Aggregating and archiving news from both sides of the aisle.

Top Stories
What Tesla charging partnerships with Ford and GM mean for the EV industry

Preview: Ford Motor, General Motors and Tesla appear to have shifted the tide on the electric vehicle-charging infrastructure in North America.

Cramer says don't be complacent ahead of Fed meeting: 'I do not trust a benign market like this one.'

Preview: CNBC's Jim Cramer told investors on Friday to be wary of the week — especially Wednesday's Fed meeting — even though the market's been fairly calm.

$5.2 billion in cargo stuck off West Coast ports in truck and container bottleneck

Preview: The West Coast port labor union battle has held up over $5 billion in ocean cargo and led to a pileup of trucks, railroads and containers.

JPMorgan bond chief Bob Michele sees worrying echoes of 2008 in market calm

Preview: Economic crosscurrents have divided the investing world into roughly two camps: Those who see a soft landing and those who envision something far worse.

Americans owe nearly $1 trillion in credit card debt—here's the breakdown by age

Preview: Americans are racking up credit card debt amid rising interest rates and elevated prices. Here's how much debt each generation carries, per TransUnion.

The IRS is cracking down on a popular small business tax break that could lead to a costly audit

Preview: The Employee Retention Credit has soared in popularity among pandemic-related tax incentives for business owners, but the IRS has become skeptical of claims.

Crypto tokens plunged this week after Gensler stepped up SEC crackdown

Preview: Several of the most valuable cryptocurrencies dropped more than 15% this week after the SEC filed lawsuits against Coinbase and Binance.

How Samsung became the world’s No. 2 advanced chipmaker and set the stage for a U.S. manufacturing boom

Preview: CNBC got an exclusive look inside Samsung's U.S. chip business as it doubles down on manufacturing in an effort to catch market leader TSMC

One of our recent top-performers is not in tech. Here's how the stock has been creeping higher

Preview: This stock has jumped 15% since its $12-per-share close on May 8 and more than 20% higher since May 25.

Netflix subscriptions rise as password-sharing crackdown takes effect

Preview: Netflix has seen a rise in new subscribers in the U.S. in recent days after rolling out its password sharing crackdown, according to new report.

Top Stories
Here are the 20 specific Fox broadcasts and tweets Dominion says were defamatory

Preview: • Fox-Dominion trial delay 'is not unusual,' judge says • Fox News' defamation battle isn't stopping Trump's election lies

Judge in Fox News-Dominion defamation trial: 'The parties have resolved their case'

Preview: The judge just announced in court that a settlement has been reached in the historic defamation case between Fox News and Dominion Voting Systems.

'Difficult to say with a straight face': Tapper reacts to Fox News' statement on settlement

Preview: A settlement has been reached in Dominion Voting Systems' defamation case against Fox News, the judge for the case announced. The network will pay more than $787 million to Dominion, a lawyer for the company said.

Millions in the US could face massive consequences unless McCarthy can navigate out of a debt trap he set for Biden

Preview: • DeSantis goes to Washington, a place he once despised, looking for support to take on Trump • Opinion: For the GOP to win, it must ditch Trump • Chris Christie mulling 2024 White House bid • Analysis: The fire next time has begun burning in Tennessee

White homeowner accused of shooting a Black teen who rang his doorbell turns himself in to face criminal charges

Preview: • 'A major part of Ralph died': Aunt of teen shot after ringing wrong doorbell speaks • 20-year-old woman shot after friend turned into the wrong driveway in upstate New York, officials say

Newly released video shows scene of Jeremy Renner's snowplow accident

Preview: Newly released body camera footage shows firefighters and sheriff's deputies rushing to help actor Jeremy Renner after a near-fatal snowplow accident in January. The "Avengers" actor broke more than 30 bones and suffered other severe injuries. CNN's Chloe Melas has more.

Jake Gyllenhaal and Jamie Lee Curtis spent the Covid-19 lockdown together

Preview: It's sourdough bread and handstands for Jake Gyllenhaal and Jamie Lee Curtis.

Toddler crawls through White House fence, prompts Secret Service response

Preview: A tiny intruder infiltrated White House grounds Tuesday, prompting a swift response from the US Secret Service.

Top Stories
BREAKING: Felony Arrest Warrant Issued For Biden Official Sam Brinton For Another Alleged Theft, Report Says

Preview: An arrest warrant has been issued for controversial Biden administration official Sam Brinton in connection with a second alleged theft at an airport in Las Vegas. Brinton, who works for the Department of Energy, was already placed on leave after he allegedly stole a woman’s luggage at Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) International Airport late last month. ...

Satanic Temple Display Near Nativity Scene, Jewish Menorah In Illinois State Capitol Building

Preview: Inside the Illinois State Capitol sits a display of several religious exhibits for the holiday season, which includes a Jewish menorah, the Christian nativity scene, and the “Serpent of Genesis” from the Satanic Temple, as reported by local radio media. Consisting of a leather-bound copy of astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus’ “De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium” — which ...

Twitter’s Underhanded Actions Targeting ‘Libs Of TikTok’ Revealed In New ‘Twitter Files’ Release

Preview: The latest release of the “Twitter Files” Thursday evening revealed that leftists at the highest level of the company, who have all since been fired or been forced to resign, targeted one of the most popular right-wing accounts on the platform with repeated suspensions despite the fact that they secretly admitted that she did not ...

Twitter Releases Documents Showing It Took Secret Actions Against Conservatives

Preview: The second installment of the so-called “Twitter Files” was released Thursday evening after the company turned over documents to a journalist who then started to publish the findings on the platform. Musk released internal company communications through journalist Matt Taibbi on Friday about the company’s censorship of the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story ...

Famed ‘TikTok Surgeon’ Faces Intense Backlash From Transgender Community After Allegedly Maimed Patient Goes Viral

Preview: The transgender community has turned on a once revered surgeon specializing in sex change surgeries after a patient posted graphic photos of an allegedly botched operation. Dr. Sidhbh Gallagher, a Miami-based surgeon specializing in double mastectomy surgeries for transgender-identifying patients, has been heavily criticized for performing the elective surgery on minors. She has also earned ...

Video Emerges Of Brittney Griner Being Swapped For Russian Terrorist; Critics Instantly Notice Problem

Preview: Video emerged Thursday afternoon of Brittney Griner being swapped on a runway for convicted Russian terrorist Viktor Bout after Democrat President Joe Biden agreed to the trade. The video showed Griner, who is wearing a red jacket, walking across the tarmac with three men while Bout walked toward her with a man standing next to ...

Potential Iowa Serial Killer Still Shrouded In Mystery After Police Excavation Turns Up Empty

Preview: After a woman claimed to be the daughter of a serial killer in a recent interview, a search of the supposed location of buried remains has turned up nothing. Federal, state, and local authorities did not find any evidence or remains after scouring the earth for several days in Thurman, Iowa, a small town just ...

FedEx Driver Admits To Strangling 7-Year-Old Girl After Hitting Her With Van

Preview: A FedEx contract driver strangled a 7-year-old girl after hitting her with his van in Texas late last month, according to arrest warrant documents. Tanner Horner, a 31-year-old from Fort Worth, has been arrested and charged with capital murder of a person under 10 years old and aggravated kidnapping in the death of Athena Strand, ...

Disabled Vet Congressman Torches Colleague For Putting American Flag In Trash Can

Preview: Disabled veteran Congressman Brian Mast (R-FL) took issue with fellow Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) over the way she chose to transport her American flag while she was moving from one office to another. Mast, who lost both legs and his left index finger in 2010 when he stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED) while ...

Top Democrat Senator Blasts Biden Over Releasing Terrorist For Griner: ‘Deeply Disturbing Decision’

Preview: Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, slammed President Joe Biden Thursday for releasing notorious terrorist Viktor Bout in exchange for Brittney Griner. Griner, who has a criminal record in the U.S. stemming from a domestic violence incident several years ago, was arrested in Russia back in February on drug charges, ...

Top Stories
BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago...

Preview: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... (Top headline, 1st story, link) Related stories: Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded...

Preview: Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... (Top headline, 2nd story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify...

Preview: Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... (Top headline, 3rd story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

Incriminating statements on Iran papers...

Preview: Incriminating statements on Iran papers... (Top headline, 4th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...


Preview: TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... (Top headline, 5th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

Aide Also Hit With Indictment...

Preview: Aide Also Hit With Indictment... (Top headline, 6th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable...

Preview: MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... (Top headline, 7th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... TURLEY: Extremely Damning... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

TURLEY: Extremely Damning...

Preview: TURLEY: Extremely Damning... (Top headline, 8th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

BALZ: Moment of reckoning...

Preview: BALZ: Moment of reckoning... (Top headline, 9th story, link) Related stories: BED, BATH AND BEYOND: Boxes scattered all over Mar-a-Lago... Secrets Were Among Nation's Most Closely Guarded... Ex-president admits on tape HE DID NOT declassify... Incriminating statements on Iran papers... TOP LAWYERS ABRUPTLY RESIGN... Aide Also Hit With Indictment... MAG: Stupidest Crimes Imaginable... TURLEY: Extremely Damning...



Top Stories
DC black bear tranquilized, captured after spending hours wandering through neighborhood

Preview: A black bear rambling through northeast Washington, D.C., was tranquilized by authorities Friday morning, closing roads and bringing out curious onlookers.

Michigan State to spend $300K on mass shooting memorial

Preview: Michigan State University has pledged approximately $300,000 in donations to erect a memorial to students killed and wounded in a February mass shooting.

MT gas plant to resume construction after judge reverses climate-based permit suspension

Preview: NorthWest Energy's natural gas power plant near Laurel, Montana, will resume construction after Judge Michael Moses reversed his suspension of its air quality permit.

Pigs run loose on St. Paul-area highway after semitrailer crash

Preview: Authorities corralled 50 hogs that escaped an overturned semitrailer truck on Interstate 694 in Ramsey County, Minnesota, during Friday's morning rush hour.

Robert Bell, judge who issued rare Michigan death sentence to convicted killer, dead at 79

Preview: Robert Holmes Bell, a federal judge whose three decades on the bench included the rare issuance of a death sentence in Michigan, died Thursday. He was 79.

Joran van der Sloot case: Beth Holloway says 'wheels of justice' are beginning to turn after arraignment

Preview: Beth Holloway says that the "wheels of justice" are beginning to turn after Joran van der Sloot was arraigned in federal court on Friday.

Former North Carolina legislator sentenced to 5 years probation for homeless shelter spending

Preview: A former North Carolina state legislator and city council member has been sentenced to five years of probation and ordered to pay restitution after pleading guilty to fraud.

Federal appeals court allows lawsuit by Philadelphia officers fired over racist, violent social media posts

Preview: A federal appeals court ruled that twelve Philadelphia police officers, who were either fired or suspended for posting racist content, can proceed with a lawsuit against the city.

MI woman withdraws plea, will stand trial for 3 young sons' drowning deaths in pond crash

Preview: Leticia Gonzales, whose three sons drowned after her SUV crashed into an icy pond, has withdrawn her no-contest plea after a judge rejected a deal sparing her a lengthy prison sentence.

Prosecutor seeks death penalty against Kansas man accused of killing 2 sons

Preview: A prosecutor says he will be seeking the death penalty for a 43-year-old Kansas man who is accused of killing his two sons before fleeing to Oklahoma with his younger daughters.

Top Stories
Second Trump indictment freezes GOP primary as rivals tap-dance around charges - CNN

Preview: Second Trump indictment freezes GOP primary as rivals tap-dance around charges  CNN Everything we know so far about Trump's federal indictment in classified documents probe  CBS News Ari Melber: Unsealed indictment reveals 'what looks to me like Donald Trump's worst nightmare'  MSNBC What 31 documents Trump had at Mar-a-Lago, according to the indictment  The Washington Post Opinion | Trump’s Indictment: The Department of Justice Had No Choice  The New York Times

Trump said on tape he didn't declassify secret Iran documents - The Washington Post

Preview: Trump said on tape he didn't declassify secret Iran documents  The Washington Post Anger toward Gen. Milley may have led Trump to discuss documents, adding to indictment evidence  CBS News Trump makes 'damning' admission on tape  CNN Analysis | The quote that distills why Donald Trump is facing federal indictment  The Washington Post Trump was caught on tape. Congratulations, Donald – you played yourself | Opinion  The Independent

Colombia plane crash: Four children found alive in Amazon after 40 days - BBC

Preview: Colombia plane crash: Four children found alive in Amazon after 40 days  BBC Four children found alive, rescued from Amazon jungle 40 days after surviving plane crash  KENS 5: Your San Antonio News Source Missing children found after 40 days in Amazon survived like ‘children of the jungle,’ Colombian president says  CNN Missing Colombian children from deadly jungle plane crash found alive after 40-day search  Fox News 4 children lost for 40 days after a plane crash are found alive in Colombian jungle  NPR

Trump Faces Judge Aileen Cannon—Who He Appointed And Has Already Sided With Him - Forbes

Preview: Trump Faces Judge Aileen Cannon—Who He Appointed And Has Already Sided With Him  Forbes 'Serious questions' over Trump appointed judge said to be overseeing indictment case  MSNBC Why critics are upset that Judge Aileen Cannon will preside over Trump's new criminal trial  Yahoo News Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee, initially assigned to oversee his case: Sources  ABC News Trump-appointed Judge Cannon to initially oversee Trump indictment case  MSNBC

Nancy Mace hits back at Biden for calling bribery allegations 'malarkey': It is 'legitimate and very credible' - Fox News

