Slate: "He said once I am the single greatest president in his lifetime, now he's a young man, so it's not that much," [Donald] Trump told Congressional Republicans at their annual retreat in West Virginia. And apparently it wasn't enough that the 83-year-old from Utah said that he was the best president in his lifetime. "He actually once said I'm the greatest president in the history of our country," Trump told the lawmakers in his next breath. "I said, does that include Lincoln and Washington? He said yes." The commander in chief clearly enjoyed the praise very much: "I said, I love this guy." To his Credit, Hatch denied he ever said that.
Vice President Mike Pence is dismissing the allegation that President Trump had a past sexual affair with a porn star named Stormy Daniels by calling it "baseless." Speaking to The Associated Press during a visit to Jerusalem on Monday, the vice president said he is "not going to comment on the latest baseless allegations against the president." Pence is on a four-day tour of the Middle East.
Faced with the likelihood of a "blue tsunami" in the 2018 midterm elections, President Donald Trump is holding out hope that terrorists will attack the country, reported the Washington Post on Wednesday. "In private conversations," said the Post, "Trump has told advisers that he doesn't think the 2018 election has to be as bad as others are predicting. He has referenced the 2002 midterms, when George W. Bush and Republicans fared better after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, these people said." Matthew Yglesias at Vox.com wrote, "[T]his is a frightening line of thought for an incumbent president and his team to be entertaining."
Lawmakers investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election vowed Tuesday to force answers from Steve Bannon after the former senior strategist to President Donald Trump stonewalled their inquiries -- even after the committee issued a subpoena with bipartisan support. Lawmakers in both parties attributed Bannon's silence to the White House, which they said told him to refuse to discuss his time in the West Wing or on Trump's transition team. Bannon's refusal to speak clearly angered lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee, who vowed to make him speak.
Steve Benen, MSNBC: With policymakers facing a series of pressing deadlines, congressional Democrats have taken several steps to work out an agreement on a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) solution that would protect Dreamers. Just last week, Democratic officials not only briefly persuaded Donald Trump to agree with their position, they also worked out a bipartisan agreement with Senate Republicans. It's against this backdrop that the president spent much of the weekend publishing a series of tweets suggesting the door is effectively closed. "The Democrats are all talk and no action. They are doing nothing to fix DACA. Great opportunity missed. Too bad!" ... Trump appears to be echoing an emerging line that's popular on the right, especially in conservative media: Dems could agree to a DACA compromise, the argument goes, but they'd rather keep the issue alive in order to exploit the controversy for political gain. The problem with the thesis, which the president seems a little too eager to promote, is that it's ridiculous.