Mar 9, 2017

"Uh, no": McConnell says Mexico won't pay for the wall

Timothy D. Easley / Ap

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told a Politico panel Thursday that "there is no evidence" that Obama wiretapped Trump Tower, but he is leaving the conclusion for Congress to decide. Other takeaways:

  • When asked about the Mexican border wall, McConnell admitted that, "There are probably some places along the border where that's not the best [course of action]." And on whether he thinks Mexico will pay for it? "Uh... no," he laughed.
  • McConnell's take on Russia: "The Russians are not our friends, the sanctions shouldn't be lifted, and NATO is the most important military organization and should be defended," he stated. "I certainly have no real hope that we will have a better relationship with Russia..."

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Scoop: Top NSC official reassigned to Energy Department amid "Anonymous" fallout

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates will be reassigned as a senior adviser to Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette, the National Security Council said Thursday — and a senior White House official said that the administration "rejects" the rumors that she is "Anonymous."

Why it matters: Coates has battled claims that she is the still-unknown Trump administration official that penned a New York Times op-ed and book critical of President Trump.

The Fed may be setting the table for 2020 rate cuts

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Fed looks to be laying the groundwork to lower U.S. interest rates this year, just as they did in April 2019 before cutting rates in July, September and October.

Why it matters: A Fed rate cut makes taking on debt more attractive for U.S. consumers and businesses, helping to juice the economy, but also puts the central bank in a weaker position to fight off a potential recession.

Morgan Stanley to buy E*Trade in a $13 billion deal

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Morgan Stanley is planning to buy E*Trade Financial Corp. in a $13 billion all-stock deal, the Wall Street Journal reports, with plans to acquire the company known for helping everyday Americans manage their money.

Why it matters: The deal, which would be the largest by a major American bank since the financial crisis, signals Morgan Stanley‘s desire to bulk up in wealth management.