Apr 25, 2017

Trump targets Canada in economic nationalist trade push

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was clear about the message the U.S. was sending in announcing a tax on Canadian softwood lumber imports: "It has been a bad week for U.S.-Canada trade relations."

The substance of the move isn't that unusual — the lumber dispute goes back to the 80s — but the combative rhetoric toward an ally is highly irregular.

It raises the question: is the Trump admin just trying to look tough ahead of the 100-day mark?

Our thought bubble: We're inclined to take this more seriously as a sign of things to come. Trump wants to re-examine every US trade relationship, especially those in Asia.

We previewed in Sneak Peek that Trump would be making aggressive moves this week on his economic nationalist trade agenda, and there are at least three executive orders still to come.

This puts to rest notions that Trump will morph into a "globalist" on trade. This is the one issue he's been consistent on for 30 years and his entire West Wing staff - including Gary Cohn and Steven Mnuchin - has come to accept that.

  • The next one to watch: South Korea. With the five year anniversary of KORUS coming up, watch for Trump to take a hard look at that deal.
  • Wilbur Ross is the point man on all this. Forcefully behind him are the nationalists on staff - Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller, and Peter Navarro among others.
  • Watch for more economic nationalist moves in lead up to Trump's Saturday night rally in Pennsylvania. He wants a full blown economic nationalist pitch to clash on split screen with media types sipping cocktails in their tuxedos at Washington's White House Correspondents' Dinner.

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Trump signs $2 trillion relief bill as U.S. coronavirus case count tops 100,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

President Trump signed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief package on Friday, as infections in the U.S. topped 100,000 and more cities experience spikes of the novel coronavirus.

The big picture: The U.S. has the most COVID-19 cases in the world, exceeding China and Italy, per data from Johns Hopkins. A second wave of American cities, including Boston, Detroit, New Orleans and Philadelphia, are reporting influxes of cases.

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Coronavirus updates: Italy records deadliest day with nearly 1,000 dead

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 and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

Italy on Friday reported 969 COVID-19 deaths over a 24-hour period, marking the deadliest single-day for the country since the global outbreak began, according to data from the Health Ministry.

The big picture: The U.S. now leads the world in confirmed coronavirus cases, as the number of global cases nears 600,000. Governments around the world are trying to curb the medical and financial fallout of COVID-19, as infections surge across Europe and the U.S.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 8 hours ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 595,800 — Total deaths: 27,324 — Total recoveries: 131,006.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 103,942 — Total deaths: 1,689 — Total recoveries: 870.
  3. Federal government latest: President Trump signed the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill to provide businesses and U.S. workers economic relief.
  4. State updates: Nearly 92% of cities do not have adequate medical supplies — New York is trying to nearly triple its hospital capacity in less than a month.
  5. World updates: Italy reported 969 coronavirus deaths on Friday, the country's deadliest day.
  6. Business latest: President Trump authorized the use of the Defense Production Act to direct General Motors to build ventilators for those affected by COVID-19. White House trade adviser Peter Navarro has been appointed to enforce the act.
  7. 🏰 1 Disney thing: Both Disney World and Disneyland theme parks in the U.S. are closed until further notice.
  8. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancing.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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