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Canada, Mexico exempt from tariffs once NAFTA deal signed: US official

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Canada and Mexico will be exempt from the steel and aluminum tariffs President Donald Trump will unveil this week once a new North American Free Trade Agreement is reached, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Tuesday.

Acknowledging the fears that Trump’s surprise announcement last week could spark a trade war, Mnuchin also hinted that the final implementation may address some of the issues.

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In testimony before a House appropriations subcommittee, the Treasury secretary said he has been in contact with his counterparts on the specifics of the tariff proposals and “we’re trying to deal with this on a case by case basis.”

The president “does understand the potential impact it has on the economy, and I think we have a way of managing through this.”

Trump last week announced that he would be imposing tariffs of 25 percent on all imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum to protect domestic industries, citing a rarely-invoked national security section of US trade law.

That sparked global outrage and threats of retaliation, including from the European Union, and NAFTA-partner Canada which has the most to lose as the main provider of steel to the US market.

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Trump said he would not back down, even for the closest US neighbors, unless and until a deal to revamp NAFTA that is “fair” for US business and workers was signed.

Many observers read that as a softening of his stance to have no exemptions, and that sent global financial markets roaring back Tuesday.

Mnuchin was even more definitive saying that with Canada and Mexico “our objective is to have a new NAFTA and once we do that — which I’m cautiously optimistic on — the tariffs won’t apply to them.”

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However, with the sanctions due out this week and the latest round of NAFTA talks ending Monday with no agreement imminent, the two countries will face tariffs on their metals exports at least for some time.

The NAFTA talks are complicated by coming presidential elections in Mexico in July as well as crucial midterm elections in the United States in November.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump promises vets he won’t use his campaign slogan — then blurts it out seconds later

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While talking with veterans on Wednesday, President Donald Trump vowed that he would not politicize the event by reciting his 2020 campaign slogan -- and then did it anyway just seconds later.

While addressing the American Veterans National Convention in Louisville, Kentucky, the president made light of the fact that he was not supposed to be using his speech to promote his reelection campaign and was only there to talk about his administration's work on behalf of veterans.

"In all things, we are putting our country first," the president said. "We are saying, let’s say 'Make America great again,' but we are almost there, 'Make America great again.' We may have to switch it. You know what we’re going to switch it to? Huh? Yeah? That is right. I will not say it here, because this is not a campaign speech."

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Anti-LGBT group: Straight man who spied on women’s dressing rooms is proof we need anti-trans bathroom laws

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A Pennsylvania man was arrested last month for drilling holes in the women's dressing rooms of a Target store with the intention of spying, The Mercury reports. Sean Christopher Anderson, 41, was initially charged with criminal mischief and possessing an instrument of crime, but had his charges upgraded this Monday to invasion of privacy and possessing child pornography.

Now, the right-wing Christian group American Family Association is trying to use his case as proof of the urgency of their boycott campaigns targeting Target's gender-neutral bathrooms, but as LGBTQ Nation points out, Anderson is a straight cisgender man.

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Trump promoting himself as the ‘second coming of God’ is another sign of his lack of basic mental capacity: Yale psychiatrist

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On Wednesday, President Donald Trump retweeted an anti-Semitic super-fan who compared Trump to the "second coming of God." That was after he made comments Tuesday suggesting that Jews who vote for Democrats are traitorous to Israel. The comments come after a long summer of Trump accusing members of the Squad of being anti-Semitic and suggesting that the Clintons are responsible for disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein's death in jail.

Raw Story spoke with Dr. Bandy X. Lee, a forensic psychiatrist and violence expert at Yale School of Medicine, about the president's fitness for office. Lee helped launch a public health approach to global violence prevention as a consultant to the World Health Organization and other United Nations bodies since 2002. She authored the textbook, “Violence: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Causes, Consequences, and Cures,” which shows how the dangerous psychology of individuals is connected to dangerous societies and cultures, including their politics and economics. She and several coauthors of the public-service book, “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 37 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President,” prepared a mental health analysis of the president using information in the Mueller report (dangerouscase.org).

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