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Trump’s China tariffs massively backfire as trade deficit smashes record high

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President Donald Trump regularly cites the United States’ massive trade deficit with China as a primary justification for his decision to implement tariffs.

However, the Washington Post reports that the United States’ trade deficit with China has only widened since the implementation of tariffs and hit a record-high $34.1 billion, according to Chinese statistics released this week.

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“It’s obvious that the immediate effects of the trade war are the exact opposite of what the Trump administration had been planning,” Andrew Polk of Beijing-based research firm Trivium China tells the Post. “We expect the dynamic to change once we get a bit deeper into this, but for now China is trying to outrun the next round of tariffs.”

Julian Evans-Pritchard, an economist at Capital Economics, tells the Post that one reason that China has been able to beat Trump’s tariffs so far is that its currency value has depreciated by more than eight percent since June, which has helped make its products even cheaper abroad, while also reducing domestic demand for U.S. imports.

And Huo Jianguo, a trade expert at the Center for China and Globalization in Beijing, tells the Post that Trump might want to rethink his trade strategy when he sees that the trade deficit with China has only widened under his watch.

“He won’t be happy with these figures but it proves that tariffs don’t help curb exports,” he said.

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Trump took out DNI head Dan Coats to install a new acting director in charge of whistleblowers: CIA veteran

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Appearing on MSNBC's "AM Joy," a longtime veteran CIA official said the whistleblower, who ran to the inspector general with a complaint about Donald Trump asking Ukraine's president for dirt on Joe Biden, should expect the president and his aides to come after them.

Speaking with host Joy Reid, Jonna Mendez said she saw the first warnings signs that something was up in the U.S. intelligence community when the president forced DNI head Dan Coats and his top deputy out.

"Through the lens of someone who spent 27 years at the CIA, the thing that caught my eye instantly was Dan Coats' resignation follow by Sue Gordon," Mendez explained. "The fact that Dan Coats went into a meeting and said 'Sue, you've got to resign' and that she did, truncating a career that clearly hadn't reached its zenith."

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2020 Election

GOP’s cancellation of presidential primaries could blow up in Trump’s face — here’s why

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In recent weeks, Republican state party committees have been moving to cancel presidential primaries to prevent Never-Trump conservatives, like former Reps. Joe Walsh (R-IL) and Mark Sanford (R-SC) and former Gov. Bill Weld (R-MA), from challenging the president from the right. So far, Republicans in Arizona, Kansas, Nevada, and South Carolina have all announced they will scrap the voting process for 2020.

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Alternet 2020

Nancy Pelosi faces serious challenges — but she’s failed miserably in two key ways

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As I wrote earlier this week, with its muddled messaging on impeachment, the House Democratic leadership may have figured out a way of both demoralizing the Democratic base and firing up Trump's supporters. It's a mess.

But fairness requires us to acknowledge an important fact: Speaker Nancy Pelosi doesn't have the votes to launch an official impeachment process. And it's not close. At present, The Washington Post's tally finds 137 members of the House in favor of launching an impeachment inquiry, with 92 opposed and 6 others not taking a position. Leadership can twist arms on a close vote, but when you're close to 100 votes shy of a majority, it's impossible to whip a measure across the finish line--especially one of such consequence.

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