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Mikhail Klimentyev / AP

The Daily Beast got their hands on a Department of Homeland Security memo issued this past July warning government employees of approaches by foreign intelligence officials.

  • A caveat: Some of The Daily Beast's sources believed it to be "routine and somewhat obvious," while others saw it as a "serious indication" of Russian interference.
  • Its timing: A senior administration official said that Kislyak's presence at the RNC was "not unrelated" to the production of the memo. The memo was issued the day after then-Sen. Jeff Sessions met with Kislyak, although that meeting was not reported until last week.
  • Reaction from a Trump campaign staffer now working with the administration: "So yeah, we know him and he knows us, and you make small talk and you play that game. If you think that means I can't handle my shit and we're all Russian agents, go [f***] yourself."
  • The big takeaway from a current law enforcement official, "This is also known as one enormous Cover Your Ass…The bulletin is bullshit, but the threat isn't and people should know."

Go deeper

Updated 15 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inauguration Day dashboard

Biden delivers his inaugural address on the West Front of the Capitol. Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

President Biden has delivered his inaugural address at the Capitol, calling for an end to the politics as total war but warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country.

What's next: The Celebrate America event, with remarks by Biden and Harris.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
40 mins ago - Politics & Policy

President Biden faces a deeply broken America

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As President Biden begins his term in office today, he'll be tasked with leading a country beset with deep, long-term problems.

Why it matters: Though the pandemic has made them worse, existential challenges around inequality, social alienation and political division in the U.S. were in place well before SARS-CoV-2 arrived on American shores. The country's future will depend in large part on whether the choices made over the next four years can flatten the curve of American decline.

Facebook, Instagram transfer accounts, followers to Biden administration

Screenshot of official White House Facebook account.

Facebook on Wednesday confirmed that it is transferring the millions of followers of the official Facebook and Instagram White House accounts to the Biden administration.

Details: The accounts for "@POTUS," "@VicePresident" ("@VP" on Instagram) and "@FLOTUS" are having the followers from their personal Pages and accounts be transferred over. It's unclear when that transition process will be complete.