People seem to like Drake's new album, Scorpion. In the newest Billboard Top 100 chart, seven songs from Scorpion populate the Top 10, gabbing every spot but 3, 5, and 10. That topples a record set by the Beatles on April 4, 1964, when the Fab Four held the first five spots on the Top 10 with "Can't Buy Me Love," "Twist and Shout," She Loves You," "I Want to Hold Your Hand," and "Please Please Me." No other act has simultaneously held the top five spots, but Drake seems to be on a roll.
Drake's "Scorpion" album set a record by posting seven simultaneous singles on Billboard's Top 10. That toppled The Beatles' record of five singles, set in 1964. https://t.co/zrE1r9jSGQ pic.twitter.com/QYulFZiKLO
— CNN (@CNN) July 12, 2018
In fact, all 25 tracks from Scorpion are on the Hot 100 chart, plus two other Drake songs — 27 songs also breaks a record, though in this case, it was held by Drake — and his album was streamed more than a billion times in its first week, in yet another first. With 31 Top 10 singles under his belt, Drake also passed Michael Jackson as the male solo artist with the most Top 10s, though Jackson just notched his 30th Top 10 single thanks to Drake ("Don't Matter to Me" is a posthumous duet with Jackson, based on an unreleased song). You can read more about Drake's hit machine at Billboard. The Hot 100 chart, which debuted in 1958, now combines digital streaming with radio airplay and digital music sales numbers. Peter Weber
AP's Jon Lemire directly asked Trump whether he believes Putin over U.S. intelligence. Watch Trump's stunning dodge.
President Trump was asked a very straightforward question about Russia's interference in the 2016 election. His response was essentially: "But what about Hillary's emails?"
Jonathan Lemire, an Associated Press reporter, reminded Trump at his joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday that the entire U.S. intelligence community has concluded that Russia meddled in the election. Putin has repeatedly denied such actions.
"Who do you believe?" Lemire asked Trump. "Would you now, with the whole world watching, tell President Putin, would you denounce what happened in 2016, and would you warn him to never do it again?"
Trump immediately dodged, changing the topic without denouncing Russia or even acknowledging any misconduct. "You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server," he said, referring to the Democratic National Committee's server that was hacked. "I've been wondering that, I've been asking that for months and months." Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted 12 Russian agents in connection to the hacking last week.
Trump said that while U.S. officials have shown him that Russia interfered with election systems, Putin has said "it's not Russia" who meddled. "I will say this, I don't see any reason why it would be [Russia]," said Trump, continuing to emphasize the importance of the DNC servers. "What happened to Hillary Clinton's emails?" he said, calling it a "disgrace" that her emails went missing. He said Putin was "extremely strong and powerful in his denial today" — so apparently, that's that. Watch Trump's non-answer below, via CNN. Summer Meza
Asked if he believes US intel agencies or Putin about Russia's interference in the 2016 election, Trump immediately starts pushing debunked DNC & Hillary conspiracy theories.
"I don't see any reason why it would be" Russia, Trump says, affirming he believes Putin's denials. pic.twitter.com/uciAoRxbxA
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) July 16, 2018
Russian President Vladimir Putin has a message for the Department of Justice: We didn't do it.
The leader definitively slammed accusations of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election — and any election — during a press conference alongside President Trump, following the two men's closed-door meeting Monday. Russia "has never interfered and is not going to interfere into internal American affairs, including election processes," Putin claimed.
JUST IN: Vladimir Putin says Pres. Trump mentioned Russia's "so-called interference" into U.S. elections, says he reiterated "the Russian state has never interfered and is not going to interfere into internal Americans affairs, including election processes." pic.twitter.com/byKxzo4LOo
— Evan McMurry (@evanmcmurry) July 16, 2018
That's a slightly different message than the U.S. delivered Friday, when Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe indicted 12 Russian agents on charges related to interference in the election. Trump barely mentioned the charges before Monday's meeting, but revealed during the press conference that the two leaders did at least bring up the subject. Putin apparently "feels very strongly" about election meddling and has an "interesting idea" about it, Trump said.
— Bloomberg (@business) July 16, 2018
Putin and Trump went on to question interference allegations as the conference continued. Putin welcomed Mueller's team to witness Russia's own interrogations of interference suspects, while Trump maintained his ongoing denial of any collusion, notably refusing to caution Putin against potential future interference because he "doesn't see any reason why" Russia would've meddled in the 2016 election anyway. Kathryn Krawczyk
President Trump met with Russian President Vladimir Putin for more than two hours Monday, in a closed-door summit that will produce no historical record. After their meeting, the two men emerged for a joint press conference, where Putin once again claimed that Russia did not interfere in America's 2016 presidential election — a claim that defies the conclusion of U.S. intelligence agencies.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is leading the investigation into Russian election meddling and whether there was any collusion by the Trump campaign with those efforts, has indicted multiple Russian entities and individuals for unlawful interference. But during the Monday presser, Trump took the opportunity to once again side with Putin over American intelligence, casting doubt on Russia's culpability by saying "both countries" were "responsible" for their fraught relations.
