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Possibly Craziest Story Ever (New Innovations in Pol Revenge Porn)

2018 has been a year with constant new innovations in the field of politician revenge porn. First Missouri Governor Eric Greitens. Later St. Paul Minnesota City Council candidate David Martinez posted a semi-nude photo of his estranged wife to his campaign website after she got a restraining order against him. He then got arrested. But this new story out of Illinois makes these other incidents sound almost run-of-the-mill by comparison. Meet rising star State Rep. Nick Sauer from Illinois.

Two years ago Illinois state Rep. Nick Sauer began a relationship with a California woman who he met on the dating app Tinder. It was at first a long distance relationship. But she eventually moved to Illinois to be closer to him. The two broke up in March of this year when the girlfriend Kate Kelly found out Sauer was dating other women behind her back. So far, it’s your average story of a rotten boyfriend.

But there’s more.

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Coming Up: Next Witnesses In Manafort Trial

Caitlin MacNeal sends in this dispatch from the Manafort trial. The next witnesses expected to take the stand are Maximillian Katzman (an NYC menswear retailer), Ronald Wall (presumably a vendor Manafort used) and Daniel Opsut (comptroller of the Alexandria, Virginia Mercedes Benz).

More to come this afternoon.

Big Picture

I’m not sure whether or not it’s prejudicial as a technical matter. But I agree with the larger point from TPM Reader NB

I read Tierney Sneed’s account of judge Ellis arguing that the term oligarch was derogatory and he didn’t want it used in front of the jury with some shock and dismay.

“We’re not going to have this case tried that he associated with despicable people,” Ellis said, referring to Manafort.

“That’s not the American way,” Ellis added.

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Poll: Republicans Give Thumbs Up To Russian Help

It’s always a bit hard to know what to make of polls of such wild questions. But Yahoo Finance used SurveyMonkey to poll all voters and particularly Republicans about whether or not they think it’s okay for Russia to help the Republican party in US elections. Trumpers have long been edging their way toward a “collusion is awesome” defense for some time. They’re in luck. Republicans are basically already there. Here are the numbers.

Looking toward the 2018 midterm, 11% of Republicans say it’s “appropriate” for Russia to help the GOP maintain control of Congress. Another 29% say it’s “not appropriate but wouldn’t be a big deal.” So fully 40% of Republicans, according to this poll, either think Russian election is assistance is actually great or at least aren’t going to lose any sleep over it.

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Trump's Theater of the Absurd

People frequently mock President Trump’s press strategies, or rather lack of strategies. They mock Rudy Giuliani’s floundering press appearances. Let’s put a finer point on this: I mock all of them! A lot. But recent days have seen a series of revelations that paradoxically show how relatively successful the President and his toadies have been in warning observers off more or less obvious conclusions about the President’s actions.

Consider the recent claims from Michael Cohen that President Trump knew about the Trump Tower collusion meeting in advance. Some pointed out that we shouldn’t take Michael Cohen’s apparent claims at face value. He lacks credibility. This is a massive understatement. Few people have more checks against his credibility than Cohen. Only President Trump is a more notorious liar. But an eagerness to believe the worst about President Trump isn’t the main reason many were and are inclined to believe this claim. Why would they? Because it’s really obvious that it is almost certainly true. Of course the President knew in advance.

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