The Hill's 12:30 Report — NYT says Cohen taped Trump on payments | Trump floats tariffs on all Chinese imports | Russia open to new summit

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*Ha. Haha. Hahah. Sniff. Haha. Sniff. Ha--breaks down crying hysterically.

 

The Hill's 12:30 Report: Breaking - Cohen reportedly taped Trump on payment to ex-Playboy model | Trump floats tariffs on all Chinese imports | Russia 'open' to second summit | GOP senators try to wave Trump off | Russia moves demoralize Trump's team | New questions about Kelly's future | Roseanne posts bizarre video about racist tweet

 

BREAKING

Plot twist -- I bet President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: I hope voters pay attention to Dem tactics amid Kavanaugh fight South Korea leader: North Korea agrees to take steps toward denuclearization Graham calls handling of Kavanaugh allegations 'a drive-by shooting' MORE has a few words for Michael Cohen right about now...:

Via The New York Times's Matt Apuzzo, Maggie Haberman and Michael S. Schmidt, "President Trump's longtime lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, secretly recorded a conversation with Mr. Trump two months before the presidential election in which they discussed payments to a former Playboy model who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump, according to lawyers and others familiar with the recording." What happened to the recording?: The FBI seized that recording when the agency raided Cohen's office and home. Read the full article: https://nyti.ms/2mxOIVC

WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT: "The recording's existence further draws Mr. Trump into questions about tactics he and his associates used to keep aspects of his personal and business life a secret. And it highlights the potential legal and political danger that Mr. Cohen represents to Mr. Trump." https://nyti.ms/2mxOIVC

HOW TEAM TRUMP REACTED TO THIS NEWS: President Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani acknowledged that Trump discussed payments, but never actually made them. He said the recording showed Trump did nothing wrong. https://nyti.ms/2mxOIVC

 

Happy summer Friday! I'm Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what's coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to cmartel@thehill.com@CateMartel and on Facebook.

  

TALK OF THE MORNING

Y'know what? Make that ALL Chinese imports:

In an interview with CNBC, President Trump said he is "ready to go" with $500 billion in tariffs on *all* Chinese imports. In Trump's words: "I'm not doing this for politics. I'm doing this to do the right thing for our country. We have been ripped off by China for a long time and I told that to President Xi [Jinping]." http://bit.ly/2uOSflT

Watch Trump's full interview on CNBC: https://cnb.cx/2O2x4Wm

Or read the transcript: https://cnb.cx/2uCJKv3

Best tweet I've read all week: "At least one headline on auto-related tariffs should read: 'Drove the levies to the Chevy' "(From writer Daniel Gross) http://bit.ly/2L9iwqj

 

I'm willing to bet Vladimir Putin wouldn't stay at The DuPont Circle Hotel...:

(Backstory: http://bit.ly/2O5UKcD)
President Trump has completely demoralized his own team this week with his comments on Russia, including his most recent invite for Russian President Vladimir Putin to visit the White House. The dilemma for aides: "The dizzying and often contradictory array of statements from the president and White House have also posed a dilemma for handpicked aides and advisers who are hawkish on Russia: remain on board or resign." How it's been playing out: http://bit.ly/2LrWTk0

HOW RUSSIA REACTED TO THE WHITE HOUSE INVITATION -- LET'S DO IT: Russia's Ambassador to the U.S. Anatoly Antonov said, "Russia was always open to such proposals. We are ready for discussions on this subject." http://bit.ly/2zUYydv

HOW SENATE REPUBLICANS ARE REACTING -- PLEASE DON'T: As President Trump discusses the possibility of a second summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Senate Republicans are attempting to wave him off. The most interesting part: The body language of GOP senators when asked about another Trump-Putin meeting. Details: http://bit.ly/2JEEBqM

INTERESTING TIDBIT -- WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF PUTIN COMES TO WASHINGTON?: Via The New York Times's Maggie Haberman, "On cutting-room floor, I asked a McConnell aide if Putin is welcome in the Capitol. 'There is no invitation from Congress,' the aide said." https://nyti.ms/2uMV2Mw

