News & Politics

Washingtonian Today: Russian Man Excited to Visit White House

Photograph by Evy Mages

About Washingtonian Today

Washingtonian Today is not just another political news roundup. Instead, this daily morning brief provides local context on national news, catches you up on what’s happening at Washingtonian, points you toward super duper awesome things to do around town, and lets you in on some special events going on in-house. Sign up here to receive Washingtonian Today in your inbox every morning.

Former FBI director James Comey contributed to Mueller-momentum in an op-ed published by The New York Times yesterday. In an essay titled “What I Want From the Mueller Report,” Comey lays out:

The things he’s not rooting for:

  • “Mr. Mueller to demonstrate that [Trump] is a criminal”
  • “Mr. Mueller to ‘clear’ the president”

The things he is rooting for:

  • “that the special counsel be permitted to finish his work, charge whatever cases warrant charging and report on his work.”

Notable though, is Comey’s hope that Trump is not impeached before the end of his term. Why? “Because if Mr. Trump were removed from office by Congress, a significant portion of this country would see this as a coup, and it would drive those people farther from the common center of American life, more deeply fracturing our country.”

Yet there’s a faction of folks, at least those shopping for political merchandise on Etsy, who don’t mind showing a strong tilt in favor of the Special Counsel.  Some examples include Robert Mueller devotional prayer candles, Saint Mueller stickers, Mueller fan club tees, “very legal and very cool” mugs, and so on. I’ve written about the intersections of resistance capitalism and DC newsmakers before, yet I’m still baffled by how quick and how ferociously folks glom—or, likely, project their desired narratives—onto individuals such as Mueller, Comey, and Michael Cohen.

The Ice Man Only Sort-of Comeths: The Capitals are heading to the White House on Monday, ten months after clinching the Stanley Cup. However, don’t expect to see any photographs of Trump and the team eating cereal out of the Stanley Cup. There will be no ceremony or media presence as the team takes a private tour of the property, The Washington Post’s Isabelle Khurshudyan tweeted. Captain Alexander Ovechkin and center Nicklas Backstrom have both expressed excitement over the pending White House visit. Meanwhile, former Caps player Devante Smith-Pelly and forward Brett Connolly both announced they would not attend.

AIPAC Policy Conference: This weekend is the AIPAC Policy Conference, a pro-Israel gathering with a speaker lineup that reads like an entry in Politico Playbook. Top officials from the White House and Capitol Hill will take the dais to address the partnership between the US and Israel. Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo join former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley as featured guests. Members from Congressional leadership are also set to speak, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Ted Cruz’s beard will also make an appearance.

My name is Brittany Shepherd, and I’ll never complain to the FCC about you. Email me at and follow me on Twitter. Daniella Byck ( contributed to reporting today. Please subscribe to this newsletter.

Need a new regular spot on H Street now that Sally’s Middle Name is set to close? Ask our food critic Ann Limpert during her weekly chat today at 11. Throw your questions in now.

What’s on my mind: Playtime gets political with OYOToys figurines in the likeness of 2020 presidential candidates. The biggest question isn’t even why the Bernie Sanders toy is rocking a baseball cap: the roster of presidential hopefuls doesn’t include a single female candidate.

What we have cooking at Washingtonian:

Our pick for things to do around town:

MUSEUMS The National Museum of Women in the Arts highlights the career of sculptor Ursula von Rydingsvard with “Ursula von Rydingsvard: The Contour of Feeling.” Von Rydingsvard uses organic materials for her sculptures; many are carved in cedar while others consist of materials you might call unconventional—moss, photographs, and animal intestines. Roughly 3o large-scale works will be on display, and reflect both von Rydingsvard’s childhood in German refugee camps and how opportunities for female artists have changed throughout her four-decade career. Through July 28. $10.

Good reads:

Lachlan Murdoch, the son of media giant Rupert Murdoch, is taking the helm of Fox Corp. How will he manage the network’s cozy relationship with Trump? (The Washington Post)

Do you wistfully stare at your “I Want To Believe” X Files poster that still manages to hang in your bedroom? You’re in luck. Belief in aliens could be America’s next big religion. And who knows? Truth is stranger than fiction. (The Outline)

Big events from Washingtonian:

Do you really love the drip coffee from Swings? Adore the sweets at District Doughnut? Our annual readers poll is now live–take it and let us know your favorite things in Washington. You could win two tickets to our fabulous Best of Washington party in June.

Staff Writer

Brittany Shepherd covers the societal and cultural scene in political Washington. Before joining Washingtonian as a staff writer in 2018, Brittany was a White House Correspondent for Independent Journal Review. While she has lived in DC for a number of years now, she still yearns for the fresh Long Island bagels of home. Find her on Twitter, often prattling on about Frasier.