LIVE STREAM: White House press briefing with Sarah Huckabee Sanders (6/5/17) 11 Mins Monday's White House press briefing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. with deputy press secretary
WASHINGTON - Monday's White House press briefing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. with deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
You can watch the daily press briefing right here on ClickOnDetroit.com at that time.
Here's what is going on in Washington today:
Trump uses Twitter to go after London mayor
President Donald Trump is again attacking London Mayor Sadiq Khan on Twitter.
Trump tweeted Monday morning that Khan had offered a "pathetic excuse" and "had to think fast on his `no reason to be alarmed' statement."
Trump added that the media "is working hard to sell it!"
On Sunday Trump leveled an inaccurate criticism of London Mayor Sadiq Khan, saying the mayor was telling people there was "no reason to be alarmed" about the attack. The mayor had instead been telling London residents not to be concerned by a stepped-up police presence in the city following the attack.
Later Khan's spokesman said he was too busy to respond to Trump's "ill-informed" tweet.
Kellyanne Conway's husband weighs in on Trump
The husband of senior White House adviser Kellyanne Conway is taking to Twitter to criticize President Donald Trump's tweets about the administration's travel ban that has been blocked by federal courts and is now in front of the Supreme Court.
New York lawyer George T. Conway III says Trump's Monday tweets taking aim at the Justice Department "may make some ppl feel better," but won't help win a majority in the Supreme Court. Conway said the outcome at the high court "is what actually matters."
He takes a page from Trump's playbook to brand the whole thing, "Sad."
George Conway had been considered for at least two high-ranking Justice Department jobs, including Solicitor General. That's the lawyer who represents the president at the Supreme Court.
Kellyanne Conway on Monday condemned what she called the media's "obsession with covering everything (Trump) says on Twitter and very little of what he does as president."
Trump berates Dems of slow-walking his nominees
President Donald Trump is criticizing Democrats for not approving his nominees, but the president himself has named few candidates.
As part of a Monday morning tweetstorm, Trump posted that Democrats "are taking forever" to confirm his nominees, including ambassadors.
Trump tweets: "They are nothing but OBSTRUCTIONISTS! Want approvals."
But Trump has yet to name candidates for dozens of ambassadorships. Currently, only five nominated candidates remain unconfirmed.
For instance, Trump said he would nominate New York Jets owner Woody Johnson as ambassador to the United Kingdom but has yet to formally do so.
Moreover, of the 559 key positions that require Senate confirmation, only 63 have been formally nominated. The Partnership for Public Service, a nonpartisan watchdog group says that of those, 39 have been confirmed.
Trump assails Justice Dep't court strategy on travel ban
President Donald Trump lashed out at his own Justice Department Monday for seeking the Supreme Court's backing for a "watered down, politically correct version" of the travel ban he signed in March instead of a broader directive that was also blocked by the courts.
In a series of early morning tweets, Trump urged the Justice Department to ask for an "expedited hearing" at the high court and seek a "much tougher version" of the order temporarily blocking entry to the U.S. from a half-dozen majority Muslim countries. He called the courts, which have blocked both versions of the travel ban, "slow and political."
It's unclear whether the president has conveyed his requests to the Justice Department, which he oversees, in a forum other than Twitter. The White House did not immediately respond to requests for that information.
The president has renewed his push for the travel ban in the wake of the vehicle and knife attack in London that left seven people dead and dozens injured. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack.
The president spent much of the weekend responding to the attack on Twitter. In one instance, he leveled an inaccurate criticism of London Mayor Sadiq Khan, saying the mayor was telling people there was "no reason to be alarmed" about the attack. The mayor had instead been telling London residents not to be concerned by a stepped-up police presence in the city following the attack.
"No reason to be alarmed," Khan said, describing a more visible presence as "one of things the police and all of us need to do to make sure we are as safe as we possibly can be."
Later, the mayor's spokesman said he was too busy to respond to Trump's "ill-informed" tweet.
Trump also addressed the London attack Sunday night at the conclusion of a fundraiser for Ford's Theater, scene of one of the most famous acts of bloodshed in American history: the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.
"America sends our thoughts and prayers and our deepest sympathies to the victims of this evil slaughter and we renew our resolve, stronger than ever before, to protect the United States and its allies from a vile enemy that has waged war on innocent life, and it's gone on too long," Trump said.
Senior White House adviser Kellyanne Conway on Monday condemned what she called the media's "obsession with covering everything he says on Twitter and very little of what he does as president."
In an appearance on NBC's "Today Show," Conway said people should pay attention to what the president is doing, saying people in England had tried to inform authorities about the terrorists before the attacks happened.
"If you're going to see something and say something, it has to be followed by, do something," she said. "And this president is trying to do something to protect the people of this country."
