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President Trump complained via Twitter on Monday that Asian nations heavily reliant on oil passing through the Strait of Hormuz weren’t doing enough to safeguard tanker traffic.

"[W]hy are we protecting the shipping lanes for other countries (many years) for zero compensation. All of these countries should be protecting their own ships on what has always been a dangerous journey."

Why it matters: It’s the latest wrinkle in the escalating tensions with Iran around the Strait of Hormuz — presumably what Trump meant when he cited nations’ reliance on the "Straight."

  • The narrow passageway near where two tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman this month is the world’s biggest oil chokepoint, handling nearly 19 million barrels per day of oil, as well as major traffic in other oil products and LNG.

Trump also asserted via Twitter that "We don’t even need to be there in that the U.S. has just become (by far) the largest producer of Energy anywhere in the world!"

Reality check: It’s true that U.S. imports from the Middle East are at their lowest levels in decades thanks to the U.S. domestic production surge.

  • But the U.S. remains deeply connected to global oil markets. A major conflict in the region, especially one that disrupted oil traffic, would cause prices to jump, affecting U.S. businesses and consumers.

Separately, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said via Twitter that he held "productive" talks with the Saudi king Monday on the "need to promote maritime security in the Strait of Hormuz."

Go deeper: Strait of Hormuz tensions underscore oil market’s global scope

Go deeper

36 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.

Schumer rattles reconciliation saber

More than an aisle separates Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer, seen in the Senate Chamber after the Capitol siege. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Chuck Schumer is expected to telegraph, as soon as tonight, that he will use his political muscle to pass some of his party’s priorities — like President Biden's $1.9 trillion stimulus package.

Why it matters: While the Senate majority leader wants to work with Republicans on key legislation, advisers say, he will make clear that using the simple majority vote inherent in the budget reconciliation process is one of the big sticks at his disposal.