* Erica Werner reports that Democrats are going to offer Trump a deal:
Maria Butina, a Russian gun rights activist, is poised to plead guilty in a case involving accusations that she was working as an agent for the Kremlin in the United States, according to a new court filing.Federal prosecutors and attorneys for Butina jointly requested in court documents Monday that U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan set a time for Butina to withdraw her previous plea of not guilty.“The parties have resolved this matter,” Butina’s attorneys and D.C.-based prosecutors wrote in their joint filing.
You can go here to see pictures of Butina with Donald Trump Jr., Rick Santorum, Wayne LaPierre, and other GOP luminaries.
These were not “paperwork” errors, as both Trump and Rand Paul have spuriously claimed. Campaigns do make paperwork errors all the time, especially large campaigns like Obama’s or John McCain’s, which failed to file some reports within 48 hours of making some campaign expenditures. When campaigns make these minor errors, they promptly file a corrected report with the Federal Election Commission and then pay civil fines if necessary. What they don’t do: Deny for more than a year that they made an error, and try to hide campaign payments by funneling money through unreported corporate loans, LLCs, and payoffs falsely described as legal and technical services. These are serious criminal activities for which others have gone to jail, and for which Cohen apparently will spend time behind bars following his guilty plea.
It’s almost like they knew what they were doing was criminal.
* Rebecca Leber and Dan Spinelli explains how coal-o-phile Joe Manchin will end up being the ranking member on the Senate committee in charge of environmental regulation.