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Monday, Feb 27th

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Spies Keep Trump in Dark on Intelligence in Sign of Mistrust

Spies keep intel from TrumpUS intelligence officials have withheld sensitive intelligence from President Donald Trump because they are concerned it could be leaked or compromised, according to current and former officials familiar with the matter.

The officials’ decision to keep information from Mr. Trump underscores the deep mistrust that has developed between the intelligence community and the president over his team’s contacts with the Russian government, as well as the enmity he has shown toward US spy agencies.

On Wednesday, Mr Trump accused the agencies of leaking information to undermine him.

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Labor Secretary Nominee Andy Puzder Withdraws Nomination

Andy Puzder withdraws nameAndy Puzder, President Donald Trump's nominee for labor secretary, withdrew his nomination on Wednesday amid growing questions about his business record and scrutiny from senators on both sides of the aisle.

The head of CKE Restaurants, which owns Hardee's and Carl's Jr., came under harsh criticism from Democrats and liberal groups for his opposition to raising the minimum wage, past controversial comments, and the racy ads his properties have used to promote the fast-food chains.

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Trump nixes anti-corruption regulation for U.S. energy companies

Trump nixes anti-corruption billPresident Donald Trump on Tuesday signed legislation to scrap an anti-corruption regulation enacted last year to increase transparency in the business dealings of energy companies.

Trump signed House Joint Resolution 41 to repeal the rule, which required U.S. energy companies to disclose any payments involving domestic or foreign governments to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The regulation from former President Barack Obama's administration was part of the Dodd-Frank Act, a regulatory reform package passed in 2010 as a response to the financial crisis and Great Recession.

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Trump blames 'fake media' for treating Flynn 'very unfairly'

Trrump blames fake mediaPresident Donald Trump said Wednesday that Michael Flynn, the former national security adviser who was ousted earlier this week, is “a wonderful man” who “has been treated very, very unfairly by the media.”

The remarks, which came at a bilateral press conference alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, echoed similar statements Trump made on Twitter Wednesday morning, where he dismissed reports that his campaign was in frequent touch with senior Russian officials as “nonsense.”

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Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence

Trump campaign aides in contact with Russian intelPhone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials.

American law enforcement and intelligence agencies intercepted the communications around the same time that they were discovering evidence that Russia was trying to disrupt the presidential election by hacking into the Democratic National Committee, three of the officials said. The intelligence agencies then sought to learn whether the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russians on the hacking or other efforts to influence the election.

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Ethics office: Conway committed 'clear violation' with Ivanka plug

Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Conway, a senior adviser to Donald Trump committed a “clear violation” of ethics rules when she hawked Ivanka Trump’s clothing line on Fox & Friends last week, the federal government’s ethics watchdog said in a letter released Tuesday.

“I recommend that the White House investigate Ms. Conway’s actions and consider taking disciplinary action against her,” Office of Government Ethics director Walter Shaub wrote in the letter, which is dated Feb. 13 and was posted online by Democrats on the House oversight committee.

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Mnuchin, Shulkin confirmed by Senate as treasury, VA chiefs

Cabinet confirmationsTwo of President Donald Trump's Cabinet appointees received full Senate confirmation late Monday -- one in a landslide, and the other by two votes.

The Senate narrowly confirmedSteven T. Mnuchin as the 77th U.S. treasury chief with a vote of 53-47. Vice President Mike Pence gave him the oath of office Monday night.

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