Mike ‘Payola’ Allen writing at Axios’ morning email thingie:
A WashPost front-pager, “Ryan swore Republicans to secrecy,” by Adam Entous, quotes House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy as telling fellow GOP leaders in a recorded conversation on June 15, 2016: “There’s two people I think Putin pays: [Rep. Dana] Rohrabacher [R-Calif.] and Trump. … Swear to God.”
Speaker Ryan interjected: “This is an off the record.” The Post adds: “Some lawmakers laughed at that.”
A Ryan spokesman called MCarthy’s remark “clearly an attempt at humor,” and McCarthy’s spokesman called it “a failed attempt at humor.”
Entous told Chris Matthews on “Hardball”: “I listened to it very carefully. … [H]e said it very seriously.”
Why it matters: Whatever McCarthy’s intent (and he’s inclined to leaven a serious moment with humor), this shows how long Trump and Russia have been fodder for speculation, even by close allies like McCarthy.
Those two are ready for a buddy movie.