With Breanne Deppisch and Joanie Greve
THE BIG IDEA: By their fruits you will know them.
At the Republican National Convention last summer, Donald Trump said he’d “do everything in my power to protect our LGBT citizens.” Then he rescinded protections for trans students in public schools and issued orders to bar transgender people from the armed forces.
Trump pronounced the House’s health-care bill “mean,” but that did not stop him from whipping votes for the measure and holding a rally in the Rose Garden to celebrate its passage.
At a February news conference, Trump was asked about fears in the Hispanic community that he might get rid of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. “We’re going to show great heart,” the president promised. “DACA is a very, very difficult subject for me. … You have these incredible kids, in many cases … They were brought here … We are going to deal with DACA with heart … because, you know, I love these kids. I love kids! I have kids and grandkids.”
Today the Trump administration is expected to announce plans to end the DACA program, which has allowed nearly 800,000 undocumented people who were brought to the United States as minors to live and work in the country without fear of deportation. The government will reportedly delay enforcement for six months to give Congress time to find a legislative solution that lets the “dreamers” remain in the country legally. “The president and his senior advisers continued to deliberate Monday afternoon, and aides cautioned that Trump could still change his mind ahead of the announcement,” David Nakamura reports.
— During Richard Nixon’s first year in the White House, his attorney general sought to reassure anxious African American activists by telling them that they should not worry too much about the president’s rhetoric. “You will be better advised to watch what we do instead of what we say,” John Mitchell said.
In the present administration, that’s true now more than ever.
Trump has often talked about the need to be compassionate on social issues, but his rhetoric hasn’t matched reality as he has repeatedly acceded to the wishes of his dwindling base since taking office.
— Trump gets that the optics of ending DACA are bad. Administration officials are trying to spin the six-month delay as a compromise and accommodation. Jeff Sessions, an anti-immigration hawk who has pressed Trump to kill DACA, is scheduled to make an on-camera announcement at 11 a.m. today from the Justice Department, not the White House. The attorney general will not answer any questions.
The president often said before he became a candidate that it would be unrealistic to deport people who have spent decades in the United States, especially children. “You have people in this country for 20 years: They’ve done a great job, they’ve done wonderfully, they’ve gone to school, they’ve gotten good marks (and) they’re productive,” he said in a 2011 interview on Fox News. “Now we’re supposed to send them out of the country? I don’t believe in that.”
A batch of new stories quote aides saying that Trump has agonized over what to do. For example, this is on the front page of today’s New York Times: “For months, an anxious and uncertain President Trump was caught between opposing camps in the West Wing … Last week, with a key court deadline looming … Mr. Trump, exasperated, asked his aides for ‘a way out’ of a dilemma he created by promising to roll back the program as a presidential candidate. … Mr. Trump’s frenzied weekend search for an alternative to abruptly ending the program was a fitting finale to his anguished deliberations over DACA since he took office. Aides have portrayed it as a difficult emotional decision for the president.”
— Many commentators believe this is hooey. “Some in the media take seriously the notion that he is ‘conflicted’ or ‘wrestling’ with the decision, as though Trump were engaged in a great moral debate,” writes conservative blogger Jennifer Rubin. “That would be a first for Trump, who counts only winners and losers, never bothering with moral principles or democratic norms. The debate, if there is one, is over whether to disappoint his rabid anti-immigrant base or to, as is his inclination, double down on a losing hand.”
Of Trump’s promise that he’d make the DACA decision with heart, liberal blogger Paul Waldman writes: “If you believed that for a second, you were a fool. … Trump began his presidential campaign saying, ‘When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. … They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.’ He alleged that the judge in the Trump University fraud trial couldn’t do his job objectively because ‘He’s a Mexican’ (the judge is in fact an American of Mexican heritage). He repeatedly told lurid stories of individual crimes committed by an undocumented immigrant, especially if the victim was a ‘beautiful’ white girl, even though immigrants actually commit fewer crimes than native-born Americans. As president he followed up by creating the Victims of Immigrant Crime Engagement Office, which exists in order to publicize crimes committed by immigrants. A month ago, he endorsed a bill in Congress that would slash legal immigration levels in half. He claimed, ludicrously, that he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton only because millions of undocumented immigrants voted for her. And the symbolic centerpiece of his campaign was a wall along our border with Mexico.” (Trump also pardoned Joe Arpaio.)
