Dec 15, 2018

By the numbers: The cost of the Mueller investigation

Special counsel Robert Mueller. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Through Sept. 30 of this year, special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possible Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential election has cost taxpayers just over $25 million including $8.5 million over the last six months, ABC News reports.

Why it matters: President Trump has often complained about the cost of the Mueller investigation, saying its costs have exceeded $40 million. According to this report, that is not the case.

By the numbers: Mueller's team has dialed back spending in recent months, according to the report.

  • The team spent $4.6 million from the special counsel's budget from April through September, according to the Justice Department's report. The department also provided an additional $3.9 million, bringing the total to $8.5 million.
  • The spending shows a 15% decrease from the previous six-month period where the team spent $10 million.
  • The largest expense was for personal compensation with has costs reaching $2.9 million. The team also spent nearly $1 million on rent, communications and utilities as well as more than $580,000 on travel.

Mueller is expected to bring in tens of millions of dollars in fines, making up the difference in some of the costs for the investigation, per ABC News.

  • This includes $22.3 million in forfeited real estate properties from Paul Manafort's plea deal. Manafort also faces up to $500,000 in fines.
  • Others, including Michael Cohen and George Papadopolous, have been sentenced to $79,500 in fines.

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House passes bill to make lynching a federal hate crime

Photo: Aaron P. Bauer-Griffin/GC Images via Getty Images

The House voted 410-4 on Wednesday to pass legislation to designate lynching as a federal hate crime.

Why it matters: Congress has tried and failed for over 100 years to pass measures to make lynching a federal crime.

This year's census may be the toughest count yet

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Community leaders are concerned that historically hard-to-count residents will be even harder to count in this year's census, thanks to technological hurdles and increased distrust in government.

Why it matters: The census — which will count more than 330 million people this year — determines how $1.5 trillion in federal funding gets allocated across state and local governments. Inaccurate counts mean that communities don't get their fair share of those dollars.

Live updates: Coronavirus spreads to Latin America

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

Brazil confirmed the first novel coronavirus case in Latin America Wednesday — a 61-year-old that tested positive after returning from a visit to northern Italy, the epicenter of Europe's outbreak.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,700 people and infected over 81,000 others. By Wednesday morning, South Korea had the most cases outside China, with 1,261 infections. Europe's biggest outbreak is in Italy, where 374 cases have been confirmed.

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