Trump Is ‘Thankful’ Putin Ordered Cut To Diplomats: US ‘Able To Cut Our Payroll’

“Thank you sir, please don’t release the peepee tapes!”

President Donald Trump on Thursday said he was “very thankful” to Russian President Vladimir Putin for Putin’s order that the U.S. diplomatic mission in Russia cut its staff by 755 people.

“Do you have any response to the Russian president expelling 755 workers from our embassy?” one journalist asked during a pool spray Thursday.

“No, I want to thank him, because we’re trying to cut down on payroll, and as far as I’m concerned, I’m very thankful that he let go of a large number of people because now we have a smaller payroll,” Trump said, responding to a question about the Putin-mandated cut. “There’s no real reason for them to go back. So I greatly appreciate the fact that they’ve been able to cut our payroll for the United States. We’ll save a lot of money.”

Trump didn’t show any sign that he was joking about the statement, which reflected the opposite of Putin’s stated goal in ordering a cut: to harm the United States.

Trump Escalates Rhetoric on Threat From North Korea

In between rounds of golf of course.

BEDMINSTER, N.J. — President Trump warned North Korea on Thursday that “things will happen to them like they never thought possible” should the isolated country attack the United States or its allies.

Trump told reporters here that his Tuesday statement warning of “fire and fury” may not have been “tough enough,” but even as he continued his brinksmanship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the president sought to reassure anxious people around the world that he has the situation under control.

“Frankly, the people who were questioning that statement, was it too tough? Maybe it wasn’t tough enough,” Trump said. “They’ve been doing this to our country for a long time, for many years, and it’s about time that somebody stuck up for the people of this country and for the people of other countries. So, if anything, maybe that statement wasn’t tough enough.”

(Image from here)

FBI conducted predawn raid of former Trump campaign chairman Manafort’s home

This broke yesterday and probably everybody has already seen it to death but I’m playing catch up and this seems pretty important:

FBI agents raided the home in Alexandria, Va., of President Trump’s former campaign chairman, arriving in the pre-dawn hours late last month and seizing documents and other materials related to the special counsel investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

The raid, which occurred without warning on July 26, signaled an aggressive new approach by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III and his team in dealing with a key figure in the Russia inquiry. Manafort has been under increasing pressure as the Mueller team looked into his personal finances and his professional career as a highly paid foreign political consultant.

Using a search warrant, agents appeared the day Manafort was scheduled to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee and a day after he met voluntarily with Senate Intelligence Committee staff members.

The search warrant requested documents related to tax, banking and other matters. People familiar with the search said agents departed the Manafort residence with a trove of material, including binders prepared ahead of Manafort’s congressional testimony.

Trump’s top evangelical ally: God supports bombing North Korea

Oh, well, if the invisible man in the sky says it’s ok, then sure, why not:

A short time after Trump spoke Tuesday afternoon, one of his closest religious advisers made that link explicit. In a statement emailed to journalists Tuesday afternoon, pastor Robert Jeffress praised Trump’s aggressive statement as a function of divine will. “When it comes to how we should deal with evil doers, the Bible, in the book of Romans, is very clear: God has endowed rulers full power to use whatever means necessary — including war — to stop evil. In the case of North Korea, God has given Trump authority to take out Kim Jong-Un.”