defense

3 Things to Watch: Kim lets Trump know their ‘mysteriously wonderful’ chemistry isn’t enough
‘There is no sign he’s stopped producing missiles,’ analyst says of North Korean strongman

South Koreans watch coverage of President Donald Trump meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during their summit in Hanoi, Vietnam, before talks collapsed. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images file photo)

ANALYSIS President Donald Trump once claimed he and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “fell in love.” But the dictator he once called “Little Rocket Man” let him know on Friday that their “mysteriously wonderful” relationship might not be enough to strike a disarmament pact.

As recently as Wednesday, the U.S. commander in chief signaled he continues to believe the unlikely warm relationship with Kim could drive a deal under which Kim would give up his nuclear arms.

These GOP senators voted to potentially let Trump pull funds from military projects back home
Votes could carry some risk for Republicans up for re-election in 2020

Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., voted “no” on a resolution to revoke President Donald Trump’s authority to shift military construction funds, putting funds for several military bases in his state at risk. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Some Republican senators who voted Thursday against terminating the President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration may face backlash for risking military projects in their home states.

Twelve GOP senators joined all Democrats in voting for the joint resolution to block the president’s bid to redirect up to $6.7 billion from other Cabinet departments for his southern border wall. But 41 Republicans, some facing competitive re-elections in 2020, voted against the measure. 

After bitter fight, defense budget will stay high
The hard-fought outcome is likely to be a bipartisan accord keeping defense spending at historically high levels

A Manned Ground Vehicle (MGV) chassis, an Abrams A1 tank, and a pair of Stryker Leader Followers during a demonstration of future combat systems (Scott Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS — President Donald Trump’s defense budget request is sparking partisan discord that will last for months, but the hard-fought outcome is likely to be a bipartisan accord to keep defense spending at its historically high level.

The conflict is real. A House controlled by Democrats will not easily swallow Trump’s proposal to slash spending on nondefense programs by 9 percent at the same time as he wants a nearly 5 percent increase in defense spending. Trump’s $750 billion request for the Pentagon and other defense accounts marks one of the biggest peacetime defense budgets since World War II, even adjusting for inflation.

Trump budget request triggers clash with Congress
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 102

Copies of President Donald Trump’s budget for Fiscal Year 2020 are prepared for distribution at the Government Publishing Office in Washington. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

U.S. commander warns of risks from Trump’s troop withdrawal
Votel’s testimony clashes with recent remarks by the president, who has celebrated the complete defeat of the Islamic State

Army Gen. Joseph Votel says the Islamic State remains a dangerous threat and that the president’s plan to withdraw troops from Syria and Afghanistan could be risky. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The U.S. commander in the Middle East warned lawmakers Thursday about the risks of President Donald Trump’s plans to withdraw American forces from Syria and Afghanistan.

The Islamic State terrorist group is down to less than one square mile of territory in Iraq and Syria, but the group has made a “calculated decision” to lay low and remains a dangerous threat, Army Gen. Joseph Votel told the House Armed Services Committee.

Martha McSally says officer raped her when she was in Air Force
Arizona Republican opens up during hearing on sexual assault in the military

Sen. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., revealed that while in the Air Force, she was raped by a superior officer. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Martha McSally revealed Wednesday that while in the Air Force, she was raped by a superior officer. McSally, the first female fighter pilot to fly in combat, spoke out at a Senate Armed Services hearing on the military’s efforts to respond to and prevent sexual assaults.

The Arizona Republican served 26 years in the military. McSally said she did not report being sexually assaulted by the officer because she did not trust the system in place to handle such a case.

As Dems rev up investigations, Trump declares ‘the campaign begins’
President again says legislation unlikely to move as opposition party’s probes get serious

President Donald Trump shows reporters Space Policy Directive 4 after he signed it on Feb. 19 in the Oval Office. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Tuesday said House Democrats’ decision to launch multiple investigations of him and his associates — including a massive documents request — marks the start of the 2020 campaign season.

“They want to do that instead of getting legislation done,” Trump told reporters during a veterans event at the White House. “Basically they've started the campaign. So the campaign begins.”

3 takeaways: Trump-Kim collapse ‘a breakdown that ... didn’t need to happen’
What now? Analysts see difficult path to a deal — and a distracted U.S. president

President Donald Trump speaks at a news conference Thursday while Mike Pompeo, U.S. secretary of state, looks on following his second summit meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. They failed to reach a deal or iron out long-unresolved issues. (Tuan Mark/Getty Images)

ANALYSIS — The table was set for a working lunch inside a posh Hanoi hotel, silverware wrapped in carefully folded napkins atop yellow plates flanked by flowers placed on a long rectangular table. But President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un never stepped foot in the room — and their path to a deal is newly murky.

Reporters in Vietnam for the duo’s second nuclear disarmament summit were positioned on one side of the room, some tweeting pictures of the lunch table as they waited. Soon came this dispatch from the day’s print pooler, David Nakamura of the Washington Post, quoting a White House spokeswoman: “There has been a program change.”

Rep. Adam Kinzinger’s criticism of Wisconsin governor spurs Guard ‘review’
Illinois Republican criticized Wisconsin governor for withdrawing National Guard troops from southern border

The Wisconsin National Guard is reviewing comments made by one of its airmen, Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill.. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Adam Kinzinger is facing a review from the Wisconsin National Guard after he publicly criticized Gov. Tony Evers over previously undisclosed troop withdrawals from the southern U.S. border with Mexico.

Kinzinger, an Illinois Republican who is part of a Madison, Wisconsin, unit, criticized Evers in tweets and a Fox News appearance earlier this week. The Wisconsin National Guard is looking into whether those comments may have violated the law.