Politics

Political news

Updated at 9:25 p.m. ET

President Trump suggested on Twitter Friday morning there might be recordings of his private conversations with former FBI Director James Comey, whom he fired earlier this week, in an apparent attempt to caution Comey against "leaking to the press."

When President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey on Tuesday, Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska was one of several Republicans in Washington voicing concern. As details unfolded throughout the week, Sasse, who sits on the Judiciary Committee, continued to call the timing of the firing "troubling," though he maintains there is not yet a need for an independent investigation or special prosecutor to look into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

The White House has nominated Mark Andrew Green to what could be one the toughest jobs in the Trump administration.

The former Republican congressman from Wisconsin has been tapped to run USAID — the U.S. Agency for International Development. If confirmed, the 56-year-old Green will take over USAID at a time when global humanitarian crises are mounting. And he'll have to answer to a president who's been openly hostile to handing out American taxpayer dollars abroad.

Across the development world, Green's nomination has been widely praised.

Former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown has been found guilty of siphoning hundreds of thousands of dollars from a charity that she and her chief of staff had passed off as a scholarship service for students. The Florida Democrat had faced 22 counts ranging from conspiracy to tax fraud; she was convicted of 18.

Updated at 7:45 p.m. ET

Undermining the prior rationale laid out by the White House, President Trump said he decided to fire James Comey as FBI director without regard to the Justice Department's recommendation.

"It was set up a while ago," Trump admitted to NBC's Lester Holt in his widest-ranging remarks about his firing of Comey. "And frankly, I could have waited, but what difference does it make?"

He added, "Regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey."

More than three months after President Trump vowed to investigate unfounded claims that last November's election was tainted by as many as 5 million fraudulent votes, the White House has announced the creation of a presidential commission led by Vice President Mike Pence to investigate voter fraud.

If the giant inflatable Trump chicken outside New Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur's town hall didn't make it clear — or the group of people singing health care-themed protest songs; or the Affordable Care Act cemetery; or even the plane circling overhead trailing an anti-MacArthur message — an early moment in the Republican's constituent town hall provided a sign this was going to be a long, contentious night.

That's when several people in the Willingboro, N.J., crowd started to boo and jeer when MacArthur talked about his daughter, Grace, who died at age 11.

The New Hampshire state Legislature is deciding whether to discipline one of its members for his role in setting up a misogynistic online forum.

For Sale: Spectacular Caribbean waterfront property in French St. Martin.

Amenities: Swimming pools, tennis court, full staff.

Owner: President of the United States, Donald Trump.

This sale is the first known major divestiture of a Trump property since he became president. Trump bought Le Chateau des Palmiers about four years ago; the asking price at the time was $19.7 million.

Gun dealers in Washington state will soon be required to report when someone tries to buy a gun and fails a background check. Gov. Jay Inslee signed that requirement into law Wednesday as part of a crackdown on prohibited gun buyers. 


Craig McCulloch

After a 28-day campaign, the results are still not final in the British Columbia general election. The current numbers are very tight, with the Green Party potentially playing a significant role in deciding which party will lead the next provincial government.

The results were expected to be close, but few political watchers expected them to be this tight.

The politically right leaning B.C. Liberal Party of incumbent Premier Christy Clark currently has enough elected members to form a minority government. 

In a rare victory for environmentalists under President Trump, the Senate rejected efforts to roll back an Obama-era rule limiting methane emissions from energy production sites on federal land.

The vote over the greenhouse gas was close — 49-51 — with Republican Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Susan Collins coming down against the resolution, which would have repealed the Bureau of Land Management's Methane Waste and Prevention Rule.

Updated at 3:15 p.m. ET

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein were interviewing four candidates Wednesday to serve as interim FBI director, following the firing of James Comey.

Updated at 9 p.m. ET

Questions about the abrupt dismissal of FBI Director James Comey swirled on Wednesday, but Comey himself reportedly told staff he would not "spend time on the decision or the way it was executed. I hope you won't either."

