Feb 27, 2017

Deciphering Trump on the border tax

Evan Vucci / AP

Reuters ran a story that got a lot of attention last week. The headline: "Exclusive: Trump says Republican border tax could boost U.S. jobs." Republicans who support border adjustment immediately celebrated — blasting out press releases trumpeting Trump's comments.

Here's what Trump actually said to Reuters: "I certainly support a form of tax on the border ... What is going to happen is companies are going to come back here, they're going to build their factories and they're going to create a lot of jobs and there's no tax."

The problem: In the days following Trump's comments, we've heard that his top economic advisor Gary Cohn is less than enthusiastic about the tax, and yesterday on Fox Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin expressed deep reservations about the tax. Even public supporters of the proposal — the same folks who have to publicly say that Trump is on board — admit privately they have no idea what's in his head.

Between the lines: A source who's worked closely with Trump tells us that when Trump hears border adjustment tax, he's often hearing "border tax." That could be something very different. Remember that the only idea in this realm that Trump has spoken of publicly and enthusiastically is his idea to punish American companies that move factories overseas with 35 percent import tariffs when they try to sell their goods back into the United States. That's very different than a tax levied on all imports.

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Updated 12 mins ago - Politics & Policy

The latest: George Floyd protests nationwide

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued for a seventh day across the U.S., with President Trump threatening on Monday to deploy the military if the unrest continues.

The latest: New York Attorney General Letitia James responded to Trump's comments by tweeting that he "is not a dictator & he doesn’t have the right to unilaterally deploy U.S. military across American states. We will guard the right to peaceful protest & will not hesitate to go to court to protect our constitutional rights during this time & well into the future."

2 hours ago - World

The world watches America burn

Newspaper front pages via the Newseum

The world is watching the grief and anger, violence and pain in America's streets.

The big picture: The U.S. accounts for nearly one-third of the world's deaths from COVID-19. The killing of a black man, George Floyd, by police has sparked days of protest and nights of chaos in America's major cities.

Trump walks to historic St. John's Church outside White House as protests rage

President Trump walked to the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church, located just steps away from the White House across Lafayette Park, on Monday night as protests linked to the murder of George Floyd raged across the capital and cities around the country.

What we're seeing: Military police and park rangers used physical force and tear gas on peaceful protestors to clear the area so that Trump could "pay respects" to the church that was damaged by a fire on Sunday.