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Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s trust unloaded Russian investment — but he claims he had no role in choosing it

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As a Senate candidate, Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) is required to disclose his financial investments, debt and property ownership. The 125-page report, filed Friday, revealed at least $50,000 in income last year from sales of his stock in a Russian shipping company that has come under fire, the Bradenton Herald reported.

The company, Navigator Holdings, Ltd., has caused problems for Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who owns a large stake. After increased scrutiny, Ross said he would divest from the company eight months after joining the administration. There’s no evidence he has, however.

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The company is responsible for transporting liquefied petroleum gas for international companies as well as Russian state-owned utilities. One of the major clients is Sibur, a Russian energy company with links to the Kremlin.

The investment disclosure listed his wife’s income from the stock between $50,001 and $100,000, but the family said they no longer own the stock and didn’t make the decision to invest.

“The governor had no role in selecting that investment,” a statement from his campaign read. “The blind trust is managed by an independent financial professional who decides what assets are bought, sold or changed. The rules of the blind trust prevent any specific assets or the value of those assets within the trust from being disclosed to the governor, and those requirements have always been followed. When asked recently, Gov. Scott was clear he believes that Putin is not our friend or ally, and should not be trusted.”

Scott has said that he disagrees with President Donald Trump’s close relationship with Vladimir Putin and doesn’t trust the Russian president.

Scott’s financial disclosure reveals at least $255 million in investments.

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2020 Election

Trump’s path to re-election ‘smashed to splinters’ as his only achievement is swallowed up by the pandemic: report

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In a piece for Politico, Ben White writes that Donald Trump was going into November's election with only one achievement under his belt -- a healthy economy -- and now he has nothing left to run if he wants to be re-elected.

With all of the gains made in the stock market long gone due to the coronavirus pandemic and the collapse of oil prices, White claims that the president's campaign strategy lies in tatters.

"The fundamental pillars of Donald Trump’s presidency — a hot economy, strong job growth and a rocking stock market — are all being smashed to splinters by the ravaging coronavirus, which has shuttered much of the nation and now officially ended a streak of 113 months of job gains dating back to the end of the Great Recession a decade ago," he wrote before noting the explosion of unemployment claims -- over ten million so far -- that has the country reeling.

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Strong signs that judges will increasingly decide how 2020 elections are run during the coronavirus pandemic

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The jaw-dropping conclusion of a federal court hearing on April 1 about Wisconsin’s statewide elections on April 7 was no April Fools’ joke. U.S. District Judge William Conley said the state’s Democratic governor and Republican-led legislature had failed to put their citizenry’s health first by not postponing the statewide election in a pandemic.

“There’s a hurricane coming!” Conley fumed from the bench, interrupting Douglas M. Poland, a lawyer representing the Wisconsin Alliance for Retired Americans, League of Women Voters of Wisconsin and four citizens who sued the state. “You can’t even give me a case where a federal judge stopped a state from stupidly holding an election when most of the voters were not going to go to the polls because there’s a hurricane coming!”

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Top South Dakota Republicans face investigation for appearing to be drunk during crucial coronavirus session

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Lawmakers in South Dakota are investigating whether or not Senate Majority Leader Kris Langer (R) was drunk during a meeting earlier this week -- a meeting that dealt with new legislation regarding the coronavirus outbreak, the Rapid City Journal reports.

Another South Dakota Republican, Brock Greenfield, is also under investigation for his conduct during the meeting.

"Langer and Greenfield oversaw the Senate proceedings from a conference room in the Capitol as lawmakers convened through teleconference to decide on a series of emergency bills for the coronavirus outbreak," the Journal reports. "As the Senate prepared to adjourn Tuesday morning, Sen. Phil Jensen, a Rapid City Republican, said he had heard Langer was intoxicated and had interrupted meetings in the House and Senate. He then attempted to move to create a disciplinary committee."

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