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Timeline: the Russia meetings along the road to the White House

Sam Jayne / Axios

We now know that as Donald Trump was storming to the Republican nomination, and later the White House, people close to him were interacting with individuals with ties to the Kremlin. Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman who was indicted Monday as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe, figures prominently.

Here's where those interactions fell along Trump's rise to the presidency.

Dave Lawler 7 hours ago
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What Trump and Putin did and didn't discuss

President Trump spoke with Vladimir Putin this afternoon, and congratulated him on winning re-election on Sunday. After the call, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was asked whether Trump felt the election had been free and fair, and said it wasn’t up to the U.S. to “dictate" how Russia holds elections.

The bottom line: Trump is not alone in congratulating Putin — leaders in France, Germany and elsewhere have done so this week, as Barack Obama did in 2012. But past administrations certainly have seen it as America’s role to call balls and strikes when it comes to elections abroad, and weigh in when democratic institutions are being undermined. A departure from that approach would be welcomed not only by Putin, but other leaders of pseudo democracies around the world.

Dan Primack 7 hours ago
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Salesforce buying MuleSoft for $6.5 billion

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Source: Giphy

Salesforce today announced that it will acquire SaaS integration company MuleSoft for approximately $6.5 billion in cash and stock. The sale price represents a 36% premium over where MuleSoft stock closed yesterday, and 164% higher than where it priced its IPO one year ago this week.

Why it matters: This is the largest-ever acquisition by Salesforce, and reflects its interest in expanding beyond its core customer relationship management business.