Stormy Daniels

Monday, March 26, 2018Screen Shot 2018-03-26 at 10.04.25 AM

Good Monday morning,
Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today:
  • The pornographic film actress known as Stormy Daniels told 60 Minutes that in 2011 a man warned her to stop talking about an affair she said she had with Donald J. Trump. “He leaned round and looked at my daughter and said, That’s a beautiful little girl, it would be a shame if something happened to her mom.

  • Elliott Broidy, an investor and a defense contractor, marketed his connection to President Trump to politicians and governments, including some with unsavory records. It illustrates how Mr. Trump’s unorthodox approach to governing has spawned a new breed of influence peddling in the swamp he vowed to drain.

  • Students rallying for gun control seized the nation’s attention on Saturday with raised fists and tear-streaked faces, vowing that their grief about school shootings and their frustration with adults’ inaction would power a new generation of political activism.

  • The large rally crowds around the country signaled that gun violence is not going away as an issue in the 2018 midterm elections and raised the prospect that Republican candidates might be pushed on the defensive on gun issues for the first time in decades.

  • Mr. Trump decided not to hire two lawyers who were announced last week as new additions to his legal team, leaving him with a shrinking stable of lawyers as the investigation by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, enters an intense phase.

  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions said that the Justice Department was proposing to ban so-called bump stocks through regulations rather than wait for Congress to act. The move defies recommendations by federal law enforcement officials and could subject the department to litigation from gun rights groups.

  • The United States acknowledged its first ever drone strike in southern Libya, hitting a suspected Qaeda safe house and killing two militants. The strike signaled a possibly significant expansion of the American counterterrorism campaign in the North African nation.
— The First Draft Team
The Upshot

Support for Gun Control Seems Strong. But It May Be Softer Than It Looks.

A sign in Los Angeles was prepared for a March for Our Lives rally on Saturday.

A sign in Los Angeles was prepared for a March for Our Lives rally on Saturday. Mario Tama/Getty Images

When you ask Americans in a poll whether they support universal background checks for gun purchases, huge majorities say yes.
Ask them for a specific vote for such a legal change, and that support drops off.
In recent years, there have been three true tests of this question. In Washington State and Nevada, voters said yes. In Maine, they said no. Ballot measures in all three earned a much smaller vote share than the initial polling suggested.
The results illustrate the political challenges facing the student-led activists who marched in Washington and other cities over the weekend to push for stronger gun laws.
While a wide range of gun control laws appear popular in polls, support may soften once details emerge and they’re subjected to a robust political debate.
Read more »
The incoming national security adviser, John R. Bolton, vowed that he would find ways to execute the policies that President Trump was elected on, but that he would not tolerate slow-walking and leaks from bureaucrats he dismissed as “munchkins.”

‘America First’ Bears a New Threat: Military Force


Not since the immediate aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, have key national security leaders so publicly raised the threat of armed confrontation if foreign adversaries do not meet America’s demands.

Stephanie Clifford, a pornographic film star known as Stormy Daniels, says she had an affair with Donald J. Trump. To many in the capital, she has become an unexpected force, but those who know her view the moment differently.

Actress, Trump’s Unlikely Foe, Is ‘Not Someone to Be Underestimated’


To many in the capital, the pornographic film actress known as Stormy Daniels has become an unexpected force. But those who know her well view the moment differently.

Irma Mangayan, an immigrant from the Philippines, checks on residents at Belmont Village Senior Living in Burbank, Calif.

When the Elderly Call for Help, a ‘Chain’ Immigrant Often Answers


A proposal to change the immigration system from family-based to skills-based could shrink a primary source of workers for the growing senior-care industry.

At the heart of Jared Kushner’s involvement with Mexico is the relationship he has cultivated with a close adviser to President Enrique Peña Nieto.

As Ties With Mexico Fray, Kushner Works Quietly to Mend Them


Allies of Jared Kushner and Mexican officials say he has worked, with some success, to preserve a relationship that has been corroded by President Trump’s clashes with his Mexican counterpart.

Aimee Stephens, the employee at the center of the court case, said she had been shocked by her dismissal from a funeral home. “I had a hard time believing that a company or a person could get away with firing me because I was transgender,” Ms. Stephens said. “It didn’t seem right.”

Transgender Workers Gain New Protection Under Court Ruling


Federal judges say that employers cannot legally discriminate against employees transitioning from one sex to the other.

“I’m confident that by working together and finding similar areas to agree and compromise, we can come up with solutions to the ‘going dark’ problem,” the F.B.I. director, Christopher A. Wray, said at a conference in Boston this month, referring to encryption that thwarts investigators.

Justice Dept. Revives Push to Mandate a Way to Unlock Phones


F.B.I. and Justice Department officials have been quietly meeting with security researchers working on approaches to provide such access to encrypted devices.

Capt. Jeffrey Ward holding a transgender policy training session in January. Transgender troops in the military may remain in the ranks, the White House said late Friday, but the Pentagon could require them to serve according to their gender at birth.

Trump Approves New Limits on Transgender Troops in the Military


The directive essentially bans service members from identifying as transgender, but it also largely gives the Pentagon the ability to make exceptions.

Army soldiers participating in a live-fire exercise in Oklahoma last month. Military spending has decreased in recent years.

Trump’s Objections Require Some Corrections


The president said that American troops would receive the largest pay raise in a decade and that Democrats fought against a solution for Dreamers. Neither claim is true.