Photo: Street vendors at the pedestrian border crossing in Tijuana, with the US-Mexico barrier at their backs.(Toksave)
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President Trump signed two new executive orders today, aimed at reshaping US trade policy. One puts in place a wide-ranging study of America's half-trillion-dollar deficit with our largest trading partners. The other calls for stricter enforcement of anti-dumping laws to keep foreign manufacturers from undercutting US companies selling goods at fair prices. The orders come just one week before Trump meets with President Xii Jinping of China, which Trump has repeatedly accused of unfair trade practices. Peter Nicholas, who covers the White House for the Wall Street Journal, has details.
President Trump promised to tighten US borders by restricting travel and building his big beautiful wall between America and Mexico. But legal challenges to his travel ban and Mexico's refusal to foot the construction bill are making it hard for him to deliver. Nevertheless, the administration is moving forward on both fronts. It's opened a $600 million bidding contest for construction on the border wall and, in the past two weeks the administration implemented a new policy of "extreme vetting" of visa applicants -- one of Trump's signature campaign promises, but without the fanfare. This vetting was revealed in a series of diplomatic cables sent by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to embassies and consulates, explaining the new policy.
Miller on Trump's 'buy American' pledge being at risk with border wall
Taylor on White House calling for domestic cuts to finance border wall
Washington Post on Hispanic contractors that offered to build the wall getting death threats
Senate Republicans took aim at Planned Parenthood yesterday in a vote that unfolded like a House of Cards episode. With Democrats and two female Republicans opposed, it took a Georgia Republican showing up in a wheelchair, still recovering from back surgeries to cast his vote -- and Vice President Mike Pence still had to break the tie.
Photo by Sarah Mirk
The bill now heading to the President's desk would affect more than just Planned Parenthood. It seeks to undo an Obama Administration rule that prevented states from blocking funding for family planning clinics that also perform abortions. Emily Crockett of Vox has more on the story.
More From To the Point
US elections: How far have we come since Bush v. Gore? This program began in the year 2000 with coverage of the contested election of President George W. Bush. Changes in the following 17 years were supposed to improve the integrity of the electoral process. Is the "guarantee" that every American has the right to vote more — or less — a reality?
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