Apr 12, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen
1 big thing: Trump's new trade flirtation

President Trump has deputized his chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow and his top trade negotiator Robert Lighthizer to take a fresh look at at re-entering Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations.

Why it matters: Re-opening the door to TPP after closing it last year would be a major pivot.

But, but, but: "Just how serious Mr Trump’s plans are for the TPP remains unclear." [FT's Shawn Donnan]

What they're saying:

  • Sen. Ben Sasse: “We should be leading TPP... China is a bunch of cheaters and the best way to push back on their cheating would be to be leading all these other rule-of-law nations in the Pacific that would rather be aligned with the U.S. than with China.”
  • Sen. Jeff Flake, who wasn't present: “If it holds until this afternoon, that’s a good move."
  • AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka: “TPP was killed because it failed America’s workers and it should remain dead. There is no conceivable way to revive it without totally betraying working people.”
  • A top Japanese diplomat told Axios before Trump directed his top advisers to take a fresh look at the deal that they would welcome him back with open arms.

Be smart, from Axios' Dan Primack: "This suggests Trump is increasingly concerned about China's response to his tariffs threat and, in particular, its impact on farmers. But a big problem is that Trump's original decision to bail on TPP resulted in many provisions the U.S. had fought for getting stripped from the final deal, including language around intellectual property protections."

2. What you missed

A clock face on Elizabeth Tower, commonly known as Big Ben, is seen without its hour and minute hands as conservation work continues on the Houses of Parliament. Photo: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images

  1. CIA Director Mike Pompeo has been interviewed by Bob Mueller, he told senators today in a hearing on his nomination to be Secretary of State. More.
  2. Trump floated the idea of subsidy payments for farmers in a meeting today with Republican lawmakers, but nobody voiced support, according to two sources familiar with the meeting. Details.
  3. Uber has agreed to expand a proposed settlement with the FTC to include a 2016 breach that it didn't disclose until after it settled last summer over its privacy and security practices. Go deeper.
  4. Grim Holocaust Remembrance Day stats: 41% of American adults don't know what Auschwitz was. That rises to 66% among millennials. By the numbers.
  5. Scoop: The Trump administration has urged Israel several times in the last few weeks to try to solve the crisis that erupted with Poland over a controversial law which makes it illegal to attribute crimes committed during the Holocaust to Poland. Read up.
1 fun thing
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Data: Sites compiled from various science journals; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

A growing number of researchers believe, based on recent findings and new technology, that human groups likely traveled out of Africa and its bordering Levant region earlier than previously thought, Axios' Eileen Drage O'Reilly reports.

Mike Allen