Trump agenda: About that Don Jr. statement…
Breaking last night from the Washington Post: “On the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Germany last month, President Trump’s advisers discussed how to respond to a new revelation that Trump’s oldest son had met with a Russian lawyer during the 2016 campaign — a disclosure the advisers knew carried political and potentially legal peril. The strategy, the advisers agreed, should be for Donald Trump Jr. to release a statement to get ahead of the story. They wanted to be truthful, so their account couldn’t be repudiated later if the full details emerged. But within hours, at the president’s direction, the plan changed. Flying home from Germany on July 8 aboard Air Force One, Trump personally dictated a statement in which Trump Jr. said that he and the Russian lawyer had “primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children” when they met in June 2016, according to multiple people with knowledge of the deliberations. The statement, issued to the New York Times as it prepared an article, emphasized that the subject of the meeting was ‘not a campaign issue at the time.’”
NBC’s White House team, on what really happened to Anthony Scaramucci: “Two sources close to President Donald Trump said Scaramucci's profane remarks last week to The New Yorker magazine "disgusted" and "offended" some close to the president, including Melania Trump, and — crucially — Ivanka Trump, who had initially advocated for Scaramucci's hiring…One source said both Ivanka and husband Jared Kushner supported Kelly and his move to dismiss Scaramucci. And it wasn't just the expletive-filled interview: Some in the West Wing believe Scaramucci overplayed his hand altogether, believing he could do no wrong in the eyes of the president. Still, even as late as Sunday evening, Scaramucci told MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle that he believed the fallout from his New Yorker interview would blow over. It did not.”
The New York Times writes on Trump’s penchant for warring with the Senate.
The Washington Post, on how GOP leaders say it’s time for the Senate to move on from health care: “Senate Republican leaders signaled Monday that they intend to move on from health care to other legislative priorities, even as President Trump continued to pressure lawmakers to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The discord comes amid uncertainty in the insurance industry and on Capitol Hill about what will come next after last week’s dramatic collapse of the GOP’s effort to scrap the seven-year-old landmark law. Trump on Monday threatened to end subsidies to insurers and also took aim at coverage for members of Congress. But the White House insistence appears to have done little to convince congressional GOP leaders to keep trying. One after another on Monday, top GOP senators said that with no evidence of a plan that could get 50 votes, they were looking for other victories.”
Benjy Sarlin asks of Trump’s threat to “hurt” insurance companies: Can he do that?
Leigh Ann Caldwell writes on how Trump’s threat to allow Obamacare to collapse spells big trouble for the GOP.
From CNN: “A self-described "email prankster" in the UK fooled a number of White House officials into thinking he was other officials, including an episode where he convinced the White House official tasked with cyber security that he was Jared Kushner and received that official's private email address unsolicited.”
By the way, a majority of voters say the White House is in chaos.
Here’s Jeff Flake in POLITICO, summing up his argument against Trump.
The Wall Street Journal: “Senate Democrats outlined their conditions for working with the Trump administration and congressional Republicans on tax policy, and their principles didn’t seem to leave much room for common ground.”
American Action Network says it’ll spend as much as $20 million on a pro-tax reform effort.
Off to the races: Challengers get set to take on Tester, Casey
POLITICO reports that some Democrats are snubbing the party’s new attempts at messaging.
The National Democratic Redistricting Committee has raised $10.8 million in its first six months.
OH-GOV: The Dayton Daily News lays out the money-raising race in Ohio.
PA-SEN: The AP reports that Rep. Lou Barletta is gearing up for a race against Bob Casey.
MT-SEN: Republican State Auditor Matt Rosendale is in the race to challenge Jon Tester.