News from the note…
A round up of the day’s news that might be of interest to you.
This is 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.
A bipartisan bill meant to secure future U.S. elections against foreign meddling suffered a major setback Wednesday after Republicans pulled support from the measure.
A dispute over the Secure Elections Act boiled down to whether Congress should compel more states to use paper-based audits — a safeguard that election integrity advocates say would help ensure vote tallies weren’t tampered with or altered.
The delay by the Senate Rules Committee angered Senate Democrats who said the bill is critically important for states to have the necessary safeguards in place to protect elections from foreign interference.Politico
The Democratic National Committee contacted the FBI on Tuesday after it detected what it believes was the beginning of a sophisticated attempt to hack into its voter database, a Democratic source tells CNN.
The DNC was alerted in the early hours of Tuesday morning by a cloud service provider and a security research firm that a fake login page had been created in an attempt to gather usernames and passwords that would allow access to the party’s database, the source said.
The page was designed to look like the access page Democratic Party officials and campaigns across the country use to log into a service called Votebuilder, which hosts the database, the source said, adding the DNC believed it was designed to trick people into handing over their login details.
The source said the DNC is investigating who may have been responsible for the attempted attack, but that it has no reason to believe its voter file was accessed or altered.CNN
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday condemned U.S. sanctions against Russia as counter-productive, but said a summit he had held last month with U.S. President Donald Trump had still been useful.
Speaking at a news conference after holding talks with his Finnish counterpart Sauli Niinisto, Putin said he hoped Washington would realize that its policy of imposing sanctions on Moscow for its perceived misbehavior was misguided.
“As for sanctions, these actions are counter-productive and pointless, especially towards a country like Russia,” Putin told reporters in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi.Reuters
“I hope that our American partners will realize that this policy has no future at some point and we can start cooperating in a normal way.”
Manigault Newman said the video, which was shown on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” is evidence that Cohen was involved in the Trump campaign, something she predicted the president will begin to deny.
“He sat and met with the president during that trip,” she said on “Hardball.”
“He was very involved,” she added of Cohen. “He was directing some of the things that were happening and he was impacting some of the decisions that the president made, as well as the president telling him to fix things.”The Hill
The National Weather Service says that Hurricane Lane headed toward Hawaii has been is now a Category 4 hurricane and that some weakening of the storm is forecast over the next two days.
The weather service said Wednesday that the hurricane’s maximum sustained winds are near 155 mph (250 kmh) with higher gusts.AP
The service says the hurricane is still forecast to be a dangerous hurricane as it gets closer to the islands.
A majority of respondents say President Trump has either “probably” or “definitely” used the “n-word” since taking office, according to an Economist/YouGov poll released Wednesday.
Twenty-three percent in the survey said Trump had “probably” and 32 percent said he “definitely” used the racial slur while serving as president, far higher than the percentage who said the same about any former president dating back through the Nixon administration.The Hill
The data predictably split among partisan lines, with 80 percent of Democrats saying they believe Trump has “definitely” or “probably” used the slur, while 52 percent of independents and just 31 percent of Republicans said the same.
African-Americans were far more likely to believe that Trump had used the term within the span of his presidency, with 54 percent of black respondents saying that Trump “definitely” uttered the n-word and another 16 percent saying he had “probably” used it.
A majority of white Americans, however, also believe Trump has used the term — 54 percent.