Preview: Nancy Mace hits back at Biden for calling bribery allegations 'malarkey': It is 'legitimate and very credible'  Fox News US President Joe Biden accused of taking $5 million bribe | WION Pulse  WION LARRY KUDLOW: Evidence against the Biden crime family is mounting across the board  Fox Business Conservatives warn Biden after he jokes about alleged bribery scandal: 'Accountability is coming'  Fox News Joe Biden accused of taking $5m bribe, according to FBI document | Latest News | WION  WION

El Niño has arrived, which may make Southern California wetter - Los Angeles Times

Preview: El Niño has arrived, which may make Southern California wetter  Los Angeles Times El Nino: how could it affect where you live?  Reuters What Is El Niño and How It Affects Weather  TIME Could El Nino push us past the 1.5 degree point? | DW News  DW News El Nino has returned. What does that mean for Utah?  KSL NewsRadio

Judge grants bond for woman who shot, killed her neighbor in Ocala - WESH 2 Orlando

Preview: Judge grants bond for woman who shot, killed her neighbor in Ocala  WESH 2 Orlando Florida woman who fatally shot a Black neighbor admitted hurling racial slurs at victim’s children in the past, affidavit says  CNN Florida woman accused of fatally shooting her neighbor is granted bond  NBC News Vigil held for Ocala mother who was shot, killed by neighbor  WKMG News 6 & ClickOrlando Florida woman who fatally shot neighbor granted $154,000 bond  WXYZ 7 Action News Detroit

Texas businessman central to AG Ken Paxton impeachment indicted for financial crimes - The Dallas Morning News

Preview: Texas businessman central to AG Ken Paxton impeachment indicted for financial crimes  The Dallas Morning News Paxton impeachment: Nate Paul appears in federal court Friday  WFAA Nate Paul, close associate of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, faces eight felony counts  CNN Love those Houston lawyers. But it’s time for impeached Texas AG Ken Paxton to quit | Opinion  Fort Worth Star-Telegram Paxton trial promises to be as serious as this past legislative session (Opinion)  Houston Chronicle

Two Trump Lawyers Quit a Day After His Indictment - The New York Times

Preview: Two Trump Lawyers Quit a Day After His Indictment  The New York Times Two Trump lawyers resigned following his indictment. But why?  MSNBC Trump, lawyers part ways after federal indictment  Fox News Trump loses two lawyers just hours after 2nd indictment - POLITICO  POLITICO Trump announces changes to legal team amid classified docs indictment  MSNBC

Joran van der Sloot pleads 'not guilty' to federal charges of extortion, wire fraud - WVTM13 Birmingham

Preview: Joran van der Sloot pleads 'not guilty' to federal charges of extortion, wire fraud  WVTM13 Birmingham Van Der Sloot to face U.S. judge on Friday  WFAA Joran van der Sloot case: Natalee Holloway suspect pleads not guilty to extortion, wire fraud charges  Fox News Joran van der Sloot pleads not guilty to extorting Natalee Holloway's family  CBS News Joran van der Sloot pleads not guilty as Natalee Holloway's mom looks on  KTRK-TV

Top Stories
Schiff suggests DOJ's detailed indictment proves Trump's 'maligned intent’

Preview: Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said the Justice Department’s detailed indictment proves former President Trump had a “maligned intent” in keeping the documents that were taken from the White House to Mar-a-Lago after his presidency ended. Schiff told MSNBC’s Nicole Wallace in an interview on Friday that the indictment is “stunning” in the amount of detail...

Arizona governor vetoes transgender bathroom bill, condemns it as 'attack' on children

Preview: Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs (D) vetoed a bill that would have prevented students in public schools from using a bathroom or changing facility for a sex different from their gender assigned at birth. Hobbs said in her veto message on Thursday that she will veto every bill that “aims to attack and harm children,” as...

MSNBC hosts laugh during Maddow's 'dramatic reading' of Trump indictment

Preview: The hosts on MSNBC had a laugh on Friday during a “dramatic reading” that host Rachel Maddow gave of former President Trump’s indictment over the classified and sensitive documents kept at Mar-a-Lago after his presidency.  Maddow recited a transcript of an interview that Trump allegedly gave to a writer and a publisher for an at-the-time...

DOE announces $850M loan for battery plant

Preview: Welcome to The Hill's Energy & Environment newsletter {beacon} Energy & Environment Energy & Environment   The Big Story DOE tentatively OKs loan for battery maker The Energy Department on Friday announced that it conditionally approved an $850 million loan to a battery manufacturing plant in Arizona. © Getty The loan would go to...

Mayorkas taps Jason Owens to replace retiring Border Patrol chief

Preview: Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced Friday that he is choosing Jason Owens to serve as the next chief of U.S. Border Patrol. Mayorkas said in a release that Owens will succeed Raul Ortiz as the head of the agency responsible for securing the country’s borders and preventing illegal crossings and threats from entering. ...

Youngkin slams Trump indictment, argues it hurts trust in legal system

Preview: Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R) slammed the indictment against former President Trump that was released Friday, arguing it undermines faith in the country’s justice system. Youngkin argued in a tweet that the charges demonstrate that two versions of a justice system exist in the country, with some prosecuted and others not. “These charges are unprecedented,...

Murkowski: charges against Trump 'quite serious and cannot be casually dismissed' 

Preview: Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) on Friday said the charges contained in a 37-count indictment brought by Justice Department (DOJ) special counsel Jack Smith against former President Trump are “quite serious and cannot be casually dismissed.” Murkowski, who says the Republican Party needs to move past Trump and was one of seven Senate Republicans who...

US authorities charge Russians in crypto hack

Preview: Welcome to The Hill's Technology newsletter {beacon} View Online Technology Technology   The Big Story DOJ charges Russians in hack of crypto exchange The Department of Justice on Friday unsealed charges against two Russian nationals accused of participating in a 2011 hack of cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox. © Getty Authorities said the two Russians, Alexey...

Bolton calls on Trump to end campaign with criminal charges 'piling up’

Preview: Former national security adviser John Bolton called on former President Trump to end his campaign for president following the release of the 37-count federal indictment against him. Bolton tweeted on Friday that criminal charges are piling up against Trump and he would support the rule of law instead of violating it if he truly believed...

Trump indicted in classified docs case

Preview: Welcome to The Hill's Defense & NatSec newsletter {beacon} Defense &National Security Defense &National Security   The Big Story Trump faces 37 counts in classified documents case The former president is accused of having kept secret files on everything from U.S. nuclear programs to secrets on foreign allies. © AP The Department of Justice (DOJ)...

Top Stories
GOP Governor Grills Republican Candidates Over Not Campaigning Off Trump Indictment

Preview: "You almost look like you're defending him at this point," New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu said of Trump's rivals for the presidential nomination.

Officer Who Raced To Parkland Massacre Scene Testifies Against Deputy Who Stayed Outside

Preview: Officer Richard Best testified that Deputy Scot Peterson told him the shooter was upstairs, contradicting the deputy's previous story.

California Family Finds 1 Million Pennies While Cleaning Out Old Home

Preview: John Reyes is hoping to sell the copper coins for $25,000 and says it's possible some of the coins might be particularly rare.

GOP Congressmen All But Declare War After Trump Indictment

Preview: Rep. Clay Higgins, one of at least two Republicans to use warlike rhetoric over Donald Trump's charges, told his Twitter followers to “Buckle up.”

Donald Trump’s Indictment Has A 'But Her Emails' Section

Preview: The former president's attacks on Hillary Clinton in 2016 are now evidence against him.

Twitter Users Can't Stop Talking About Trump Toilet Pic In Unsealed Indictment

Preview: The former president is getting a lot of crap for allegedly keeping sensitive documents in a bathroom.

2 Of Donald Trump’s Top Attorneys Resign In Wake Of Indictment

Preview: One of them, Jim Trusty, recently appeared on television defending the former president.

Here’s The Unsealed Indictment Over Donald Trump’s Handling Of Classified Documents

Preview: The former president will face 37 charges over documents he took to Mar-a-Lago after leaving office.

Resurfaced Donald Trump Tweet About Classified Info Has Twitter Users Giggling

Preview: There's always a tweet. Always. Always. Always.

Los Angeles County DA's Office Quits Twitter Due To 'Vicious' Anti-LGBTQ Attacks

Preview: The Los Angeles county district attorney's office had tweeted photos of its entry in a Pride parade, which was met with "homophobic and transphobic slurs."

Top Stories
Key Words: Mark Zuckerberg says Meta may be ‘primary beneficiary’ of Apple Vision Pro headset

Preview: "A lot of people aren't going to find that to be affordable," Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said about the $3,499 price of Apple's Vision Pro VR headset.

Washington Watch: Top Democrats use default scare to push new debt-ceiling overhaul bill

Preview: Leading Democrats in the House and Senate will advance a bill aimed at overhauling the debt-ceiling process, according to a report.

: As the Equal Pay Act turns 60, ‘an uneven playing field’ remains. Here’s where pay equity stands.

Preview: Women working full time are paid about 84 cents for every dollar paid to men, according to the federal government.

: Smoke gets in your eyes? High-tech masks help you breathe easier — for a price.

Preview: N95 masks are the most cost-effective option, but almost anything is cheaper than the Dyson Zone air-purifying headset.

: FDA advisers vote in favor of Biogen and Eisai’s collaborative Alzheimer’s treatment

Preview: If granted full FDA approval, which could come in early July, treatment could boost annual Medicare spending by nearly $9 billion, analysis shows.

Economic Report: Banks increase lending for third straight week

Preview: Total bank lending rose by $4.6 billion to $12.1 trillion in the week ending May 31, the Federal Reserve said Friday.

Market Extra: S&P 500 exits longest bear market since 1948. What stock-market history says about what happens next.

Preview: The S&P 500 ends its longest bear-market run since 1948. Here's a look at how the benchmark has fared after waving goodbye to past bears.

Market Snapshot: U.S. stocks end higher, S&P 500 books longest weekly win streak since August 2022 after bear-market exit

Preview: U.S. stocks ended slightly higher Friday, with the S&P 500 index edging up after exiting bear-market territory a day earlier.

Bond Report: Two-year Treasury yields end at 3-month highs as investors eye approaching Fed decision

Preview: U.S. bond yields advance on Friday as investors weigh what could be next for interest rates ahead of the Federal Reserve’s June 13-14 policy meeting.

Top Stories
DeSantis says Trump indictment is a 'mortal threat.' He couldn't be more wrong.

Preview: Republicans like House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis denounced former President Donald Trump's indictment -- for backwards reasons.

Walt Nauta’s indictment is a warning to 'Trump’s Mar-a-Lago mafia'

Preview: Special counsel Jack Smith has indicted former President Donald Trump and his aide Walt Nauta in the investigation of classified documents.

Read: Trump indictment in Jack Smith's documents probe

Preview: Read the full Trump indictment text from the classified documents case, which details all 37 counts the former president faces.

Judge Aileen Cannon is back in play in Trump’s documents case

Preview: Judge Aileen Cannon is back as the classified documents case moves forward following Trump’s indictment after a federal investigation.

Photos show boxes of classified documents all over Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate

Preview: According to the unsealed indictment against Donald Trump, one of the former president's aides took photos of boxes containing classified documents at Mar-a-Lago and texted them to another Trump employee. MSNBC’s Chris Jansing reports on the details of the revealed photos.

Trump didn't learn from his first impeachment. Now he’s finally paying the price.

Preview: Trump indictment charges from special counsel Jack Smith of over 100 classified documents recovered from Mar-a-Lago have finally caught up to Trump.

Trump's indictment-inspired video rant tells us nothing — and everything

Preview: If you hoped Trump might clear up what he’s been charged following Jack Smith's classified documents investigation, you're out of luck.

Remember: Trump’s documents situation looks way different than Biden’s

Preview: Based on what we know, there’s no reason to take seriously Trump’s false equivalency with Biden’s classified documents situation, which is still being investigated.

Two Trump lawyers resigned following his indictment. But why?

Preview: Two of Trump’s defense lawyers resigned from his defense team just hours after his indictment in the classified documents case. Andrew Weissmann, Rachel Maddow and others discuss why they may have left Trump’s side.

Trump-appointed Judge Cannon to initially oversee Trump indictment case

Preview: Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee, has been assigned to initially oversee the case involving the Department of Justice's indictment of former President Trump over his handling of classified documents. NBC's Laura Jarrett reports.

Top Stories
Saudi crown prince threatened US ‘economic consequences’ during feud over oil production: report

Preview: The crown prince claimed in private that “he will not deal with the U.S. administration anymore" and promised “major economic consequences for Washington," according to the document.

Bam Adebayo’s missed dunk led to rim delay in Game 4 of NBA Finals

Preview: It was an eventful Game 4 of the NBA Finals and it wasn't because of the Heats near comeback or Nikola Jokić's fouling out.

Florida’s ‘Dr. Deep’ resurfaces after a record 100 days living underwater

Preview: Dr. Joseph Dituri set a new record for the longest time living underwater without depressurization during his stay at Jules’ Undersea Lodge, submerged beneath 30 feet of water in a Key Largo lagoon.

Mets’ Tomas Nido clears waivers after DFA, accepts Triple-A assignment

Preview: PITTSBURGH — The Mets will have a familiar face in the minor leagues to provide organizational catching depth. Tomas Nido cleared waivers Friday, the team announced, and accepted an outright assignment to Triple-A Syracuse. The catcher was designated for assignment Monday, when Omar Narvaez returned from the injured list. Nido could have refused the outright...

