News from the note…
A round up of the day’s news that might be of interest to you.
Consider this an OPEN THREAD, folks. Chat about any of the stories listed, share links to stories that caught your eye today, and generally have a good time discussing whatever you want.
From the Daily Beast
In the winter of 2017, the pharmaceutical giant Novartis made a strategic investment. It paid Donald Trump’s longtime employee Michael Cohen a rate of $100,000-a-month over the course of a year to, in its words, “advise the company as to how the Trump administration might approach certain U.S. healthcare policy matters, including the Affordable Care Act.”
Through the LLC, the pharmaceutical company could try to shape, or at least predict, federal policy without ever having to disclose the work or the sums paid to carry it out.
Sen. Jeff Flake, the retiring Republican also from Arizona, has yet to make up his mind on Haspel as of Thursday morning, a fact complicated now by McCain, who’s been a mentor to him. Flake said McCain’s statement will “affect everyone.”“He’s been a preeminent voice on speaking out against torture,” Flake said. “The laws that we now have, we used the Army field manual as a guide — that was his bill. He was the main motivation behind that, so his voice matters here. I’m glad that he’s spoken up.
Kanye West, whose publicly professed love for President Trump and erratic, sometimes brash, statements such as calling slavery “a choice,” has drawn intense backlash from his fans, so much so that it may be hurting his album sales.
President Donald Trump’s new attorney, Rudy Giuliani, told CNN on Thursday that Trump “wasn’t aware” his longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen pitched his access to the President to potential clients following the 2016 election and landed lucrative consulting deals as a result.
“I talked to the President only one time about this and that was the first day it came out and he wasn’t aware of that situation that now, I guess, the facts are getting a little contorted,” Giuliani said when asked about Cohen’s pitch and if the President knew about it.
From The Hill
Sources told Page Six, which first reported the relationship, that Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle have been dating for a few weeks.
“Don Jr. and Kimberly are seeing each other, and are having a great time. While he wants to respect the privacy of his family, he is getting divorced, and he enjoys Kimberly’s company,” a source told Page Six.
A US investment firm thrust into the spotlight because of its payment to President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer has scrubbed its website, distancing itself from a Russian investment company and its oligarch chairman.
The Russian investment company, Renova Group, is controlled by Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg, a close ally of President Vladimir Putin who was placed last month on the US Treasury Department’s list of sanctioned individuals and entities for Russian election meddling and other hostile activities.
George Will Twists the Knife in Blistering Column on ‘Horrifying’ Mike Pence: It’s ‘Groveling as Governing’
Conservative writer George Will is still not a fan of Donald Trump. And in his new column, he goes after Mike Pence in a big way by calling him “the worst person in government.”
In his new piece for Washington Post, Will says the vice president reflects everything that’s wrong with the Republican Party as the country gets closer and closer to the midterm elections. The reason, according to Will, is that Pence’s antics represent how the GOP’s platform has become all about servility to Trump.
From The Hill
Ex-coal CEO Don Blankenship, who lost the GOP primary bid in West Virginia this week, is actively plotting how to undercut state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s Senate candidacy.Greg Thomas, an adviser and campaign manager for Blankenship, said on Thursday that Blankenship will not support his former rival and “all options are on the table” as Blankenship weighs how best to kneecap Morrisey’s Senate campaign.
And a Thursday Bonus Note from the “This Couldn’t Wait for the Weekend” file
By Rick Wilson
Like a bloated, portly fake billionaire rolling off a hooker after a hot 45 seconds of passionate sex, Donald Trump’s ardor for Rudy Giuliani seems to have cooled.
If the White House leaks are any barometer, it sounds more and more as if Donald wants Rudy to get his money off the nightstand and the hell out of his room at the No-Tell-Motel. This is what happens when you work for Trump, and Rudy is old enough, crafty enough, and knows Trump well enough to have known better.