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July 11, 2018

Some may say President Trump was ready to shake things up at this week's NATO summit in Brussels. Fox News politics editor Chris Stirewalt opted for a more graphic simile.

In a Fox News @ Night appearance late Tuesday, Stirewalt anticipated that Trump wasn't just going to disrupt the norm during the meeting of North American and European allies, which begins in earnest Wednesday. Instead, Trump would "fly into Brussels like a seagull" and "defecate all over everything, squawk, and fly away," he told host Shannon Bream.

Trump went into the NATO meeting prepared to challenge the organization, saying the U.S. protects its allies more than they protect America and deserves a break on tariffs to make up for it. That prompted concern from former diplomats and even Republicans, including Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.), who warned Trump against making consolations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump is meeting with Putin next week.

"I want to tell these Republicans, quit kidding yourselves," Stirewalt said on Fox News @ Night. "You will not stop Donald Trump from undermining NATO ... and you will not stop him from realigning U.S. foreign policy to be more favorable toward Russia."

So far, Stirewalt has been right. Trump didn't even make it through Wednesday's breakfast before tearing into Germany for being "captive to Russia," and on Tuesday he said his upcoming meeting with Putin may be the "easiest of them all." Only time will tell how many more messy bombshells Trump will drop. Kathryn Krawczyk

8:56p.m.

After a year of discussions, Department of Justice officials are optimistic they will be able to get WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange into a U.S. courtroom, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal on Thursday.

In 2012, Assange received political asylum from Ecuador, and has been living in the country's London embassy. Prosecutors do not yet know what charges they might file, but it could involve the Espionage Act, the Journal reports. Prosecutors are also reportedly considering publicly indicting Assange so the Ecuadorian government could see evidence against him and would have a reason to remove him from the embassy.

Last month, Assange sued Ecuador over his conditions in the embassy, and after a judge rejected his claims, he said he believes he'll soon be kicked out. In 2010, Chelsea Manning gave WikiLeaks documents related to the Iraq War, and ahead of the 2016 presidential election, WikiLeaks released thousands of emails hacked from Democrats, which Special Counsel Robert Mueller says were provided by Russian intelligence officers. Catherine Garcia

7:36p.m.

FBI agents are investigating the death of a 52-year-old woman while aboard a Princess Cruises ship on its way to Aruba.

Early Tuesday, the woman, whose name has not been released, fell from an upper deck onto a lifeboat, authorities in Aruba said. A local news outlet said witnesses saw the woman fighting with another passenger before she plunged to her death.

The Caribbean cruise left Port Everglades, Florida, on Nov. 9, and was traveling from Curacao to Aruba when the woman died. Her husband was on the ship with her, HuffPost reports, and has not been named as a suspect. A spokeswoman for the Aruba Public Prosecutor's Office told USA Today it is "obvious that she fell, but why did she fall? Was she pushed? Did she jump? That is what we are investigating, to find out exactly what happened." Catherine Garcia

6:42p.m.

Following the conclusion of a machine recount on Thursday afternoon, the state of Florida ordered a manual recount in the Senate race.

The incumbent, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, is about 12,600 votes behind his challenger, Republican Rick Scott, the state's current governor. At least three counties did not submit their machine recount results by the 3 p.m. deadline, and are going with the counts submitted last Saturday. About an hour before the deadline, Palm Beach County announced it was not going to finish in time, and Broward County was late by two minutes, because the person uploading the results didn't know how to use the website, The Miami Herald's Alex Harris said on MSNBC.

A hand recount was not ordered for the governor's race, where Republican Ron DeSantis has a .41 percent lead over Democrat Andrew Gillum, outside the .25 percent threshold for a manual recount. Catherine Garcia

5:08p.m.

It was always too good to be true.

The story of a homeless man using his last $20 to buy gas for a stranded New Jersey woman warmed hearts and brought in more than $400,000 in a GoFundMe campaign about a year ago. But now, the man, the woman, and her husband have been arrested on charges that the whole thing was a scam, BuzzFeed News reports.

Late last year, Kate McClure said she'd run out of gas while driving to Philadelphia. A homeless man named Johnny Bobbitt came to her rescue, she said, so she and her boyfriend Mike D'Amico launched a fundraising campaign to pay him back. Things started looking sketchy when Bobbitt said he didn't get much of the money, eventually winning $75,000 in an August lawsuit against McClure and D'Amico, Forbes notes. And now, prosecutors say the whole story was fake.

