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President Trump announced that he would delay a scheduled tariff hike on $200 billion of Chinese goods in a series of Sunday tweets, citing "substantial progress" in an ongoing round of U.S.-China trade talks and hinting at an upcoming Mar-a-Lago summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

"I am pleased to report that the U.S. has made substantial progress in our trade talks with China on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues. As a result of these very productive talks, I will be delaying the U.S. increase in tariffs now scheduled for March 1. Assuming both sides make additional progress, we will be planning a Summit for President Xi and myself, at Mar-a-Lago, to conclude an agreement. A very good weekend for U.S. & China!"

Between the lines, via Axios' Jonathan Swan: China hawks inside the administration have long argued the administration should ratchet up tariffs on March 1 because the Chinese have given nothing they can be held to on the most important structural issues that Trump mentions in his tweets.

  • Trump's announcement will be music to Xi's ears. Over the past decades, successive Chinese administrations have mastered the art of negotiating with the U.S. government — playing for time while they continue stealing U.S. intellectual property, defying global trading rules and using government policy to accelerate their rise towards what Xi views as China's destiny: replacing America as the global superpower.
  • Global markets will likely breathe a small sigh of relief. That comes with any new data that show Trump taking a more dovish stance towards China.

Go deeper: Grading the impact of Trump's China tariffs

Go deeper

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Hong Kong pro-democracy media tycoon Jimmy Lai detained for fraud

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Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai is being detained until an April court hearing after the pro-democracy supporter was charged Thursday with fraud, per his Apple Daily news outlet.

Why it matters: The 72-year-old's arrest and denial of bail is another blow for the pro-democracy movement in the former British colony amid concerns about a fresh crackdown on activists.

5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Inhofe loudly sets Trump straight on defense bill

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Senator Jim Inhofe told President Trump today he'll likely fail to get two big wishes in pending defense spending legislation, bellowing into his cellphone: "This is the only chance to get our bill passed," a source who overheard part of their conversation tells Axios.

Why it matters: Republicans are ready to test whether Trump's threats of vetoing the bill, which has passed every year for more than half a century, are empty.

Conspiracy theories blow back on Trump's White House

Sidney Powell. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

President Trump has rarely met a conspiracy theory he doesn't like, but he and other Republicans now worry the wild tales told by lawyers Sidney Powell and Lin Wood may cost them in Georgia's Senate special elections.

Why it matters: The two are telling Georgians not to vote for Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler because of a bizarre, baseless and potentially self-defeating theory: It's not worth voting because the Chinese Communist Party has rigged the voting machines.