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L: Michael Cohen. Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images. R: Paul Manafort. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Longtime Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and 2016 Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort each became felons during the 4pm hour this afternoon.

The bottom line: Former Trump allies are going to jail, with no end in sight for the Mueller probe.

In New York, Michael Cohen accepted a plea deal to charges that include campaign finance violations, tax and bank fraud. His sentencing hearing will be on December 12.

  • "The plea agreement does not call for Mr. Cohen to cooperate with federal prosecutors in Manhattan, but it does not preclude him from providing information to the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III," the N.Y. Times reports.
  • Reuters: "Cohen says at direction of 'candidate for federal office' he arranged to make payments 'for principal purpose of influencing election.'"
  • Go deeper: What Michael Cohen knows (Axios)

In Virginia, a jury found Paul Manafort guilty on eight counts of fraud.

  • WashPost: "Manafort was convicted on five counts of filing false tax returns, one count of not filing a required IRS form, and two bank fraud counts."
  • Why it matters: "Manafort’s guilty verdict may strengthen Mueller’s hand as he continues to investigate possible conspiracy and seeks an interview with the president; an acquittal could have led to a broader effort by conservatives to shut down the special counsel’s office."
  • Senate Intel Committee ranking Democrat Mark Warner in a statement: “Any attempt by the President to pardon Mr. Manafort or interfere in the investigation into his campaign would be a gross abuse of power and require immediate action by Congress.”

Go deeper... Mueller’s map: What 35 indictments and pleas tell us

Go deeper

2 hours ago - World

U.S. will give Russians written response to NATO demands, Blinken says

Blinken and Lavrov shake hands in Geneva. Photo: Russian Foreign Ministry / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed after a meeting with his Russian counterpart on Friday that the U.S. will provide written answers to Russia's security demands next week.

Why it matters: Russia claims to be waiting for "concrete answers" to its demands that NATO rule out further expansion and roll back its presence in eastern Europe before deciding its next steps on Ukraine. But the U.S. and NATO have called those proposals "non-starters," and Friday's meeting offered no breakthroughs, so it's unclear how written answers might change the equation.

More surprises await scientists at Antarctica's "Doomsday Glacier"

Cliffs along the edge of the Thwaites Ice Shelf in West Antarctica. Photo: James Yungel/NASA

Researchers like David Holland, an atmospheric scientist at New York University, are in a race to understand the fate of a massive glacier in West Antarctica that has earned a disquieting nickname: "The Doomsday Glacier."

Why it matters: Studies show the Thwaites Glacier (its official name) could already be on an irreversible course to melt during the next several decades to centuries, freeing up enough inland ice to raise global sea levels by at least several feet.

Updated 4 hours ago - Health

The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Omicron's blitz around the world has underscored the need for a new arsenal of COVID vaccines and therapeutics, experts say — and that may require an effort akin to Operation Warp Speed 2.0.

Why it matters: The virus will continue to evolve, potentially in a way that further escapes vaccine protection, and the best way to prevent more global disruptions to everyday life is to have tools ready to combat whatever comes next.