Trump, Comey, and Rod Rosenstein

According to Kevin Liptak at CNN, the White House thinks removing Comey will help bring Russia investigation to end. Janet Shan said simply: “That's not how this works.” Neha Shastry tweeted: “Girl why you gotta dig yourself into a deeper hole?” And John Roman analogized, “Kid accused of cheating? Fire the teacher.”

While the AP reports that Trump insists the Russia reports were 'fabricated'. They also tweeted: “BREAKING: President Trump tweets that James Comey 'better hope' that there are no 'tapes' of their conversations.” Which...what?!

For another take on those tapes Trump suggested, read Philip Rucker in the Washington Post here. Caitlin Abber tweeted: “I didn't know you could troll yourself, and yet.... #peetape.”

Also in the Washington Post, an explainer on How Trump’s anger and impatience prompted him to fire the FBI director from Robert Costa.

In a wholly relevant piece called “Loyalty vs. Honesty,” Michael Barbaro at the New York Times explains: “The White House’s story about Comey's firing is unraveling: Among those contradicting the president is the president.”

Then the Wall Street Journal reports that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Pressed the White House to Correct the Record on Comey’s Firing. It was a team effort written by Del Quentin Wilber, Rebecca Ballhaus, Aruna Viswantatha, and Del Wilber.

And Benjamin Wittes lays out Why The Deputy Attorney General Must Resign.

NBC News tells us that Trump Nixed His Plan to Visit FBI Headquarters After Comey Firing. Bradd Jaffy added, “WH was told he was unlikely to be greeted there warmly.”

And Politico simply writes: Trump’s attempt to fix the Comey crisis made it worse.

Two scoops and a lie

Inside the White House With the President from Time Magazine’s Michael Scherer, Zeke Miller, and Benjamin Rasmussen. Veronica Bautista called it, “How President Trump spends his time after hours.” Naturally, everyone just tweeted quotes from this article. Phil Mattingly liked: "This is one of the great inventions of all time— TiVo." Alex Leo pointed out: "I’ve been able not to watch or read things that aren’t pleasant.” While Siobhan O'Connor highlighted:  "He gets two scoops of vanilla ice cream instead of the single scoop for everyone else."

The Economist also got an interview with President Trump and they uploaded the transcript right here. Helen Joyce tweeted: “Our editor @zannymb talked to @realDonaldTrump. Check out her asking if his NAFTA deal would be 'huge.’”

NBC not only got the interview with Trump after the Comey firing, but they also got a scoop from Current and Former FBI Official, Who Dispute Trump’s Account of Meeting With The FBI Director. It basically boils down to: "Despite what...Trump said ...James Comey did not seek a dinner with the president to retain his job.”

And speaking of presidential inaccuracies, Philip Rucker at the Washington Post writes that Trump threatened to cancel White House briefings because it is ‘not possible’ to always tell the truth.

Bad news bears

The AP’s Sadie Gurman has news that US prosecutors were told to push for more, harsher punishments “against the vast majority of suspects.” Alex Sanz explains, “The reversal of the @BarackObama-era policies is sure to send more people to prison and for much longer terms.” Which sounds like something that will make the prison-industrial complex very happy.

The Wall Street Journal’s Beth Reinhard also covered the update: Attorney General Sessions Revives Policy of Tougher Sentences for Drug Offenders. Sherrilyn Ifill explained: “AG Sessions re-ups prosecutor practice that destroys lives, increases mass incarc & has been discredited.”

‘Here’s something different’

Elsewhere in the country, Republicans misstate, again and again on TV and at town halls, what’s in their health-care bill, according to David Weigel at the Washington Post.

Sarah Kliff at Vox has a story about an Aetna CEO in a private meeting saying, “Single-payer, I think we should have that debate.” Dylan Scott called it, “Here’s something different.”

And in other news

China wants to Reopen Its Market to U.S. Beef, says a release from the USDA. But wait, there’s a twist. Heather Timmons pointed out: “This was agreed under the Obama administration.”

There’s a preview of next week’s New Yorker cover. PHOTO http://www.newyorker.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/CoverStory-Blitt-Comey-690x950-1494533316.jpg

Take some time this weekend to read The Last Person You’d Expect to Die in Childbirth from Nina Martin and Renee Montagne at Propublica. The organization explained: “The U.S. has the worst rate of maternal deaths in the developed world- we found 450 deaths since 2011.” Sandhya Kambhampati called it, “Fantastic reporting.”

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