Trump said he had spoken with British Prime Minister Theresa May to express America's "unwavering support" and offer U.S. assistance as the British government works to protect its citizens and bring the guilty to justice.
British authorities say that have identified the three attackers but have not revealed that information publicly.
Trump has used attacks around the world to justify his pursuit of the travel and immigration ban, one of his first acts since taking office. The first order, which was signed at the end of his first week in office, was hastily unveiled without significant input from top Trump national security advisers or the agencies tasked with implementing the order.
After that order was struck down by the courts, the administration decided to write a second directive rather than appeal the initial ban to the Supreme Court. The narrower order temporarily halts entry to the U.S. from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen is necessary to protect U.S. national security.
Iraq was removed from the list of banned countries in the second order and an indefinite halt to entry from Syrian refugees was replaced by a temporary pause. Still, the courts have also blocked that directive.
Last week, the Justice Department formally asked the Supreme Court to let a ban be put in place. The high court also is being asked to uphold the constitutionality of the Trump travel policy, which lower courts have blocked because it shows anti-Muslim prejudice.
A date for the court to hear arguments in the case was not immediately set.
Survey: Economists expect slower US growth
Forecasts for U.S. economic growth are coming in slightly lower after a weak first quarter, according to a survey of business economists released Monday.
The National Association for Business Economists says it's expecting gross domestic product growth of 2.2 percent this year and 2.4 percent in 2018. Those forecasts are down 0.1 percentage points from a survey in March. The survey is based on responses from 52 professional forecasters.
The gross domestic product -- the broadest gauge of the economy -- expanded in the January-March quarter at a 1.2 percent annual rate. That was better than initially forecast, but still weak. Unseasonably warm weather was one reason for the slow growth, since it limited spending on utilities.
Economists forecast GDP growth will rise 3.1 percent in the April-June period and 2.5 percent in the second half of the year. They're forecasting solid hiring and a low, 4.5-percent unemployment rate, which should help boost consumer spending. Inflation also is expected to remain in check
Most of the economists surveyed believe President Donald Trump will enact an infrastructure plan and cut corporate and individual taxes before the end of 2018. That will have a positive impact on economic growth, but likely not until 2018, the survey said.
There are downside risks. Just over one-third of the panelists say trade protectionism, a strong U.S. dollar and higher interest rates could pose a risk to the economy in 2018. But 60 percent say there's more chance of an upside risk thanks to expected corporate tax reform, individual tax cuts and infrastructure spending.
Nearly all the panelists -- 95 percent -- think the chance of a recession this year is 25 percent or less.
4 nations cut diplomatic ties to Qatar as Arab rift deepens
Four Arab nations cut diplomatic ties to Qatar on Monday over its relations with Iran and support of Islamist groups, isolating the tiny energy rich country by cutting off its land, sea and air routes to the outside world.
Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates began withdrawing their diplomatic staff from Qatar as regional airlines quickly announced they'd suspend service to its capital, Doha.
Qatar, which will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup and is home to some 10,000 American troops at a major U.S. military base, criticized the move as a "violation of its sovereignty." However, it immediately wreaked havoc with long-haul carrier Qatar Airways, sent its stock market tumbling and raised questions about how a country reliant on food imports would be affected.
Saudi Arabia also said Qatari troops would be pulled from the ongoing war in Yemen. Yemen's internationally backed government, which no longer holds its capital and large portions of the country, also cut relations with Qatar.
The countries all ordered their citizens out of Qatar and gave Qataris abroad 14 days to return home to their peninsular nation. The countries also said they would eject Qatar's diplomats from their territories.
Putin dismisses US claims about Trump, Russia and elections
Russian President Vladimir Putin says claims about Russian involvement in U.S. elections are untrue, and says the United States actively interferes with elections in other countries.
And he is dismissing as "a load of nonsense" the idea that Russia has damaging information on President Donald Trump. Putin made the comments in an interview with NBC's "Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly."
U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded that Russia meddled in the presidential election to hurt the bid of Democrat Hillary Clinton. Trump himself has been dogged by questions about any business dealings with Russia -- he says he has none -- as well as reports of a Russian dossier of damaging personal information.
AP FACT CHECK: Attack draws visceral Trump tweets, not facts
President Donald Trump can't be counted on to give accurate information to Americans when violent acts are unfolding abroad.
The latest deadly London attacks, like one in the Philippines last week, prompted visceral reactions from Trump instead of statements shaped by the findings of the U.S. intelligence and diplomatic apparatus. He got ahead of the facts emerging in Britain's chaos Saturday and got it wrong in the Philippines case, calling the episode there a "terrorist attack" when it was not.
A look at some of his weekend tweets about the London attack and rhetoric that came from the president and his aides about climate change and more last week:
TRUMP: "We need to be smart, vigilant and tough. We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety!" -- tweet Saturday, soon after the rampage at the London Bridge and Borough Market that killed at least seven people and wounded dozens
THE FACTS: Trump's tweet directly contradicted an earlier statement by his homeland security secretary that the travel restrictions blocked by U.S. courts do not constitute a ban.
