FBI agents talked to at least a dozen employees of Kaspersky Lab, a Russia-based, Kremlin-linked cybersecurity firm, NBC News reported on Wednesday. As part of a counter-intelligence inquiry, agents allegedly visited the homes of the employees on both the east and west U.S. coasts at the end of the work day Tuesday to ask questions about that company’s operations. It is unclear if the inquiry is part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election meddling. Employees were allegedly told that they were not in trouble and that the bureau just wanted to learn more about how the lab works.
A CNN spokesperson shared a three-letter verbal statement on the latest right-wing sting video from James O'Keefe's Project Veritas: "LOL." The new video, the second in a series titled "American Pravda," shows CNN liberal commentator Van Jones telling an unidentified man with a hidden camera, “The Russia thing is just a big nothing burger.” The video provides next-to-zero context for the quote, yet Project Veritas suggests it proves that CNN is intentionally pushing a false narrative about the Trump campaign’s alleged ties to Russia. In reference to the first video in the series, White House press aide Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Tuesday, “There’s a video circulating now, whether it’s accurate or not, I don’t know, but I would encourage everyone in this room and frankly everybody across the country to take a look at it.” Less than a week ago, in a public video posted to Twitter, Jones said he believes Democrats are “fooling ourselves” if they believe something will come out of the Russia investigation to end Trump's presidency. “Unless there is a real smoking gun, which there is probably not,” he said, “it’s just going to be a big old mess.”
After quitting Congress and his powerful seat atop the House Oversight Committee, soon-to-be-former Rep. Jason Chaffetz will join Fox News as a contributor. The network confirmed in a Wednesday statement that he will “offer political analysis” for both Fox News and Fox Business Network’s daytime and prime-time programming. Chaffetz’s congressional gig ends Friday, as he decided to resign early instead of seeking re-election next year. He will start his job with the right-leaning cable-news network on Saturday, July 1.
The Democratic National Committee has hired former Uber executive Raffi Krikorian as its chief technology officer, Recode reported on Wednesday. Krikorian, who previously headed up the ride-sharing corporation’s self-driving car program, will be in charge of improving the tech team for a political organ crippled by the 2016 election loss and a massive breach by Russian hackers who stole DNC emails and provided them to WikiLeaks ahead of the vote.
A man was arrested on charges he allegedly destroyed a Ten Commandments monument this week at the Arkansas Capitol, police said. Officials said the 6-foot monument was toppled by Michael Tate Reed, a 32-year-old who purportedly rammed his vehicle into the statue while shouting “Freedom!” Powell has also been accused of destroying a Ten Commandments monument in Oklahoma. An officer said he noticed a vehicle ram the monument around 4:45 a.m. Wednesday morning. Reed was taken to a local hospital to make sure he wasn’t injured in the incident.
Danielle Bergoli Peskowitz, a.k.a. “Cash Me Ousside” girl, pleaded guilty Wednesday to several charges, including grand theft, filing a false police report, and possession of marijuana. Peskowitz, 14, achieved viral internet fame after an appearance on Dr. Phil in 2016 when a fight with her mom and audience members ended in her signature catchphrase: “Cash me ousside, how bow dah.” She now lives in Los Angeles with her mother.
Senior Republicans are increasingly fed up with White House moves they describe as impulsive and harmful to the party’s future, Politico reported Tuesday. Citing nearly two dozen top Republicans, the report said many say they believe President Trump’s administration is sabotaging GOP efforts to expand the Republican Senate majority in 2018, hindering lawmakers’ chances at re-election and jeopardizing the party’s plans. Several senators have reportedly complained to Trump over what they view as the latest miscalculation by his administration: attack ads launched by a pro-Trump group against a GOP lawmaker who opposed the Senate’s health-care bill. The campaign by America First Policies, a group staffed by several of Trump’s top campaign aides, was pulled amid a mounting backlash, and the health-care repeal vote was delayed. Some lawmakers are reportedly also growing frustrated with Trump’s personal vendettas against those who criticize him, a habit they say might cause disunity in next year’s Senate elections.
An FBI agent has been indicted on charges that he lied about firing a gun at Robert “LaVoy” Finicum last year when officers arrested leaders of the occupation of a federal wildlife refuge, The Oregonian reported. The agent is accused of trying to obstruct justice. Finicum was the armed takeover’s spokesperson and was shot and killed by state troopers. The FBI found that one of its agents had fired shots that hit Finicum’s truck, but none of the agents said they discharged their weapons. Four other members of the FBI team are under investigation for covering up the gunshots.
The New England Holocaust Memorial was damaged in an act of vandalism overnight, The Boston Globe reported. Police said they found part of the glass memorial shattered after responding to a call at 2 a.m. local time. A man who allegedly threw a large rock at the glass has been arrested. The memorial is comprised of six 54-foot glass towers representing the main death camps. The panels are also etched with millions of numbers for those tattooed on the arms of Holocaust victims. Boston Mayor Marty Walsh vowed that the memorial will be fixed quickly.
The New York Knicks have fired team president Phil Jackson amid his feuds with multiple players, the New York Daily News reported Wednesday morning. The coaching legend—who won 11 championship rings with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers—joined the Knicks as a team exec in 2014 and has since attempted to rebuild the struggling franchise. But rather than allow him to trade one of the team’s two biggest stars, including Carmelo Anthony, owner James Dolan decided to fire Jackson.