Good Thursday morning. Situational awareness: "President Trump is disbanding his controversial voter fraud commission amid infighting, lawsuits and state officials' refusal to cooperate." (AP) ... "Paul Manafort sued Special Counsel Robert Mueller, alleging that his office's investigation exceeds its legal authority." (Reuters)
Amid the firestorm over Michael Wolff's forthcoming book "Fire and Fury," a lawyer for President Trump says legal action against Steve Bannon is "imminent," accusing the former White House aide of breaking a confidentiality and non-disparagement agreement he had signed with the Trump campaign.
Axios has learned that, at Trump's direction, his lawyers may go after Wolff as soon as today.
What has Trump so livid? Here are key excerpts from the 322-page book, obtained by Axios:
For all their grenades over Michael Wolff's bombshell book, Steve Bannon and President Trump have something stunning in common: Each helped create a monster he can't control.
How's this for palace intrigue? Despite knowing his trashing of President Trump was coming in Wolff's bombshell of a book, Bannon had continued talking to the president, and had even been telling friends he wanted to run Trump's reelection in 2020.
And how's this for a twist? Bannon has also told friends he'd run for president in 2020 if Trump does not, knowing the same book would include his on-the-record argument that Mueller could topple Trump.
It's no secret Bannon is a mischief-maker and fancies himself a Machiavellian operative. But this is some out-there behavior, and arguably the craziest episode of the Trump show:
And, damn: He's a lot like the man who made him.
Michael Wolff has tapes to back up quotes in his incendiary book — dozens of hours of them.
Some reporters and officials are calling the book sloppy, and challenging specific passages.
Space observatories and probes will be launched. Gene editing is expected to move further into medicine. And immunotherapies for treating cancer need to be evaluated to figure out how they work and whether more people can benefit from them. Axios Science Editor Alison Snyder and her team look ahead:
A nasty series of vulnerabilities affecting decades of chip processors from Intel and others is the root of the broadest security hole to date, affecting nearly all computers, smartphones and servers, Axios chief tech correspondent Ina Fried writes from S.F.:
"America's Worst Graveyard Shift Is Grinding Up Workers" — Bloomberg Businessweek cover story:
MSNBC President Phil Griffin announces the promotion of Colleen King and Tina Urbanski to executive producer:
The Washington Post promotes Tracy Grant to managing editor in charge of staff development and standards, per The Post's Paul Farhi:
"The Cashless Society Has Arrived — Only It's in China ... Mobile payments have surged to some $9 trillion a year, way ahead of the U.S., changing how people shop, borrow—and even panhandle," per a Wall Street Journal front-pager (subscription):