PGA Tour players who remained will get extra benefit after LIV merger: Jimmy Dunne

Preview: Dunne explained that players moving to LIV would not be eligible to participate in the new company’s equity plan.

Russia claims it blew up advanced Ukrainian tank, but video shows its helicopter attacked a tractor

Preview: A grainy black-and-white gunsight video Russia released this week to bolster a claim its military blew up some of Ukraine’s most fearsome tanks actually documented the destruction of a tractor.

Nuggets take commanding 3-1 lead over Heat in NBA Finals

Preview: Aaron Gordon scored 27 points, Nikola Jokic added 23 and the Denver Nuggets moved one win away from their first NBA championship

Woman’s decomposed body found inside bin in the Bronx

Preview: A woman’s “semi-decomposed” body was found stuffed inside of a plastic bin in a wooded area in the Bronx on Friday afternoon, NYPD said. The grisly discovery was made around 12:15 p.m. near 4438 Edson Avenue in Wakefield in a secluded area used as a shortcut by locals to get to the train and stores,...

Mets and Pirates fans brawl in stands during Amazins’ blowout loss

Preview: The Mets might've gone down without a whimper Friday night, but the fans in the stands at PNC Park put up a fight — literally.

Suit-clad Bryan Kohberger appears in court after Kaylee Goncalves’ sister shares heartbreaking birthday tribute

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Trump Indictment Lays Out Evidence for Historic Charges in Documents Case

Preview: The indictment details evidence that the former president placed national security secrets in jeopardy and schemed to thwart the investigation into the matter.

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Preview: The accounts in the 49-page indictment provide compelling evidence of a shocking indifference toward some of the country’s most sensitive secrets.

Battles Rage as Ukraine Tries to Retake Russian-Occupied Territory

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Boris Johnson Resigns From Parliament

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The Slatest Jun 9: The Trump Classified Documents Indictment Have Been Unsealed—and Whew Boy!

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Private Employers May Not Fire Employees for Writing to the Legislature, Tennessee Court Holds

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Donald Trump Indicted on More Than 30 Charges in Classified Documents Case

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Pat Robertson’s influence over conservative culture spanned decades

Preview: Rev. Pat Robertson, controversial founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network and the Christian Coalition, is dead at 93. | Wally McNamee/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images Pat Robertson was a cartoonish figure. He was also one of the most powerful men in conservative America. Televangelist Pat Robertson, who died on June 8 at the age of 93, occupied the cultural landscape as an incredibly influential, doomsaying extremist. The one-time Southern Baptist minister’s career in television spanned six decades, enabling him to espouse religious dogma layered in bigotry to millions of viewers on his long-running daily show, The 700 Club. The man who turned his media empire, the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), into a vast, powerful political machine did so by going after every perceivable “enemy” of the church, from feminists and queer people to Palestinians and Haitian earthquake victims. Through the CBN and The 700 Club, Robertson created the blueprint for decades of increasingly extreme right-wing media. Alongside other right-wing public figures and media personalities of the late 20th century, such as Jerry Falwell, Phyllis Schlafly, and Rush Limbaugh, he helped codify the language and rhetoric of that extreme, even as he later seemed to occasionally decry the culture he helped create. As Tara Burton detailed for Vox in 2017, Robertson’s CBN was and arguably still is a powerhouse of religion and politics. Created by Robertson in 1961, the network became known for religious programming, which it eventually merged with news programming. At the height of its influence during the ’80s and ’90s, the CBN seamlessly presented political propaganda as religious doctrine to its millions of viewers. As we left behind the civil rights era and the feminist and countercultural movements, conservative anxiety expressed itself using televangelism as its mouthpiece. So often, the dark things that lurked in white evangelical America’s collective subconscious first swam to the surface on The 700 Club. It platformed the views of anti-feminists like Edwin Louis Cole, who argued that Christian men should be masculine authorities over their wives and children; Cole’s 1982 book Maximized Manhood included a foreword written by 700 Club co-host Ben Kinchlow. Most controversial of all were the views of Robertson himself. As Burton observes, his adherence to premillennial dispensationalism — the evangelical view that God has a preordained, structured timeline for the end of the world — led him to drop awful dictums, including blaming hurricanes on gay people and tornadoes on a lack of prayer. He frequently described himself as a prophet. All of this made him something of a laughing stock as a public figure, yet he also voiced political positions which, though viewed as extreme in the ’80s, seem almost commonplace today. Like many evangelical Christian leaders of the ’80s and ’90s, he believed in a “bias in the Government against families,” argued that welfare had created a “permanent underclass,” and worried that foreign powers were encroaching on American autonomy. Unlike most Christian leaders, Robertson had a platform to broadcast those views directly to millions of Americans. It’s hard for modern audiences to comprehend just how huge televangelism was. An outgrowth of the Christian revivalist movement spearheaded by Billy Graham, it was one of the most popular media formats of the late ’70s and ’80s. Flamboyant pastors like Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Bakker and his then-wife Tammy Faye Messner, Falwell, and Robertson were household names among evangelical Americans who tuned in weekly or nightly for their shows. A 1985 Nielsen survey commissioned by the CBN found that a staggering 60 million Americans, or “more than 50 percent of all Americans with a television set,” watched at least one televangelical show per month. Topping the long list of televangelist programming, with 16 million monthly viewers, was Robertson’s 700 Club. By 1987, televangelism was a massive industry, raking in $2 billion annually, mainly from viewer donations. According to the book Jesus and John Wayne by Kristin Kobes Du Mez, the CBN reportedly earned over $50 million a year during this era, though exact numbers are murky. That gave Robertson tremendous clout. During the Reagan era, the White House invited Robertson to receive briefings from Oliver North, then serving as deputy director of political-military affairs for the National Security Council, and Reagan gave interviews directly to The 700 Club and other televangelist shows. In 1988, on the back of all that goodwill, Robertson ran for president. Despite an early strong showing in caucuses and primaries, Robertson withdrew and endorsed George H.W. Bush. Even as his erratic behavior was apparent — a 1988 New York Times profile reported that early in their marriage his wife suspected Robertson was schizophrenic — his empire expanded. By 1994, CBN claimed The 700 Club had generated over $600 million in total revenue. Per an Esquire profile, that empire also consisted of “the nonprofit CBN (1993 revenues, $140 million); Regent University (endowment, $154 million); International Family Entertainment, the for-profit holding company (1993 revenues, $208 million) that owns, among other things, the Family Channel, Mary Tyler Moore Entertainment, and the Ice Capades; and various other businesses, including the Founders Inn, a smoke-free, alcohol-free hotel and conference center that charges ninety dollars a night.” The CBN’s cable offshoot, The Family Channel, still exists today, owned by Disney under the name Freeform. More explicitly political was the Christian Coalition, which Robertson founded in 1989 following his failed presidential run. Under Robertson, the Coalition became a hugely influential voter mobilization and right-wing lobby group. In 1994, the Coalition, as part of Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America,” was crucial in helping return control of the House of Representatives to Republicans after decades of a Democratic majority. Though Robertson resigned in 2001, the Coalition continues to advocate for political platforms today. Robertson was controversial for more than just his opinions. In the ’90s, he was accused of scamming loyal viewers out of millions of charity dollars that were earmarked for a Congolese refugee program but which were reportedly used instead to fund Robertson’s failed diamond-mining scheme. Though multiple investigations and a documentary explored these allegations, the charity, Operation Blessing, denied the claims. Prosecutors declined to bring charges against Robertson, and later released a report clearing him and the charity of intent to defraud. If Robertson was slippery that way, it’s arguable that the media allowed him to be. As he aged and his profile faded, Robertson’s cultural impact was reduced to a litany of nonsensical, bigoted sound bytes. Who’s saying the “darnedest” things? Time asked in 2003, comparing — randomly but not so randomly — Jessica Simpson and Pat Robertson. Perhaps because mainstream pundits viewed Robertson as an eccentric, the sheer breadth of his cultural footprint didn’t truly become apparent until the Trump years, when it became clear that his influence had barely waned at all. Robertson was a staunch supporter of Donald Trump’s presidency, arguing that he was ordained by God and using CBN’s platforms to deliver Trump’s messaging directly to viewers. In an echo of the Reagan presidency, Trump used CBN’s news show Faith Nation, which launched in 2017, as an unofficial propaganda arm. Robertson himself continued to host The 700 Club until his retirement in 2021 at the age of 91. His son, Gordon Robertson, took over his spot as the show’s anchor. Current estimates place the CBN’s annual revenue at between $390 million and $560 million annually. Even though, in a rare moment of clarity, Robertson said in 2022 that Trump lives in an “alternate reality” and should move on from his claims of election fraud, Robertson was perhaps somewhat responsible for helping to nurture that delusion. He understood, long before Trump did, the way media can shape viewers’ reality. “It takes a little while on TV, four or five minutes, to switch 40 percent of the totally negative people into, ‘let’s take a second look,’” he said in 1987. In light of this long history, it’s hard to read some of his more recent opinions — moments in which he appeared to be thawing, or at least showing a more compassionate side — and know what to make of them. In 2013, he declared that he believed trans identity is “very rare” but real, and that “it’s not for you to decide or to judge.” In 2019, he spoke out against the US withdrawal of troops from Syria and against Alabama’s “extreme” and “ill-considered” anti-abortion law. In 2020, he rebuked President Trump for his response to protests over the death of George Floyd, admonishing him for cracking down instead of standing in solidarity with the protesters. In 2021, he went on to sternly rebuke the police shooting of Daunte Wright. The cynic might argue that these opinions, too, were merely opportunistic attention-getters. “Robertson has spent decades lying and obfuscating, throwing himself into the middle of discussions in which he wasn’t invited, to offer opinions that nobody wanted,” Erin Gloria Ryan wrote for the Daily Beast in 2017. “He’s weighed in on ... [every] topic du jour, tragic or zeitgeist, that can help boost Pat Robertson Awareness. He’s thrown his fortunes in with warlords, hucksters, and profiteers.” Whether Robertson’s aim all along was merely attention or the shaping of a culture, he certainly succeeded in both.

The detailed, damning new Trump indictment, explained

Preview: Jane Barlow/PA Images via Getty Images The allegations are that Trump deceived his own attorneys and the government to try and hold on to documents including defense, nuclear, and military secrets. Special counsel Jack Smith’s indictment of former president Donald Trump in the classified documents investigation was unsealed Friday. It is detailed and damning. The indictment alleges that, while out of office, Trump deliberately kept many documents involving military, nuclear, and intelligence secrets. It makes the case that he knew full well some of that information was classified. It contains a wealth of evidentiary detail attesting to Trump’s intense interest in those documents, and his deep involvement in discussions about what to return to the government. And it recounts how Trump allegedly schemed to hide certain documents from his own attorneys and from the government. Some of this evidence relies on a recording Trump’s own attorney Evan Corcoran made recounting the case so far. According to Corcoran, in discussions about what to return to the government, Trump asked him, “Isn’t it better if there are no documents?” Overall, Smith’s team charged Trump with 37 counts, accusing him of unauthorized retention of defense information, conspiring to obstruct justice, withholding government documents, scheming to conceal information from a grand jury, and causing false statements to be made to the government. They also charged Trump’s personal aide Walt Nauta on six counts, accusing him of making false statements to the FBI and conspiring with Trump to conceal information. “Our laws that protect national defense information are critical for the safety and security of the United States and they must be enforced,” Smith said in a public statement. “Violations of those laws put our country at risk.” Some mysteries remain. The indictment does not seek to provide an explanation of Trump’s motives in holding on to these documents. What was he trying to do? And its descriptions of the documents themselves remain quite vague, since they are still classified — any details, such as the names of countries involved, are redacted. Overall, though, the indictment appears formidable. We’re still a long way from any trial — which would take place in Florida under a potentially Trump-friendly judge — or conviction. But the charges add to Trump’s heightening legal jeopardy, with potentially more to come. What documents did Trump keep? Since the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago and the government’s claim they recovered over 100 classified documents there last year, one big mystery has been what, exactly, those documents were about. Smith’s indictment didn’t exactly clear that up, but he offered more detail than we’ve had previously. He lists the following broad topic areas the documents cover: Defense and weapons capabilities of both the US and foreign countries US nuclear programs Potential vulnerabilities of the US and its allies to military attack Plans for possible retaliation in response to a foreign attack That seems like pretty serious stuff the government would prefer not to have sitting around in Mar-a-Lago. Smith filed separate charges against Trump for unauthorized retention of each of 31 documents, which each get a vague description. Two of these descriptions specifically mention the word “nuclear.” Count 5 is a “document dated June 2020 concerning nuclear capabilities of a foreign country.” Count 19 is about an “undated document concerning nuclear weaponry of the United States.” Twenty other document descriptions include the word “military.” For instance, Count 11 is about an “undated document concerning military contingency planning of the United States,” and several other descriptions are about “military capabilities” or “activity” of foreign countries. Other documents are from intelligence briefings about other countries. There are hints about two more specific documents. One reportedly involves Trump’s attempts to dispute claims in the press by Joint Chiefs of Staff chair Mark Milley, that he stopped Trump from attacking Iran. In a recorded session talking with several people on July 21, 2021, Trump mentioned, “I have a big pile of papers,” went looking for something, and pulled out a document he said disproved Milley. “Secret, this is secret information,” Trump said, per the indictment. “Look, look at this. You attack, and —” Later, he mused that, “as president, I could have declassified it,” but “now I can’t.” He added: “This is still a secret ... Isn’t that interesting?” Department of Justice Later, the indictment alleges, Trump commented to a staffer of his political action committee that a military operation in a certain country was not going well, pulled out a classified map to show the staffer, and added that he shouldn’t be showing it. Per the timing — August or September 2021 — the country here could be Afghanistan. Smith paints a picture of Trump being deeply interested in these documents While most of the details of the documents themselves remain obscure, the indictment paints a detailed picture of Trump as being very involved with them — and with discussions about how to respond to the government’s requests to get those documents back. Those requests first came through the National Archives in 2021. And the indictment describes how Nauta, Trump’s personal aide, brought Trump boxes to his residence to review. “He’s tracking the boxes, more to follow today on whether he wants to go through more today or tomorrow,” Nauta texted another Trump employee in January 2022. (When he was later interviewed by the FBI, Nauta falsely told them that he didn’t do any of this, the indictment alleges.) Trump returned 15 boxes of documents to the National Archives in January 2022. In those boxes, the government found 197 documents with classification markings, and officials suspected Trump had more. So the Justice Department got involved, and in May 2022 they sent a grand jury subpoena to Trump’s office, requesting all documents with classification markings. Trump then discussed how to respond with two of his attorneys, one of whom was Evan Corcoran. Corcoran later recorded a lengthy voice memo chronicling his work on the case, which Smith’s team obtained by citing the “crime-fraud exemption” to attorney-client privilege. (Basically, if you use your attorney to commit a crime, privilege doesn’t apply.) Corcoran describes how Trump said he didn’t “want anybody looking through my boxes,” how he suggested he should tell the government, “We don’t have anything here,” and how he asked, “Isn’t it better if there are no documents?” Department of Justice Trump scheduled a date for Corcoran to search through all the other boxes in the storage room. But before that, per the indictment, Trump directed Nauta to remove 64 boxes from that room and bring them to his residence. Later, Nauta brought 30 boxes back to the storage room. The indictment implies a whole lot of material did not make it back. Cocoran eventually searched the now-less-crowded storage room and found 38 classified documents there. Per his voice memo, when he discussed what to do with them, Trump “made a funny motion” that he took as an implication that “if there’s anything really bad in there, like, you know, pluck it out,” but “he didn’t say that.” Department of Justice In June 2022, Trump’s attorneys submitted a statement to the government asserting they’d conducted a diligent search and returned all classified documents. But DOJ still didn’t believe them — and they were right not to, as the FBI’s August 2022 search of Mar-a-Lago proved. During that search, the FBI seized 102 documents with classification markings. Most of the charges against Trump that cite specific documents are from this batch. The indictment does not present a theory of Trump’s motives Since the public learned of this investigation after the Mar-a-Lago search last August, there’s been much speculation about exactly why Trump was so set on holding on to these documents. The indictment does little to clear that up. It establishes that he kept the documents and that he was keenly interested in keeping them, but it doesn’t try to explain why. Perhaps prosecutors will present more of a theory about this at trial. A report from the Washington Post last year claimed that investigators had determined that his motive was “largely his ego and a desire to hold on to the materials as trophies or mementos,” citing people familiar with the matter. The indictment does not outright back up that claim but it doesn’t present anything to disprove it, either. As a result, some of Trump’s defenders are already coalescing around a defense that, hey, he wasn’t selling them or giving them away, so what’s the issue? (All the obstruction of the investigation would be, I guess, something like a harmless prank, in this thinking.) First read of indictment and my reaction is “That’s it? The conspiracy is with the aide who moved the boxes? No documents were sold or given to third parties not in his close employ?” — Hugh Hewitt (@hughhewitt) June 9, 2023 We don’t know why Trump wanted to keep the documents. But the indictment alleges in stark terms that Trump wanted to act as though the law didn’t apply to him. Turns out, under special counsel Smith, it did.

