Feb 23, 2017

Ivanka pushes the White House to focus on human trafficking

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

President Trump this afternoon will hold a listening session on domestic and international human trafficking, including women and girls who are sexually exploited for profit. We're told that the sudden West Wing attention to the issue was driven by Ivanka Trump, a huge West Wing force despite her decision not to take an official title at first.

  • How the meeting came about: Ivanka Trump and Dina Powell, White House senior counselor for economic initiatives, had a few meetings with some of the groups attending today's 2:30 p.m. session in the Roosevelt Room. "Ivanka recommended the meeting to the president and he immediately agreed, given what a horrible issue it is in the U.S. and internationally," a source said.
  • Outside groups coming: National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; International Justice Mission; Thorn: Tech Innovation to Fight Child Sexual Exploitation, co-founded by Ashton Kutcher (who'll be represented by someone else).
  • Who's coming from the administration: The meeting is likely to include Vice President Pence, who has had a longtime focus on the issue; representatives of the Justice Department; plus policy guru Stephen Miller, Dina Powell and Hope Hicks, director of strategic communications.

Why it matters: White House support for legislation on the issue could emerge from the meeting; West Wing aides are already talking about how to work with three senators — Rob Portman of Ohio, Marco Rubio of Florida and Bob Corker of Tennessee.

Editor's note: This article was updated to reflect that Sen. Rubio was not in attendance at today's meeting.

Go deeper

The cost of going after Bloomberg

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Here's the growing dilemma for 2020 Democrats vying for a one-on-one showdown with frontrunner Bernie Sanders: Do they have the guts — and the money — to first stop Mike Bloomberg?

Why it matters: Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren all must weigh the costs of punching Bloomberg where he looks most vulnerable: stop-and-frisk, charges of sexism, billionaire entitlement. The more zealous the attacks, the greater the risk he turns his campaign ATM against them.

How Trump’s economy stacks up

Source: "Presidents and US Economy", Trump figures through 2019 courtesy of Alan Blinder; Note: Data shows real GDP and Q1 growth in each term is attributed to the previous president; Chart: Axios Visuals

Average economic growth under President Trump has outpaced the growth under Barack Obama, but not all of his recent predecessors.

Why it matters: GDP is the most comprehensive economic scorecard — and something presidents, especially Trump, use as an example of success. And it's especially relevant since Trump is running for re-election on his economic record.

Coronavirus cases rise as 14 American evacuees infected

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

14 Americans evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship tested positive for the novel coronavirus before being flown in a "specialist containment" on a plane repatriating U.S. citizens back home, the U.S. government said early Monday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,770 people and infected almost 70,000 others. Most cases and all but five of the deaths have occurred in mainland China. Taiwan confirmed its first death on Sunday, per multiple reports, in a 61-year-old man with underlying health conditions. Health officials were investigating how he became ill.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health