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Mexico tariffs on track to take effect Monday: White House

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The United States intends to apply punitive tariffs on imports from Mexico on Monday despite progress in talks on stemming migration, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said Friday.

“Our position hasn’t changed,” Sanders told reporters heading on Air Force One to Shannon, Ireland, as President Donald Trump wrapped up a week-long trip to Europe.

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“They’ve made a lot of progress,” she said. “The meetings have gone well, but as of now we’re still on track for tariffs on Monday.”

Sanders’ comments came after two days of crunch talks in Washington by top officials from both countries to head off the tariffs, which could deal a stunning blow to the Mexican economy.

The Trump administration has demanded Mexico take tough action to halt the flow of hundreds of thousands of Central American migrants towards the United States, insisting it down its border with Guatemala and agree to let asylum seekers register their claims inside Mexico.

Last week Trump announced that, starting from Monday, June 10, a five percent tariff would be applied to all goods from export-dependent Mexico, rising by five percentage points each month to a high of 25 percent, until US demands on migrant controls were satisfied.

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On Thursday Mexico scrambled to appease Washington, agreeing to deploy 6,000 National Guard troops to its southern border, blocking a new migrant caravan and freezing the bank accounts of suspected human traffickers.

But it appeared there was no agreement between Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard and US negotiators led by Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on the asylum question.

“We have been working this afternoon, we still do not have an agreement,” Ebrard said Thursday as talks wrapped for the day.

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“Tomorrow we have another session in the morning and we will continue forward.”


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‘A deeply disappointing moment’: Trump’s new national security adviser is ‘big fan’ of John Bolton

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President Donald Trump named Robert C. O’Brien as national security adviser on Wednesday even though his worldview is similar to that of former National Security Adviser John Bolton.

“I am pleased to announce that I will name Robert C. O’Brien, currently serving as the very successful Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs at the State Department, as our new National Security Advisor,” the president announced in a tweet.

O'Brien's appointment comes a week after the firing of Bolton, who was known to clash with Trump because of his hawkish foreign policy positions.

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Black woman confronts racist tow truck driver over slurs: ‘I bet you this goes viral’

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A Massachusetts tow truck driver was caught on camera last weekend hurling racist abuse at a black man.

The woman, identified online as Nene Judge'mayo, shared video of the incident Sept. 14 with a driver from Robert Towing in Brighton.

"Because of your f*cking n*gger husband," says the driver, whom she identified as Jeff, as he walked toward his truck.

The woman confronts the driver about the racial slur, and the driver confirms that's what he said and then pulls out his own phone to record the incident.

"Look me up -- my last video of a white man went viral, of the motorcycle girl that hit the news," she tells the driver. "I bet you this goes viral, too."

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Christian conservatives are giving Americans an ‘allergic reaction’ to religion: researchers

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The number of Americans identifying as atheists is increasing -- and recent social science research suggests that the Christian Right is playing a key role in making that happen.

As reported by Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight, new research has found that distaste for Trump-loving Christian conservatism has not just turned some Americans off from individual churches but from religion altogether.

"As recently as the early 1990s, less than 10 percent of Americans lacked a formal religious affiliation, and liberals weren’t all that much likelier to be nonreligious than the public overall," FiveThirtyEight notes. "Today, however, nearly one in four Americans are religiously unaffiliated. That includes almost 40 percent of liberals — up from 12 percent in 1990, according to the 2018 General Social Survey."

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