Yet Another Russiagate Witness Flips

Rick Gates and his pal Donald Trump back in happier times.Mark Reinstein via ZUMA

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Why was Donald Trump so irritable this weekend? Was it because his advisors told him that playing golf would make him look insensitive after Wednesday’s school massacre in Florida? Maybe. Or maybe he had some idea beforehand of this report from the LA Times:

A former top aide to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign will plead guilty to fraud-related charges within days – and has made clear to prosecutors that he would testify against Paul J. Manafort Jr., the lawyer-lobbyist who once managed the campaign. The change of heart by Trump’s former deputy campaign manager, Richard W. Gates III, who had pleaded not guilty after being indicted in October on charges similar to Manafort’s, was described in interviews by people familiar with the case.

This is all part of the money laundering charges against Manafort, and Gates may not have any inside dope to offer beyond that. Then again, maybe he does. Trump can bellow “NO COLLUSION!” as many times as he wants, but that doesn’t mean it’s so until and unless Robert Mueller closes the books on his investigation with no charges filed. Needless to say, Trump knows this perfectly well.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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