This week was a blur as political Washington works frantically to clear its plate before hopping on planes, trains and automobiles to head home for the holidays. (Oh, and there's also a partial government shutdown that may or may not happen next Friday.)
The week started out with a White House chief-of-staff search that went off the rails -- it was unclear who would replace John Kelly after the presumptive successor, Nick Ayers, announced he wouldn't take the job.
Government and public administration
Immigration, citizenship and displacement
International relations and national security
Political Figures - US
Political platforms and issues
Territorial and national borders
US federal government
US-Mexico border wall
But Trump ended speculation late Friday afternoon, tweeting that OMB head Mick Mulvaney would become "acting" chief of staff.
Meanwhile, former Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen was sentenced to 36 months in prison (a swanky one, at that) on Wednesday, and he's not keeping quiet about his ex-boss anymore. Trump, true to form, hit back at Cohen, saying he never directed Cohen to break the law.
Cohen responded in a TV interview this morning, saying the President wanted him to conceal his actions because Trump "was very concerned about how this would affect the election."
But you know who probably had the best week in Washington? Nancy Pelosi.
Not only did she flip a key constituency of opponents to her future House speakership, but she won plaudits for her composure in a televised, fiery meeting with Trump in the Oval Office. AND the fanfare around the rust-colored Max Mara coat she wore while walking out of the West Wing inspired the fashion house to re-issue the coat five years after taking it off the racks. I'd consider that an early Christmas present for the likely soon-to-be speaker.
There's still a rough road ahead before lawmakers leave town. One major speed bump is a possible government shutdown over funding for Trump's border wall, which will come to a head at the end of next week.
The Point: Unlike Michael Cohen and Donald Trump, Nancy Pelosi had a VERY good week. But 2018 isn't over, and some of the biggest squabbles are still to come.
Now, a recap of the week, in 21 headlines:
- Trump concerned about being impeached, sees it as a 'real possibility,' source says
- GOP shrugs at Trump's involvement in Cohen crimes
- Trump clashes with Pelosi, Schumer in Oval Office over border wall
- Trump still searching for chief of staff
- Department of Education reorganization set for January
- Trump expresses openness to using Huawei CFO as bargaining chip in China trade talks
- Trump privately brags that Mexico will still pay for border wall
- Judge orders Stormy Daniels to pay nearly $300,000 in legal fees to Trump's attorneys in defamation case
- Michael Cohen sentenced to three years in prison
- Trump dismisses Russia contacts as 'peanut stuff' after denials
- Nikki Haley: Trump's 'unpredictable' behavior advantageous at UN
- Trump seizes on France attack to push border wall
- Alleged Russian spy Maria Butina pleads guilty to engaging in conspiracy against US
- Trump says he never told Michael Cohen to break the law
- Pelosi's meme-tastic coat so popular it will be re-issued
- Trump inaugural committee under criminal investigation: sources
- Cohen says Trump knew hush payments were wrong
- Christie takes himself out of running for White House chief of staff
- Trump keeps everyone guessing over shutdown
- Hatch says he regrets his 'I don't care' comment about Trump allegations
- Trump names Mulvaney 'acting' chief of staff