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AP Photo/Michael Probst, FILE

Marine Le Pen kicked off her bid for French president with a campaign, as the Financial Times says, that hopes to "capitalise on some of the same nationalist forces that swept US President Donald Trump to power last year."

Some of her campaign promises:

  • France will control its borders and protect its national identity from immigration
  • New negotiations with the EU to turn it into a "loose confederation of nations," and if that fails a vote on leaving the EU
  • Lower taxes and higher welfare payments for working class
  • "Intelligent protectionism" including a rejection of trade treaties

Why it might matter: Le Pen is projected to win the first round of voting in April but fall short in the final ballot the next month

Go deeper

Trump threatens to veto Defense spending bill over social media shield

Photo: Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump tweeted Tuesday a threat to veto a must-pass end-of-year $740 billion bill defense-spending authorization bill unless Congress repeals a federal law that protects social media sites from legal liability.

Why it matters: Trump's attempt to get Congress to end the tech industry protections under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act is the latest escalation in his war on tech giants over what he and some other Republicans perceive as bias against conservatives.

The walls close in on Trump

Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

With Bill Barr's "Et tu, Brute!" interview with AP, President Trump is watching the walls close in on his claims of fraud, hoaxes and conspiracies.

Why it matters: Trump and his legal team continue to claim election fraud. But the Republican governors of Arizona and Georgia have certified their elections, a loyalist like Barr has weighed in, and lower-ranking officials have taken potshots.

Congress plots COVID pandemic-era office upgrades

oving crates outside Rep. Elise Stefanik's old office Tuesday. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

The House plans to renovate members' suites even though staff are worried about an influx of contractors and D.C. is tightening restrictions on large gatherings, some staffers told Axios.

Why it matters: The Capitol has been closed to public tours since March. Work over the holiday season comes as U.S. coronavirus cases spike, Americans beg for more pandemic assistance and food lines grow.