— Retiring GOP Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Cuban American who represents the Miami area, also seized on Trump’s promise to “show great heart”:
— Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (@RosLehtinen) September 4, 2017
WHY THIS MATTERS — THE HUMAN DIMENSION:
— “Their lives were transformed by DACA. Here’s what will happen if it disappears,” by Maria Sacchetti: “A former waiter, born in El Salvador, now writes code for a U.S. Navy contractor. A young man from South Korea is using the money he makes selling pastries to help pay for community college. And a psychology major from Ecuador, who feared she’d be stuck babysitting all her life, now plans to earn a doctorate and move to New York. They are among nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants whose lives were transformed by (DACA). … Some became high school valedictorians. Others are lawyers, engineers or medical professionals. Hundreds returned to school, because [DACA] required it, and made it easier in some states to seek tuition assistance. … If Trump phases out the program … those young people will become undocumented again — eventually losing their work permits, jobs and health insurance and, in many states, their driver’s licenses. The job losses alone — about 30,000 a month — would cost the U.S. economy billions of dollars in taxes and retraining, according to estimates by the Center for American Progress and Fwd.us.”
— Related: “‘If they deport all of us, who will rebuild?’ Undocumented workers could be key to Texas recovery,” by Arelis R. Hernández and Aaron C. Davis in Houston. “Leaders in the construction industry have begun sounding alarms that there will not be enough American-born workers to rebuild as quickly as needed. ‘If they would relax the rules, honestly, that would be great, we could use it,’ said Jeffrey Nielsen, executive vice president of the Houston Contractors Association.”
WILL CONGRESS ACT?
— Once again, there is fear among top Republicans on Capitol Hill that Trump is setting them up to be the fall guys. If something doesn’t get done, the president will blame them.
— “The odds that a sharply polarized Congress could strike a deal — steep in the best of times — are considered especially difficult at a time when lawmakers face a busy fall agenda,” David Nakamura reports. “House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (Wis.), Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (Utah) and several other GOP leaders have urged Trump not to end the program. … Moderate congressional Republicans, and even some conservatives, suggested that they are open to crafting a legislative deal … (But) Ryan and other GOP leaders have not laid out a new legislative path, including whether the dreamers’ future would be addressed in isolation — which would appeal to Democrats and moderates — or be coupled with proposals to increase border security and tighten immigration controls, which could win greater support from conservatives. … Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), an immigration hard-liner, suggested that he would be open to giving the dreamers legal permanent residence provided that any deal also include his legislative proposal, called the Raise Act, which would slash legal immigration levels by half over a decade. … Others have suggested that Trump could attempt to use the dreamers to bargain for a down payment — an estimated $1.6 billion — on the U.S.-Mexico border wall he promised voters during the campaign.”
— “DACA to test Bannon’s juice outside the White House,” by Politico’s Eliana Johnson, Josh Dawsey and Andrew Restuccia: “(Steve) Bannon, who has reclaimed his post at the helm of Breitbart News and believes the fight over immigration propelled Trump to the presidency, has told associates he’s prepared to take on both Ryan and [Mitch McConnell] over immigration this fall. … [A] senior White House aide said that if Republican lawmakers fail to agree on a plan, he didn’t expect Trump to follow through on terminating DACA — a prospect that would test Bannon’s commitment to support his former boss from the outside.”
— This also adds another big-ticket and highly polarizing item to the congressional agenda, which will make it marginally harder to pass the president’s highest priorities — including an overhaul of the tax code.
