policy

Trump, House Republicans meet to line up support for new NAFTA
The USMCA would replace NAFTA, if simple majorities in the House and Senate approve it.

President Donald Trump, flanked from left by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Sen. John Thune, R-S. Dak., Vice President Mike Pence, Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., stops to speak to the cameras following his lunch with Senate Republicans in the Capitol on Wed. Jan. 9, 2019. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet with a number of House Republicans later Tuesday as the White House steps up efforts to increase support for the proposed trade agreement to replace NAFTA.

The afternoon meeting comes after Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer courted House Democrats earlier this month with closed-door meetings on the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement. It would replace the North American Free Trade Agreement if simple majorities in the House and Senate approve it.

In a volatile crypto market, stable coins find increasing appeal
Banks, regulators mull virtual currency with less risk

JPMorgan Chase & Co. has introduced a JPM Coin, a stable coin linked to the dollar. Such a form of virtual currency has the potential to speed up payments and cut money transfer costs for consumers, advocates say. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images file photo)

The cryptocurrency rollercoaster, with its price peaks and valleys, has financial technology proponents looking to a new type of virtual currency that promises the benefits of being virtual while limiting the risk.

Banks, regulators and industry leaders are studying, or have already started to implement, so-called stable coins. They tout the potential to speed up payments, cut money transfer costs for consumers, and help citizens of foreign countries whose currencies are under duress.

Trump accuses some who investigated him of ‘treasonous’ actions
Release of full Mueller report ‘wouldn’t bother me,’ president says

Special counsel Robert Mueller walks with his wife Ann Mueller on Sunday in Washington. President Trump said the former FBI director acted honorably in his Russia election meddling probe, but also lashed out at some involved. (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Monday accused unnamed people involved in the Justice Department’s special counsel investigation of “treasonous” acts and said he is not opposed to the release of Robert S. Mueller III’s report.

“There are a lot of people out there that have done some very, very evil things, very bad things — I would say treasonous things against our country,” Trump said in what sounded like a warning.

Democratic committee chairmen shift focus to Barr as House investigations forge ahead
House Democratic leaders want to examine what led attorney general to his conclusions

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler made it clear that Attorney General William Barr’s four-page summary of the Mueller report doesn’t answer a number of questions into the investigation into possible obstruction of justice. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The key Democratic-controlled House committees investigating President Donald Trump and his administration are forging ahead with their probes into the president, his finances, and allegations of nepotism despite special counsel Robert S. Mueller’s conclusion publicized Sunday that he could not “establish” a case that that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 elections.

But while House Democrats continue with their investigative work, they made clear Sunday that Attorney General William Barr’s four-page summary of Mueller’s key findings does not quell their appetite for information about Mueller’s 22-month probe.

Caribbean Islands becoming hot spots for Chinese investment
Marco Rubio, says he is ‘very concerned’ about China’s efforts to extend influence into Latin American and the Caribbean

The Freeport Container Port on Grand Bahama Island. (iStock)

On Grand Bahama Island, some 55 miles off the continental United States, a Hong Kong-based company has spent approximately $3 billion developing and expanding a deep-water container port.

The Freeport Container Port’s Chinese and Bahamian backers expect to benefit from increased shipping through the region as a result of the expansion of the Panama Canal, not to mention an overall boost in trade between China and Latin America and the Caribbean.

White House says Democrats and Mueller tried to ‘overthrow’ Trump
White House spokeswoman warns that Democrats should ‘be careful’ about continuing investigations

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the media and Democrats have accused the president of being an agent of a foreign government, which she said amounts to treason. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 9:55 a.m. | The White House lashed out at Democrats and Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III, accusing them of trying to “overthrow” President Donald Trump.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called Mueller being unable to establish Trump 2016 campaign coordination with Russians “a great reminder also of the rule of law … but it’s also a sad reminder of the lack of accountability that started to seep into the media and into Democrats that have gone out for the last two years actually over two years and accused the president the United States of being an agent of a foreign government.

Some Republicans want an apology over Mueller investigation
Republicans celebrating a win, some calling for apologies, but members from both parties still want to see the full report

Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III “did not establish” collusion between the Donald Trump campaign and Russia but left the question of whether the president obstructed justice up to Attorney General William Barr. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congressional Republicans claimed victory Sunday that a letter from Attorney General William Barr summarizing the special counsel investigation ended the debate about whether Donald Trump’s campaign knowingly colluded with the Russian government.

But Democrats said the letter did not adequately allay their concerns about whether the president is guilty of obstruction of justice, and demanded that the attorney general hand over the full Mueller report and its underlying documents.

Road ahead: As Congress digests Mueller conclusions, it has plenty more on its plate
House will attempt to override Trump’s veto, while Senate takes up Green New Deal

A Capitol Visitor Center employee sets up a shade umbrella last Tuesday outside the CVC entrance. The Senate and House minority parties may need an umbrella to block the shade the majorities plan to throw at them this week amid votes on the Green New Deal and overriding a presidential veto. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Capitol Hill spent much of the weekend waiting to find out what special counsel Robert S. Mueller III discovered about Russian efforts to undermine the 2016 election. But as Congress digests the principal conclusions of his report, prepared by Attorney General William P. Barr, leaders will also try to get members to address other priorities.

Barr’s four-page letter sent to Congress on Sunday afternoon stated that Mueller “did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts.”

Yes, Trump’s budget really does promote evidence-based policies
And it’s doing so in a responsible way

President Donald Trump’s fiscal 2020 budget isn’t perfect, but it includes many policies that push our government to become more evidence-based, Hart writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

OPINION — When presidents send budget proposals to Congress, they include funding requests and broad policy statements. But what lies beneath the surface is often critical for understanding real priorities.

The broad contours of President Donald Trump’s latest budget will come as no surprise: increases to defense spending, cuts to nondefense spending, and a goal to eventually reduce the deficit long after his administration is gone.

Mueller report doesn’t say what GOP says it does
Mueller’s primary mission was to see if he could establish an actionable case, and Barr’s letter said he couldn’t

President Donald Trump returns to the White House on Sunday after spending the weekend in Florida after Attorney General William Barr released his summary of the special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

ANALYSIS — The way GOP lawmakers reacted to Attorney General William Barr's letter to Congress on Sunday outlining the key findings of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s final Russia investigation report, you would think special counsel prosecutors went out of their way to prove Trump’s innocence on collusion and obstruction allegations.

But statements from Republican leaders in both the House and Senate — and in the White House — do not accurately reflect the direct quotes from Mueller’s report that Barr included in his letter.