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Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

This leaked WTO bill is part of a much larger story, Trump's war on multilateral, global institutions and agreements. Some of these, like the World Trade Organization, form the core of the post-World War Two international order.

The big picture: Trump has expressed skepticism, and in some cases outright hostility towards NATO, the European Union, the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, and the Group of Seven (G7). He's already withdrawn the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Iran deal, announced his intent to withdraw from the Paris climate accord, and has seriously contemplated terminating NAFTA.

  • On Friday, we broke the news that Trump has been repeatedly telling his advisers that he wants to withdraw the U.S. from the WTO. His advisers have taken this as him "venting" and haven't put in place a policy process to deal with the suggestion, but Trump keeps returning to it.
  • Trump denied the Axios story, but he has told aides so many times privately that he thinks the WTO is terribly unfair and wants to withdraw the U.S. from the organization, that a phone call to anyone involved in the White House trade conversations over the past year would confirm our reporting.

Between the lines: Michael Wessel, a China hawk who's worked on trade for more than 30 years, channels the Trump-Navarro thinking behind getting aggressive with the WTO.

  • "These trade problems are growing in scope and impact, with no resolution in sight," Wessel told me.
  • "What they’ve [the Trump administration] been doing isn’t pretty, it’s aggressive, but nothing else has gotten the attention of our trading partners who have largely refused to respond to U.S. complaints for years."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Texas AG sues Biden administration over deportation freeze

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton speaks to members of the media in 2016. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is suing the Biden administration in federal district court over its 100-day freeze on deporting unauthorized immigrants, and he's asking for a temporary restraining order.

Between the lines: The freeze went into effect Friday, temporarily halting most immigration enforcement in the U.S. In the lawsuit, Paxton claims the move "violates the U.S. Constitution, federal immigration and administrative law, and a contractual agreement between Texas" and the Department of Homeland Security.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
1 hour ago - Podcasts

Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck

President Biden has said that getting Americans vaccinated for COVID-19 is his administration’s top priority given an initial rollout plagued by organizational, logistical and technical glitches.

Axios Re:Cap digs into the bottlenecks and how to unclog them with Carbon Health chief executive Eren Bali, whose company recently began helping to manage vaccinations in Los Angeles.