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(Los Angeles Times)

One year into his presidency, Donald Trump is among the most successful presidents when it comes to appointing federal judges.

A Times data analysis found Trump is ranked No. 6 of 19 presidents appointing the highest number of federal judges in their first year.

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Two years after presidential primaries laid bare divisions in the Democratic Party, its voters remain in a muddle over whom they favor in the 2020 election, torn between a trio of veterans but unattached at this point to any of a fresh generation of potential candidates, a new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll has found.

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With a morning tweet, President Trump added confusion to the effort to avert a federal shutdown. (Saul Loeb / AFP-Getty Images)
With a morning tweet, President Trump added confusion to the effort to avert a federal shutdown. (Saul Loeb / AFP-Getty Images)

A government shutdown appeared likely after Congress deadlocked over a proposed four-week stopgap spending bill to keep federal offices open past Friday’s deadline.

After the House late Thursday passed the measure, 230 to 197, with strong Republican support, the bill was headed for probable defeat in the Senate amid opposition from most Democrats and a few Republicans.

The setback sends the White House and congressional leaders back to the negotiating table in a frantic search for a compromise.

  • White House
(Susan Walsh / Associated Press)

President Trump suggested a government shutdown was “coming” in a tweet early Friday as lawmakers scrambled to patch together a last-minute spending deal by midnight Eastern time, a task complicated by the president’s remarks.

A White House official said Trump would not leave for his private club Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., until a bill passes, though his public schedule released Thursday night had him leaving Friday afternoon despite the shutdown threat. At Mar-a-Lago, he planned to celebrate the anniversary of his inauguration on Saturday with a gala Republican fundraiser.

Congress appears deadlocked over a proposed four-week stopgap funding bill to keep government offices open past Friday’s deadline. 

Donald Trump began his presidency a polarizing figure; he ends his first year a beleaguered one.

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President Trump and Atty.Gen. Jeff Sessions.
President Trump and Atty.Gen. Jeff Sessions. (Evan Vucci / Associated Press)

Justice Department lawyers filed an appeal with the Supreme Court on Thursday evening asking the justices to review and reverse the ruling by a federal judge in California that President Trump may not end the Obama-era program that protects so-called Dreamers from deportation.

But they did not ask the high court to issue an immediate emergency order to put the judge’s ruling on hold.

Instead, Solicitor Gen. Noel Francisco said the court should agree to decide the case soon and issue a ruling by the summer.

In his first quarterly funding request as acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Mick Mulvaney is asking for nothing.

  • White House
Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Michael Reynolds / EPA/Shutterstock)

The federal government’s controversial warrantless surveillance program is poised for a six-year extension over the loud objections of privacy advocates after the Senate approved reauthorization Thursday.

The Senate measure renewing Section 702 of the Foreign Surveillance Intelligence Act makes only marginal changes to the program, which has been a source of heated debate since former federal contractor Edward Snowden exposed its reach in 2013.

Under the bill, which passed 65-34, law enforcement would need to obtain warrants only in narrow circumstances. Agents still would have broad authority to perform warrantless searches of the emails and texts of Americans, even if they are not the targets of terrorist investigations.

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President Trump and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto meet on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last year.
President Trump and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto meet on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last year. (Saul Loeb / Agence France Presse /Getty Images)

President Trump falsely claimed in a tweet Thursday morning that Mexico is “now rated the number one most dangerous country in the world.”

A border wall between the United States and Mexico is needed, Trump said, “for the safety and security of our country.”

A few hours later, the Mexican government fought back to challenge Trump’s facts. 

(Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times)

The White House press office was once again forced to walk back a tweet from President Trump on Thursday morning after he described a trip to Pennsylvania later in the day as a political one — a statement that would force the Republican Party, not taxpayers, to pay for the journey.

The White House had said Trump was going to an industrial equipment company outside of Pittsburgh to highlight the good economy and new tax cuts, making it an official, policy-oriented event.

It was widely assumed that the trip had a political cast — the area is holding a special election to fill a congressional seat vacated by a Republican who resigned. Trump, by his tweet, seemed to confirm that politics was the whole purpose.