Good Sunday morning. Situational awareness: "Russians voted in a presidential election on Sunday set to give Vladimir Putin a runaway victory [for a fourth term], the only possible blemish for the Kremlin being if large numbers of voters do not bother taking part because the result is so predictable," per Reuters.
Andrew McCabe says President Trump asked him: “What was it like when your wife lost? ... So tell me, what was it like to lose?"
The McCabe memos are helping fuel a possible constitutional crisis, with the White House turning up the heat on Mueller as Trump's exposure increases:
Trump v. Comey ... Both sides are getting personal:
Be smart, from Jonathan Swan: On this issue, Trump is dug in and angry. He views the leadership of the FBI as arrayed against him. And that red line he drew in the interview with the N.Y. Times last year — where he said he wouldn’t stand for Mueller prying into his family finances — still stands.
Breaking ... Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) tells Chuck Todd on NBC's "Meet the Press" that McCabe "should've been allowed to finish through the weekend.”
Editor's note: This online version of this item was updated to reflect the proper wording in the alleged quote from President Trump about Jill McCabe.
Facebook was caught flat-footed after stories in The New York Times ("How Trump Consultants Exploited the Facebook Data of Millions") and the Guardian-owned Observer of London revealed that user data had been illicitly obtained by Cambridge Analytica, Axios' Sara Fischer and David McCabe write:
The gritty details: Cambridge Analytica, a data firm used by the Trump campaign, obtained data from 50 million users through a third-party developer that was linked to Facebook's data.
The dispute lit up Twitter, with an Observer editor tweeting that Facebook threatened to sue the company ahead of publication. One of the reporters on the story tweeted that “Facebook instructed external lawyers and warned us we were making 'false and defamatory' allegations.”
Facebook executives argued on Twitter that "breach" was inaccurate, but Alex Stamos, the chief security officer, ultimately deleted several of his tweets. Stamos said he'd deleted them because "I can't stop people from using the most uncharitable interpretation of what I wrote to put words in my mouth."
The big picture: The issues raised by these stories are at the core of how Facebook makes money. So, however you describe it, the reports have put more force behind questions about whether Facebook is capable of policing its own platform and the data that powers it.
Facebook's statement, by Paul Grewal, V.P. and deputy general counsel:
After his own gloating tweet ("Andrew McCabe FIRED") and his lawyer's call for the Mueller probe to be shut down, President Trump returned to Twitter yesterday afternoon and evening with a few thoughts:
AP's Andrew Medichini
"Stung by accusations of spreading 'fake news,' the Vatican on Saturday released the complete letter by Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI about Pope Francis after coming under blistering criticism for selectively citing it in a press release and digitally manipulating a photograph of it," AP reports.
Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas), who's leading the House Intelligence Committee through the Russia investigation, tells Jonathan Swan and me that President Trump called him twice — and he didn't answer.
Conaway, previewing the Republicans' coming findings and recommendations during an interview in his Capitol Hill office, said he wanted to be able to say he had no contact with the president during the investigation.
Conaway said he was disappointed "that we weren't able to conduct the investigation a little quieter, with less public fanfare."
Conaway said the GOP's coming recommendations include:
Illustration: Sarah Grillo / Axios
Moderate candidates led Democrats to two unlikely special election victories: first Doug Jones in the Alabama Senate race, and now Conor Lamb in a Pennsylvania House race, Axios' Alexi McCammond writes:
P.S. N.Y. Times' Frank Bruni, "Democrats Are Primed for 2018 and Looking Pretty in 2020":
"‘S.N.L.’ Takes Aim at Betsy DeVos, Jeff Sessions and Rex Tillerson," per N.Y. Times' Dave Itzkoff:
Thanks for reading! See you on Axios.com.