Apr 27, 2017

Trump getting a pass from GOP on Paris climate deal

Charles Rex Arbogast / AP

Nine House Republicans led by Rep. Kevin Cramer, who advised President Trump on energy during his campaign, are urging him to remain in the Paris climate accord, but under altered conditions that better promote U.S. fossil fuels.

  • Their letter arrives ahead of a closed-door White House meeting today about the agreement. A decision is expected by late May.

Reality check: The letter, while in circulation for weeks, attracted only a small slice of the House GOP. Four Republicans signed on to a more explicitly pro-Paris letter, while a letter calling on Trump to abandon Paris got 12 signatures.

Why it matters: The small numbers publicly pressing Trump either way suggests it's not a major priority for most members—at least not one they want to take a public stand on ahead of the decision.

What they're saying: Cramer's letter says the U.S. should soften Obama's emissions pledge, while using U.S. involvement in the accord to promote U.S. fossil fuel and manufacturing interests; and push for international focus on tech to trap carbon emissions from coal, among other things.

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O'Brien rejects intelligence report of Russia effort to re-elect Trump

National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien. Photo: Chris Usher/CBS via Getty Images

White House national security adviser Robert O'Brien repeatedly rejected on ABC's "This Week" an assessment from a congressional briefing led by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election to help President Trump get re-elected.

Why it matters: The report put the Trump administration under fresh scrutiny in regard to steps it has been taking to combat the kind of interference that the U.S. encountered in 2016.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 28 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Italy becomes site of largest coronavirus outbreak outside of Asia

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus has spread to more nations as South Korea and Italy step up emergency measures in their countries amid rising case numbers on Sunday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed at least 2,462 people and infected almost 79,000 others, mostly in mainland China. South Korea increased the infectious disease alert to red, the highest possible, as its case numbers jumped to 602 and the death toll to five. Italy's government announced emergency measures as it confirmed a spike from three to 132 cases in matter of days, making it the largest outbreak outside of Asia.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

Iranian state TV: Hardliners win landslide victory in low-turnout election

Photo: Iranian Supreme Leader Press Office/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Iranian state TV announced Sunday that hardliners won a landslide victory in the country's parliamentary elections two days ago, including all 30 seats in Tehran, AP reports.

Why it matters: Voter turnout in the election only reached 42.57%, according to Iran's interior ministry, the first time turnout dipped below 50% since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The low turnout may signal dissatisfaction with the Iranian government and the election system.

Go deeperArrow2 hours ago - World