ELITE BACKLASH MOUNTS:
— Members of Trump’s evangelical advisory board, who stood by him even in the wake of his widely condemned Charlottesville response, have pleaded with the president to show more empathy. “I know these kids,” Atlanta-area pastor Jentezen Franklin recalled telling Trump last week. “They are good kids?” Trump reportedly asked. “Yes, sir, they are.” Franklin said he replied. He then noted Trump’s love for his own kids. “I want to see that kind of heart toward these children,” Franklin told Trump. (Frances Stead Sellers)
— More than 400 chief executives — from many of the country’s biggest companies — signed a petition urging Trump and Congress to protect Dreamers. A national business coalition, founded by Michael Bloomberg to advocate for immigration changes, has more than 100 corporate and conservative leaders lined up in at least 15 states to call on Congress to act. The lobbying will take the form of private meetings both in Washington and in members’ home districts, letters to member of Congress, newspaper op-eds and public events. (Tracy Jan)
— The American Council on Education, which represents nearly 1,800 higher education officials, issued a statement criticizing Trump’s decision. “To our students, and all those who are potentially affected, be assured that the nation’s colleges and universities will actively, strongly and persistently urge Congress to swiftly approve legislation to enable you to maintain your current status,” said Ted Mitchell, the council’s president. (Nick Anderson)
— An NBC-Survey Monkey poll released last week found that 64 percent of Americans back this program, including 41 percent of Republicans.
HOW THE STORY IS PLAYING ACROSS THE COUNTRY:
- AP: “Young immigrants prepare for worst if Trump ends protections.”
- ABC News: “Dreamers head back to school facing fears about DACA’s future.”
- People Magazine (picking up a story in the Houston Chronicle): “Man Who Drowned Trying to Save Harvey Victims Benefited from the DACA Program Trump Wants to End.”
- Fox News: “Republicans divided on Trump’s expected DACA announcement.”
- USA Today: “DACA fix could ‘overwhelm’ Congress that has failed to devise an immigration solution.”
- BuzzFeed: “How DACA Became An Orphan In Trump’s White House.”
- Chicago Sun-Times: “Dreamers worry as they await Trump’s decision on DACA.”
- Denver Post: “Coloradans express concerns about Trump’s apparent decision to end DACA.”
- KFOR (NBC affiliate in Oklahoma City): “‘It’s a scary emotion at the same time,’ Oklahoma DACA participants await decision.”
- The Tampa Bay Times: Two of the Republican candidates for governor in Florida issued statements offering support for young immigrants and say Congress needs to act. “…The children of illegal immigrants should not be punished for their parents’ wrongdoings,” said Adam Putnam. “We must lead with a compassionate heart, not by punishing children,” said Jack Latvala.
- Boston TV stations and newspapers are covering Massachusetts Republican Gov. Charlie Baker saying he hopes Trump does not follow through on his plans to get rid of the program. (WBZ)
- The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette runs a story about Democratic Sen. Bob Casey, up for reelection next year in a state Trump carried, saying ending DACA is “not only wrong and immoral … it’s really bad for our economy.”
- Newsmax: “Trump a ‘Liar’ If He Doesn’t Protect DACA: Hispanic Chamber Chief.”
- Breitbart: “Hillary Clinton Lobbies for DACA as Obama Plans Rebuke.”
— HAPPENING FRIDAY — THE DAILY 202 LIVE WITH WILBUR ROSS: I will talk one-on-one with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross at The Washington Post’s headquarters Sept. 8 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. We’ll cover the Trump administration’s efforts to reshape the playing field for international trade, the future of NAFTA, the push to overhaul the tax code and a host of other pressing issues. More information is here.
WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING:
— Hurricane Irma has strengthened to a Category 4 storm and is threatening to make landfall on the U.S. mainland as early as Friday. Greg Porter and Angela Fritz report: “Florida and the Gulf Coast continue to be at risk. The East Coast, including the Carolinas and the Delmarva Peninsula, are also potential candidates for landfall — or, at the very least, heavy rain, strong winds and coastal flooding.”
— The Coast Guard began relocating helicopters over the weekend from Harvey-ravaged Texas to Irma-threatened Puerto Rico, Florida and Georgia. Another natural disaster could further complicate congressional efforts to secure recovery aid for Harvey victims. (Dan Lamothe, Jessica Contrera and Sarah Larimer)
— Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) issued a state of emergency Monday for every county in the state as the forecast worsened.
— Since Harvey struck last week, chemical companies across the Texas Gulf Coast have already released 1 million pounds of extra air pollutants. Steven Mufson reports: “While attention has zeroed in on the crisis at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, Tex., other facilities — oil refineries, chemical plants and shale drilling sites — have been reporting flaring, leaks and chemical discharges triggered by Harvey. Emissions have already exceeded permitted levels, after floating rooftops sank on oil storage tanks, chemical storage tanks overflowed with rainwater, and broken valves and shutdown procedures triggered flaring at refineries. … The chemicals released in the week after Harvey [are] toxic air pollutants documented to harm human health; several cause cancer.”