Your 7 biggest questions about Trump’s latest indictment, answered

Preview: Former US President Donald Trump watches from a box on the 18th green during day one of the LIV Golf Invitational - DC at Trump National Golf Club on May 26, 2023, in Sterling, Virginia. | Rob Carr/Getty Images Here’s what you need to know about the classified documents case against Trump. Former President Donald Trump was charged Thursday with federal crimes in connection with his alleged refusal to return classified documents to federal authorities after he left the White House. Trump was already the first former president to face criminal charges and is now the first to face federal criminal charges. He was indicted in New York in April in a separate case concerning hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels during his 2016 campaign. And the twice-impeached former president could face additional legal troubles given that he is the target of several additional ongoing civil and criminal investigations. The indictment, which was unsealed Friday, charges Trump with 31 counts of willful retention of national defense information under the Espionage Act and one count of false statements and representations. Together with his body man Walt Nauta, Trump was also charged with one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice, one count of withholding a document or record, one count of corruptly concealing a document or record, one count of concealing a document in a document in a federal investigation, and one count of scheming to conceal. Nauta was additionally charged with one count of false statements and representations. Jack Smith, a special counsel appointed by the Justice Department in November to investigate the case, said in a press conference Friday that he intended to pursue a “speedy trial.” “Our laws that protect national defense Information are critical to the safety and security of the United States and they must be enforced,” he said. “Violations of those laws put our country at risk.” Trump said Thursday that he is an “innocent man” and framed the indictment as a political attack designed to undermine his 2024 presidential campaign. Other Republicans, including many of his GOP rivals in the primary, have repeated that defense. “They’re trying to destroy our reputation so they can win an election,” Trump said. Here’s what you need to know about the indictment and what comes next. 1) What does it mean that Trump was indicted? An indictment is a document that lays out crimes a grand jury — a group of 16 to 23 people selected at random — believes someone committed. Trump’s announcement on Thursday means at least 12 members of a federal grand jury were convinced, given the evidence provided by the Justice Department, that there is probable cause Trump committed a federal crime and should face a trial if prosecutors continue to pursue the case. The decision to indict doesn’t necessarily indicate guilt on Trump’s part; his innocence or guilt will be decided at a trial. It also doesn’t stop him from running for president. But during his arraignment in Miami federal court Tuesday, Trump will be put on notice of the allegations against him, which he is expected to challenge. 2) What are the charges against Trump? The indictment, which was filed in Florida federal court, says the classified documents that Trump had in his possession included information relating to US and foreign defense, various nations’ weapons capabilities, and US nuclear programs. The documents also detailed “potential vulnerabilities of the United States and its allies to military attack,” as well as “plans for possible retaliation in response to a foreign attack,” according to the indictment. “The unauthorized disclosure of these classified documents could put at risk the national security of the United States, foreign relations, the safety of the United States military and human sources, and the continued viability of sensitive intelligence collection methods,” the indictment states. Trump allegedly stored the documents throughout Mar-a-Lago, including in a ballroom, a bathroom and shower, an office space, his bedroom, and a storage room. He’s alleged to have twice shown the documents to people who did not have a security clearance, including a group featuring a writer, a publisher, and members of his staff, as well as a representative for his political action committee. Trump knew that he had held on to “secret information” that he hadn’t declassified before leaving office, the indictment says, and he acknowledged this in a conversation with an unidentified writer that his aides recorded with his consent. The indictment says that Trump then “endeavored to obstruct the FBI and grand jury investigations” into his retention of the documents and to “conceal” that he had done so by directing his staff to move the documents around his properties, and by proposing that his attorneys lie about him having the documents. Trump also is accused of having suggested hiding or destroying them, at one point telling his lawyers, “Well look isn’t it better if there are no documents?” Nauta allegedly aided in that process. He’s accused of making false statements to the FBI about how the documents got to Trump’s residence and whether they were stored in a secure location. At Trump’s instruction, he also allegedly moved more than 60 boxes of documents before one of the former president’s attorneys was supposed to review them as part of their response to a DOJ subpoena. The attorney eventually reviewed the remaining boxes, and put all the documents with classified markings in a folder. Trump suggested they take those documents back to their hotel room and “pluck ... out” anything “really bad,” the lawyer told prosecutors. The attorney later turned over that folder to federal officials. Trump’s legal team then certified to the DOJ that they had complied with the subpoena, not knowing that Trump and Nauta had allegedly conspired to prevent them from reviewing most of the boxes of documents. 3) Could Trump go to prison — or to jail? The charges carry potential prison sentences, though it’s not at all clear that Trump will even be convicted. Each count related to Espionage Act violations alone could carry a maximum sentence of up to 10 years. For the conspiracy and false statements charges, it’s five years per offense; for the obstruction charges, it’s 20. But there’s a logistical question as to whether Trump could even go to prison given his required Secret Service detail and security concerns. These are uncharted waters for a former president. Trump’s security needs similarly limit the court’s options for jailing him pre-trial, and as a candidate for president he would seem to pose little flight risk. He was allowed to return home following his arraignment in New York and is unlikely to be jailed this time. 4) What happens next? Trump’s arraignment in Miami will likely follow a similar format to his arraignment in New York where he showed up in court to hear the charges against him and pleaded not guilty. He was fingerprinted, but not put in handcuffs and did not have his mugshot taken. US District Judge Aileen Cannon, whom Trump appointed in 2019, is reportedly overseeing the case for now. She was previously appointed as a special master to examine the documents retrieved from Mar-a-Lago last year and was criticized for delivering Trump several perplexing wins in those proceedings. As with the case against him in New York, the Florida court case could extend well into the 2024 campaign season or even beyond the election. 5) How are Republicans reacting? A number of Trump’s rivals in the GOP primary were quick to defend him Thursday. “The weaponization of federal law enforcement represents a mortal threat to a free society,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis tweeted. Right-wing activist Vivek Ramaswamy repeated his promise to pardon Trump if he’s elected and in a statement Thursday called the indictment “an affront to every citizen.” Republicans might be wary of using the latest indictment as a cudgel against the former president because the base still overwhelmingly approves of him — and his first indictment didn’t change that. He remains the frontrunner in the primary, with a 30 percentage point polling advantage on average over DeSantis. Sen. Mitt Romney, a longtime Trump critic, was among the few Republicans to support the Justice Department’s decision to move forward with indicting Trump. He called the allegations “serious” in a statement. “By all appearances, the Justice Department and special counsel have exercised due care, affording Mr. Trump the time and opportunity to avoid charges that would not generally have been afforded to others,” Romney said. 6) What happened with Trump’s first indictment again? Trump was indicted in April on charges related to hush money payments. The indictment includes 34 felony counts of falsification of business records to “conceal criminal conduct that hid damaging information from the voting public during the 2016 presidential election.” Though the crime of falsifying business records can be prosecuted as a misdemeanor under New York law, prosecutors elevated the charges to felonies, arguing Trump falsified records with the intent of covering up another crime. The indictment didn’t specify what that crime might be. But Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has said that his team believes Trump tried to cover up a violation of New York state election law, which prohibits promoting a candidacy by unlawful means, including “planned false statements to tax authorities.” He could face up to four years in prison for the falsification of business records (though serving time would be unusual for first-time offenders) and possible fines if convicted. The next in-person court date is December 4, and the case is currently slated to go to trial in January. 7) What are the other ongoing investigations into Trump? Smith is also leading a separate investigation into Trump’s involvement in the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the US Capitol. That inquiry follows a comprehensive House committee investigation last year that concluded that Trump had incited the insurrection and conspired to defraud the US government, referring him and other associates to the DOJ for prosecution. If charged and convicted on that basis, Trump could face up to 35 years in prison and more than $500,000 in fines. A special grand jury also investigated Trump and his associates’ efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia. The jury has transmitted its final report to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, who will decide whether to pursue charges. From the outset of the investigation, Willis zeroed in on a phone call in which Trump asked Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” the votes necessary for him to beat President Joe Biden in the state. CNN reported that prosecutors are considering racketeering charges, which carry fines and a maximum 20-year prison sentence. Prosecutors are also reportedly weighing conspiracy charges, which carry a maximum sentence of five years and up to a $250,000 fine. Finally, Trump faces a civil inquiry in New York centered on his business dealings. New York Attorney General Letitia James sued Trump, his company, and his three children for $250 million last year over alleged fraud, including lying about the value of the business, spanning a decade. A trial in that case is scheduled for October. But even if all of these investigations may complicate Trump’s attempt to win the White House, federal charges could become moot if he wins. Under a longstanding Department of Justice policy, a sitting president cannot be charged with a federal crime. That’s why former special counsel Robert Mueller never considered whether Trump committed a crime as part of his investigation of Russian interference in 2016. But that policy technically only governs the DOJ, raising the unresolved legal question as to whether district attorneys could prosecute the president for state or local crimes. Update, June 9, 3:30 pm ET: This story has been updated with additional information on the text of the indictment, comments from Smith’s press conference, and Republicans’ reactions to news of Trump’s indictment.

