President Trump backed off demands that Congress fund his promised border wall with Mexico after the political opposition threatened a government shutdown, averting what could have been an embarrassing moment Friday on the eve of marking his first 100 days in the White House.
Trump's reversal was welcomed on Capitol Hill as tensions cooled and negotiators continued talks Tuesday to reach an agreement. But it does not completely eliminate the drama surrounding the shutdown threat.
Among the more puzzling cuts in the Trump administration budget proposal is the one that eliminates all funding for the popular -- and cost-effective -- Energy Star program, which awards its vaunted label to products and properties that utilize the most energy-efficient technologies.
The voluntary program is credited with saving consumers billions of dollars on their electricity bills, curbing greenhouse gas emissions and encouraging companies to innovate. The plan to eliminate it reflects the substantial influence in the administration of a small group of advocates in free-market think tanks who argue that even the voluntary measure reflects too much government interference in industry.
But it turns out those think tanks are not the only organizations that have an interest in seeing the program disappear. Trump’s businesses do too. A report on CNN details how Trump’s buildings consistently receive low Energy Star ratings, which diminishes their value. If the program goes away, so does that business problem.
President Trump delivered a sober and uplifting speech Tuesday recognizing the Holocaust and emphasizing the need to speak out against evil, two weeks after his press secretary apologized for a series of awkward remarks about the dark chapter in Jewish history.
Trump struck a far more formal tone than usual, sticking closely to written remarks in front of a group at the Capitol that included survivors and lawmakers as part of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s National Days of Remembrance.
“We must never, ever shrink away from telling the truth about evil in our time,” Trump said.
The senior members of the House Oversight Committee say classified military documents show that the Trump administration's former national security advisor, Michael Flynn, did not ask permission or inform the U.S. government about payments he received for appearances before Russian organizations in 2015 and for lobbying that helped Turkey's government.
Flynn's failure to obtain permission from military authorities for the payments raises concern whether Flynn violated a constitutional ban on foreign payments to retired military officers. That's according to Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz and Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings.
The two leaders of the oversight committee said there was no evidence Flynn complied with federal law. They said Flynn could be criminally prosecuted, and they said Flynn should surrender the money he was paid.
It’s an open secret on Capitol Hill: President Trump wants a “big, beautiful” border wall, but few in Congress are willing to pay for it.
The standoff, between the White House and lawmakers — Republicans and Democrats — has escalated tensions toward a possible government shutdown at midnight Friday as Congress races to meet a deadline to fund federal offices and operations.
Cooler heads will likely prevail. Talks are underway for a stopgap measure to keep the government running for another week or so while negotiations continue.
In the closing weeks of his campaign last year, President Trump laid out what he called a “100-day contract” with voters — an ambitious flurry of administrative and legislative steps that he vowed would start the process of “draining the swamp” and protecting American workers.
With many of those promises as yet unfulfilled or abandoned, Trump and his aides scrambled Monday to present a glowing picture of vast accomplishment even as they downplayed the significance of the 100-day deadline looming Saturday.
Trump isn’t the first president to try to balance high expectations against harsh reality in the first months of a new administration. But the traditional temporal benchmark has become a case study for what the news cycle has come to mean in the Trump era.
The Trump administration moved Monday to impose a 20% tariff on softwood lumber entering the United States from Canada, escalating an intensifying trade dispute between the two countries.
The president announced the decision during a gathering with conservative media outlets at the White House on Monday evening. Trump's initial comments were relayed by four people who were in the room and confirmed by an administration official.
On Twitter, Breitbart News White House correspondent Charlie Spiering quoted Trump as saying, "We're going to be putting a 20% tax on softwood lumber coming in — tariff on softwood coming into the United States from Canada."