Former FBI director James Comey “has spoken privately of his concerns that the contacts from” President Trump “and his aides were inappropriate, and how he felt compelled to resist them.” Comey told a friend “that despite Mr. Trump’s attempts to build a personal relationship, he did not want to be friendly with the president and thought any conversation with him or personal contact was inappropriate.” (New York Times)
“Trump pressured a ‘reluctant’ Michael Flynn into accepting a job as the White House’s top national security official even after Flynn warned the president that he was under investigation over undisclosed lobbying on behalf of a foreign government, The Daily Beast has learned.” Trump’s affinity for Flynn is so strong that he’s hopeful Flynn could be re-hired once the investigations are resolved, which advisers have advocated against. (Daily Beast)
ANYTHING FOR A BUCK. “After crying ‘sabotage’ in email and text fundraising messages yesterday, the” Trump “campaign cashed in, raising $314,000 between the campaign and Republican National Committee’s joint fundraising committee. According to a release from Trump’s campaign, it’s a ‘one-day record for digital fundraising.’” (NBC News)
WHERE’S PENCE? Vice President Mike Pence has been keeping a low profile in recent weeks as the administration has dealth with setback after self-inflicted setback. The chaos appears to be wearing on him. He did recently set up a new PAC, however. (CNN)
FBI REPLACEMENT. “Trump may be dramatically miscalculating how much support Sen. Joe Lieberman would have among his former Democratic colleagues if nominated to become FBI director. Some Senate Democrats hold a grudge against Lieberman for his rightward turn and opposition to some of President Barack Obama’s agenda late in his Senate career. Others say even though they respect Lieberman, the job of FBI director should not go to a former politician.” (Politico)
CONFLICTS ABROAD. “When President Trump sets off on his first international trip as president on Friday, his itinerary will include two Middle Eastern countries, Israel and Saudi Arabia, where he explored business deals before taking office.” (New York Times)
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"President Donald Trump’s nominee to be ambassador to Russia was unequivocal Tuesday in calling out the federation’s interference in the 2016 election in the United States. 'There is no question—underline no question—that the Russian government interfered in the U.S. election last year, and Moscow continues to meddle in the democratic processes of our friends and allies,' Jon Huntsman Jr., told the Foreign Relations Committee."