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Paul Ryan disinvites Trump from Wisconsin event as GOP runs from ‘vulgar, sexist’ hot mic problem

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In a statement released late Friday Night, House Speaker Paul Ryan disinvited Donald Trump to his Wisconsin unity party. Trump’s 2005 hot mic on “Access Hollywood” revealed how Trump views women and has prompted many, even Republicans, particularly Republican women, to call it disgusting and inappropriate. The campaign has tried to soften the blow by saying that Trump instead will be focusing on debate prep and Mike Pence will be attending.

“I am sickened by what I heard today,” Ryan said in a statement. “Women are to be championed and revered, not objectified. I hope Mr. Trump treats this situation with the seriousness it deserves and works to demonstrate to the country that he has great respect for women than this clip suggests. In the meantime, he is no longer attending tomorrow’s event in Wisconsin.”

The statement from Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus was simple: “No woman should ever be described in these terms or talked about in this manner. Ever.”

Curiously, religious leader Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, blew it off, claiming “My personal support for Donald Trump has never been based on shared values, it is based upon shared concerns about issues.”

After Trump’s evangelical meeting, during a press conference with religious leaders, Perkins seemed to be singing a different tune. “I kind of did my own survey of the room. … One of the things that I’ve heard is ‘he’s not what we’ve seen in the media.’ He’s actually a likable guy. I like him. I like what I’ve heard,” Perkins said. “I think this is a good start. I feel much more comfortable … he gained a lot by coming here today and having this conversation.”

Paul Ryan:

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John McCain:

Bill Mitchell

Tony Perkins:

Charles Cooke at the National Review has a suggestion for the GOP:

John Podhoretz at the NYDN was bothered by the Trump statement:

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Mitt Romney was NOT happy:

Mark Kirk:

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Sen. Richard Burr:

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Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock of Virginia also just rescinded her endorsement of Trump:
“This is disgusting, vile, and disqualifying. No woman should ever be subjected to this type of obscene behavior and it is unbecoming of anybody seeking high office. In light of these comments, Donald Trump should step aside and allow our party to replace him with Mike Pence or another appropriate nominee from the Republican Party. I cannot in good conscience vote for Donald Trump and I would never vote for Hillary Clinton.”

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Jason Chaffetz unendorsed as well, saying, he’s no longer voting for Trump, but refuses to vote for Clinton either. “I do wish that Mike Pence was at the top of the ticket, I really do,” he said.

But Jeb Bush’s was the most heartfelt:

Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
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Hope Hicks told Congress that Trump has cut her out of his life — he virtually never calls her anymore

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Former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks was broadly considered to be one of President Donald Trump's favorite staffers.

But when she left the administration in 2018, the president virtually cut off ties to her, and has only spoken with her five times since then, according to the transcript of the closed-door hearing in the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday:

In her interview, Hope Hicks says she has only spoken to Trump between five and ten times since she left the White House in February 2018. (He used to call that much in a day.) They last spoke in April, when they had dinner. Our story from yesterday:https://t.co/3gzVY21c3z pic.twitter.com/VMZqhnbgib

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Elections regulator warns foreign intrusion into US campaigns is already happening

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In a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Federal Elections Commission is warning that there is already foreign intrusion in the U.S. campaigns.

FEC chair Ellen L. Weintraub was forced to issue a statement after President Donald Trump said that he wasn't sure what he would do if a foreign government approached him with "dirt" on his political opponent. He said that he "might" tell the FBI but would likely hear what they had to say. He said that it wasn't illegal, but Weintraub issued a statement reiterating that it is illegal.

"I am particularly concerned about the risk of illicit funds and foreign support influencing our political system. Foreign dark money represents a significant vulnerability for American democracy. We do not know the extent to which our political campaigns receive foreign dark money, but we do know that the political money can be weaponized by well-funded hostile powers," the letter warned.

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Trump’s anti-abortion rule attacking Planned Parenthood can go into effect in 49 states: appeals court

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According to the Associated Press, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Thursday that President Donald Trump's domestic "gag rule" can take effect while litigation proceeds, potentially making it far harder for low-income women to access abortion care.

District judges in California, Oregon, and Washington previously blocked the rule from taking effect. But a three-judge panel in San Francisco today said that the rule was "reasonable" as an interpretation of federal law, and lifted the injunction preventing it from being enforced. The rule can now take effect in every state except Maryland, where another federal judge's order has still enjoined the policy.

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