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Max de Haldevang

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U.S. Lawmakers Want To Pay Up to $5 Million For Foreign Corruption Tips

March 1, 2018 Are you sitting on a trove of information about global kleptocracy? Do you like the idea of up to $5 million and witness protection? If so, a bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers has the bill for you. Modeled on existing programs to reward people who give tips to the State...

Trump’s White House Communications Directors, By Length of Service

March 1, 2018 Hope Hicks on Wednesday became the fourth White House communications chief to announce she was leaving the job in under a year. Trump’s comms chiefs couldn’t have had more varied personalities. Clumsy political insider Sean Spicer gave up the job to the invisible, ineffective Mike Dubke, who was eventually replaced...

HUD Spent $31,000 on a Dining Set for Carson's Office

February 28, 2018 Ben Carson said he “wasn’t happy” with a suggested budget cut of $6 billion to the Housing and Urban Development Department he leads. President Donald Trump’s latest budget proposal would increase the cut to $6.8 billion, or 14 percent of the agency’s budget. But that didn’t stop Carson’s office from...

Rick Gates is The Fifth Person To Plead Guilty in Trump-Russia Probe

February 23, 2018 Rick Gates is the latest to fall before special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump presidential campaign’s Russia ties. He pleaded guilty today in a Washington, D.C. courtroom (Feb. 23) to charges of conspiring against the United Sates and lying to investigators. Gates was the number two to former...

Paypal Was Used to Launder Russian Trolls’ Money During the 2016 Election

February 17, 2018 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Russian trolls used Paypal to sow chaos in the 2016 US election, according to special counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment today of 13 Russian nationals. The indictment accuses members of the St Petersburg “troll factory” Internet Research Agency of paying for online ads using Paypal. The ads were used to spread...

Analysis: The Republican Campaign To Discredit the FBI—Explained

February 2, 2018 The Clinton White House did it with great success when it was being investigated by Ken Starr. The Nixon White House did it with mixed results when it was being investigated by Archibald Cox. Now, the Trump administration is following the well-worn path of taking on a special-counsel investigation by...

Russian Twitterbots Are Blaming the US Shutdown on Democrats

January 22, 2018 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The PR war over the US government shutdown has been a tale of rival hashtags. Democrats are desperately branding it the “Trump shutdown,” while Republicans are pushing the phrase “Schumer shutdown,” after Democrat Senate leader Chuck Schumer. The GOP is getting a boost with that message from a now-familiar ally:...

Mitt Romney Is the Latest Political Target of Russian Trolls and Bots

January 4, 2018 FROM NEXTGOV arrow As soon as Utah senator Orrin Hatch announced he would retire this year, speculation mounted that Mitt Romney, a longtime critic of president Donald Trump, would vie for his place. Alongside that speculation came a now familiar force in US politics: Russian bots and trolls. Tweets from Russian accounts with...

Trump’s Bureaucracy is Nearly as White, Male, and Unequal as His Cabinet

October 23, 2017 When Donald Trump’s cabinet was criticized for having more white men (paywall) than any president’s first cabinet since Ronald Reagan, his then-spokesman Sean Spicer said we should wait to see the numbers for the whole bureaucracy. “People [should] look at and respect the level of diversity throughout his entire administration,”...

Russia’s Troll Factory Also Paid for 100 Activists in the US

October 17, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Russian independent media are having an impressive week in exposing how the country’s government allegedly tried to influence the US 2016 elections using online trolls. On Monday (Oct. 16), a man going under the pseudonym Maksim told TV Rain (paywall) that he was paid to post negative comments on Facebook...