Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi announced Monday that he will resign effective April 1.
Cochran, who has appeared increasingly feeble in recent years, said in a statement released by his office that his health “has become an ongoing challenge.”
“I intend to fulfill my responsibilities and commitments to the people of Mississippi and the Senate through the completion of the 2018 appropriations cycle, after which I will formally retire from the U.S. Senate,” said Cochran, who is 80.
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan publicly broke with President Trump on Monday, the latest Republican to call on the president to reverse his planned imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports that many fear could set off a trade war.
“We are extremely worried about the consequences of a trade war and are urging the White House to not advance with this plan,” said AshLee Strong, Ryan’s spokeswoman. “The new tax reform law has boosted the economy and we certainly don't want to jeopardize those gains.”
Trump stunned Congress last week when, without apparent consultation with members of his staff, Republican leaders or trading partners, he announced that he would impose 25% tariffs on steel imports and 10% penalties on aluminum imports.
For years, lobbyists treated the Foreign Agent Registration Act the same way some drivers treat speed limits — not something to worry about if there isn’t a speed trap around the corner.
Most people registering as advocates for foreign governments or political parties didn’t bother to file their paperwork on time, according to the Department of Justice’s inspector general. Some didn’t register at all.
But that’s changing now that special counsel Robert S. Mueller III is prosecuting violations. Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign manager, is facing charges of undisclosed lobbying on behalf of Ukraine’s pro-Kremlin government.