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Sen. Hatch encouraged Rob Porter to "fight through" abuse allegations

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Utah Senator Orrin Hatch has come under fire after defending Rob Porter, his former chief-of-staff who resigned as White House staff secretary Wednesday over allegations that he abused his two ex-wives.

The latest: After initially backing away from his defense of Porter, Hatch said Porter was a "very good man" who should "fight on" rather than step down.

The timeline:

  1. Yesterday, Hatch released a fiery statement defending Porter and disparaging news outlets for publishing the allegations, which he called a "vile attack on such a decent man."
  2. Today at 2 p.m., in a statement released by the White House, Hatch called all domestic violence “abhorrent and unacceptable,” and offered prayers for everyone involved.
  3. The Latest According to NBC News’ Frank Thorp, Orrin called Porter a “very good man” and urged him not to resign:
“I told him he shouldn’t (resign)...he should fight his way through this, and he’s got a lot to give to the administration and to all of us.... I know Rob, he’s a very fine fellow and very good man, and it’s been a tremendous embarrassment to him. But he’s going to hang in there I think.”
Jonathan Swan 8 hours ago
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A stunning leak rattles Trump and his aides

President Trump discussed his call with Russian President Vladimir Putin during an Oval Office meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Photo: Kevin Dietsch, Pool / Getty Images

One of the most startling leaks — and stunning revelations — of this whole administration has left President Trump and his senior staff furious and rattled. The Washington Post reports in its lead story: "Trump did not follow specific warnings from his national security advisers [yesterday] when he congratulated ... Putin on his reelection — including a section in his briefing materials in all-capital letters stating 'DO NOT CONGRATULATE.'"

Why it matters: The speed and sensitivity of the leak prompted immediate finger-pointing within the administration, as aides reeled from a leak that could only have come from a small group of people, each of whom is trusted with sensitive national secrets.

Mike Allen 8 hours ago
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Scoop: Zuckerberg finally plans to speak

Mark Zuckerberg in 2016. Photo: Lluis Gene / AFP / Getty Images

Axios is told that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg plans to speak out in the next 24 hours on the data-harvesting revelations that have hammered his stock price, inflamed lawmakers in D.C. and Europe, and trapped his social network in a crisis of trust.

Quote"It’s a big deal, and he knows it."
— A source close to Zuckerberg

What's been happening: We're told that Zuckerberg was initially more focused on how to fix the problems than on what to say. But that left a vacuum that provoked merciless coverage, increased lawmakers' suspicions, and even left some employees demoralized.