Biden’s former antitrust adviser tees off on Big Golf’s proposed merger

Preview: Brooks Koepka tees off at recent LIV Golf Invitational. | Rob Carr/Getty Images Why Tim Wu thinks regulators might block a PGA Tour-LIV Golf “partnership.” The golf world was rocked this week by news that the PGA Tour, Europe’s DP World Tour, and Saudi Arabia’s controversial LIV Golf plan to merge. Or, as the PGA Tour put it, “unify the game of golf.” PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan — who as recently as a year ago was using the 9/11 attacks, carried out mainly by Saudi citizens, to criticize PGA Tour players who had jumped to LIV — framed it a little differently: “take the competitor off the board.” The entities involved haven’t finalized the terms of the deal and it will need approval from various stakeholders, like the PGA Tour’s board of directors, before it can go forward. But even if it does, there may be another hazard up ahead: antitrust regulators, who have generally taken a more adversarial stance on corporate consolidation in the last several years. They might not be thrilled with the game (and business) of golf being “unified.” Tim Wu is a Columbia law professor who’s one of the leaders of an antitrust reform movement that would like to see US competition policy go back to its pre-1980s roots, when antitrust regulators and enforcers took a more oppositional stance to big mergers and corporate consolidation. He’s pretty doubtful that antitrust authorities will approve the deal. Wu knows what he’s talking about, especially considering he’s a former competition adviser to President Biden who helped shape the administration’s policies regarding competition, including authoring the sweeping executive order designed to promote it. Vox asked Wu to elaborate on some of those points and make the case to Americans who don’t watch golf for why this proposed merger should be important to them. This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity. Sara Morrison Does antitrust law cover sports? Tim Wu Yes. It’s a business. Sara Morrison Is this a merger? The PGA Tour is now calling it a “partnership.” What’s the difference? Tim Wu No one knows how the deal will be structured (maybe not even the parties who agreed to it). But if the result — whether a merger or a partnership — is an agreement not to compete, the antitrust law will care. The law doesn’t care what you call it. Sara Morrison Why should Americans who don’t follow golf or sports care about this? Tim Wu Three reasons: First, I think there’s a question of public sovereignty. It’s illegal to merge to monopoly. For the Saudis and the PGA to so brazenly flout that raises basic rule-of-law questions. In other words, I think people should want to know that the laws will be enforced even if the Saudi government has lots of money. Second, what we have here is mostly a labor case. While professional athletes may not be the most sympathetic workers, the fact is that when employers merge, employees usually get hurt. Many may not care if a pro-golfer makes less money, but there are other employees as well, and the principle of defending employees against mergers that will hurt them. Finally, Saudi Arabia buying and controlling a major American sports league matters as just a matter of geopolitics — these are significant assets, and who controls them matters for propaganda and other purposes. Sara Morrison Sen. Mitch McConnell says it’s “not a governmental concern.” Why wouldn’t it be a governmental concern? Tim Wu It is an irresponsible thing to say and he’s wrong. Congress made monopolization a “government concern” back in 1890 when it passed the Sherman Act. So I don’t know why he’d say that unless he is trying to pressure law enforcement, which is also wrong. Sara Morrison The US has two antitrust enforcers, the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission. Which one will handle this? Tim Wu The Justice Department. There also is an outside chance that another entity, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, might take a look too. They’d be looking for national security concerns, including those related to data collection. To be sure, national security isn’t so obviously implicated by the buying of a professional sports league as it is in the buying of a semiconductor firm. But that said, sports leagues are valuable media properties, and the US has traditionally been concerned about foreign ownership of major media properties. Sara Morrison What will DOJ’s considerations be when reviewing this merger and deciding whether or not to block it? Tim Wu As I said, no one knows what the “partnership” will actually look like. However, PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan gave a hint when he said a benefit of the deal is “to take the competitor off the board.” For that reason, I think a big question will be similar to the JetBlue-American Airlines alliance that was just blocked: Is the “partnership” actually a merger? More generally, does it “eliminate competition”? If the answer is yes, then the deal may be dead on arrival, but I think the Justice Department will want to have a sense of what this will mean for players and for media buyers. Sara Morrison Does the fact that there was already an investigation into the PGA Tour’s allegedly anticompetitive actions against LIV mean anything? Or is it a clean slate? Tim Wu It means they have a head start. Sara Morrison LIV Golf didn’t even exist just a few years ago. Does that make this merger any less of an antitrust issue, since it’s not a longtime competitor leaving the space? Or is it more of an issue, since it could also be seen as the PGA Tour almost immediately quashing a competitive threat? Tim Wu I think it can be spun both ways, but it looks an awful lot like the elimination of an upstart competitor. It is one of the classic antitrust stories: established monopoly faces upstart challenger; eventually both parties recognize it would be better for them to stop competing and split the profits. But the law doesn’t let you do that. Sara Morrison Is there a labor issue? Many in the antitrust reform movement — including the Biden competition executive order — have said that competition concerns need to include the impact on labor. One thing the PGA Tour was not happy about was how LIV lured golfers away with the promise of much larger purses. So there’s a real possibility that golfers will get less prize money once LIV is no more. Tim Wu This would probably be brought as a labor case. The blueprint for bringing this as a merger case would be the recent blocking of the Random House/Simon-Schuster merger. The Justice Department sued on the theory that fewer buyers of authorial labor would hurt authors, and won on that theory. Sara Morrison Do you think the DOJ will sue to block this? What about the UK and Europe? Tim Wu It does depend on how the deal is structured. But if it is a straight-up merger to monopoly there may be an [international] race to block it. The UK authority has been aggressive. Sara Morrison The DOJ and the FTC have made it pretty clear that they’re taking a stricter approach to mergers and competition than the agencies did under the last several administrations. And we have the Biden executive order, which you had a lot to do with. Yet we’re still seeing companies attempting these massive, even audacious mergers: JetBlue/AA, JetBlue/Spirit, Microsoft/Activision, Spirit/Frontier, Penguin Random House/Simon & Schuster. Are they not taking the FTC and DOJ seriously? Or is there an assumption that they’ll be okay in the courts? Tim Wu I think it takes a while for the industry to adjust. Many have gotten used to enormous paydays and golden parachutes during the “green light” era and don’t easily change their habits. Say you have a multimillion-dollar golden parachute waiting for you [if the merger goes through] — wouldn’t you want to try rolling the dice? But of the deals you mentioned, two are already blocked, and the rest are in trouble. So it may take a few more hard knocks — old habits die hard. Sara Morrison Has the Biden administration accomplished what you thought it could or should on competition, or has it fallen short? What is left to do that can reasonably be done before the end of his first (or only) term? Tim Wu I think we’ve done great! Antitrust had become an overly technical backwater — and now has returned, in my view, to the forefront of a national conversation about the economy and how it should be structured. Having the president involved in setting antitrust policy is a big deal, historically taking us back to FDR’s approach. So I feel that we’ve definitely changed the conversation, changed the institutions, and have begun to change the case law. What more could you want? As for what comes next: This is a big topic, but over the rest of the term the administration should keep bringing good, big, winner cases, block bad mergers, and institutionalize the leadership and positions at the White House Competition Council. That’s just a matter of appointing staff to the Council, which I hope they’ll do soon. Sara Morrison We had antitrust bills last session in Congress and most of them didn’t go anywhere. They probably have an even worse chance with a split Congress. Are you optimistic that we’ll get anything from Congress? And do you think the FTC and DOJ have what they need to do the job if not? Tim Wu I’ve long thought it important that antitrust revival not depend on Congress. Waiting for Congress — assessing your success by congressional action or inaction — is a big Washington trap. The fact is that Congress is no longer capable of doing what supermajorities of voters want, but has become an undemocratic body. So yes, it would be nice if Congress were to pass new antitrust legislation; it would also be nice if Congress would fix American health care, reform immigration laws, pass a privacy law. It is good at spending money, but that’s it. These issues are all too important to waste time with Congress’s offer to hold the football so Charlie Brown can kick it. The fact is Congress did act and gave enormous powers to the agencies in 1890, 1914, 1936, and 1950, not to mention the powers it gave to the Department of Transportation, United States Department of Agriculture, Surface Transportation Board, and many other agencies. I have more faith in returning to what Congress asked for when passing those laws than sitting around hoping this Congress can overcome its many dysfunctions.

The dangerous Republican freakout about Trump’s indictment

Preview: Trump at a campaign rally on April 27, 2023. | Spencer Platt/Getty Images The paranoid reaction to the Justice Department’s charges reveal a party gripped by the politics of perpetual apocalypses. Surveying the reactions of top Republicans after Donald Trump’s indictment on charges of mishandling classified information, you’d think the country was in the midst of a coup. “It is unconscionable for a President to indict the leading candidate opposing him,” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy tweeted. “The weaponization of federal law enforcement represents a mortal threat to a free society,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis claimed. “There is no limit to what these people will do to protect their power & destroy those who threaten it, even if it means ripping our country apart,” Sen. Marco Rubio declared. These are extraordinary claims — and all made on Thursday night before the indictment or the evidence behind it was made public. On Friday morning, we learned thanks to CNN that Trump is literally on tape in 2021 discussing having documents in his possession that he knew were still classified. “As president, I could have declassified, but now I can’t,” he reportedly said. The tape may or may not prove dispositive in a court of law; there’s certainly room for good-faith disagreement on the strength of the case against Trump. But the tape is at least very strong evidence that these charges are not some kind of Biden-mandated witch hunt but instead based on very serious allegations of wrongdoing. Yet top Republicans — including Trump’s leading rival for the 2024 election — have shown no signs of changing their tune, and instead are lining up behind Trump’s conspiracy theory that special counsel Jack Smith is leading Joe Biden’s personal Stasi. This paranoid reaction to Trump’s indictment is not a surprise. Over the past several years, the political right has been captured by a worldview that sees the entirety of mainstream society arranged against it. According to this thinking, America’s “woke” power elite, including ostensibly neutral institutions of governance like the Justice Department, is determined to stamp out the conservative way of life. You are either with us or against us — and attempting to send Trump to jail, whatever the reason, puts you on the wrong side. Such once-fringe thinking now dominates the Republican Party at the very highest levels. Whether people like McCarthy and DeSantis actually believe it is immaterial: The fact that they feel the need to say such wild things indicates just how central anti-institutional paranoia has become in Republican politics. The dangers of this going forward, as Trump faces trial and America faces an election where he is the GOP’s most likely presidential candidate, should not be underestimated. A democracy whose basic institutional functions come under attack is a democracy in mortal peril. The paranoid style in Republican politics The entire Trump phenomenon was, from the very beginning, about conservative fear of losing America. Study after study after study has found that Trump voters in the GOP primary and electorate are motivated by a concern that the United States is becoming literally unrecognizable: populated by people who look different and think differently than they do. The fears of the base were reflected in the language of the elite. In 2016, the most famous intellectual case for Trump in 2016 was Michael Anton’s “Flight 93” essay — which argued that these changes were transforming the government in ways that handed more and more control over American government to the left. Anton spoke of a “bipartisan junta” that controlled the centers of power and wielded it against conservative institutions, a kind of soft coup against ordinary Americans backstopped by demographic change. “Our side has been losing consistently since 1988,” Anton wrote. “The ceaseless importation of Third World foreigners with no tradition of, taste for, or experience in liberty means that the electorate grows more left, more Democratic, less Republican, less republican, and less traditionally American with every cycle.” Anton’s essay, seen as fringe at the time, captured an essential linkage of the Trump era: between the traditional conservative sense of alienation from mainstream American culture and growing hostility to its governing institutions. The general conservative sense that they were losing America demographically and spiritually could easily be translated into a case that the government itself was hostile to their interests. So when Trump began facing legal trouble during his presidency, at first over his campaign’s ties to Russia, he ran a version of the Anton playbook (Anton was, at the time, serving in Trump’s White House). He argued, in now-familiar but then-novel terms, that the investigation was a “deep state” plot against Trump — that special counsel Robert Mueller and his investigators were Democrats who sought only to destroy his presidency. Faced with this challenge, the rest of the Republican Party had a choice: They could defend the underlying integrity of the Justice Department, even while remaining skeptical of the merits of this specific investigation, or fully accede to the Trumpist “witch hunt” narrative. We know which one they chose, and we know why they chose it: Trump had built such a powerful following on the basis of his paranoid critique of America that any Republican who challenged it risked career suicide. The Russia investigation set a pattern that would endure for the entire Trump presidency. Again and again, when faced with credible allegations of wrongdoing, Republicans indulged Trump’s wildest fantasies out of either fear or genuine belief. The Anton worldview, once the province of cranks, evolved into the official narrative of the Republican Party — an evolution cemented when Trump attempted to overthrow the 2020 election and the party elite permitted him to do so. In the Biden years, with Republicans out of power, the narrative of an entire government arranged against them only became more credible in the eyes of the base. Surveys consistently showed that a large majority of Republicans believed his claims of voter fraud; political scientists have shown that this belief is likely genuine and that Republican politicians who parrot Trump’s lies improve their standings in the eyes of the base. The result is a party that has, in the past several years, grown increasingly radicalized against the core institutions of America. They believe that everything in America is turning against them: not just the traditional enemies like the media and Hollywood, but also the military, big business, and even the US Olympic team. If you express agreement with the left on anything from LGBTQ issues to Trump’s fitness for office, you are an enemy of the right. The dangers of this shift cannot be overestimated. Republicans are already vowing to “bring accountability to the DOJ” (DeSantis) and “hold this brazen weaponization of power accountable” (McCarthy). If Republicans do win the White House in 2024, the chances of an attempt to turn the Justice Department into an actually political institution are very high. If Trump is their candidate, it’s basically a certainty. And if they lose — well, January 6 showed us what could happen when Republicans believe they’ve lost illegitimately. And we’re already seeing paranoia about this indictment bleed over into paranoia about the upcoming election. “Biden is attacking his most likely 2024 opponent. He’s using the justice system to preemptively steal the 2024 election. This is what’s happening, plain and simple,” writes Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH). Democracy depends on both sides respecting the rules of the game. But one side has decided, without any real evidence, that the rules are rigged against them — and have demonstrated a willingness to disregard them as a result.

