Stories by Alayna Treene

Trump defends Russia and NATO meetings after mass outrage

Trump looks down in thought
Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Here’s President Trump’s defense for his NATO and Russia meetings that resulted in pushback for his demands to European allies as well as concerns over his behavior in a press conference with Putin:

"I had a great meeting with NATO. They have paid $33 Billion more and will pay hundreds of Billions of Dollars more in the future, only because of me. NATO was weak, but now it is strong again (bad for Russia). The media only says I was rude to leaders, never mentions the money! ... While I had a great meeting with NATO, raising vast amounts of money, I had an even better meeting with Vladimir Putin of Russia. Sadly, it is not being reported that way - the Fake News is going Crazy
— Trump on Twitter

Heritage Action to spend bulk of $11.5 million budget on confirming Kavanaugh

Close up of Brett Kavanaugh
Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call via Getty

The Heritage Foundation's activist partners will spend the bulk of it's $11.5 million budget for the year on getting Judge Brett Kavanaugh confirmed to the Supreme Court, Heritage Action's executive director Tim Chapman tells Axios.

Why it matters: The conservative organization, which is widely influential among Republican voters and has worked closely with the Trump administration, is making Kavanaugh's confirmation its number one issue this year, ahead of the midterm elections. The group's plan is to target key red states to pressure senators to push Kavanaugh through to the bench as fast as possible.

Joe Manchin: Brett Kavanaugh "has all the right qualities"

Brett Kavanaugh arrives on the Hill with a smile on his face
U.S. Judge Brett Kavanaugh (C) arrives at the Capitol. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Red state Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who will cast a key vote during Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation process, said on Talkline Communications radio Wednesday that Kavanaugh "has all the right qualities" of a Supreme Court Justice, and he will defer to his constituents when casting his vote.

Why it matters: With comments like these, it's no wonder the White House is feeling good about Kavanaugh's confirmation. The conservative movement — after some early warning shots — appears to be rallying around Kavanaugh as well. And so far we've not seen anything from the moderate Republican senators, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, to signal they won't vote for him either.