Trump then went a step further, attacking the Mueller probe while standing side-by-side with Putin. "The probe is a disaster for our country. it's kept us apart. It's kept us separated," Trump said. "There was no collusion. Everybody knows it." For good measure, Trump then cited his Electoral College victory in the 2016 race, noting that he ran a "brilliant campaign" and that's why he won "by a lot."
Putin, for his part, called the allegations of collusion "nonsense." "Could you name a single fact that definitively proves the collusion?" he asked. He later acknowledged outright that he "wanted" Trump to win the 2016 election. Kimberly Alters
Russian President Vladimir Putin thinks the U.S. and Russia should work together on cybersecurity issues.
Following his meeting with President Trump on Monday, Putin commented on Russia's interference in the 2016 election. At a joint press conference, Putin said that Russia, of all countries, "favors the continued cooperation in counterterrorism and maintaining cybersecurity" on the world stage.
He also said that Trump brought up "the so-called interference of Russia with the American elections" during their closed-door meeting. "The Russian state has never interfered and is not going to interfere into internal American affairs, including the election process," claimed Putin. He admitted that U.S. and Russian "postures don't always dovetail," but called for collaboration to restore the relationship, which he said was tense for "no solid reason." The Russian president said that the two nations could work together on establishing peace in Syria, in addition to cybersecurity efforts, as a way to meet halfway and work on mutual interests.
Trump said that he and Putin "spent a great deal of time talking about" Russian interference in the election and cybersecurity issues. "President Putin may very well want to address it and very strongly, because he feels very strongly about it, and he has an interesting idea," said Trump, not clarifying whether he accepted Putin's denial and not elaborating on Putin's "idea." The two leaders did not indicate any specific way in which they had considered collaborating on solving cybersecurity concerns. Summer Meza
Plutonium went missing from the back seat of government worker's car last March, and the Department of Energy still has no idea where it went.
In March 2017, two Energy Department officials were supposed to drive from an Idaho lab to pick up some nuclear materials in San Antonio, Texas, and bring them back safely, The Center for Public Integrity reports. They rented a Ford Expedition, packed some plutonium and cesium, and eventually stopped at a Marriott hotel for the night. In the morning, the nuclear materials they left in the back seat were gone.
Notably, the two so-called energy experts didn't even pick up their intended cargo in San Antonio before losing the radioactive elements they brought from home. Plutonium and cesium are used to calibrate radiation detectors, which the experts would've needed to do before measuring the San Antonio materials to ensure they grabbed the right stuff, per CPI.
That was more than a year ago. Yet San Antonio police and the FBI never publicly announced the dangerous and valuable materials went missing, CPI says. In fact, police and the FBI only discussed the case by phone. And it's not an uncommon story: Plutonium has silently disappeared from U.S. military stockpiles for years despite presidential pledges to safeguard it from would-be terrorists.
Officials won't disclose just how much plutonium went missing — but don't worry, a spokeswoman assured CPI, it's not enough to make a bomb. Read more at The Center for Public Integrity. Kathryn Krawczyk
"What is the point" of President Trump's summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, wonders former Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. Does it have a "strategic purpose?" Hagel asked Monday. "Is this just a golf date with another leader?"
If you've had the same question, Trump has answers — perhaps too many answers. As The Washington Post documents, the president's explanations for why he should meet with Putin, as well as why they need to talk alone, have not been consistent in the run-up to Helsinki.
The president's discussion plan has at various points included Ukraine, China, Syria, "other parts of the Middle East," nuclear weapons, trade, military, missiles, election meddling, extradition of the 12 Russian agents indicted for election-related hacking Friday, and "many other subjects."
As for why Trump wanted to meet with Putin alone, CNN reports that the White House provided three separate reasons: "[Trump] wanted alone time to assess [Putin] better, he didn't want details of their conversation to leak and — this is key — didn't want aides who favor a hard line against Russia to undercut him."
Trump has also seemed to propose meeting just to meet ("I do believe in meetings") or to develop a positive personal relationship with Putin. "I hope we get along well," he said last week. "[I]n a sense, we're competitors. Not a question of friend or enemy. He's not my enemy. And, hopefully, someday, maybe he'll be a friend." Maybe the strategic purpose was friendship all along. Bonnie Kristian
President Trump's controversial decisions to meet with antagonistic world leaders will go down in the history books. The actual content of those meetings, however, will not.
His Monday meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin was a one-on-one conversation, with only translators present, reports The Wall Street Journal. One official said Trump didn't want to invite note-takers into the room to avoid leaks — but that also means that there will be no official record of the meeting.
Trump also met alone with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un last month, and the two leaders had fairly different accounts of the conversation after it ended: Trump said that North Korea would immediately completely dismantle its nuclear weapons program, while Kim claimed he had agreed only to a "step-by-step" process with U.S. security guarantees.
Trump has said that he would ask Putin about election meddling, Syria, and nuclear weapons, but experts are concerned that Russia might offer a misleading account of the conversation. The meeting was scheduled to last for an hour and a half but stretched more than two hours, Reuters reported. While there will be no official historical record of what was discussed, Trump and Putin will hold a joint press conference following the meeting to give reporters at least some information. Unless Russia secretly records the meeting, we'll have to take their word for it. Summer Meza