The 4 criminal investigations into Donald Trump, explained

Preview: Former US President Donald Trump gestures as he arrives to speak during a 2024 election campaign rally in Waco, Texas, March 25, 2023. | Suzanne Cordeiro/AFP via Getty Images Trump has already been indicted twice. More indictments could be coming. Former President Donald Trump has now been indicted not just once — but twice. On Thursday, news broke that Trump will face charges in Florida stemming from special counsel Jack Smith’s investigation into his handling of classified documents. The indictment has not yet been unsealed, but Trump has been asked to appear in court in Miami on Tuesday of next week. He is now the first sitting or former president to be indicted on federal charges. Details on the charges remain slim, but the New York Times reports he will face seven counts, including retention of defense secrets under the Espionage Act, conspiracy to obstruct justice, and making false statements. These new reported charges are in addition to the 34 separate counts Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg charged him with in April, in connection with the most absurd crime imaginable: allegedly falsifying business records to cover up the hush money payments he paid to a porn actress, which was itself intended to cover up an extramarital affair Trump allegedly had shortly after his third wife gave birth to their son Barron. And these two indictments may not be Trump’s last. There are two other known investigations into Trump, both involving his attempt to retain power after the 2020 election. One of those is another federal investigation from Smith’s team, which is still active. Specifically, Attorney General Merrick Garland called it “the investigation into whether any person or entity unlawfully interfered with the transfer of power following the 2020 presidential election, or with the certification of the Electoral College vote held on or about January 6, 2021.” The other is an investigation from the district attorney of Fulton County, Georgia into whether Trump illegally tried to overturn Biden’s election win there. Criminal charges against Trump could potentially arise out of a post-election call with Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which Trump told the state’s top election official that he wanted “to find 11,780 votes.” (Biden defeated Trump in Georgia by 11,779 votes.) We do not yet know if any of these investigations will end in Trump being convicted of a crime. And in the one of the two investigations where Trump has been charged — Bragg’s New York-based investigation — there is some legal uncertainty about whether the felony statute Trump was indicted under actually reaches Trump’s alleged actions. Win McNamee/Getty Images Jacob Chansley, also known as the “QAnon Shaman,” screams “Freedom” inside the US Senate chamber after the Capitol was breached by a mob during a joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC. When all these investigations are complete and all the potential charges against Trump are resolved, in other words, it is still possible that he will never be convicted of a crime. Nevertheless, Trump is already the first former US president ever to be indicted. Now he will reportedly add a second set of charges — federal ones — to that dubious achievement. The classified documents investigation: Trump’s most recent indictment The investigation into Trump keeping classified documents at Mar-a-Lago was revealed to the world when the FBI searched his property last August. Now, it’s culminated in the former president’s indictment. That indictment has not yet been released, but the key fact at the center of the Mar-a-Lago case is clear enough: Trump had many classified documents at Mar-a-Lago at the time of that search that were the property of the US government, and that had not been returned to the government despite requests and subpoenas. When Trump was leaving office in January 2021, he had many government documents sent to Mar-a-Lago. The National Archives — the agency in charge of keeping government records — noticed many were missing, and asked for them back. A lengthy back-and-forth began. Trump would sometimes stonewall and insist the documents were rightfully his, but eventually, in January 2022, he agreed to return some of them. Archives officials discovered many of the documents he’d had were classified, and they also suspected he was still holding onto some others. So they referred the matter to the Justice Department. DOJ sent Trump a subpoena demanding he return more. Trump’s team did return some more, and told the government in June 2022 that they’d searched the property and there was no more classified material remaining. The FBI search two months later proved that to be false — the government claims they found more than 100 more classified documents. Exactly what they found remains a mystery. The Post reported some documents had “highly sensitive intelligence regarding Iran and China,” including a description of Iran’s missile programs. The government has expressed concern that the information could jeopardize human intelligence sources. But it is difficult to evaluate those claims because, well, the information is classified. The legal questions at the heart of the investigation were twofold. One, did Trump break the law by keeping this material? Two, did Trump conspire to try and deceive the government about whether he still had more documents? Special counsel Smith has evidently concluded the answer to both questions is yes. But we’re still waiting to see the indictment itself to know exactly what his case against Trump entails. The New York indictment of Donald Trump Before charging Trump in April, the Manhattan DA had already been investigating financial fraud at the Trump Organization for several years. Bragg’s office has already secured a couple of convictions against Trump’s primary business and one of his close business associates. Last August, former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg pleaded guilty to allegations that he did not pay taxes on $1.7 million in compensation — including an apartment, two cars, and private school tuition for family members. He also agreed to testify against the Trump Organization, and this allowed prosecutors to convict the Trump Organization of 17 counts of tax fraud and related financial crimes arising from the payments to Weisselberg. But Weisselberg did not agree to testify against Trump, and the actual charges against the former president arise out of a separate set of shady transactions: Trump’s alleged $130,000 in payments to porn actress Stormy Daniels, which were made to cover up an alleged sexual encounter between Trump and Daniels in 2006 (Trump denies that he had sex with Daniels). Notably, Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to federal campaign finance crimes arising out of these hush money payments to Daniels in 2018. In April, Bragg’s office unsealed an indictment that charges Trump with 34 separate counts of falsifying business records in the first degree, a felony. A separate document laying out the factual basis for Bragg’s allegations against Trump points to a complicated web of arrangements between Trump, Cohen (who is identified as “Lawyer A”), and David Pecker, the CEO of American Media, the company that publishes the National Enquirer. New York law typically does not make it a crime to pay a former sexual partner to remain silent about an affair. But it is a crime to falsify business records in New York “with the intent to defraud.” So, if Bragg can prove that Trump mischaracterized his payments to Daniels in the Trump Organization’s own documents in order to cover up those payments, that could potentially allow Trump to be convicted. There is, however, a catch. Ordinarily, falsifying business records is only a misdemeanor under New York law — meaning that it is a minor crime that is only punishable by up to a year in prison — and that matters because the statute of limitations for misdemeanors is only two years in New York state. So, if Trump is only charged with a misdemeanor, Bragg would have to prove that Trump tried to cover up the payments to Daniels within the last two years — which is unlikely because those payments have been public since at least 2018. That said, it is possible to charge a defendant accused of falsifying business records with a felony, and the statute of limitations for this more serious felony is five years. To charge Trump with a felony, however, Bragg also has to prove that Trump falsified business records with the “intent to commit another crime or to aid or conceal the commission thereof.” In the statement of facts document, Bragg tries to link Trump to the federal campaign finance crime Cohen pleaded guilty to in 2018 and a broader “scheme” with Pecker to suppress damaging stories in the lead-up to the election. But it is far from clear that New York state prosecutors may charge Trump with a felony because he tried to cover up a federal, as opposed to a state, crime. As Mark Pomerantz, a former prosecutor in the Manhattan DA’s office, wrote in a recent book, the felony statute is “ambiguous” — though it refers to “another crime,” it does not say whether this crime may be a federal criminal act or only an act that violates New York’s criminal law. Worse, Pomerantz writes, “no appellate court in New York has ever upheld (or rejected) this interpretation of the law.” That means that, unless Bragg eventually links Trump to some other state crime, there is a great deal of uncertainty about whether a felony conviction against Trump can stand. There’s one more twist here. The statute of limitations for the felony version of the false records crime is five years, while the statute of limitations for the misdemeanor version is only two years. Trump’s final payment to Cohen occurred in December 2017, which was more than five years ago. That said, New York law sometimes allows the clock to be stopped on these statutes of limitations when the defendant was out of the state, and Trump spent four years living in the White House before relocating to Florida. In any case, there is still a good chunk of time before these issues will be sorted out: this trial will happen in March 2024, the presiding judge said recently. The start date, for what it’s worth, is three weeks after Super Tuesday. The state of the investigation into Trump’s attempt to steal the 2020 election The Justice Department’s larger investigation into the January 6 attacks has been going on since they happened, focusing first on the people who stormed the Capitol. Initially, there wasn’t a consensus in the political world about whether Trump had committed crimes with his web of lies about the election. So an investigation into him does not appear to have begun immediately. We now know that a team of prosecutors began more intensely scrutinizing Trump and his associates in the fall of 2021. About a year ago, this team was “given the green light by the Justice Department to take a case all the way up to Trump, if the evidence leads them there,” according to a recent CNN article. The probe proceeded quietly at first. In January 2022, the Washington Post reported that “so far the department does not appear to be directly investigating” Trump. But just a week and a half after that article, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco confirmed an investigation into one aspect of Trump’s scheme: fake electors. This was Trump allies’ effort to name Trump supporters as electors in key swing states Biden won, and to have their purported electoral votes submitted to Congress and Vice President Mike Pence and effectively dispute the actual electors’ votes. “Our prosecutors are looking at those, and I can’t say anything more on ongoing investigations,” Monaco said. By May, the investigation had subpoenaed many close Trump aides for documents and was asking specifically for info about lawyers who had tried to help him overturn the election. In June, the home of Jeffrey Clark — the official Trump tried to put in charge of the DOJ so he could enlist the department in declaring the election results fraudulent — was searched by federal agents. The DOJ’s inspector general, Michael Horowitz, is involved in the investigation of Clark since he was a DOJ employee at the time. Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), who put Trump in touch with Clark, is also a key subject of this investigation. By late July, the Washington Post reported prosecutors were asking “hours of detailed questions” about Trump’s actions specifically, on topics such as the extent of his involvement with the fake elector push and his effort to pressure Pence to throw out state electoral votes. Then, in September, investigators issued at least 40 subpoenas in a week, this time focusing more on Trump’s political and fundraising operations. More recently, new subpoenas have gone out to state officials Trump tried to pressure. A growing number of Trump aides have gone in to testify before one of several active Washington, DC, grand juries in recent months. The former president filed a secret suit to try to block testimony of aides like former White House counsel’s office lawyers Pat Cipollone and Pat Philbin, citing privilege concerns, but he lost that suit, and they testified in December. Former White House aides like Mark Meadows also testified, as did former Vice President Mike Pence. Yet though the election investigation certainly seems quite sprawling and serious, we still lack visibility into a few important questions. First, how strong is the evidence against Trump personally? Have they “flipped” members of his inner circle who can testify that he knowingly committed corrupt activity — or not? Will he be able to get out of charges by claiming (some of) his lawyers advised him everything he was doing was legally permissible? Second, what is the DOJ thinking about the legal issues at the heart of the case? The House January 6 committee argued that Trump broke four laws in his attempt to stay in power: obstruction of an official proceeding, conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to make a false statement, and assisting an insurrection. And a federal judge, David Carter, already ruled last year that evidence suggests Trump committed some of these crimes. Still, though DOJ investigators are clearly taking their investigation very seriously, we don’t know whether they agree with Judge Carter’s analysis of the law or whether they are even entirely sure what they think about it yet. One of Trump’s arguments in defense will likely be that he was engaging in politicking and political speech, not plotting a criminal conspiracy. If he is indicted, that argument would surely reach the Supreme Court at some point. This is all fairly novel territory, and it’s hard to point to a case quite like it. The topic is enormously important, but because Trump’s actions were so unprecedented, there’s much less of a road map on what the special counsel’s path forward should be. The Georgia investigation into Trump’s attempts to overthrow the 2020 election In early January 2022, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’s office asked a Georgia court to convene a special grand jury “for the purpose of investigating the facts and circumstances relating directly or indirectly to possible attempts to disrupt the lawful administration of the 2020 elections in the State of Georgia.” This investigation includes both Trump’s “find 11,780 votes” phone call and the Trump campaign’s attempt to create a slate of fake members of the Electoral College who would fraudulently tell Congress that the state’s electoral votes were cast for Trump. The special grand jury, whose investigation is now complete, heard testimony from several very high-profile Trump allies, including former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and US Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). While Willis has yet to file charges against Trump or any members of his inner circle, and while the full grand jury report remains sealed, the forewoman of this special grand jury told the New York Times that the report recommends multiple indictments. The forewoman also said that “it’s not a short list.” It remains to be seen whether Willis files any charges against Trump. For the moment, Trump’s lawyers are trying to convince an Atlanta court to suppress the grand jury report and to disqualify Willis from the case. But there are a few Georgia criminal statutes that could potentially reach Trump’s conduct after the 2020 election. Georgia laws make it a crime to willfully tamper with certain aspects of an election, to solicit another person to do so, or to engage in “criminal solicitation to commit election fraud.” The investigation is also reportedly expanding to cover some actions in Washington, DC, and other states under Georgia’s broad Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute, according to a Washington Post report this month. So what should we take away from all of this? The purpose of a criminal investigation, and ultimately of a prosecution, is to convince a jury to convict a defendant after a full criminal trial has taken place. It is not to provide the media or the public with regular updates about what law enforcement knows about potential suspects. Especially within the context of federal investigations, these norms exist to protect the investigation — if a suspect learns too much about what information law enforcement is seeking, they could destroy evidence or tamper with witnesses — and to protect potential suspects. When someone is formally charged with a crime, they have an opportunity to vindicate themselves at trial. If they are merely the subject of accusations tossed off by government officials, they have no real way to protect or rehabilitate their reputations. For these reasons, anyone eager to see how the investigations into Trump will end must have patience. Even now that Trump is indicted in Bragg’s investigation and one of Smith’s two investigations, this will not be the end of the story — far from it. A trial or trials would follow, as would many legal challenges from Trump’s team (some perhaps before sympathetic judges). Trump likely can’t be stopped from continuing his 2024 presidential run except by voters, but despite talk of his recent political woes, he continues to lead almost every poll of a multi-candidate GOP field. There could be many more twists and turns ahead. Update, June 9, 11:10 am ET: This story, originally published April 4, has been updated twice, most recently to include information about Smith’s indictment of Trump.

Wildfire smoke reminded people about climate change. How soon will they forget?

