Jacquelyn Martin / AP

President Trump asked the Director of National Intelligence and NSA Director to make public statements denying the existence of any evidence of collusion between his campaign and Russia, according to the Washington Post. Per the report, Trump made separate requests to Dan Coats and Admiral Mike Rogers and both declined, considering the requests inappropriate.

The timing: After James Comey testified on March 20 that the FBI was investigating potential ties between the campaign and Russia.

The motivation: White House officials say Trump was "upset" by Comey's testimony. A senior intel official accused him of trying to "muddy the waters" about the nature of the investigation.

The paper trail: According to the Post, Trump's request to Rogers was recorded in a memo that can be reviewed by Robert Mueller, the special counsel leading the Russia investigation.

The White House response:

"The White House does not confirm or deny unsubstantiated claims based on illegal leaks from anonymous individuals."

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China-Iran deal envisions massive investments from Beijing

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

China and Iran have negotiated a deal that would see massive investments flow into Iran, oil flow out, and collaboration increase on defense and intelligence.

Why it matters: If the proposals become reality, Chinese cash, telecom infrastructure, railways and ports could offer new life to Iran’s sanctions-choked economy — or, critics fear, leave it inescapably beholden to Beijing.

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House Judiciary Committee releases transcript of Geoffrey Berman testimony

Geoffrey Berman. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee on Monday released the transcript of its closed-door interview with Geoffrey Berman, the former top federal prosecutor in Manhattan who was forced out by Attorney General Bill Barr last month.

Why it matters: House Democrats have seized on Berman's testimony, in which he claimed the attorney general sought to "entice" him into resigning so that he could be replaced by SEC chairman Jay Clayton, to bolster allegations that the Justice Department has been politicized under Barr.