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Trump campaign aide repeatedly tried to set up meetings with Russian leaders including Putin: report

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Three months before Donald Trump Jr. agreed to meet with an emissary for the Russia government to discuss potentially damaging information on Hillary Clinton, a foreign policy aide for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign repeatedly tried to set up meeting between the campaign and Russian leaders “including [Vladimir] Putin.”

George Papadopoulos repeatedly offered to set up “a meeting between us and the Russian leadership to discuss US-Russia ties under President Trump,” the Washington Post reports. Papadopoulos reportedly told Trump campaign officials he was acting as an intermediary for the Russian government.

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“Putin wants to host the Trump team when the time is right,” Papadopoulos wrote in an email to former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on April 27, 2016. He also told Lewamdowski he had fielded “a lot of calls over the past month” related to a meeting between the Trump campaign and Russia.

“Russia has been eager to meet with Mr. Trump for some time and have been reaching out to me to discuss,” Papadopoulos said in a separate email to former campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

As the Post reports, Papadopoulos’ multiple attempts to arrange a meeting between Trump officials and Russia show the Kremlin was “looking for entry points and playing upon connections with lower-level aides to penetrate the 2016 campaign.”

“The bottom line is that there’s no doubt in my mind that the Russian government was casting a wide net when they were looking at the American election,” retired CIA agent Steven L. Hall told the Post. “I think they were doing very basic intelligence work: Who’s out there? Who’s willing to play ball? And how can we use them?”

The report flies in the face of blanket denials by members of the Trump campaign, including Lewandowski, who said earlier this year he doesn’t “know of any person working on the campaign” that had contact with Russia.

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With each passing day Trump’s spin is less capable of distracting Americans from reality: op-ed

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Writing in the Washington Post this Monday, Paul Waldman says that if you want to know the sorry state President Trump's campaign is in, just look at its deteriorating spin machine.

The first example cited by Waldman was Trump's recent attack on his usually supportive top infectious disease expert, Dr. Deborah Birx, for daring to say that the virus' spread isn't going away any time soon. Waldman also listed the numerous statements from Trump that downplay the threat of the virus while pushing the misleading claim that things are just fine.

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Trump openly solicits payment to US treasury for his ‘approval’ of TikTok sale – which he is forcing

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President Donald Trump says he is allowing Microsoft to purchase the U.S. assets of the popular Beijing-based TikTok social media video sharing app, in a sale Trump personally is forcing.

In discussing what he sees as the broad portions of an agreement the President used a real estate term to openly solicit the payment that would have to be made to the U.S. Treasury.

"I said a very substantial portion of that price is going to have to come into the U.S. Treasury of the United States, because we're making it possible for this deal to happen," Trump told reporters Monday afternoon.

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Andrew Cuomo rips Trump like never before: ‘This was the worst government blunder in modern history’

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) on Monday accused President Donald Trump of presiding over "the worse government blunder in modern history."

At his daily COVID-19 briefing, Cuomo said that it was time for the president to hit the "reset button" on his handling of the pandemic.

"If we don't tell the truth on the reset, COVID will never end," the New York governor explained. "It will ricochet across the country. It will just bounce back and forth."

"This was a colossal blunder -- how COVID was handled by this federal government," he continued. "Shame on all of you. Six months, lives lost. Hit the reset button, yes."

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