GET SMART FAST:
- Wildfires are threatening two national parks. Parts of Glacier and Yosemite were under threat by fires burning across the West Coast and Canada. (AP)
- U.S.-backed forces seized Raqqa’s Old City from the Islamic State, authorities said on Monday — a significant victory that comes after a grinding, months-long battle for the neighborhood and asserts Syrian Democratic Forces control over 60 percent of Raqqa. (Liz Sly)
- Kenya’s Supreme Court annulled the results of last month’s presidential election, which was marred by irregularities. There will be a new vote next month. (Wall Street Journal)
- After a spate of violence in the Bay Area, California legislators are debating whether extremist groups like antifa and white supremacists should be classified as street gangs. The proposed designation would give authorities new power to combat the groups — but it has also raised serious concerns about political expression. (Los Angeles Times)
- The grandson of Maryland’s House majority whip was killed in a Baltimore shooting. Talmadge Branch implored the government to find a solution to the worsening violence just hours after his 22-year-old grandson Tyrone died. (Baltimore Sun)
- The head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau once again dodged questions over whether he would run for governor of Ohio. Richard Cordray attended Cincinnati’s AFL-CIO Labor Day picnic, but waved off questions about his political future. (Kevin Williams and Renae Merle)
- Cashing in, Sean Spicer has signed with the Worldwide Speakers Group. His first paid speech will be next week at the investment bank Rodman & Renshaw’s annual conference. (Politico)
- A Utah nurse is considering legal action after she was violently arrested for telling police — correctly — they were not allowed to take a blood sample from an unconscious patient. Her arrest was captured by an officer’s body camera, and has earned strong condemnation from national nursing organizations, Utah officials and even the local police department. (Amy B Wang and Derek Hawkins)
- The New York Daily News is close to announcing an agreement to be sold to Tronc, the publisher of the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times. The deal would be the end of an era for the nearly 100-year-old tabloid. (New York Times)
— House lawmakers are slated to vote Wednesday on a $7.85 billion package of emergency aid for victims of Harvey. The storm has already claimed at least 60 lives, according to the latest estimates. Laurie McGinley and Mike DeBonis report: “The bill … reflects the White House’s requested total for assistance for Texas communities — including $7.4 billion for [FEMA’s] disaster relief fund. The bill is to be considered as a stand-alone measure. It does not include a provision to raise the federal debt limit, something that [Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday] that the Trump administration supported. But multiple congressional aides acknowledged that the debt-limit provision could be added later in the process[.]”
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Harvey recovery could ultimately cost the federal government $180 billion, which would be double the amount required after Hurricane Katrina. “The geographic area and the population affected by this horrific hurricane and flooding … is far larger,” he said. (Texas Tribune)
- The Narrative: “In Texas, Distrust of Washington Collides With Need for Federal Aid.” From the New York Times’s Richard Fausset: “Despite state Republican leaders’ anti-Washington rhetoric, the aftermath of the storm is prompting huge demands for federal relief.”
— While Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has endorsed a “clean” debt ceiling hike, GOP leaders are looking for an explicit endorsement from Trump himself. Politico’s Burgess Everett and Rachael Bade report: “Without [that], the GOP could plunge into a month of intra-party battles that could rattle financial markets and threaten the economy. And absent relative GOP unity on a crucial fiscal deal, Republican leaders could be forced to beg for Democratic votes to avert catastrophe … Trump’s most direct comments on the issue came when he tweaked McConnell and Ryan on Twitter for creating a debt ceiling ‘mess,’ but there are plenty of signals that the president is falling in line — especially after Hurricane Harvey. Paradoxically, the storm, leadership sources believe, could actually smooth the entire process, making September a little easier.”
— The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee is aiming to pass an Obamacare stabilization package by the end of the month. Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander and Democrat Patty Murray are looking at a narrow set of fixes, as states have largely stepped up to address the exchanges’ most pressing concerns. But they hope to include funding for the ACA’s cost-sharing reduction payments, although they disagree on how many years to provide the CSR funds. (Politico’s Adam Cancryn)
— Still, Congress’s lengthy to-do list this month will put Trump’s negotiating abilities to the test like never before. “The list of daunting challenges has only grown with little sense of how he plans to tackle them beyond Twitter storms and declarations of determination,” Peter Baker writes in the New York Times.
