Sep 8, 2019

Trump to visit Baltimore weeks after calling it a "rodent infested mess"

Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

Weeks after calling Baltimore a "disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess," President Trump is set to visit the city on Thursday to meet with congressional Republicans, the White House confirmed to the Washington Post.

The big picture: In a July Twitter tirade against Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), Trump said Baltimore — a majority black area of Cummings' Maryland district — is a place where "no human being would want to live." The attacks prompted immediate backlash from Democrats and members of the Baltimore community. Perhaps most notably, the Baltimore Sun published a scathing op-ed on Trump's remarks titled, "Better to have a few rats than to be one."

  • Maryland's Republican Gov. Larry Hogan also called the comments "outrageous," while others on social media rallied against the characterization with the hashtag #WeAreBaltimore.
  • The city had already been chosen as the venue for House Republicans' 3-day biennial retreat before Trump's attacks. According to the Post, Republican lawmakers and aides "weren’t sure the president would want to attend."

What to watch: Trump's presence is likely to spark protests from residents still angered by the remarks, placing visiting GOP lawmakers at the center of controversy.

Go deeper: Trump's premeditated racism is central to his 2020 strategy

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Texas Republicans admit there's a problem

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The retirement of six House Republicans from Texas at the end of this term shows their pessimism about winning back the House majority in 2020, GOP strategists tell Axios — and foreshadows bigger Republican fears in the nation's second most populous state.

The big picture: The GOP recognizes they can no longer ignore their Democratic opponents and count on coasting to re-election in this previously-reliable red state.

Go deeperArrowOct 1, 2019

Scoop: Trump's private concerns of an impeachment legacy

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump has told friends and allies he worries about the stain impeachment will leave on his legacy.

Driving the news: In a phone call with House Republicans on Friday, Trump articulated why he really doesn't want this. Impeachment, Trump said, is a "bad thing to have on your resume," according to a source on the call. Two other sources on the call confirmed the substance of the comment, but one said they recalled Trump phrasing it as "you don't want it [impeachment] on your resume."

Go deeperArrowUpdated Oct 7, 2019

Report: Trump ordered Ukraine aid freeze days before call to its leader

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump directed his acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney to withhold nearly $400 million in military aid for Ukraine days before he phoned the country's president and allegedly urged him to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden's son, the Washington Post and New York Times report.

Details: The White House told Axios that the reports, published late Monday, are "completely false." WashPost reported that officials in the administration's Office of Management and Budget notified the Pentagon and State Department about the request at an interagency meeting in July.

Go deeperArrowSep 24, 2019