Axios Nov 23
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Agreement on certain issues across party lines is growing

Photo: Elaine Thompson / AP

A "Democracy in America" dispatch by The Economist looks at the bright side of an otherwise bleak Pew Research Center study, and finds that "on some issues, and across party lines, agreement is growing."

Why it matters, from The Economist: "It seems that many dinner tables divided by party politics will still be united by the idea that there is much to give thanks for—even if everyone agrees that America has a lot to worry about."

The issues:

  • "Only 3% of Democrats and 8% of Republicans believe that increasing number of people from different races, ethnic groups and nationalities in America makes the country a worse place to live."
  • "The proportion of Republican supporters who see immigrants as a burden on the country has fallen from 64% in 1994 to 44% today."
  • Another Pew report found that "86% of Republicans believe they are on the way to achieving the 'American Dream' or have achieved it, along with 80% of Democrats."
  • Pew: "Only about one-in-five (17%) say the American dream is 'out of reach' for their family."
  • According to Gallup, "the proportion of Americans who reported they were satisfied with the way their life was going reached 87%, up from 78% in 2011 and only one percentage point below the highest number reported since the poll question was first asked by Gallup in 1979."

A sign of our times: "The percentage of Republicans who think homosexuality should be accepted, at 54%, now matches the percentage of Democrats who favored tolerance in 1994," 23 years ago.

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Trump: Transgender people "disqualified" from the military

SecDef Jim Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford.
Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford. Photo: Andrew Harrer-Pool / Getty Images

President Trump late Friday issued an order disqualifying most transgender people from serving in the military.

"[T]ransgender persons with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria -- individuals who the policies state may require substantial medical treatment, including medications and surgery -- are disqualified from military service except under certain limited circumstances."

Why it matters: Anything short of an inclusive policy for transgender troops will be viewed as a continuation of the ban Trump announced on Twitter in August.

Haley Britzky 9 hours ago
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Both Bush and Obama also requested line item veto power

Donald Trump.
Photo: Mark Wilson / Getty Images

President Trump tweeted on Friday evening that to avoid having "this omnibus situation from ever happening again," he wants Congress to re-instate "a line-item veto."

Why it matters: This would allow him to veto specific parts of a bill without getting rid of the entire thing. Trump was deeply unhappy with the $1.3 trillion spending bill approved by Congress early Friday morning, but signed it anyway on Friday afternoon.