Photo: Street vendors at the pedestrian border crossing in Tijuana, with the US-Mexico barrier at their backs.(Toksave)
FROM THIS EPISODE
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
Scott Pruitt and James Comey: In and out of the Trump Administration EPA Director Scott Pruitt is undergoing an ethics investigation, but his Obama-Era predecessor, Gina McCarthy, says the real scandal is that he “doesn’t know what he’s doing.” We’ll also tackle the backlash against fired FBI Director James Comey. Can his credibility survive angry public exchanges with President Trump?
The internet, privacy and data protection Mark Zuckerberg survived this week’s Congressional grilling. But Facebook still profits on free information: yours and mine. Three experts on big data explain how it works and lay out the risks as well as the benefits. Also, a veteran of Washington’s war games says President Trump is right to want U.S. troops out of Syria
Nuclear weapons in the 21st Century President Trump and Kim Jong Un have revived fears about weapons of mass destruction. But “tactical” nuclear weapons for use on the battlefield are still around, too. Is President Trump--like Barack Obama before him--relaying on a World War II technology ill-adapted to modern threats like cyber warfare? Would the use of low-level nukes inevitably escalate into an all-out atomic warfare? Also, Pulitzer Prize-winner Lawrence Wright on his new TV miniseries “The Looming Tower” about the FBI, the CIA and September 11th.
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