Preview: Smoke from Canadian wildfires renewed attention on climate change, but the effect may not last. | Lev Radin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images Extreme weather and climate-linked disasters don’t always lead to changes in public opinion. The smoke cloud over the East Coast from record wildfires in Canada has become an impossible-to-ignore story. Turn on the news or log into any form of social media this week, and you’ll soon hear reports of increasingly toxic air or see otherworldly photos of orange skies over metropolises like New York and Washington, DC. Or if you’re anywhere along the eastern seaboard, a brief whiff of air outside may be enough to learn what it’s like to breathe some of the worst pollution in the world. Given that the smoke has shrouded one of the most populated parts of the country (and some of the largest media markets), it makes sense that the dirty air is getting a lot of attention. And many people under the pall are drawing a link to rising average temperatures. President Joe Biden on Thursday called it “another stark reminder of the impacts of climate change.” Due to hundreds of uncontrolled wildfires across Canada, New York City looks like a post-apocalyptic hellscape. If you want a prelude of what the world is going to look like if we do not address man-made climate change — this is it. #ActOnClimate — Mike Hudema (@MikeHudema) June 7, 2023 But after the fires burn out and the smoke dissipates, will people still care as much about rising temperatures? And will that concern translate into action? To an extent, sure. But public opinion research on this is surprisingly murky. “Overall, Americans are growing more concerned about climate change,” said Edward Maibach, director of the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University, in an email. “The increasing frequency of extreme weather events and wildfires is likely playing a role in this growing rate of concern.” It’s important to note that wildfires are a regular, natural phenomenon in many forests, including those in Canada. But several factors converged to make the recent blazes so stunning. Eastern Canadian forests experienced abnormally high temperatures and low humidity this year. Swirling winds above Nova Scotia then pushed the rising smoke south along the Atlantic coast toward New York City and then Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, DC, places that don’t typically get this kind of smoke. However, rising average temperatures are increasing the chances of fomenting the conditions for large fires as well. “As the atmosphere warms, the ability to suck moisture out of the fuel [trees and other vegetation] increases almost exponentially,” Mike Flannigan, a wildland fire professor at the University of Alberta, told Vox’s Benji Jones. Which is to say, climate change didn’t “cause” these fires, but it’s a factor that’s driving up the overall risk of major infernos. Growing populations in vulnerable areas also mean that more people and property are afflicted when fires do ignite. Recent polls have shown that Americans are connecting these dots. The Pew Research Center reported last year that among people who experienced events like heat waves, drought, and wildfires, more than 80 percent said climate change played a role. However, there was a big gap between Republicans and Democrats, with Democrats more likely to report a larger role for climate change. Pew Research Center There’s a partisan divide in how Americans see the role of climate change in extreme weather. Another 2022 poll, from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, found that among adults who experienced extreme weather over the past five years, 37 percent said climate change was a crisis and 40 percent said it was a major problem. Compare that to adults who didn’t experience severe weather: Just 16 percent described climate change as a crisis and 30 percent as a major problem. NPR/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation/Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health People who experience extreme weather say that climate change is a more urgent problem than those that don’t. But other researchers have found mixed results on the question of how much disasters and extreme events alter how people think about global warming. A 2019 review paper in Environmental Research Letters looking at 73 studies of climate change and public opinion found that there were often too many confounding variables, concluding “the relationship between weather and climate opinions still remains unclear.” Major events similar to the ongoing fires in Canada did raise short-term concerns about climate change, mainly among people who were already worried about rising global average temperatures, explained the paper’s co-author Peter Howe, who studies perceptions of climate change at Utah State University, in an email. “However, it’s not clear how durable or long-lasting the impacts are,” he said. It’s also uncertain how much floods, fires, heat waves, and drought influence people who weren’t already thinking about the environment. “We don’t have strong evidence yet that extreme weather events are a major cause of people who were previously dismissive about climate change changing their minds,” Howe said. In fact, some opinion polls show that the partisan divide on climate change as a priority has grown even though disasters exacerbated by climate change afflict red and blue regions alike. Pew Research Center Far more Democrats say that climate change is a major threat than Republicans. On the other hand, many of the tactics to limit climate change remain broadly popular. According to Pew, 69 percent of Americans support the US becoming carbon neutral by 2050 and a majority favor more government support for renewable energy. Climate change isn’t the only issue on the table, of course. Worries about the economy can push concerns about warming to the backburner for some people, and for others, it can alter the kinds of solutions they support. “In the current period of high inflation, the public largely favors policies seen as having less of a direct impact on their own financial situation,” according to the 2022 NPR poll. For example, Americans were more inclined to support measures to protect against future disasters (57 percent) and less likely to favor a carbon tax that would raise their energy prices (39 percent). So, on their own, the recent Canadian fires and their smoky shadow over a huge swath of the continent might not lead to large, lasting changes in public opinion. But with average global temperatures rising, the chances of fires, floods, and heat waves recurring more often or with more severity is growing. The smoke will blow away, but more days with dangerous air quality lie ahead, and it will grow even harder to avoid.

Why are all these random Republicans running for president?

Preview: Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks at a town-hall-style event at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College on June 6, 2023, in Manchester, New Hampshire.  | Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images In a crowded GOP primary, everybody still thinks they can win in 2024. The 2024 Republican field expanded this week with the entry of three new presidential candidates: former Vice President Mike Pence, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum. All three are polling at the bottom of the now nine-candidate field, raising the question: Why would any of them enter a race that seems impossible to win? The short answer is that they may think they can beat the odds. That might seem delusional given both Pence and Christie are polling in the low single digits, and Burgum is so little-known that he hasn’t even been poll-tested. But they’re holding out hope that they could become the definitive alternative to the current frontrunner, former President Donald Trump, if Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is consistently polling in second, flames out. “For all these guys, it’s a very, very, very steep climb. But if DeSantis stumbles, somebody will fill that vacuum,” said Chris Russell, a GOP strategist based in New Jersey. That’s not an impossibility given that DeSantis has had a rocky few months. His campaign launch was defined by technical glitches and an overly online message that seemed impenetrable to most rank-and-file Republicans. There are growing concerns among donors that he’s just not that good at retail politics and that he’s already doomed himself among general election voters by embracing right-wing policies on issues such as abortion. If DeSantis’s issues continue, second-tier GOP candidates — which also include former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, and right-wing activist Vivek Ramaswamy — could catch a break. It wouldn’t be the first time a long-shot candidate was suddenly catapulted into viability: At this point in the primary eight years ago, Trump was polling at 1 percent, while Jeb Bush had a double-digit lead and Scott Walker was in second. Walker later dropped out before the Iowa caucuses, the first on the Republican primary calendar, and Trump killed Bush’s campaign by dubbing him “Low-Energy Jeb.” The difference between 2016 and this year is Trump’s stranglehold on his base. He remains the leader of his party and is polling at over 50 percent, with DeSantis about 30 percentage points behind. That lead increased after he was indicted in New York, and it’s unclear whether his trajectory will change given the additional criminal charges Trump said he faces on Thursday night in a separate criminal case concerning his alleged withholding of classified documents. Taking down DeSantis is one thing; taking out Trump is another. But the other Republican hopefuls are looking to history when they say anything can happen. Regardless of the polls, they seem to truly believe that they have a shot, though if they were to lose, some (except for maybe Pence) would welcome any consolation prizes, including positions of vice president or in the Cabinet. “I think all these guys think to themselves, ‘Why not me?’” Russell said. Pence’s and Burgum’s campaigns seem like uphill battles Of the three new entries in the race, Michael DuHaime, a GOP strategist based in New Jersey, thinks that Christie has the best chance of breaking through. That might be an unsurprising opinion coming from a former top adviser to Christie. But it’s also true that Pence and Burgum have some problems Christie lacks, which means they don’t really have a plausible path to the nomination. Pence’s unfavorability ratings, even among Republicans, are through the roof. In a series of recent polls, well over half of voters said that they viewed him unfavorably. He had 39 percent favorability in his best poll, from Fox News, and 29 percent in his worst, from the Wall Street Journal. That’s historically bad for a presidential candidate who previously served as vice president. His decision to certify the results of the 2020 election and his criticism of Trump’s actions during the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the US Capitol was the turning point: Despite being viewed favorably by his party during his tenure as vice president, his approval ratings took a nosedive thereafter and never revived. Pence has nevertheless dug in his heels in criticizing the insurrection and attacking Trump. At his campaign launch in Iowa Wednesday, he said, “I believe anyone that puts themselves over the Constitution should never be president of the United States, and anyone who asks someone else to put them over the Constitution should never be president of the United States again.” And during a CNN town hall Wednesday, he said that he had no interest in pardoning insurrectionists (but declined to say whether he would pardon Trump). When asked whether he would support Trump if he wins the nomination, he said, “I don’t think he’s going to be the nominee. I have great confidence in Republican primary voters.” Those critiques will make it difficult for Pence to win over voters who still view Trump and the insurrectionists favorably. But Pence is also likely to have trouble finding support among those ready to move on from Trump. He worked for the former president for four years; that’s turning off the “Never Trump” segment of the party and would probably be an issue for swing voters in the general election. So it’s hard for him to make the case for his electability. Still, he persists. A prominent evangelical, Pence sees his campaign for president as a spiritual journey in addition to a political one, and his advisers believe he can vanquish the other second-tier GOP candidates and emerge victorious if Trump and DeSantis self-destruct, as Adam Wren writes in Politico. But that is a very large if, and sheer self-belief doesn’t make someone president. All those qualifiers have made big donors including the Koch network appear skeptical of his bid. Burgum’s problem, on the other hand, isn’t that voters don’t like him; it’s that they’ve never heard of him. His favorability ratings are high in North Dakota, but he doesn’t have the national name recognition of some of his GOP rivals. His entry into the race might be a symptom of the fact that he’s hit his “ceiling for rising in North Dakota politics,” given that he’s term-limited and would have a hard time trying to unseat North Dakota’s incumbent Republicans in the US Senate, said Mark Jendrysik, a professor of political science and public administration at the University of North Dakota. Burgum is hoping he can differentiate himself from the pack as a free market entrepreneur, touting his experience leading Great Plains Software, which went public in 1997 and was sold to Microsoft in 2001 for $1.1 billion in stock. His proceeds from that deal mean he’ll likely be able to self-fund his campaign through the early stages, but he would need to pick up serious donor support to stay viable after the first primaries. “He’s going to have to spend a lot of money just telling people who he is,” Jendrysik said. “It might be that he’s trying to raise his profile, but it just seems like a very expensive way to do that.” Burgum might believe that there is an avenue for a “non-confrontational, competent business leader,” Jendrysik added, but that might not be enough to resonate given the current preferences of Republican primary voters who clearly still love Trump and his red-meat politics. His aides are betting that his business network will help yield major donors, but upon announcing his candidacy, he didn’t have the support of any super PAC or outside group. That leaves Burgum, at least for now, waiting for Trump and DeSantis to somehow be taken out of the running. Does Christie have an opening, or just a bone to pick with Trump? Christie insists he sees a path to the nomination, however narrow that may be. But at least on some level, he also seems motivated to take down Trump and believes he’s the best person to do it: “You need to think about who’s got the skill to do that and who’s got the guts to do it because it’s not going to end nicely no matter what,” he said in March. Once a Trump defender, he’s said he was “wrong” about the former president and that election night 2020 was the “breaking point” in their relationship. Christie has already proved willing to go head-to-head with the former president, offering criticism of his reluctance to debate and unwillingness to accept the results of the 2020 election, and calling him a “coward” and “puppet of Putin.” He’s said that he wouldn’t support Trump even if the former president wins the Republican nomination in 2024. “Beware of the leader in this country, who you have handed leadership to, who has never made a mistake, who has never done anything wrong, who when something goes wrong it’s always someone else’s fault. And who has never lost,” Christie said of Trump Tuesday. It’s a remarkable 180-degree turn for someone who briefly headed Trump’s White House transition team and helped him prepare for debates in 2020. And it’s attracting Trump’s ire — and therefore earning Christie the media attention he wants. On Tuesday, Trump responded to Christie’s attacks with a jab about the former governor’s weight, which Christie called “childish.” Russell said it’s Christie’s bombastic style that puts him in a different class than other GOP rivals who have taken an anti-Trump stance, including Pence. Christie has publicly reminded his Republican colleagues about how he took down Florida Sen. Marco Rubio on the presidential debate stage in 2016 and says that somebody needs to do the same to Trump. “The one thing he does bring to the race that probably nobody else does or that at least he does better than everybody else: He’s a really high-level communicator and he’s not afraid to throw a punch,” he said. “He is incredibly charismatic. His debating skills and media skills are nonparallel in a lot of ways.” Those skills may end up benefiting other candidates as well, especially those who might be hesitant to directly attack the former president. If Christie becomes the attack dog, he can do the dirty work for them. “I don’t doubt that he will land some blows on Trump,” Russell said. “I could see him as potentially a kamikaze pilot of sorts that does damage to Trump and helps [the other GOP contenders] get closer.” That might be the most likely, though not preferred, outcome for someone who came in sixth the last time he ran for president. But Christie might still take that loss as a win. His previous support of Trump has seemingly brought him nothing but misery; now, he might want to inflict a little of his own. Overall, it remains possible, though perhaps unlikely, that some confluence of events radically reshapes the race. That has candidates at the bottom of the polls waiting, hoping, and looking for their chance. “There’s an opportunity right now for one of these candidates to break through,” DuHaime said. “It seemed like it might be a two-person race six months ago, but DeSantis has been very disappointing in the runup to and the start of his candidacy. That has donors and voters looking for a third alternative.”

