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President Trump speaks at a news conference Tuesday with French President Emmanuel Macron at the White House
President Trump speaks at a news conference Tuesday with French President Emmanuel Macron at the White House (Shawn Thew / EPA/Shutterstock)

President Trump suggested Tuesday that he was nudging aside Dr. Ronny Jackson, his nominee to head the Veterans Affairs Department, after senators cancelled his nomination hearing to investigate allegations of inappropriate behavior.

“I told Admiral Jackson just a little while ago … I said, ‘What do you need this for?’” Trump said during a news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron.

The decision on whether to continue was up to Jackson, the chief White House physician, Trump said. But, he added, “If I were him, the fact is, I wouldn’t do it.”

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President Trump's reflection is seen in First Lady Melania Trump's sunglasses.
President Trump's reflection is seen in First Lady Melania Trump's sunglasses. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press)

She is either complicit in her husband's worst instincts or a victim of them, either struggling in an anachronistic job or confidently doing precisely what she wants to do with it. Fifteen months after she became first lady, Melania Trump remains a mystery.

In the span of several days ending Tuesday, Melania Trump will have been thrust into a more visible public role than perhaps at any other time in her husband's presidency. It comes after a lengthy period of relative invisibility that has not only confounded White House tradition but also limited her potential political benefit to a troubled administration.

After hosting the Japanese prime minister and his wife at Trump's Mar-a-Lago compound in Florida last week, Melania Trump attended the Saturday funeral of former First Lady Barbara Bush in Houston; the president stayed away. Before the service she smiled and chatted with President Obama, whom her husband has scorned for years, and, again smiling, joined in a formal picture with all of the former presidents and first ladies who attended the funeral.

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With critical political deadlines fast approaching, the Trump administration is racing to strike a deal on a revamped North American Free Trade Agreement by early May — with an eye toward forcing a congressional vote on a new pact by the end of the year.

  • White House
  • Middle East
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javed Zarif speaks during a press conference in Baghdad, Iraq on Sept. 8, 2013.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javed Zarif speaks during a press conference in Baghdad, Iraq on Sept. 8, 2013. (Associated Press)

Iran’s foreign minister said in an interview aired Sunday that if President Trump pulls out of a landmark nuclear accord, Tehran might respond by re-launching and intensifying its nuclear program.

Speaking on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” Mohammad Javed Zarif said Iran would weigh its options if Trump makes good next month on repeated threats to withdraw the United States from the deal and reimpose sanctions against Tehran.

Iran’s options, Zarif said, would include “resuming at much greater speed our nuclear activities.”

  • White House
  • Russia

President Trump vowed Saturday that his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, will not “flip” and cooperate against him in the special counsel investigation into his campaign’s connections to Russia and attacked a New York Times story as part of a “witch hunt” against him.

In several morning tweets, the president also lashed out at the Times over its coverage of the investigation. He slammed Maggie Haberman, the lead reporter on a new story, and called a former aide quoted in the story a “drunk/drugged up loser.”

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A federal judge postponed a ruling on a request by President Trump and his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, who is now the subject of a federal investigation, for a 90-day delay of a lawsuit filed against them by porn star Stormy Daniels.

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez
Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez (Branden Camp / Associated Press)

The Democratic National Committee has sued Russia, President Trump’s campaign, WikiLeaks and others on Friday, alleging a broad conspiracy to influence the 2016 presidential election.

The lawsuit, which was filed in federal court in Manhattan, said “the Trump campaign and its agents gleefully welcomed Russia's help,” which involved releasing hacked emails and spreading misinformation on social media.

“During the 2016 presidential campaign, Russia launched an all-out assault on our democracy, and it found a willing and active partner in Donald Trump’s campaign,” Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez said in a statement. “This constituted an act of unprecedented treachery.”

  • White House
(Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)

The Associated Press has obtained and published 15 pages of memos that former FBI Director James B. Comey drafted about his interactions with President Trump.

The Justice Department earlier Thursday provided the documents to Congress.

In a letter sent to three Republican House committee chairmen Thursday evening, Assistant Atty. Gen. Stephen Boyd writes that the department is sending a classified version of the memos and an unclassified version. The department released Boyd's letter publicly, but not the memos.

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(John Minchillo / Associated Press)

Rudolph Giuliani, the former mayor of New York and an unofficial White House advisor, is joining President Trump’s personal legal defense team.

“He has been my friend for a long time and wants to get this matter quickly resolved for the good of the country,” Trump attorney Jay Sekulow said in a statement.

Giuliani is a former federal prosecutor in New York, but he has not spent much time in a courtroom in recent years. 

  • Congress
Sen. Tammy Duckworth holds her newborn, Maile, after voting on the Senate floor.
Sen. Tammy Duckworth holds her newborn, Maile, after voting on the Senate floor. (Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

Sen. Tammy Duckworth and daughter Maile have made Senate history.

The Illinois Democrat brought her daughter, in a pink hat, onto the Senate floor under new rules that permitted it. Duckworth  is the only senator to have given birth while serving in the Senate. Maile, born April 9, is the first senator's baby to be allowed on the chamber floor.

The history was made under a new rule passed a day earlier that permitted newborns of senators on the floor during votes. The Republican-controlled Senate held the vote — on President Trump’s pick to lead NASA — open so Duckworth and Maile could adhere to the new rule. Duckworth, an Iraq war veteran and double-amputee, arrived in a wheelchair with Maile on her lap, voted no with a downturned thumb, and laughed. Her colleagues crowded around to see.