Questions on Russia Follow Trump to France

Friday, July 14, 2017Screen Shot 2017-07-14 at 9.00.07 AM

Good Friday morning, 
Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today:
— The First Draft Team

Congressional Budget Office Casts Doubt on Trump Spending Plan

By ALAN RAPPEPORT
Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, testified before a House committee about President Trump's budget in May.

Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, testified before a House committee about President Trump’s budget in May. Al Drago/The New York Times

WASHINGTON — President Trump had promised that his mix of tax cuts, deregulation and reductions in wasteful spending would spur economic growth and cure America’s ailing fiscal health. On Thursday, an independent government analysis of those proposals effectively said, “Not so much.”
The Congressional Budget Office cast Mr. Trump’s inaugural budget as overly optimistic, expressing doubt about his promises to balance the federal budget. The budget projected that by 2027, the economy would achieve a small budget surplus. But according to the budget office, the deficit would remain at $720 billion, or 2.6 percent of gross domestic product.
The assessment comes after the Trump administration was criticized in May for releasing a budget that economists said relied on overly rosy growth estimates. It was also panned for using questionable math and offering minimal detail about the president’s tax plan, a central component in Mr. Trump’s plans for improving the economy.
One of the biggest reasons the Trump budget fell short is that the budget office did not agree that its proposals would generate as much economic growth as the White House has suggested. It said that the average gross domestic product growth over 10 years is currently 1.8, and that under Mr. Trump’s plan it would be 1.9 percent — far lower than the 3 percent the administration assumes.
Read more »

Where Every Senator Stands on the Revised Health Care Bill

By ALICIA PARLAPIANO AND ANJALI SINGHVI

A real-time count of every senator’s position.

Liu Xiaobo, the Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate who died of cancer under guard in a hospital, was mourned in Hong Kong on Thursday.

Liu Xiaobo, Chinese Dissident Who Won Nobel While Jailed, Dies at 61

By CHRIS BUCKLEY

Mr. Liu, who was convicted in 2009 of inciting subversion and sentenced to prison, was given medical parole recently to be treated for late-stage cancer.


Trump’s Conversation With Journalists on Air Force One

President Trump and his wife, Melania, arrived at Paris Orly Airport on Thursday. The French president, Emmanuel Macron, had invited Mr. Trump to a Bastille Day celebration.By THE NEW YORK TIMES

The White House released excerpts from a conversation aboard a flight to Paris that journalists initially thought was off the record.

REUTERS/Carolyn Kaster

Trump Tells First Lady of France: ‘You’re in Such Good Shape’

By LIAM STACK

President Trump told Brigitte Macron, the first lady of France, that she was “beautiful” and in “good shape” shortly after arriving for an official visit.

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
• David French in National Review:
“This isn’t the smoking gun that proves actual ‘collusion’ with Russia, but rather evidence that Trump Jr., Manafort, and Kushner tried to collude with Russia.”
Mr. French maintains that he always needed more information when it came to Russia’s connection to the Trump administration, citing his skepticism of anonymous sources in the media. Now that the emails to Donald Trump Jr. have been made public, he feels comfortable calling the Russia investigation a “national necessity.” Read more »
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From the Left
• David A. Graham in The Atlantic:
“If Trump really knew nothing about the June 9 meeting, one wonders what it was that he was so eager to suppress in his calls to the intel chiefs and his firing of James Comey.”
In light of how absolute the Trump administration’s denials have been against allegations of collusion, and in light of recent revelations that contradict these denials, Mr. Graham wonders “which of the other allegations are true, too?” Read more »
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