pruitt testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Environment Subcommittee hearing in Rayburn Building titled "The FY2019 Environmental Protection Agency Budget," on April 26, 2018. In addition to the budget, Pruitt faced questions about controversies that have occurred at the agency during his tenure. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call) MORE LESS
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August 25, 2018 9:00 am

Hello Prime subscribers. If you’re new, welcome, and thanks so much for signing up.

After several days of suspense, two separate Trump-related storylines came to a head on Tuesday when Michael Cohen plead guilty in the same hour that a jury reached a guilty verdict on eight counts for Paul Manafort. It was a split-screen moment that had us firing on all cylinders.

Anyway, here’s what happened in Prime this week.

  • In April, when he was still employed by taxpayers, then-EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said it was “rare” that he needed to use the $43,000 soundproof phone booth he’d installed in his office. “Turns out,” Matt Shuham writes, “‘rare’ means he used it ‘exactly once.'”
  • To get caught up on all the investigations, check out Allegra Kirkland’s weekly primer on the Russia probe.
  • Now that Iran is looking to influence our politics through Facebook, will the GOP take election meddling more seriously?
  • With a mixed verdict and a mistrial on ten counts, will prosecutors seek to retry Manafort on financial crimes? Likely not, Tierney Sneed writes. And: One quote from a former prosecutor sums up how the Mueller team is likely thinking about its options.
  • Why does Donald Trump frequently declare “I hate the wind“? It likely has something to do with a golf course he owns in Scotland, I write.
  • Centrist Dems may be quiet on Trump, but they are running aggressively on health care, Alice Ollstein writes.
  • Michael Cohen plead guilty this week. But there was a lot we didn’t know about the details of his plea, and a lot we still don’t know. Josh Marshall sums it up in two posts. Importantly, he writes, “the lack of a cooperation agreement is partly semantic.” Josh also has his notes on the Cohen charges here.
  • Copping to his wrongdoing with a plea deal likely prompted prosecutors to recommend a lighter sentence of only 46-63 months for Cohen,” Allegra Kirkland writes.
  • Having trouble keeping track of the many entities investigating Cohen? Here’s your guide. And: Michael Cohen might be in pretty sorry shape financially.
  • Tierney Sneed closely followed a Georgia county’s bid to close seven of nine polling places in majority minority areas this week. The county’s excuse appeared to be that they were not ADA compliant, a position the Trump administration has frequently taken. The county ultimately backed down.
  • Has Papadopoulos been cooperating in good faith with Mueller? Josh Marshall digs in.
  • Elliot Broidy is back in the news: Now he’s under investigation, too, Josh Marshall writes.
  • A cheat sheet on Trump Org CFO Allen Weisselberg, the latest denizen of Trumpworld to receive immunity from prosecutors.
  • Is a Virginia sheriffs office implicated in a ballot qualification signature scandal? Matt Shuham reports.
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