Dec 28, 2017

Mueller's team to question former RNC officials on Russia

Mueller departs a closed-door Senate Judiciary Committee meeting in June. (AP's J. Scott Applewhite)

Members of Robert Mueller's team have begun reaching out to former Republican National Committee staff who were familiar with the digital operations of the Trump campaign, according to a source with knowledge of the outreach. The only outreach I can confirm happened recently.

Yahoo News' Michael Isikoff first reported that Mueller's prosecutors are interested in "the party digital operation that worked with the Trump campaign to target voters in key swing states." Isikoff adds: "They are seeking to determine if the joint [RNC-Trump campaign] effort was related to the activities of Russian trolls and bots aimed at influencing the American electorate..."Isikoff says some of these interviews have already happened. Context: Congressional investigators have had lots of questions for campaign digital alums, including senior official Brad Parscale. They've also interviewed Alexander Nix, president of Cambridge Analytica (a firm that worked on data issues for the campaign).

The collusion theory-of-the-case that's held most widely in Washington is that if any collusion happened, it would have been through Trump's data operation. There's no public evidence the data team did anything wrong.

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44 mins ago - Sports

European soccer's push to return

A Bundesliga match between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munchen in an empty stadium. Photo: Alexandre Simoes/Borussia Dortmund via Getty Images

European soccer made a splash Thursday, with two of its biggest leagues announcing official return-to-play dates in June.

Why it matters: Soccer is the world's most popular sport, so watching its return through the lens of various leagues, countries and cultures — all of which have been uniquely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic — is illuminating.

The corporate bankruptcy wave has just gotten started

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Even with trillions of dollars in loans, grants and government support — with markets having absorbed a record $1.22 trillion of corporate debt in just five months — a slew of companies are defaulting on their loans and filing for bankruptcy in what is expected to be a record wave of insolvencies and defaults.

Why it matters: While equity and debt markets have rallied thanks to massive interventions from the Federal Reserve and Congress and excitement about the removal of lockdown orders, the real economy is quietly buckling, with many companies threatened by issues that predate the coronavirus pandemic.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

CNN crew released after being arrested live on air while reporting on Minneapolis protests

CNN's Omar Jimenez and his crew were released after being arrested Friday by Minneapolis state police while reporting on the protests that followed the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody in the city.

What happened: CNN anchors said Jimenez and his crew were arrested for not moving after being told to by police, though the live footage prior to their arrests clearly shows Jimenez talking calmly with police and offering to move wherever necessary.