February 24, 2017

Top Stories

Priebus Asked FBI Official To Deny Trump/Russia Stories

The Gist: White House chief of staff Reince Priebus asked a top FBI official to dispute media reports that President Donald Trump's campaign advisers were frequently in touch with Russian intelligence agents during the election, a White House official said late Thursday.

GOP Rep. Calls For Release Of Trump's Tax Returns At Town Hall

The Gist: During a town hall in Florida on Thursday freshman Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) called for President Donald Trump to release his tax returns following a question from an attendee.

Trump Rages At FBI: 'They Can't Even Find Leakers' In Their Own Bureau

The Gist: President Donald Trump unleashed fury at “leakers” in the FBI after CNN reported Thursday night that the FBI refused White House requests to tamp down on reports of Russian contact with members of Trump’s campaign.

From The Reporter's Notebook

Just outside the hall, two trans women attending CPAC held up signs protesting the president's decision and pleaded with their fellow conference-goers to speak to them and open their minds, TPM's Alice Ollstein reported. "As far as they’re concerned, we are the worst stereotype they can come up with," said Jordan Evans, a trans woman from Charlton, Massachusetts. "But that's the reason why I’m here, to show that we’re all the same. I’m a conservative. You’re a conservative.”

Agree or Disagree?

Josh Marshall: "I think Trump's nonstop crazy will weigh him down over time. But as much as he tries, he won't totally self-destruct on his own. Okay, he might. But there's no betting on it. The real things that will tell the difference in the few 2017 races and especially in 2018 won't so much be Twitter tirades or even corruption (probably). It will be things like millions of people losing their health care. It will be threats to things like Medicare and Social Security (yes, that's not done at all). It will be basic pocketbook stuff where Trump's (and the GOPs) policies are revealed to be deeply damaging to average Americans. Those are things that are about voters, immediate life issues that shape opinions and don't fade with a few days or the President keeping his head down. "

Say What?!

"The President was using that as an adjective. It's happening with precision and in a manner in which it's being done very, very clearly."

- White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Thursday that President Donald Trump was using the word "military" as an "adjective" to describe deportations carried out under his administration.

BUZZING: Today in the Hive

From a TPM Prime member: "A simple central theme is essential. Having a raft of well thought out policy proposals (cf HRC) does not cut any ice. You have to have a rallying cry, a banner for people to coalesce around, which unifies all of your policies under one umbrella. Simply coming up with policies that benefit Trump America as a strategy to build bridges, create common ground, build support for Democrats is a fools errand. We have superb proof of that. The ACA. It was perfectly designed to help rural white Americans. I won't recount the sad story of how it was turned into a weapon of division - causing whites who depend upon it to hate it - we all know it. The Democratic Party has been complicit in the rise of the Plutocracy and the corruption of government. Democrats in Congress gave massive support to Gramm-Bliley-Leachman. Democratic politicians were all for for the creation of 'Leadership PAC' pay-off vehicles."

Related: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: We're Not In 'The Best Of Times, But There’s Hope'

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What We're Reading

Witches Plan To Cast Mass Spell Against Donald Trump (Huffington Post)

I Was a Muslim in the Trump White House—and I Lasted Eight Days (The Atlantic)