If you can’t breathe well, neither can your pet

Preview: In early June, smoke from Canadian wildfires blanketed New York City, causing hazardous levels of air pollution. | Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images How to tell if your pet is suffering from wildfire smoke. Humans aren’t the only ones breathing in deadly, dirty air this week. Pets — animals who often have indoor sanctuary — may still have to venture outside when wildfire smoke comes to town. Dogs need their outdoor bathroom breaks, and don’t have the protection of masks, like we do. And if living in poorly sealed buildings without air filters, other pets like cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, and birds, too, can suffer from unhealthy air. Smoke from more than 150 forest fires blazing hundreds of miles away in Quebec, Canada, billowed to parts of the US earlier this week, leading to extremely high levels of air pollution. New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC all saw air pollution levels reach the “hazardous” level on the Air Quality Index. While pet parents and animals in the US are a safe distance from the flames themselves, the threat of air pollution cannot be underestimated. In humans, air pollution can cause dizziness, coughing, headaches, and in more severe cases and vulnerable groups, heart and lung problems. Air pollution is also a silent killer: It’s responsible for nearly 250,000 premature deaths in the US and 6.7 million premature deaths globally each year. Poor air quality can also harm your pet. As such, air quality alerts apply to people as well as their pets. If the air isn’t safe for you, it’s not safe for them. “A lot of people just don’t realize that animals can experience things almost exactly in the same ways that we do,” said Lisa Lippman, a veterinarian and director of virtual medicine at Bond Vet. “They have the same organ systems that we do, and they’re really, really susceptible, especially [to air pollution] if they’re in the at-risk categories.” Importantly, fretting about air quality and what to do is just the beginning of what experts believe, due to climate change, will be a more fire-filled future. As such, it’s important that pet parents learn how to protect themselves and their furry/scaly/feathered friends. How to keep your pets safe from wildfire smoke Like humans, the first line of protection for pets is staying indoors whenever possible. Even indoors, birds are particularly at risk. Keeping them in a room with sealed windows and an air purifier can help. “You get birds in smoke and they’re going to crumple,” said Debra Zoran, a veterinarian and professor in small animal clinical sciences in the School of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University. But “with good filtration and working air conditioners and all those sorts of things, they’re probably going to be okay [indoors].” As Vox’s Keren Landman reports, you’ll want to switch from ventilation mode to recirculation mode on your HVAC units. If you have a window AC unit, make sure those flimsy side panels are well sealed. You’ll also want to avoid running exhaust fans like the ones in your bathroom or kitchen. For dogs that require the occasional quick trip outdoors, keep it brief and mission-oriented. That can be difficult if your pup doesn’t quite understand why you’re in such a hurry. If they’re reluctant, potty pads might also be a good resource to stock up on. Smoke is usually less intense really early in the morning and late at night, so think about doing your outside walks during those times. Back inside, you can wipe down their fur (especially around the eyes and mouth) to help prevent irritation from airborne particles. Puppies and older dogs, along with those with smushed faces — like pugs, Boston terriers, and bulldogs — are at greater risk. “Animals with flat faces, like pugs and Persian cats, are sensitive to poor air quality since they cannot pant as effectively,” Lori Bierbrier, a senior medical director for the ASPCA Community Medicine team, told Vox in a written statement. “These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.” Bierbrier recognizes that keeping your pet indoors most of the day, especially if they’re used to outdoor play sessions or walks, can be challenging. Boredom is already a neglected animal welfare issue, even without added confinement. “Ramping down that exercise could leave your pet with pent-up energy,” she said. “Interactive toys or healthy chews can help keep your dog active and engaged while limiting outside time.” Specifically for dogs, Bierbrier recommends stuffing toys with the animal’s favorite food and then freezing it. These toys keep pets busy and soothe them, she said. One thing you should not do, Zoran said, is put a mask on your dog when you take them outside. Even if you manage to get a mask on tight enough to prevent particulates from getting around the edges, “a mask that tight would cause most dogs to lose their minds. If it’s tight enough to keep particulates from getting around it, they’re not going to go for it because they can’t pant,” she said. Cats and dogs alike have strong respiratory systems, but hydration is key. “Their nasal passages and respiratory trees are amazingly resilient to removing those particulates, as long as they’re well hydrated. If the airways get dehydrated, they can’t do their jobs as well,” said Zoran. How to tell if your pets are having a bad reaction to wildfire smoke or poor air quality Since animals can’t exactly say, “Hey, I’m having a tough time breathing!” directly to humans, it’s sometimes hard to tell when your pet isn’t feeling well, or if symptoms are a sign of something more serious as opposed to general irritation. The American Veterinary Medical Association instructs pet owners to consult their vet if their animal is experiencing fatigue, eye irritation, coughing, gagging, or labored breathing after exposure to smoke-caused air pollution. If cats are breathing through their mouths, they’re having trouble breathing. “That’s go-to-the-vet land,” said Zoran. “With dogs, you can’t use that same criteria, because they breathe through their mouths all the time,” Zoran continued. “If they’re coughing, and are obsessively open-mouth breathing, or are unable to lay down and rest, that probably means they’re uncomfortable and don’t have the ability to relax, and that is telling you that something is not going well.” There are ways for owners to relieve their discomfort at home. For dogs and cats that show signs of eye irritation (which include redness, tearing, and pawing at their face), squeezing a cotton ball with lukewarm water over their eyes to flush them out can relieve discomfort, Jerry Klein, the chief veterinary officer at the American Kennel Club, told the New York Times. It’s also important to recognize when the best option for you and your pet is to leave the area. If you and your pets are in immediate danger due to a wildfire or any other type of natural disaster, having a confirmed, pet-friendly location to evacuate to is vital. Your animal’s evacuation kit should contain three to seven days of food, any medicine your pet needs, medical records, and a pet carrier (a full list of what to include can be found on the American Veterinary Medical Association’s website). In any case, pet parents should be monitoring these disasters closely, paying attention to both the air quality — which they can do via AirNow — and their pet’s behavior. “Don’t hesitate to reach out to the vet if you have any questions,” said Lippman, who shared advice on how to deal with the current air pollution on her Instagram. “We would so rather you be safe than sorry.”

Trump says he’s been indicted again: The Mar-a-Lago classified documents case, explained

Preview: Former President Donald Trump leaves Trump Tower on May 31, 2023, in New York City. | James Devaney/GC Images Here’s the background on the investigation that just led to the former president’s second indictment. Former President Donald Trump is now facing his second indictment — this time, from the feds. Trump announced in posts on Truth Social Thursday evening that the government had informed his attorneys that he had been indicted and that he should report to the federal courthouse in Miami Tuesday afternoon. The New York Times confirmed the indictment, citing multiple people familiar with the matter. The indictment itself and its specific charges have not yet been released, but Trump wrote that it was “seemingly over the Boxes Hoax” — meaning, special counsel Jack Smith’s investigation into Trump for the classified documents held at Mar-a-Lago, which according to multiple reports had been nearing an indictment decision. CNN and the Times both reported that Trump has been indicted on seven counts. Of the four criminal investigations into Trump currently unfolding, this would be the second to result in charges, after Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s prosecution of Trump for falsifying business records. Smith is also investigating Trump’s attempt to remain in office after he lost the 2020 presidential election, but that probe has not yet resulted in charges. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is also probing Trump’s attempt to overturn Joe Biden’s win in Georgia. The key fact at the center of the Mar-a-Lago case is clear enough: Trump had classified documents at Mar-a-Lago at the time of that search that were the property of the US government, and that had not been returned to the government despite requests and subpoenas. But many of the bigger questions remain a mystery: Why did Trump keep the documents? What happened to the documents while he had them? What’s the evidence that he knew he was breaking the law? And did he knowingly try to deceive the government about whether he still had classified material — something that could open him up to an obstruction of justice charge? The background of the classified documents investigation A few months after Trump left office in 2021, the National Archives — the federal agency charged with preserving government records — reached out to his attorneys. Some official documents, which had been kept in Trump’s White House residence in two dozen boxes, were now missing. A lengthy back-and-forth between Trump and the Archives ensued, and eventually, in January 2022, Trump agreed to return 15 boxes of documents that he’d been keeping at Mar-a-Lago. He reportedly personally oversaw which documents would be returned, and wanted to release a statement saying he’d returned everything the Archives had requested. But his own advisers didn’t believe him, and the statement was never released. Then, when Archives officials reviewed the returned material, they discovered 184 classified documents, leading them to question whether national security had been jeopardized. Officials also weren’t convinced that Trump had really returned everything. That’s when the Archives asked the Justice Department to get involved. Another months-long back-and-forth with Trump’s team ensued, this time involving DOJ officials and the FBI. In the spring of 2022, Justice Department officials subpoenaed Trump for any remaining documents, making their request now legally binding. Yet Trump continued to want to hold on to some documents. In June 2022, DOJ investigators visited Mar-a-Lago to talk with Trump’s team; the former president himself briefly stopped by. The team showed investigators where some remaining records were being kept, but they maintained there were no more classified records in the bunch. One of Trump’s attorneys, Evan Corcoran, gave the government a letter — signed by another lawyer, Christina Bobb — claiming that Mar-a-Lago had been diligently searched and all remaining classified records had been returned. The government had reason to believe otherwise. They soon obtained Mar-a-Lago surveillance footage that showed boxes of documents being moved from the storage area. They thought that classified documents likely remained on the premises. Investigators discussed whether the FBI should conduct an unannounced search of the property, with some FBI officials reluctant, and DOJ officials in favor, according to a Washington Post report. The DOJ got its way — and the Mar-a-Lago search took place in August 2022, electrifying the political world. How federal prosecutors built their case Prosecutors later claimed they found over 100 documents with classification markings during the Mar-a-Lago search — and they even included a photo in a court filing. US Justice Department A redacted FBI photograph of documents and cover sheets agents recovered during the Mar-a-Lago search. But exactly what they found remained a mystery — because, well, the information is classified. The Post reported some documents had “highly sensitive intelligence regarding Iran and China,” including a description of Iran’s missile programs. Some reports have mentioned investigative interest in a “map” among the documents. The government has also expressed concern that the information could jeopardize human intelligence sources. With little concrete information, the political world was rife with speculation about what Trump might have been up to. Was he selling classified material to the highest bidder? Was he trying to blackmail the “deep state”? These theories were never backed by evidence, but a Washington Post report that agents were looking for “nuclear documents” suggested this was monumental stuff indeed. Yet a later Post story suggested that the more ominous and speculative theories about why Trump kept classified documents weren’t founded, in investigators’ eyes. They came to believe, instead, that his motive was “largely his ego and a desire to hold on to the materials as trophies or mementos,” per the Post. Of course, that would not get him off the hook for violating classified information law — many such “hoarders” have been prosecuted. The warrant used for the Mar-a-Lago search cited three crimes that may have been committed: violating the Espionage Act (which criminalizes improperly retaining or disclosing national defense information), concealing government records, and concealing records to obstruct an investigation. As the investigation continued — starting in November 2022, under special counsel Jack Smith — more and more focus was placed on the last of these: obstruction. Smith’s prosecutors obtained extensive testimony about exactly what was done with the documents at Mar-a-Lago, and they eventually zeroed in on the role of one of Trump’s attorneys: Corcoran. He had given the government the false assurance before the search that Mar-a-Lago had been diligently searched and no classified documents remained there. Smith’s team reportedly obtained evidence that Corcoran did this because Trump had lied to him. So, they wanted to get Corcoran’s account of what happened. To do this, they argued to a judge that attorney-client privilege did not apply because of the “crime-fraud exemption” — that the attorney was used by the client to commit a crime. The judge, and a subsequent appellate panel, agreed with Smith and ruled that Corcoran did indeed have to testify. He did so in March, and also handed over a lengthy voice memo in which he recapped the Trump team’s internal discussions. Investigators also inquired about other matters — such as whether Trump showed donors a map with sensitive intelligence information, and a pool draining at Mar-a-Lago that flooded a room with servers for the property’s surveillance footage. There was a curveball when news broke this January that classified documents had also been found at President Joe Biden’s home and an office he’d used during the Trump administration — and another twist when it was reported such documents were found at Mike Pence’s home, too. (The Pence investigation has since been closed.) Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed a special counsel to investigate the Biden matter, but there appear to be major differences between the two situations. Far more documents were at issue in the Trump case, and so far as we know, Biden’s team cooperated with investigators and handed documents over quickly, unlike Trump. Recent leaks have revealed evidence in the case — but the indictment hasn’t yet been released In the days before Thursday’s indictment news, a series of stories leaked out with new revelations about evidence Smith has obtained. Last week, CNN reported that Smith had a 2021 tape in which Trump claimed to have a classified document related to Iran in his possession, but that he was not able to release it. That’s significant because Trump’s allies have floated a dubious defense that he had already used his presidential powers to declassify all the documents in question. His comment on the tape could be interpreted to suggest otherwise. Then, last weekend, the New York Times revealed Smith had obtained a detailed voice memo in which a Trump attorney recounted the team’s private deliberations. And on Monday, another CNN report revealed that prosecutors had suspicions about the pool draining at Mar-a-Lago that flooded a room with servers for the property’s surveillance footage. Both raise the question of whether Smith thinks there was a conspiracy to hold back classified documents and evidence from the government — and whether he has evidence Trump ordered it. Much intrigue has also focused on Trump’s former chief of staff, Mark Meadows. On Tuesday, the New York Times reported that Meadows had testified to at least one of Smith’s grand juries (he had a separate grand jury focusing on Trump’s attempt to subvert the 2020 election results). But exactly what Meadows said was unknown. And the intrigue will continue until we get a better look at the indictment itself and its specific charges.

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