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Watch: Rachel Maddow exposes evidence showing Trump’s team was behind Cohen tape leak

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Rachel Maddow strongly suspects that Donald Trump and his legal team are behind today’s big news about an audio recording of Trump and his then-lawyer discussing payments to at least one of the women Trump paid hush money to following affairs.

As Maddow said, reporting suggests that these tapes were deemed privileged communication between an attorney and client.

“So they would not be given to prosecutors,” she said. “We have had weeks of wrangling over whether this stuff is privileged… they would turn out to be covered and prosecutors wouldn’t be allowed to see them.”

Then Maddow pivoted into explaining how this is “really important now to understanding why we have all learned about this today

“So that means the only people who would have had access are [Trump and] Michael Cohen’s lawyers,” she said. “His lawyers apparently didn’t leak this thing… it means by process of elimination that president Trump’s lawyers did.”

Maddow said that Trump’s lawyers leaking the tapes mean that they serve his own interests.

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“Don’t get your chain yanked on this one,” she said. “President Trump’s lawyers found out this tape existed. For obvious reasons they realized it may be a pretty ugly thing. So today the president’s lawyers themselves appear today have leaked the existence of this tape to get out ahead of this story… You should know the reason we got those headlines is because the president’s legal team decided you should see this story today. They did it themselves.”

Watch below.

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2020 Election

Here are 5 reasons why 2020’s down-ballot races could reshape America’s future

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The political press always tends to focus mostly on the marquee race for the White House but that's especially true this cycle, as Donald Trump runs for a second term. He demands attention and his antics enrage his opponents and delight his supporters in equal measure.

But national reporters risk missing the big picture by centering so much of their reporting at the top when many of the most important political battles in 2020 will take place further down the ballot.

Trump is catnip for reporters and their editors, but the dearth of coverage of downballot races didn't begin with his election. As the news media in general faces structural changes—with print circulation declining and much of their work moving into digital spaces that are more difficult to monetize--publishers have cut back on reporters assigned to the state and local government beat. Nevertheless, Trump has arguably worsened the trend by getting so much airtime— one estimate suggested that over the past four years, Trump has taken up, on average, 15 percent of the entire daily news cycle on the three leading cable networks, nearly three times what Obama did.

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2020 Election

WATCH: Katie Porter explains to constituents why her conscience demands support for Trump impeachment inquiry

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Congresswoman Katie Porter, in a video posted on social media Monday night, shared with residents of her purple California district why she is joining dozens of other Democrats who support launching an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

"I didn't come to Congress to impeach the president," said the first-term representative. "But when faced with a crisis of this magnitude, I cannot with a clean conscience ignore my duty to defend the Constitution. I can't claim to be committed to rooting out corruption and putting people over politics and then not apply those same principles and standards in all of the work I do."

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2020 Election

Bernie Sanders calls fact that minimum wage worker cannot afford 2-bedroom apartment in any US state ‘a national disgrace’

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For a decade, U.S. lawmakers have kept the federal minimum wage at a level which increasingly leaves workers unable to afford housing.

That's according to a report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC). The group's 30th annual study of housing affordability found that a worker earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25—which is unchanged since 2009—cannot afford to rent a modest two-bedroom apartment in any state, metropolitan area, or county in the United States.

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