In text messages sent just an hour after she launched the fundraiser, McClure told a friend she'd made the "buying gas" part of the story up, a New Jersey prosecutor said Thursday. Bobbitt was homeless, McClure said, but they'd allegedly staged a photo together to craft a scheme to split the money. All the money raised by the campaign has since been spent, with more than $100,000 withdrawn at or near casinos, BuzzFeed News says. And D'Amico, McClure, and Bobbitt have all been arrested on second-degree theft charges. GoFundMe has pledged to refund the 14,000 people who donated to Bobbitt. Kathryn Krawczyk

4:25p.m.

Get ready to one day see Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Academy Awards.

Apple, having previously set aside $1 billion to start producing original TV shows and films, has signed a multi-year deal for original movies with hit indie studio A24, Variety reported Thursday.

Some of A24's films include Moonlight, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 2017, as well as Room, Lady Bird, The Florida Project, The Disaster Artist, and The Witch. Founded in 2012, the studio has had at least one film nominated at the Oscars for the past three years, and in 2019, its movies Eighth Grade, Hereditary, and Mid90s are among those in contention for top awards. Apple did not buy A24 completely, though, as had been rumored.

The deal with Apple is not exclusive, so A24 will make an unspecified number of movies for Apple and other movies elsewhere. It's not yet clear whether these films will be released in theaters or premiere exclusively on an Apple streaming platform, Variety writes.

This news shows that Apple is committed to attracting some serious talent for its slate of originals: the company reeled in Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, Chris Evans, and Charlie Day for its new Apple TV shows. Before this deal, Apple acquired the rights to two movies from the Toronto International Film Festival, Deadline points out.

Amazon and Netflix have both previously received Oscar nominations for their original films, and Netflix's Roma is thought to have a chance at Best Picture in 2019. No streaming platform has yet taken home that top prize — it remains to be seen who might get there first, but with Apple now in the mix, the race is on. Brendan Morrow

3:15p.m.

Roy Clark, country music star and Hee Haw host, has died at the age of 85, his publicist confirmed Thursday.

Clark died at his home in Tulsa, Oklahoma due to complications from pneumonia, Variety reports. A country music legend, Clark was perhaps best known for his role on the popular variety show Hee Haw, which he co-hosted for more than 20 years from 1969 through 1993. Some of Clark's hit songs include "Yesterday, When I Was Young" and "Honeymoon Feeling," and although he was mainly known for playing the guitar and the banjo, his talents extended to several other instruments including the harmonica and the mandolin, Fox News writes. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2009.

The tributes to Clark poured in on Thursday, especially from those in the world of country music. "My first [Country Music Association Awards] memory is sitting on my living room floor watching Roy Clark tear it up," country musician Keith Urban tweeted Thursday, one day after the 2018 CMAs. "Sending my love and respect to him and his family for all he did." Brendan Morrow

3:08p.m.

President Trump is the definition of a frenemy.

Trump truly does like Fox News' Sean Hannity, and willingly grants him interviews that pander to the president's agenda. But when the duo isn't on camera or enjoying a late-night phone call, sources tell The Daily Beast, Trump makes fun of Hannity for asking "dumb" questions that make the host look like a sycophant.

The three people The Daily Beast talked to asked to remain anonymous because, as one put it, Hannity is a "perfectly nice guy." But he's too nice to Trump — and the president easily gets sick of it. Trump has often "zero[ed] in on the low-quality laziness of the host's questions," The Daily Beast details, once mocking Hannity's voice and complaining that his "softball" interviews weren't very fun. One source even "recalled a round of ripping on the TV talker's interview style and cloying devotion to Trump that lasted long enough that the source glanced at their watch and started feeling sorry for Hannity."

Despite laying into CNN's Jim Acosta at a press hearing last week, Trump actually prefers confrontational interviewers, Trump ally Jeff Lord tells The Daily Beast. Trump did call on Acosta to ask a question, after all. However, in spite of all the insults Trump throws at Hannity behind the scenes, sources say he still "loves Sean." Read more at The Daily Beast. Kathryn Krawczyk

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