REACTION FROM A HOUSE INTEL COMMITTEE MEMBER: Rep. Eric SwalwellEric Michael SwalwellRussia probe accelerates political prospects for House Intel Dems Authorities: California man arrested after trying to stab GOP House candidate As we look back at 9/11, let’s recapture the spirit of uniting to protect America MORE (D-Calif.) said on CNN's "New Day," "Most Americans, when their homes get broken into, they upgrade their security system, they don't invite the burglar over for dinner. And the president shouldn't let Vladimir Putin in the Rose Garden for a victory lap." http://bit.ly/2JJzpC6

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR CHIEF OF STAFF John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE: Via The Hill's Niall Stanage, "The future of White House chief of staff John Kelly is the subject of growing speculation, amid the firestorm over President Trump's recent behavior toward Russian President Vladimir Putin." What Trump loyalists are angry about: A Vanity Fair report saying Kelly encouraged congressional Republicans to publicly rebuke Trump's Russia press conference. What Kelly sympathizers are saying: Kelly has found this position in the White House deeply frustrating and his allies wonder how long he will last. http://bit.ly/2Nx1IpS

Ooooof, check out today's cover of the New York Daily News: These covers have sure been bold these days. http://bit.ly/2JK8kPu

 

IN OTHER NEWS

Remember those Trump-as-a-baby balloons from London? Yeah, you'll be seeing more of those:

Via CNN's David Williams, activists in New Jersey got permission from the U.K. activists who created the Trump balloons to recreate the floats and fly them right outside President Trump's golf club in Bedminster, N.J. Funding: The activists started a GoFundMe and have already raised $17,000. https://cnn.it/2LahwSK

 

The weirdest PR stunt I've seen in a while -- yes, it even trumps IHOP's IHOb stunt: 

"Dragging from a cigarette and appearing flustered, an unhinged Roseanne Barr has again blasted Valerie Jarrett, saying she sent out a racist tweet comparing the former Obama adviser to a monkey because she 'thought the bitch was white.' " Coughs on my sip of coffee. I'm not kidding. http://bit.ly/2NwHtIC

Watch the video -- it's insane: http://bit.ly/2A5Bk4H

  

Ugh, this is gut wrenching:

Ayub Ali, whose son and daughter survived the Parkland, Fla., high school shooting earlier this year, was shot and killed this week during a robbery at his convenience store. Details: http://bit.ly/2zSRDSg

  

NOTABLE TWEETS

Haha, the ending of this is pretty funny:

 

Yikes, this photo is pretty nuts:

Full-size photo: http://bit.ly/2Lkv3GH 

  

ON TAP

The House and Senate are out for the weekend. President Trump is heading to his golf club in New Jersey and Vice President Pence has no public events on his calendar. SuMmEr ViBeS.

11:30 a.m. EDT: President Trump received his intelligence briefing.

3:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for his golf club in Bedminster, N.J. 

Today: As noted in The Hill's Morning Report, today is the 18-month mark for President Trump's administration. 

This weekend: Here are 12 things happening in D.C. this weekend: https://wapo.st/2O6NxJ5

 

WHAT TO WATCH

4 p.m. EDT: The National Governors Association holds its summer meeting. Livestream: https://cs.pn/2uClRDT

  

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National Lollipop Day.

 

Stretchy ice cream is a thing, by the way:

Via Dessert Insider, check out this stretchy ice cream in Brooklyn, N.Y. Watch: http://bit.ly/2NvK3ig

 

This story is pretty funny:

BuzzFeed reporter Erin Chack explains how she accidentally became famous in Malta. Watch: http://bit.ly/2uONGbq

Back story: Here's the article that started it all: https://bzfd.it/2NyQGR4

 

Dogs are not only 'man's best friend.' They are each other's best friends, too!:

Via NBC's 'Today,' a dog fell into a pool and was having trouble getting out. His dog buddy then jumped in and helped him get out. Watch -- it's pretty amazing: https://on.today.com/2O5p8ni

 

And to get your weekend off to a good start, here's a boy who is *extremely* done with pools: http://bit.ly/2mupTJV