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AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka appears at the National Press Club in Washington on April 4, 2017.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka appears at the National Press Club in Washington on April 4, 2017. (Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

President Trump started his Labor Day with an attack on a top union leader, lashing out after criticism from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

Trump tweeted Monday that Trumka "represented his union poorly on television this weekend." He added: "it is easy to see why unions are doing so poorly. A Dem!"

The president's attack came after Trumka appeared on "Fox News Sunday" over the weekend, saying efforts to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement should include Canada. Trumka, whose organization is an umbrella group for most unions, said the economies of the United States, Canada and Mexico are "integrated" and "it's pretty hard to see how that would work without having Canada in the deal."

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Under the soaring neo-Gothic arches of the National Cathedral, official Washington was set to gather Saturday to say farewell to Sen. John McCain, capping days of tributes to the war hero and two-time Republican presidential contender who died last week of brain cancer at the age of 81.

Two former presidents who prevented McCain from winning that title, Democrat Barack Obama and Republican George W. Bush, were to deliver eulogies to the sixth-term Arizona senator before 2,500 invited guests. Their keynote role was McCain’s idea — his final, poignant display of the bipartisanship that was his hallmark, and was celebrated at memorial services from Phoenix to the U.S. Capitol over the last three days.

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President Trump has told Congress he is canceling a pay raise that most civilian federal employees were due to receive in January, citing budgetary constraints. 

Trump informed House and Senate leaders in a letter sent Thursday. 

Trump says in the letter that locality pay increases, which are based on the cost of living where an employee works, would cost $25 billion, on top of a 2.1% across-the-board increase for most civilian government employees. 

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  • White House

President Trump is signaling that he knows who will succeed White House counsel Don McGahn, saying he's "very excited" about the individual.

Trump did not announce a successor in his tweet Thursday but said: "I am very excited about the person who will be taking the place of Don McGahn as White House Councel! I liked Don, but he was NOT responsible for me not firing Bob Mueller or Jeff Sessions. So much Fake Reporting and Fake News!"

Trump announced Wednesday on Twitter that McGahn will leave his post in the fall, after the expected Senate confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

If Republicans are hoping Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh will help them knock down Obamacare in the courts, they might be in for a disappointment.

Ron DeSantis, an upstart Republican riding the endorsement of President Trump, surged to win Florida’s gubernatorial primary Tuesday, setting up a starkly ideological fight with a Bernie Sanders acolyte vying to become the first black governor in state history.

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President Trump released the following statement:

Despite our differences on policy and politics, I respect Senator John McCain’s service to our country and, in his honor, have signed a proclamation to fly the flag of the United States at half-staff until the day of his interment.

I have asked Vice President Mike Pence to offer an address at the ceremony honoring Senator McCain at the United States Capitol this Friday.

Sen. John McCain in 2007.
Sen. John McCain in 2007. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

Rick Davis, Sen. John McCain’s former presidential campaign manager and a family spokesman, read the following farewell statement from the Arizona Republican at a news conference in Phoenix on Monday:
 
“My fellow Americans, whom I have gratefully served for 60 years, and especially my fellow Arizonans.
 
“Thank you for the privilege of serving you and for the rewarding life that service in uniform and in public office has allowed me to lead. I have tried to serve our country honorably. I have made mistakes, but I hope my love for America will be weighed favorably against them. 
 
“I have often observed that I am the luckiest person on Earth. I feel that way even now as I prepare for the end of my life. I have loved my life, all of it. I have had experiences, adventures and friendships enough for 10 satisfying lives, and I am so thankful. Like most people, I have regrets. But I would not trade a day of my life, in good or bad times, for the best day of anyone else’s.  
 
“I owe that satisfaction to the love of my family. No man ever had a more loving wife or children he was prouder of than I am of mine. And I owe it to America. To be connected to America’s causes — liberty, equal justice, respect for the dignity of all people — brings happiness more sublime than life’s fleeting pleasures. Our identities and sense of worth are not circumscribed, but enlarged, by serving good causes bigger than ourselves. 
 
“‘Fellow Americans’ — that association has meant more to me than any other. I lived and died a proud American. We are citizens of the world’s greatest republic, a nation of ideals, not blood and soil. We are blessed and are a blessing to humanity when we uphold and advance those ideals at home and in the world. We have helped liberate more people from tyranny and poverty than ever before in history. We have acquired great wealth and power in the process. 
 
“We weaken our greatness when we confuse our patriotism with tribal rivalries that have sown resentment and hatred and violence in all the corners of the globe. We weaken it when we hide behind walls, rather than tear them down, when we doubt the power of our ideals, rather than trust them to be the great force for change they have always been. 
 
“We are 325 million opinionated, vociferous individuals. We argue and compete and sometimes even vilify each other in our raucous public debates. But we have always had so much more in common with each other than in disagreement. If only we remember that and give each other the benefit of the presumption that we all love our country, we will get through these challenging times. We will come through them stronger than before. We always do. 
 
“Ten years ago, I had the privilege to concede defeat in the election for president. I want to end my farewell to you with the heartfelt faith in Americans that I felt so powerfully that evening. I feel it powerfully still. 
 
“Do not despair of our present difficulties, but believe always in the promise and greatness of America, because nothing is inevitable here. Americans never quit. We never surrender. We never hide from history. We make history. 
 
“Farewell, fellow Americans. God bless you, and God bless America.”