Morning Briefing: This Saudi Arabia Story Is Insane
From yesterday’s Washington Post:
Turkish officials have provided The Washington Post with scans of passports that they say were carried by seven men who were part of a Saudi team involved in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.
Donald Trump: “I don’t want to get into his mind —- but it sounded to me like maybe these could have been rogue killers. Who knows? We’re going to try getting to the bottom of it very soon. But his was a flat denial.”
From the Wall Street Journal:
Saudi operatives beat, drugged, killed and dismembered a dissident Saudi journalist in the presence of the kingdom’s top diplomat in Istanbul, Turkish officials said Tuesday.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, after meeting with the Saudis: “I don’t want to talk about any of the facts and they didn’t want to either,” he said. Letting the Saudis complete their investigation he said is “a reasonable thing to do”
More from the WSJ:
Audio recording shows Saudi forensic specialist asked witnesses to listen to music while he dismembered Khashoggi’s body inside the office of the Saudi consul general, per WSJ https://t.co/ctBsJc4Odc pic.twitter.com/19OAAxa4uJ— Philip Rucker (@PhilipRucker) October 17, 2018
Donald Trump: “Well, I think we have to find out what happened first. Here we go again with, you know, you’re guilty until proven innocent. I don’t like that. We just went through that with Justice Kavanaugh. And he was innocent all the way.”
There are audio recordings, dude! What the hell else does Trump need? I mean it’s not like Trump is benefitting from the Saudis, right?
For the record, I have no financial interests in Saudi Arabia (or Russia, for that matter). Any suggestion that I have is just more FAKE NEWS (of which there is plenty)!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2018
Trump & Saudi Business:— Fox News Research (@FoxNewsResearch) October 16, 2018
•1991: Sold yacht to Saudi Prince
•2001: Sold 45th floor of Trump World Tower to Saudis
•Jun 2015: I love the Saudis…many in Trump Tower
•Aug 2015: "They buy apartments from me…Spend $40M-$50M"
•2017: Saudi lobbyists spent $270K at Trump DC hotel
Hey! Trump’s views on climate change have evolved from “It’s a hoax” to “Maybe there’s been climate change, but it’ll change back, and I know because my uncle went to MIT!.”
From the AP:
Trump: “I agree the climate changes, but it goes back and forth, back and forth. So we’ll see …
AP: But scientists say this is nearing a point where this can’t be reversed.
Trump: No, no. Some say that and some say differently. I mean, you have scientists on both sides of it. My uncle was a great professor at MIT for many years. Dr. John Trump. And I didn’t talk to him about this particular subject, but I have a natural instinct for science, and I will say that you have scientists on both sides of the picture.
Meanwhile, Mitch McConnell and the GOP aren’t even trying to hide from the fact that they plan to cut Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid to pay for the tax cut for the rich.
Republicans seem to have given Democrats the chance in the final three weeks to run against both increasing deficits caused by the existing GOP Congress and the prospect of Social Security and Medicare cuts by a future GOP Congress.— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) October 17, 2018
USE THAT CHANCE, DEMOCRATS.
I have no idea how anyone in Texas can vote for Ted Cruz when they’ve got Beto O’Rourke. He was brilliant in last night’s debate against Cruz, and I almost wish he wasn’t being wasted in Texas. Come on up to Maine, Beto. Take on Collins. You’d win in a landslide.
Here’s a couple of his best moments:
Here he is using Trump’s own name against Cruz:
"Senator Cruz is not going to be honest with you," says Beto O'Rourke "It's why the president called him Lyin' Ted, and it's why the nickname stuck." #TexasDebatehttps://t.co/zx11ahFiDT pic.twitter.com/UrneUP0TTr— CBS News (@CBSNews) October 17, 2018
Finally, I think this is hilarious. There’s an incumbent Republican, Rep. Chris Collins, running to maintain his House seat up in the Buffalo, NY area. He was indicted last August for insider trading, and his campaign hasn’t been going very well of late. In the third quarter, he received individual contributions from only 3 people. Amounting to $80.
Not $80 million. Not $80,000.
That said, polls show that he still has a three-point lead on his Democratic opponent, although it is a district where he won by 34 points in 2016 (and Trump won by 25 points).
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