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Mark Cuban: Trump didn’t collude with Russia — he’s not smart enough for something that complicated

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Dallas Mavericks owner and hedge fund billionaire Mark Cuban said in a flurry of tweets on Saturday that he doesn’t believe President Donald Trump colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 campaign — but only because Trump isn’t “detail oriented, organized or big picture enough” to successfully pull off something so complicated.

TheHill.com said on Saturday night that instead it’s more likely that Trump was a clueless mark who Russian President Vladimir Putin snared through his greed.

While Trump’s associates may have been playing under the table with the Russian government, Cuban theorized, candidate Trump saw it as a “win-win” that running for U.S. president was opening up a new range of business contacts with wealthy Russians.

“As people with Russian connects came into the campaign he had no clue that those connections were possibly being influenced by Russia,” Cuban said. “His lean campaign took direction from people he trusted and he followed those directions. He had no clue where the Russians fit.”

“No chance this is a DJT led conspiracy. He isn’t detail oriented, organized or big picture enough to pull off any [type] of conspiracy. I think Putin recognized trumps greed and took advantage by back channeling coordinated misinformation in an attempt to influence voters. Trump had no idea this was happening. He was doing what he was told to do. Stick to the script and read what was written for him,” he continued.

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Trump, his campaign aides and transition team have been the subject of increasing scrutiny by multiple federal agencies including the FBI and both houses of Congress regarding repeated contacts and meetings with Russian officials both before and after the 2016 election.

As part of a multi-level operation to sway the U.S. election to Donald Trump, former FBI counterterrorism expert Clint Watts told the Senate Intelligence Committee this week, Russian intelligence operatives targeted Trump with online “fake news” stories because they knew he would spread them with little regard to their veracity or provenance.

Russia especially likes to use “unwitting agents” to carry out its disinformation operations, Watts explained. It creates an area of plausible deniability for the Kremlin and undermines public trust.

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Cuban’s full set of tweets is embedded below:

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Here’s the ugly racist history behind tipping — and how it still persists today

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On Saturday, writing for Politico, minister and civil rights activist Rev. Dr. William Barber applauded House Democrats' plans to not only raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024, but eliminate the much lower "tipped wage" of $2.13 an hour and require tipped workers to also be paid at least the minimum.

This is important, wrote Barber, because the roots of businesses forcing their workers to rely on tips for a proper wage is deeply rooted in America's history of racial tension.

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Black GOP strategist called on the carpet by Joy Reid for trying to sidestep Trump’s racist rally as ’empowering’ voters

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An "AM Joy" panel on MSNBC descended into talking over each other as host Joy Reid confronted a black GOP consultant over Donald Trump's racist rally in North Carolina.

Presenting the conservative point of view, Republican strategist Lenny McAllister was asked point-blank by the host, "Lenny, hold on a second, because you as a man of color yourself -- do you feel comfortable in a party that does rallies like that?"

McAllister pushed back saying he had walked away from just those type of events, before admitting, "To the greater point. They're using racism as an avenue through which people feel empowered, they lend you the loyalty, they give you the vote. What Republicans need to do is continue to empower people, but not by using racism and not by using phobia."

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2020 Election

Do politicians actually care about your opinions? This researcher says no

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Earlier this month, a New York Times op-ed written by two political science professors, Ethan Porter of George Washington University and Joshua Kalla of Yale, discussed their troubling research findings: State legislators, the two claim, don't much care about the opinions of their constituents, even if they're given detailed data regarding their views.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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