President Trump told "Fox & Friends" during a Friday phone-in that "the jury's still out" on FBI Director Chris Wray and the bureau's handling of its investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

What he's saying: "Look the jury's still out with regard to that, but it would have been a lot easier if he came out rather than skirting and going through, you know, 19 different ways except through the FBI, so let's see."

  • "But I said, you know what? I want Bill Barr to handle it. I want nothing to do. Let's see. He's done an unbelievable job."

The state of play: Trump has faced public and private pressure from allies to fire Wray, who he appointed to the position after firing James Comey, over the Flynn investigation.

  • The Justice Department moved yesterday to drop its case against Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with the former Russian ambassador in 2017.
  • It said in its court filing that it concluded that the interview in which Flynn lied to the FBI "was untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn" and "conducted without any legitimate investigative basis."
  • Flynn had been trying to withdraw his guilty plea in recent months, especially after the release of new FBI documents regarding his case.

Go deeper: Inside FBI director Chris Wray's fate

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Aug 9, 2020 - World

Pelosi says election threats from China and Russia are "not equivalent"

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday that the threats posed by China and Russia to U.S. elections are "not equivalent," stressing that "Russia is actively, 24/7, interfering in our election."

Why it matters: Top counterintelligence official William Evanina revealed in a statement on Friday that the Russian government is "using a range of measures" to "denigrate" Joe Biden ahead of the election. The government of China, meanwhile, prefers that Trump does not win re-election, Evanina said.

The TikTok deal's for-show provisions and flimsy foundations

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The new deal to rescue TikTok from a threatened U.S. ban — full of provisions aimed at creating the temporary appearance of a presidential win — looks like a sort of Potemkin village agreement.

How it works: Potemkin villages were fake-storefront towns stood up to impress a visiting czar and dignitaries. When the visitors left, the stage set got struck.

  • Similarly, many elements of this plan look hastily erected and easily abandoned once the spotlight moves on.
1 hour ago - Technology

Over 3 million U.S. voters have already registered on social media

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

An estimated 2.5 million+ Americans have registered to vote on Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger, Facebook announced Monday. More than 733,000 Americans have registered to vote so far via Snapchat.

Why it matters: The broad reach of social media platforms makes them uniquely effective at engaging voters — especially younger voters who may not know how to register to vote or be civically engaged.