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Reporter busts GOP’s Kevin McCarthy for saying he only met indicted Giuliani henchman Lev Parnas ‘one time’

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) on Thursday tried to distance himself from Lev Parnas, but found himself getting busted by a reporter for misstating his relationship with the indicted Rudy Giuliani henchman.

After Adam Klasfeld of Courthouse News asked McCarthy to describe his interactions with Parnas, the top House Republican downplayed his meetings with Parnas as a chance encounter.

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“I guess I met him one time, he came to an event, took a picture,” McCarthy said. “I do events every single day, I do pictures with thousands of people all the time. And the money, when we found out he donated it to the campaign, we donated it to charity.”

Klasfeld, however, has found at least two separate events where both McCarthy and Parnas were in attendance.

“In the pictures below [with Parnas], McCarthy was wearing a suit,” Klasfeld wrote on Twitter. “In the story linked here, McCarthy is wearing a tuxedo at a gala where Parnas and Fruman were honored.”

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Parnas in 2018 donated $2,700 to McCarthy’s reelection campaign during a time when prosecutors allege he was funneling foreign money into the United States to make illegal campaign contributions.

Parnas would later become a central figure in Trump attorney Giuliani’s campaign to pressure the Ukrainian government to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.

Watch the video of Klasfeld and McCarthy below.

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MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace chuckles after Times reporter explains why Trump has no hope of pivoting to an empathetic campaign

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MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace struggled to stifle a chuckle in a conversation about President Donald Trump's struggle to run a campaign that can contend with most Americans' needs in a horrific pandemic.

"I think to Nick [Confessore's] point earlier, there should be a sense of nervousness in Trump's camp," began Democratic strategist Basil Smikle. "You don't see -- you talked about enablers. You don't see Republicans engaged in their behavior with respect to the president at this juncture. You're starting to see them not nationalize he's the president of the United States. They should be more allied with him, but instead, they're focused on local campaigns. The president has lost several cases at the Supreme Court, the Affordable Care Act case notwithstanding. There's a lot of things they should be rallying around, but they can't."

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COVID-19

Texas GOP sues Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner over canceled in-person convention

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The gathering, which was estimated to draw around 6,000 people, was set to happen next week in Houston.

The Republican Party of Texas is suing Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and others involved with the canceling of the party's in-person convention, which was scheduled to happen next week.

On Wednesday, Houston First Corporation, the operator of the George R. Brown Convention Center, sent a letter to party officials informing them that the event had been canceled. That cancelation happened after Turner announced he was directing the city's legal department to work with Houston First to review the contract for the event.

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COVID-19

Texas bans elective surgeries in more than 100 counties as coronavirus hospitalizations keep climbing

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Gov. Greg Abbott said the decision is designed to free up more resources to address the pandemic.

With cases of the new coronavirus and related hospitalizations rising at alarming rates, Gov. Greg Abbott on Thursday expanded his ban on elective medical procedures to cover more than 100 counties across much of the state.

Surgeries and other procedures that are not “immediately, medically” necessary — which have already been on hold in many of the state’s biggest cities and several South Texas counties — are now barred in much of the state, from far West Texas to much of Central Texas, Southeast Texas and the Gulf Coast.

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