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Rosenstein announcing indictments against 12 Russian intelligence agents last week. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said Thursday that conclusions reached by U.S. intelligence agencies and criminal indictments presented are "based on evidence," adding that they don't "reflect mere guesses."

Why it matters: Rosenstein's remarks came after President Trump raised doubts at a press conference with Vladimir Putin about U.S. intelligence agencies' conclusion that Russia had meddled in the 2016 presidential election.

Less than 24 hours later, amid widespread rebuke, Trump claimed he misspoke and accepts the conclusions reached by the intelligence community.

Rosenstein's remarks on Thursday at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado, while announcing a new system designed to counter foreign actors attempting to interfere in the U.S. political process:

"Intelligence assessments include analytical judgments based on classified information that cannot be disclosed because the evidence is from sources — people who will be unable to help in the future if they are identified and might be harmed in retaliation for helping America — and methods — techniques that would be worthless if our adversaries knew how we obtained the evidence. Indictments are based on credible evidence that the government must be prepared to introduce in court if necessary."

Go deeper

Private colleges across America can't pay their bills

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Behind the scenes in colleges across the U.S., institutions are having trouble paying their bills.

Why it matters: There’s a reckoning coming in higher education — especially for smaller, private liberal arts schools — that’s been years in the making. In obvious ways, COVID accelerated some of the trends, but college finances have been hurting for a while.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
51 mins ago - Health

Special report: America's biggest hospitals vs. their patients

Expand chart
Data: JHU; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

More than a quarter of the 100 U.S. hospitals with the highest revenue sued patients over unpaid medical bills between 2018 and mid-2020, according to new research by Johns Hopkins University provided exclusively to Axios.

Why it matters: The report suggests that, rather than being an anomaly, patient lawsuits are relatively common across the country and among the largest providers.

51 mins ago - Health

Most top hospitals charge a more than 5x markup

Expand chart
Data: JHU; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Some of the hospitals with the highest revenue in the country also have some of the highest prices, charging an average of 10 times more than the actual cost of the care they deliver, according to new research by Johns Hopkins University provided exclusively to Axios.

Why it matters: Hospitals each determine their own charges, or list prices. While few patients ever pay those prices, due to negotiated insurance rates, they do affect the uninsured and, experts say, ultimately influence the overall price we all pay.