— The necessary cooperation between Trump and top Republicans has only been made more difficult by Trump’s tense relationship with GOP leadership. The Wall Street Journal’s Michael C. Bender and Kristina Peterson share this telling anecdote from Trump’s calls with Mitch McConnell: “Mr. McConnell, a fastidious, 30-year veteran of the Senate, often prepared note cards with points he wanted to make during phone calls with the president. Mr. Trump was more casual, starting conversations with several minutes of chatter about the day’s headlines or what he had seen on TV[.] … As it became clear Mr. McConnell couldn’t summon enough Republican votes to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the Senate majority leader stopped responding to the president’s chitchat, the people familiar said. ‘Mitch?’ the president said when Mr. McConnell fell silent in one call. ‘Are you there?’ Mr. McConnell waited a beat, then responded. ‘Yes, Mr. President. Back to the bill[.]’”
— Don’t forget Russia. Both intelligence committees are expected to hold closed-door session with some of Trump’s closest associates, and there may even be public hearings in the fall. (Politico’s Austin Wright and Ali Watkins)
THE NEW WORLD ORDER:
— Following North Korea’s apparent test of a thermonuclear weapon Sunday, South Korea’s defense minister suggested the return of tactical U.S. nuclear weapons to the Korean Peninsula — a strategy that experts warned would “sharply increase” risk of accidental conflict.
Anna Fifield reports: “[In] Seoul, the Defense Ministry warned that Pyongyang might be preparing to launch another missile into the Pacific Ocean, perhaps an intercontinental ballistic missile theoretically capable of reaching the mainland United States. [Meanwhile], Trump and his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in, spoke on the phone for 40 minutes Monday night … They agreed as well to work together to punish North Korea for Sunday’s nuclear test, pledging ‘to strengthen joint military capabilities,’ a White House statement said, and to ‘maximize pressure on North Korea using all means at their disposal.’”
— U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said during a U.N. Security Council meeting Monday that North Korea is “begging for war” through its provocative actions, and pushed for the “strongest possible” sanctions against the Kim Jong Un regime. “When a rogue regime has a nuclear weapon and an ICBM pointed at you, you do not take steps to lower your guard. No one would do that. We certainly won’t,” Haley said, ruling out the “freeze for freeze” proposal backed by China and Russia.
Haley also echoed Trump’s threat to cut off trade with countries that deal with the North: “The United States will look at every country that does business with North Korea as a country that is giving aid to their reckless and dangerous nuclear intentions,” she said. Her remarks appeared to be unpersuasive. “China will never allow chaos and war” in Korea, said Chinese ambassador to the United Nations Liu Jieyi. Russia’s U.N. ambassador echoed this sentiment, saying sanctions alone will “not solve the crisis.”
— The Environmental Protection Agency has tasked a former Trump campaign aide with vetting hundreds of millions of dollars in agency awards and grant applications. Juliet Eilperin reports: “According to both career and political employees, [John] Konkus has told staff that he is on the lookout for ‘the double C-word’ — climate change — and repeatedly has instructed grant officers to eliminate references to the subject in solicitations. Konkus, who officially works in the EPA’s public affairs office, has canceled close to $2 million competitively awarded to universities and nonprofit organizations. EPA spokeswoman Liz Bowman said that grant decisions ‘are to ensure funding is in line with the Agency’s mission and policy priorities.’”
— Trump seems okay with gifts from Saudi Arabia — as long as they’re to his administration. The Daily Beast’s Ken Klippenstein reports: “That was, of course, before he made his first foreign visit as president to Saudi Arabia — and accepted dozens of gifts from the kingdom. In fact, during Trump’s visit, the White House accepted at least 83 separate gifts from Saudi Arabia[.] … The gifts range from the regal (‘Artwork featuring picture of President Trump’) to the martial (multiple swords, daggers, leather ammo holders and holsters), to the baroque (tiger and cheetah fur robes, and a dagger made of pure silver with a mother of pearl sheath). … Amusing as the gifts may be, they are emblematic of a more serious issue: Trump’s embrace of the Saudi regime, a stark reversal from his campaign rhetoric.”