"It's not a travel ban, remember," John Kelly told Fox News on May 28. "It's the travel pause. What the resident said, for 90 days, we were going to pause in terms of people from those countries coming to the United States that would give me time to look at additional vetting." The administration has asked the Supreme Court address the court decisions holding up Trump's plan to bar entry temporarily of people from a half dozen Muslim-majority countries.
Shortly before that tweet, Trump suggested terrorism was at play in the London attack, sharing on Twitter an unconfirmed report to that effect, well before British authorities said so. It is still not known whether the attackers were British citizens or immigrants and therefore whether a Trump-style freeze on entry of people from certain nations might have prevented the violence by three knife-wielding assailants, who were killed by police.
TRUMP: "At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is `no reason to be alarmed!' " -- tweet Saturday night.
THE FACTS: A look at the fuller context of remarks by London Mayor Sadiq Khan to the BBC on Sunday shows that he was telling Londoners there was "no need to be alarmed" at the heavier police presence they will see in the days ahead. He was not playing down the danger. "The threat level remains at severe," the mayor said. "Severe means an attack across the country is still highly likely."
But he said terrorists will not be allowed to "cower our city or Londoners."
TRUMP, at a Rose Garden ceremony Thursday marking his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord: "I would like to begin by addressing the terrorist attack in Manila. We're closely monitoring the situation. And I will continue to give updates if anything happens during this period of time, but it is really very sad as to what's going on throughout the world with terror."
THE FACTS: Philippine authorities said the attack that killed 37 people at a casino-hotel complex was by a lone gunman who set fire to gambling tables and fled with casino chips. They said the motive was robbery, not terrorism.
Trump to embrace privatization of air traffic control system
President Donald Trump is laying out his vision for privatizing the nation's air traffic control system on Monday, arguing that it will enhance safety and modernize aviation.
Trump will push for the separation of air traffic control operations from the Federal Aviation Administration, adopting an approach long championed by U.S. airlines, according to White House officials.
Trump is expected to be joined by airline industry executives, union members and former transportation secretaries Elizabeth Dole and Mary Peters in an East Room address to make the case for a more modern air traffic control system.
"We're really moving into the modern decade of technology in air traffic control. It's a system where everyone benefits from this," White House economic adviser Gary Cohn said in a conference call with reporters. Trump's budget plan released earlier this year called for the changes, placing air traffic operations under an "independent, nongovernmental organization."
There are about 50,000 airline and other aircraft flights a day in the United States. Both sides of the privatization debate say the system is one of the most complex and safest in the world. The FAA would continue to provide safety oversight of the system under a congressional privatization plan.
U.S. airlines have been campaigning for more than two decades to separate air traffic control operations from the FAA. That effort picked up steam last year when the union that represents air traffic controllers agreed to support a proposal by House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster, R-Pa., to spin off air traffic operations into a private, nonprofit corporation in exchange for guarantees that controllers would retain their benefits, salaries and union representation.
White House officials said the new entity would be overseen by a 13-member board that will include members from the airline industry, unions, general aviation, airports and other stakeholders.
Airlines have been lobbying vigorously for the change, saying the FAA's NextGen program to modernize the air traffic system is taking too long and has produced too few benefits. The changes would involve moving from the current system based on radar and voice communications to one based on satellite navigation and digital communications.
Airlines and the controllers union say that the FAA's effort to modernize the air traffic system has been slowed down by the agency's dependence on inconsistent funding from Congress and occasional government shutdowns and controller furloughs. As a result, the FAA has had difficulty making long-term commitments with contractors.
Union officials have complained that the FAA has been unable to resolve chronic controller understaffing at some of the nation's busiest facilities and pointed to the modernization effort's slow progress.
But FAA Administrator Michael Huerta has said the agency has made progress during the past decade in updating its computers and other equipment in order to move from a radar-based to a satellite-based control system.
Winning congressional approval would still be an uphill battle for Trump. Democrats have largely opposed the changes, warning that the proposed board overseeing the estimated 300 air traffic facilities and around 30,000 employees would be dominated by airline interests.
They have also pointed to the unprecedented safety under the current system and noted repeated computer system failures in recent years by U.S. airlines, questioning whether they are ready to handle complex technology modernizations.
Trump's plan would also eliminate taxes on airline passengers in favor of a system of user fees. Key members of tax-writing committees have questioned whether corporations can legally impose fees, which can be viewed as taxes, on air traffic system users.
Business aircraft operators, private pilots and non-hub airports have also expressed concerns they may need to pay more and get less service under a private corporation even though airlines have promised that won't happen.
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