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Donald Trump Jr. is interviewed by Sean Hannity on Fox News in New York yesterday (AP's Richard Drew)

The Washington Post reports tonight that President Trump's involvement in writing the statement on his son Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with Russians carries legal risks.

  • Trump was responsible for the statement saying the meeting was about adoption, which later proved to be false, the Post reports: "Flying home from Germany on July 8 aboard Air Force One, Trump personally dictated a statement in which Trump Jr. said he and the Russian lawyer had 'primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children' when they met in June 2016, according to multiple people with knowledge of the deliberations."
  • Flashback: Jay Sekulow, a member of Trump's legal team, on Meet the Press on July 16, "The president did not draft the response...I can't say whether the president was told the statement was going to be coming."
  • Sekulow today: "Apart from being of no consequence, the characterizations are misinformed, inaccurate, and not pertinent."

Why this matters: The President's personal involvement in drafting the misleading statement has raised a concern among his advisers, according to the Post, that he is "needlessly vulnerable to allegations of a coverup."

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
9 mins ago - Energy & Environment

What we’re watching during the final countdown to COP26

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

This is shaping up as a critical week for climate policy in the U.S. and worldwide.

Driving the news: Democrats are in the final stages of trying to craft the big social spending and climate package they're trying to move on a thread-the-needle party-line vote.

"Atmospheric river" swings Northern California from drought to flood

Satellite view of the bomb cyclone swirling off the coast of the Pacific Northwest and the atmospheric river affecting California on Oct. 24. Photo: CIRA/RAMMB

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are delivering historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest.

Why it matters: The atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, was causing Northern California to whiplash from drought to flood, as it slowly moved south overnight. It's triggered widespread power outages, flooding and mudslides.

Facebook's pivotal week

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

They're battening down the hatches at Facebook headquarters this week as the company faces a trifecta of tumult: a continuing wave of negative press coverage fueled by document leaks, a critical earnings report Monday and a reported name change looming.

The big picture: All this is unfolding as Mark Zuckerberg tries to transform Facebook from a social network into the prime mover behind a new "metaverse" of VR- and AR-driven remote work and play.