SOCIAL MEDIA SPEED READ:
Twitter was abuzz about the DACA news.
From the head of Apple:
250 of my Apple coworkers are #Dreamers. I stand with them. They deserve our respect as equals and a solution rooted in American values.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) September 3, 2017
From the chef Trump sued after he canceled plans to open a resturaunt in Trump’s D.C. hotel:
— José Andrés (@chefjoseandres) September 4, 2017
From a contributor to The Week:
needless cruelty in the service of stoking racial grievance is the Trump admin’s only consistent feature https://t.co/OEmNBwYzDa
— Simon Maloy (@SimonMaloy) September 4, 2017
From a Vox writer:
Pardons for racist sheriffs who defy court orders, deportations for folks who crossed the border illegally when they were six years old.
— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) September 4, 2017
The organizers of the Women’s March called on its participants to support DACA:
If you marched on January 21st, this is a test of our commitment to intersectionality.
We need you to do these 5 things NOW to #DefendDACA
— Women’s March (@womensmarch) September 3, 2017
California’s attorney general, former congressman Xavier Becerra, vowed to fight for the program:
— Xavier Becerra (@AGBecerra) September 4, 2017
Other blue states, like New York, also threatened litigation:
New York will not demonize diversity.
We will not stand by as 42,000 NYers are deported.
If President Trump rescinds #DACA, we will sue.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) September 4, 2017
From House Democrats:
Ending DACA is a moral outrage. President Trump would learn that if he ever sat down, broke bread, and listened to their stories.
— Gerry Connolly (@GerryConnolly) September 4, 2017
For all the members of Congress over the past 5 years who said DACA should’ve been done “legislatively” here’s your chance. #DefendDACA
— Joaquin Castro (@JoaquinCastrotx) September 4, 2017
I stand with DREAMers in LA, I stand with DREAMers in California, I stand with DREAMers in the ENTIRE country. We will make this right.
— Congressmember Bass (@RepKarenBass) September 4, 2017
The staunchly conservative Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) argued that ending DACA will bring about a return to the “Rule of Law”:
Ending DACA now gives chance 2 restore Rule of Law. Delaying so R Leadership can push Amnesty is Republican suicide. https://t.co/iYOLxFWp7V
— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) September 4, 2017
A Daily Beast reporter laid out why dreamers could be particularly susceptible to deportation:
1/ One of the reasons DACA recipients are now incredibly vulnerable: In deportation proceedings, the gov must prove someone is undocumented
— Betsy Woodruff (@woodruffbets) September 4, 2017
2) DACA recipients – in order to receive DACA – give the gov paperwork showing how they became undoc’d (visa expiration or illegal entry)
— Betsy Woodruff (@woodruffbets) September 4, 2017
4/ Sharing that info made them *extra* vulnerable to deportation *if* the gov decides to use it
— Betsy Woodruff (@woodruffbets) September 4, 2017
Trump’s stance represented a complete reversal from the GOP’s position on such immigrants during the Reagan era:
VIDEO: George HW Bush and Ronald Reagan in 1980 debate fighting over who would be more compassionate to children of undocumented immigrants pic.twitter.com/KXBwRRA4Ee
— Comfortably Smug (@ComfortablySmug) September 4, 2017
A former deputy press secretary to George W. Bush responded to the 1980 clip:
This was the Republican Party I chose to join… https://t.co/KX6XHS7Kya
— Tony Fratto (@TonyFratto) September 4, 2017
A Senate Democrat dismissed Trump’s proposal of ending trade with any country that does business with North Korea:
No, we are not. Those counties include China, Mexico, India, Germany, Saudi Arabia.
I’m fine with threats. Just make them plausible. https://t.co/1sOIJoTRcU
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) September 4, 2017
Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) paid tribute to another one of the Alexandria shooting victims:
Thank you Matt Mika for sharing your story – glad to see you’re doing well. Can’t wait to see you on the ball field again! pic.twitter.com/opy7LPZX7z
— Rep. Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) September 4, 2017
The New Yorker depicted victims and first responders of Hurricane Harvey on its latest cover:
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) September 4, 2017
Members of Congress celebrated Labor Day:
— Senator Joe Donnelly (@SenDonnelly) September 4, 2017
Organized labor put food on my table & clothes on my back. Dad was a union guy & he & others helped build America. Celebrate labor today. pic.twitter.com/NWM8ArKQSk
— Rep. Rick Larsen (@RepRickLarsen) September 4, 2017
— Lee Zeldin (@leezeldin) September 4, 2017
And the former prime minister of Sweden took a shot at Trump:
I guess Donald Trump is now preparing to launch a tweet. It will lift off in smoke and fire, and then with a roar disappear into nowhere.