In a farewell letter, Comey said, according to CNN, "It is done, and I will be fine, although I will miss you and the mission deeply." He added:

The White House says President Trump fired James Comey because of how he handled the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

Let that sink in for a moment.

The president, who campaigned before crowds that chanted, "Lock her up," is telling the American people that he summarily fired the FBI director, by letter, because he went outside Department of Justice protocols in speaking out about the Clinton investigation months ago.

President Trump hosted Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at the White House on Wednesday, one day after firing the man whose agency is investigating Russia's meddling in the 2016 election that brought Trump to power.

As work gears up for the 2020 Census, the bureau announced on Tuesday that Director John Thompson will leave the agency next month instead of at the end of the year.

"As I pursue opportunities in the private sector, please be assured that I will continue to be supportive of the administration's priority to have a complete and accurate 2020 Census," Thompson said in a statement.

The halfway mark has come and gone in Washington’s 30-day special session of the legislature. But there’s still no deal on a budget or a school funding solution.

It was like two different hearings in one.

Democrats quizzed former Obama administration officials on Russia, how former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn had been "compromised" and how the White House officials conducted themselves when confronted with the information.

Republicans wanted to know how the information got out in the first place.

It was striking watching the two distinct focuses on a topic — national security — that shouldn't be so hotly partisan.

And the data bear out the different approaches.

The White House and Congress reached a deal last week to keep the government open — at least until this fall.

But in reality, the compromise may well have just kicked the can down the road until September, when both sides may be spoiling for a fight amid the specter of a government shutdown.

A liberal human rights lawyer born to North Korean refugees has won South Korea's presidential election with a promise to improve the economy and hold talks with the nuclear-armed North.

Reading old love letters right after a devastating breakup is rarely a good idea.

Someday — after the wounds are a little less raw — they could be a fond reminder of a different era of one's life. Eventually, they could be warm memories of an intoxicating love affair. They might even teach a few lessons about how to do the next relationship differently.

So then, the question is: How soon is too soon?

Lawmakers in the House of Representatives are back in their home districts for a recess this week. After seeing the reception some of their colleagues got in previous town hall-style meetings following the election of Donald Trump, most House Republicans are skipping them.

But a handful are diving in headfirst.

On Monday night, a few days after voting in favor of the House bill to repeal and replace major parts of the Affordable Care Act, Rep. Elise Stefanik, 32, from Northern New York, held a town hall at a public television station.

Ryan Lennon Fines seems like a typical 2-year-old. He and his parents, Scott Fines and Brianna Lennon, flip through a picture book of emergency vehicles. Ryan is looking for the motorcycle, but a photo of an airplane catches his dad's eye.

"That's an air ambulance," Fines tells him. "You've been on one of those."

It was a matter of urgency, former acting Attorney General Sally Yates says, when she called White House lawyers back in late January.

She needed to tell them that Gen. Michael Flynn, then-national security adviser, appeared to be lying to the White House, making him vulnerable to blackmail by Moscow.

"We believed that Gen. Flynn was compromised with respect to the Russians," Yates told a Senate subcommittee on Monday. "To state the obvious, you don't want your national security adviser compromised by the Russians."

Updated at 1:30 p.m. ET

A former Obama official confirms that then-President Barack Obama warned incoming President Donald Trump about Michael Flynn related to his job performance as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency. Obama and Trump met in the Oval Office shortly after the election in November.

Flynn was fired as head of the DIA during Obama's administration. It has been widely reported that it was over management issues.

Updated at 1:30 p.m. ET

A Senate hearing Monday on Russian meddling in the 2016 election is expected to feature two powerful Washington women, one of whom will be in the room — and one of whom will not.

Craig McCulloch

Voters in British Columbia are heading the the ballot box Tuesday to elect a new premier and provincial government.

During the official 28-day campaign, several cross-border issues were debated by the three major parties and their leaders.

Chief among them, the Kinder Morgan TransMountain pipeline expansion, which would see a massive increase in oil tanker traffic through Puget Sound.

Members of the Senate are hosting the next matinee Monday in the long-running saga over Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election — but even after hours of hearings, there's still much the public doesn't know.

Pages