Donald Trump didn't do much to distance himself from the Kremlin Thursday night with an interview aired on the Russia-funded RT America network. The candidate told host Larry King that it was "probably unlikely" that Moscow is interfering in US elections and that claims that it is are probably coming from the Democrats, Politico reports. He also slammed the "unbelievably dishonest" American media and discussed third-party candidates, saying they appear to be fading away and he doesn't want to see Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson on the debate stage. In other coverage:
- Trump was strongly criticized for speaking to a network widely seen as having a strong pro-Russia bias, with GOP strategist John Weaver calling it "insanity," the Washington Post reports. The Trump campaign said it thought the interview would appear on Larry King's podcast, not on RT.
- The Hill reports that during a speech in Cleveland Thursday, Trump insisted that Hillary Clinton was lying when she said he was for the Iraq war before he was against it. "If I had been in Congress at the time I would have cast a vote in opposition," he said. "For years I've been a critic of these kinds of reckless foreign invasions and interventions that have been a hallmark of trigger-happy Hillary and her failed career."
- The Washington Post looks at somebody who has been missing from the campaign trail since late July: Melania Trump. The possible first lady was in the audience for Trump's appearance at a military forum on Wednesday, but she hasn't spoken publicly since what turned out to be a partly plagiarized speech at the Republican National Convention and isn't expected to play a major role in the campaign's final weeks.
- The New York Times examines the education plan Trump unveiled in Cleveland Thursday. He promised $20 billion in federal funds to help poor students attend the schools of their choice, though it's not clear where he plans to find the $20 billion.
- The Wall Street Journal reports that Clinton's campaign has decided to try to send out a more positive message about her vision for America instead of focusing on attacking Trump. The candidate spoke about her faith to the National Baptist Convention in Kansas City, Mo., on Thursday, saying doing so "doesn't always come naturally to a Midwestern Methodist."
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