Jan 4, 2018

White House: Wolff's book contains "numerous falsehoods"

Reporters's hands shoot up for questions during a White House briefing. Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

"It's absolutely laughable" to believe that Trump would run a campaign without the intention of winning, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said, responding to a claim in Michael Wolff's new book that no one in the campaign wanted Trump to win. That's "one of the most ridiculous claims in the book," she said.

Another falsehood in the book is that Trump did not know who former House Speaker John Boehner was, Sanders added.

  • The West Wing cell phone ban has nothing to do with the publication of excerpts from the new book, Sanders told reporters.
  • Sanders called Wolff's book "some trash from an author no one has ever heard of before today."
  • The White House denied "at least two dozen" requests from Wolff to sit down with the president for his book, per Sanders.
  • Breitbart should "consider" parting ways with Bannon, Sanders said.
  • "The president absolutely believes in the First Amendment, but as we've said before, the president also believes in making sure that information is accurate before pushing it out as fact," Sanders said.
  • Is Gary Cohn on his way out? Sanders has "no reason to know of any personnel change."

One more thing: The briefing opened with a video message from Trump — unusual, as he presumably could have appeared in person — touting the tax cuts law.

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Biden rolls out new policies in effort to court Sanders supporters

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The Biden campaign announced two new policies on Thursday on health care and student debt that are squarely aimed at appealing to supporters of Bernie Sanders, who ended his campaign for the Democratic nomination on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The policies don't go as far as Sanders' platform, but they signal that Biden is serious about incorporating elements of his former rival's agenda in an effort to help unify the Democratic Party and defeat President Trump in the general election.

Reports: Saudi Arabia and Russia reach major deal to cut oil production

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OPEC+, led by mega-producers Saudi Arabia and Russia, reached a tentative agreement Thursday to impose large cuts in oil production as the coronavirus pandemic fuels an unprecedented collapse in demand, per Bloomberg and Reuters.

Why it matters: The revival of the OPEC+ collaboration patches up the early March rupture between the countries, which had pushed already depressed prices down much further by threatening to unleash even more new supplies into the saturated market.