McCain’s Former Primary Rival Wants Him to Resign

Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) former primary rival, Kelli Ward (R), urged the ailing senator to step aside after his diagnosis of brain cancer, the Washington Post reports.

Said Ward: “As a Christian, I know there can always be miracles. But the likelihood that John McCain is going to be able to come back to the Senate and be at full force for the people of our state and the people of the United States is low.”

She went on to say that she hoped to be appointed to fill his seat should he leave office.

Congress Reaches Deal on Russia Sanctions

“Congressional leaders have reached an agreement on sweeping sanctions legislation to punish Russia for its election-meddling and aggression toward its neighbors, they said Saturday, defying the White House’s argument that President Trump needs flexibility to adjust the sanctions to fit his diplomatic initiatives with Moscow,” the New York Times reports.

“The new legislation sharply limits the president’s ability to suspend or terminate the sanctions. At a moment when investigations into the Trump campaign’s interactions with Russian officials have cast a shadow over his presidency, Mr. Trump could soon face a bleak decision: veto the bill — and fuel accusations that he is doing the bidding of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia — or sign legislation imposing sanctions his administration abhors.”

Exchange of the Day

Anthony Scaramucci gave his first interview as White House communications director to Matt Boyle of Breitbart.

SCARAMUCCI: “Did you send your job application form in yet, Matt? Do you need my email so I can get your resume over here?”

BOYLE: “Anthony, I’m honored, maybe we can talk about that later.”

Trump’s ‘Axis of Adults’ Is Breaking Apart

Eli Lake: “If you thought grownups like Mattis, McMaster and Tillerson were secretly running the administration, think again.”

“In the case of McMaster, administration officials tell me he is perceived not to be a reliable messenger of the president’s wishes. What’s more, administration figures tell me, principals including Tillerson, Mattis and CIA director Mike Pompeo have a direct line to Trump. They can go around McMaster and make their case on interagency disputes directly to the commander in chief. For a national security adviser, this dynamic is deadly.”

No Respect for Sean Spicer

Wall Street Journal: “Less than a month into his new job, White House press secretary Sean Spicer needed to keep his food and drink cold. He wanted a mini-fridge.”

“He dispatched a top aide to a nearby executive office building where junior research employees are crammed into a room, surviving on Lean Cuisine frozen lunches. Mr. Spicer wants your icebox, the aide said, according to people familiar with the incident. They refused to give it up.”

“So Mr. Spicer waited until sundown—after his young staffers had left—to take matters into his own hands. He was spotted by a fellow White House official lugging the icebox down the White House driveway after 8 p.m.”

A Long-Hidden Memo Says President Can Be Indicted

New York Times: “A newfound memo from Kenneth W. Starr’s independent counsel investigation into President Bill Clinton sheds fresh light on a constitutional puzzle that is taking on mounting significance amid the Trump-Russia inquiry: Can a sitting president be indicted?”

“The 56-page memo, locked in the National Archives for nearly two decades… amounts to the most thorough government-commissioned analysis rejecting a generally held view that presidents are immune from prosecution while in office.”

From the memo: “It is proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president for serious criminal acts that are not part of, and are contrary to, the president’s official duties.”

Kushner Revised His Financial Disclosures Again

Jared Kushner “failed to disclose dozens of financial holdings that he was required to declare when he joined the White House as an adviser to President Trump, his father-in-law,” the Washington Post reports.

“A separate document released Friday also showed that Kushner’s wife, presidential daughter Ivanka Trump, had been paid as much as $5 million from her outside businesses over an 84-day span this spring around the time she entered the White House as a senior adviser and pledged to distance herself from her private holdings.”

“Kushner’s new disclosure, released by the White House, detailed more than 70 assets that his attorneys said he had inadvertently left out of earlier filings.”

Trump Jr. and Manafort Cut Deal to Avoid Public Hearing

CNN: “The leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee have cut a deal with President Donald Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort to avoid being subpoenaed for a high-profile public hearing next week, with the two men agreeing to provide records to the panel and to be privately interviewed ahead of any public session.”

The Storming of the Presidency

If you’re going to read one book on politics this summer vacation, it should be Devil’s Bargain – Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Storming of the Presidency.

Author Joshua Green joins Chris Riback on the latest episode of Political Wire Conversations.

Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes or Google Play to get new episodes automatically downloaded to your phone.

Trump Readies for Political, Legal War

Mike Allen: “The President is building a wartime Cabinet, for political and legal war. One longtime ally who’s likely to have a more visible, frequent role: Newt Gingrich, husband of Callista Gingrich, Trump’s choice for ambassador to the Vatican.”

“Trump relishes fights, and creates plenty of them. But now he’s in a real one, with special counsel Bob Mueller signaling that he plans an expansive, exhaustive investigation aimed at Trump, his relatives, and current and former political lieutenants.”

“One West Wing confidant says Trump really might dismiss Mueller. So POTUS needs ‘a group that can fight through what could end up being something quite amazing.'”

Democrats to Unveil New Economic Agenda

“Senate and House Dems, after an intensive process spanning seven months, on Monday will unveil a new economic agenda, Axios has exclusively learned, meant to counter the perception that Democrats are only the anti-Trump party, with no message of their own.”

“Top Dems see the new message as the key to turning things around after their losses in the presidential race and this year’s House special elections.”

A memo from pollster Geoff Garin explains the new messaging.