"Trump asks Putin for a favor (again)-Donald Trump has exhausted our vocabulary of outrage and I’m trying to cut down on my use of obscenities for Lent. So, it is difficult to describe the sheer revolting awfulness of this: Amid widespread criticism of his praise for Russian President Vladimir Putin, former President Donald Trump publicly called on Putin on Tuesday to release any dirt he might have on Hunter Biden, the president’s son. This was not taken out of context, nor was it a gotcha take. His own spokeswoman enthusiastically tweeted out his plea to Putin..." Charlie Sykes, Bulwark
Russian state TV host: "It's time for us, our people, to call on the people of the United States to change the regime in the U.S. early, and to again help “our partner, Trump,” to become president." Newsweek
"On the day that news broke of burner phones and seven hour gaps in WH logs Trump was on OAN asking Putin for info on Hunter Biden and bitching about Ukraine." Noel Casler
"How the false Russian biolab story came to circulate among the U.S. far right --In fact, U.S. assistance to Ukrainian biological labs has been targeted at strengthening public health measures. Both the U.S. and Ukraine have also signed a treaty vowing never to produce or use biological weapons... But unlike most Russian efforts to spread false narratives justifying its invasion of Ukraine, this one found a receptive audience in the United States among far-right social media channels, Fox News and followers of the QAnon conspiracy theory... "The Kremlin is intentionally spreading outright lies that the United States and Ukraine are conducting chemical and biological weapons activities," U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price said earlier this month... The biolab conspiracy theory is an example of how Russian narratives can be seized on and refined by conspiracy theorists in the U.S., who can often spread false narratives far more effectively than Russia's own efforts. NPR
“CBS News has hired Mick Mulvaney as a paid on-air contributor. In his first official appearance on Tuesday morning to talk about President Joe Biden’s budget proposal, anchor Anne-Marie Green introduced Mulvaney as “a former Office of Management and Budget director,” and said, “So happy to have you here…. You’re the guy to ask about this.”
Mulvaney was a far-right U.S. representative from South Carolina from 2011 to 2017, when he went to work for then-president Trump as the director of the Office of Management and Budget. While in that position, he also took over as acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the government organization organized by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) after the financial crisis of 2008. In its first five years, the CFPB recovered about $11.7 billion for about 27 million consumers, but in Congress, Mulvaney introduced legislation to abolish it. At its head, Mulvaney zeroed out the bureau’s budget and did his best to dismantle it.
While retaining his role at the head of the Office of Management and Budget, Mulvaney took on the job of acting White House chief of staff on January 2, 2019. This unprecedented dual role put him in a key place to do an end run around official U.S. diplomats in Ukraine and to set up a back channel to put pressure on newly elected Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelensky to announce he was launching an investigation into the actions of Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.
As director of OMB, Mulvaney okayed the withholding of almost $400 million Congress had appropriated for Ukraine’s protection against Russia. In May 2019, he set up “the three amigos,” Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, special envoy Kurt Volker, and Energy Secretary Rick Perry, to pressure Zelensky. When the story came out, Mulvaney told the press that Trump had indeed withheld the money to pressure Zelensky to help him cheat in the 2020 election. “I have news for everybody,” he said. “Get over it. There’s going to be political influence in foreign policy.” He immediately walked the story back, but there it was.” Heather Cox Richardson