Here are some of the headlines and stories you need to know from around the web this afternoon, Wednesday, May 16:
Kremlin used NRA to help Trump in 2016, Senate report says (The Daily Beast)
Newly released documents from the Senate Judiciary Committee indicated that Vladimir Putin used the NRA to offer the Trump campaign a "back channel to Moscow," The Daily Beast reported. The documents also suggested that Moscow secretly funded the campaign by funneling money through the gun group.
Senate votes to save net neutrality (The Hill)
Though the bill has nearly zero chance of passing the U.S. House, the Senate voted Wednesday to reinstate the FCC's controversial net neutrality rules. Democrats forced a vote by using the Congressional Review Act, which can be used to overturn moves by federal agencies. Three Republicans joined the Democrats to pass the bill: Sen. Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), and John Kennedy (La.).
Michigan State to pay out $500 mllion in settlements to Larry Nassar abuse victims (Sports Illustrated)
Larry Nassar sexually abused hundreds of young women, and now his previous employer, Michigan State University, is paying through the nose to settle the victims' lawsuits. Michigan State will fork at least half-a-billion dollars, which will be covered by tuition and state aid.
The Senate Intelligence Committee voted 10-5 Wednesday to send the nomination of Gina Haspel to head the CIA to the full Senate for what appears to be a sure confirmation. Democrats who sought to derail Trump's pick to be America's top spy finally lost all momentum when Sen. Mark Warner (Va.), the ranking Democrat on the Intel Committee, announced Tuesday that he would support Haspel's confirmation.
How did this whole thing get started? According to the Times: "Within hours of opening an investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia in the summer of 2016, the FBI dispatched a pair of agents to London on a mission so secretive that all but a handful of officials were kept in the dark. Their assignment, which has not been previously reported, was to meet the Australian ambassador, who had evidence that one of Donald J. Trump’s advisers knew in advance about Russian election meddling."
Debbie Wasserman Schultz: The NRA is ‘just shy of a terrorist organization' (The Huffington Post)
The ever-classy DWS had some thoughts about the nation's biggest civil rights group: “The NRA is kind of just shy of a terrorist organization. They have done everything they can to perpetuate the culture of violence that we have in our country with the spread of assault weapons across the nation.”
Most of the 217 anti-Trump protesters who were arrested after taking to the streets Jan. 20, 2017, have been acquitted or had the charges dropped. But 59 of those arrested are still facing felony charges over rioting and property damage. The trials are expected to continue through October, and the defendants face potential 60-year sentences.