— Carl Bildt (@carlbildt) September 3, 2017
— Politico Magazine, “The Politico 50”: This year’s list of the “50 ideas blowing up American politics (and the people behind them)” includes appearances from Steve Bannon, Sally Yates and Melissa McCarthy.
— The Atlantic, “The Merkel Effect,” by Emily Schultheis: “After expectations that this year’s campaign would be Germany’s most contentious one in years, the final weeks of the election have felt decidedly devoid of drama—enough so that the Wall Street Journal’s headline in a recent story about the campaign declared succinctly: ‘Wow, it’s Boring.’”
— NM Fishbowl, “The Petty Politics of Loboland,” by Daniel Libit: “The unique alliance between poll-plummeting governor (Susana Martinez) and win-starved basketball coach provides a keyhole into a much larger phenomenon that has played out at UNM. The state’s largest institution of higher education has steadily become, in today’s jargon, a political swamp — one that has fostered an inbred and invasive specie of self-preserving creature.”
— New York Magazine, “In Conversation: Bill de Blasio,” by Chris Smith: “The mayor thinks New Yorkers appreciate real talk, even if some of it is bad news. But also, he says, a lot of it isn’t.”
HOT ON THE LEFT
“Michelle Obama dresses as Beyonce for singer’s birthday,” from The Hill: “Beyonce posted a photo spread featuring Obama, tennis star Serena Williams, her eldest daughter Blue Ivy Carter and other friends and family members on her website. All the girls and women are seen mimicking Beyonce’s look in her 2016 music video ‘Formation,’ sporting a hat covering their eyes, an ornate necklace and braids in the black and white photographs. The performer, a Houston native, posted a link to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts on the same webpage as the snapshots.”
HOT ON THE RIGHT
“School district apologizes after students told ‘Make America Great Again’ shirts not allowed in class,” from Amy B Wang: “A Georgia school district has apologized after one of its teachers asked two high school students wearing ‘Make America Great Again’ T-shirts to leave her classroom. The incident took place at River Ridge High School on Aug. 31.’”
President Trump has afternoon meetings with the National Economic Council and members of Congress to address the overhaul of the tax code. He will also have a phone call with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in the evening.
Vice President Pence will oversee two swearing-in ceremonies today: for OPIC CEO Ray Washburne and Surgeon General Jerome Adams.
QUOTE OF THE DAY:
Russian President Vladimir Putin on whether he is disappointed in Trump for being “naive”: “[Trump is] not my bride, and I’m not his groom.”
NEWS YOU CAN USE IF YOU LIVE IN D.C.:
— It will feel like summer in D.C. today, but the rest of the week should kick off fall weather. The Capital Weather Gang forecasts: “Mostly sunny and warm with moderate humidity (dew points in the 60s) as temperatures aim for afternoon highs in the middle to even upper 80s. Clouds increase middle to late afternoon with scattered showers and storms. Some of these storms could be strong or even severe with gusty winds and heavy downpours.”
— The Nationals beat the Marlins 7-2 in Miami. (Chelsea Janes)
— The son of former U-Md. football coach Mike Locksley died in a shooting on Sunday. Meiko Anthony Locksley was 25. (Lori Aratani and Roman Stubbs)
VIDEOS OF THE DAY:
Stephen Colbert’s latest edition of “Alter Egos” focused on characters from the Washington swamp:
The Post’s fact-checking team awarded three Pinocchios to the Senate Leadership Fund’s claims about Kelli Ward and chemtrail conspiracy theories:
Award-winning chefs in Houston are providing meals to 20,000 Harvey victims and first responders a day:
Animal shelters outside of Texas are taking some of the pets who faced the hurricane:
And explosive experts defused a massive World War II-era bomb in Frankfurt: