Sep 20, 2017

Report: Manafort offered campaign briefings to Kremlin-linked billionaire

Manafort at the Republican convention. Photo: Matt Rourke / AP

Two weeks before Donald Trump accepted the Republican nomination, Paul Manafort, then his campaign chairman, offered private briefings on the campaign to a Kremlin-linked billionaire, the Washington Post reports.

From the July 7, 2016 email, sent to an intermediary: "If he needs private briefings we can accommodate."

The billionaire: Oleg Deripaska, an aluminum magnate with whom Manafort had done business in the past, per the Post.

The key paragraph: "The emails are among tens of thousands of documents that have been turned over to congressional investigators and Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller."

The backdrop: Mueller appears to be closing in on Manafort. His investigation into the longtime political consultant is now reaching back more than a decade, and prosecutors reportedly told him they plan to indict him.

Manafort's response, via a spokesman: The email was an "innocuous" attempt to collect debts from a past client.

Go deeper: FBI wiretapped Manafort before and after election

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Coronavirus updates: California monitors 8,400 potential cases

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.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 11 mins ago - Health

Wall Street falls into correction territory as coronavirus rout intensifies

A trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

The S&P 500, Dow Jones and Nasdaq all entered correction territory on Thursday, down 10% from their recent record highs amid a global market rout that began earlier this week.

The big picture: Stocks fell 3% for a time on Thursday, extending the market’s worst week since the financial crisis in 2008 following a spike in coronavirus cases around the world, according to CNBC.

Watchdog opens probe into VA secretary over handling of sexual assault claim

VA Secretary Robert Wilkie on Fox Business Network’s "The Evening Edit" on Jan. 7. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

The Department of Veterans Affairs Inspector General Michael Missal said Thursday he had opened an investigation into VA Secretary Robert Wilkie after lawmakers demanded an inquiry into his handling of a sexual misconduct report, the Washington Post reports.

Context: Wilkie allegedly "worked to discredit" the credibility of Democratic aide and veteran Andrea Goldstein after she reported last fall "that a man groped and propositioned her in the main lobby of the agency's D.C. Medical Center," a senior VA official told the Post.