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Monday, April 24, 2017

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Good Monday morning, 
Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today:
  • At an Indiana factory that assembles parts for Carrier, blue-collar workers are being laid off as their jobs move to Mexico. Many say they still support President Trump, even though his intervention didn’t save their jobs.
  • Ahead of a looming government shutdown, the Trump administration is trying to use Friday’s deadline for government funding as leverage for several of Mr. Trump’s goals. Democrats aren’t so sure that leverage exists.
  • For the first time in nearly two decades, Bill O’Reilly will not be kicking off Fox News’s prime-time lineup. The other cable networks have noticed.

  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions and John F. Kelly, the homeland security secretary, indicated that children of undocumented immigrants — the so-called Dreamers — were “caught between the law.”
  • In a Twitter message, the president said he would be “holding a BIG rally in Pennsylvaniaon Saturday, the same night the press corps will gather for the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner.
— The First Draft Team

Trump Reaches Beyond West Wing for Counsel

By MAGGIE HABERMAN AND GLENN THRUSH
Relationships have always been President Trump’s currency and comfort, helping him talk his way into real estate deals over three decades in New York. Those who know him best say that his outer confidence has always belied an inner uncertainty, and that he needs to test ideas with a wide range of people.
As Mr. Trump’s White House advisers jostle for position, the president has turned to another group of advisers — from family, real estate, media, finance and politics, and all outside the White House gates — many of whom he consults at least once a week.
The media mogul Rupert Murdoch is on the phone every week, encouraging Mr. Trump when he’s low and arguing that he focus on the economy rather than detouring to other issues. The developer Richard LeFrak is a soothing voice who listens to Mr. Trump’s complaints that cost estimates for the border wall with Mexico are too high. Sean Hannity tells the president that keeping promises on core Republican issues is crucial.
Mr. Trump’s West Wing aides, like President Bill Clinton’s staff two decades before, say they sometimes cringe at the input from people they can’t control, with consequences they can’t predict. Knowing these advisers — who are mostly white, male and older — is a key to figuring out the words coming from Mr. Trump’s mouth and his Twitter feed.
Here, based on interviews with more than a dozen friends, top aides and advisers inside and outside the White House, are 20 of Mr. Trump’s outside touchstones.
Read more »
James B. Comey, director of the F.B.I., had an influence on the 2016 presidential race by deciding at important moments how much the public should know about the agency’s investigations.

Comey Tried to Shield the F.B.I. From Politics. Then He Shaped an Election.

By MATT APUZZO, MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT, ADAM GOLDMAN AND ERIC LICHTBLAU

As the F.B.I. investigated Hillary Clinton and the Trump campaign, James B. Comey tried to keep the bureau out of politics but plunged it into the center of a bitter election.

Floyd Abrams at his Manhattan office. In his new book, “The Soul of the First Amendment,” he argues that the United States’ protections for free speech are the best in the world, at least for now.
MEDIATOR

Floyd Abrams Sees Trump’s Anti-Media Tweets as Double-Edged Swords

By JIM RUTENBERG

Mr. Abrams, a titan of free speech jurisprudence, says the Twitter trail could be a gift to lawyers defending journalists during leak investigations.

Employees at Amrut Software in Mumbai. President Trump ordered a review of the issuing of H1-B visas. More than 85,000 of the work visas are given out a year, the majority to Indians.

For Indians, Trump’s America Is a Land of Lost Opportunity

By GEETA ANAND

Generations of Indians have greatly admired the United States. But many are infuriated and unnerved by what they see as a wave of racist violence.

Marchers taking to the streets in Washington.

Pictures From the March for Science

By THE NEW YORK TIMES

Visual highlights from the demonstrations in Washington and around the world.

The witness room facing the execution chamber at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, Ohio, where Charles E. Coulson saw the executions of two men.

Bearing Witness to Executions: Last Breaths and Lasting Impressions

By ALAN BLINDER AND MANNY FERNANDEZ

Only a few people ever watch death sentences carried out in the name of the state. Here, five witnesses recall their experiences in the nation’s death houses.

Anthony Davis, a member of Nashville’s city-county Metro Council, introduced legislation to speed Google Fiber’s expansion in the market. AT&T sued to stop it.

AT&T’s Words on Time Warner Deal Say ‘Underdog.’ Its Actions Speak Otherwise.

By CECILIA KANG

AT&T has told federal regulators it needs the merger to compete with cable companies. But it has acted like a powerhouse in dealings with cities and states.

Right and Left: Partisan Writing You Shouldn’t Miss
Read about how the other side thinks. We have collected political writing from around the web and across ideologies.
From the Right
• Kevin D. Williamson in National Review:
“To call it ‘economic nationalism’ would be too grand: It is merely a very narrow form of special-interest politics consisting of backdoor handouts to favored corporate interests.”
Kevin Williamson takes issue with President Trump’s “Buy American, Hire American” executive order. Connecting the protectionist economic policy to the “corporate welfare” of the Obama administration, he argues that the order is nothing but “another exciting distraction” that might result in “perfectly legal corruption.” Read more »
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From the Left
• John Nichols in The Nation:
“Democrats cannot simply say ‘no’ to Donald Trump; they must provide a clear and coherent progressive populist alternative to [his] ‘billionaire populism.’”
John Nichols is cautiously optimistic about the new alliance between Senator Bernie Sanders and Tom Perez, the chairman of the Democratic National Committee. While some on the left wing of the party worried that Mr. Perez would continue a Clinton brand of centrism, Mr. Nichols sees Mr. Perez’s history of labor rights advocacy as an asset. To defeat President Trump and other Republicans, Mr. Nichols writes, the Democrats must change and become more militant in their economic policy. Read more »
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More selections »