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Senate will not ‘poke the bear’ Trump by passing tariff measure

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U.S. Senator Bob Corker accused his fellow Republicans of being afraid to stand up to President Donald Trump on Tuesday, as his legislation to block the president’s ability to impose tariffs on national security grounds hit a roadblock in Congress.

“‘We might poke the bear’ is the language I have been hearing in the hallways,” Corker said in an emotional Senate speech. “The president might get upset with us as United States senators if we vote on the Corker amendment, so we’re going to do everything we can to block it.”

Corker and other lawmakers – Democrats as well as some of Trump’s fellow Republicans – introduced the measure last week after the president’s recent announcement that he was considering tariffs on automobiles, after imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum, citing national security concerns.

Trump, who campaigned on a pledge to negotiate better trade deals to bring back U.S. manufacturing jobs, has pursued aggressive measures against trading partners from China to Canada, Mexico and U.S. allies in Europe.

This has worried some lawmakers who strongly back principles of free trade, warning that Trump could trigger a trade war that would destabilize the economy and ultimately hurt American workers.

Corker’s amendment would have pared back Trump’s authority under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose tariffs on national security grounds without obtaining Congress’ consent.

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Its backers had hoped for a Senate vote as soon as this week by including the legislation as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for 2019, or NDAA, a sweeping defense policy bill that Congress passes every year.

But Senator James Inhofe, the Republican who is managing debate on the defense bill, blocked the amendment as inappropriate for the legislation, preventing a vote.

Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; editing by Jonathan Oatis

Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
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New York’s legislature gives landlords a lesson in democracy

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The knockout punch that the New York State Legislature just landed fighting landlords over spiraling rents ought to be attracting wider attention.

Just as with healthcare access or prescription drug prices, the cost of rent increases that mostly benefit big apartment owners is a challenge to the income-gap society that are at the heart of the national political debate. Every urban center in the country is having housing problems, and rents, like mortgages, are a subject at every kitchen table.

For once, the New York Legislature, whose Democrats overcame internecine divisions this session, has abolished rules that let building owners deregulate apartments, and closed loopholes that have permitted landlords to raise rents. And the changes for better tenant protection were made permanent, eliminating the recurring drama over these issues.

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Trump’s EPA wants minimal limits on poison in drinking water

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The Trump EPA calculated recommended limits of a dangerous chemical sometimes found in drinking water that can harm babies’ brain development that were more than 9 times higher than those imposed by a few states by fudging a key number in the calculation.

The Trump recommended a limit for perchlorate, which can harm infant brain development, of 56 micrograms per liter, far above the limit of 6 that California imposed and 2 that Massachusetts set, more than a decade ago.

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MSNBC’s Mika scorches Trump over sex assault denials: ‘What type of woman would you rape?’

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MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski revealed the horrific meaning behind President Donald Trump's defense against new rape claims.

Author and columnist E. Jean Carroll has accused the president of raping her more than 20 years ago after a chance meeting at a Manhattan department store, but Trump insists he couldn't have assaulted her because she's not his "type."

"We're talking about sexual assault, talking about actual rape and the president said that she's not his type," the "Morning Joe" co-host said. "So I guess the follow-up question is, since you have a type when it comes to rape, what's your type, Donald Trump, and is it any of the other women who claimed that you raped them?"

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Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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