Day 944: Absurd.
1/ The Trump administration will terminate the 20-day cap for detaining migrant children and allow the government to indefinitely detain migrant families who cross the border illegally. The new regulation, announced by acting Department of Homeland Security chief Kevin McAleenan, requires approval from a federal judge before it can go into effect and could be in defiance of the 2015 Flores agreement, which limited the time families could be detained to 20 days. Trump and Republicans have repeatedly blamed the 20-day rule for encouraging migrants to arrive at the border with their children expecting to be released. Administration officials claim the new rule will serve as a deterrent against migrant families. The Trump administration proposed a similar rule in September 2018 that would have allowed the government to detain migrant children for longer periods of time, so long as they were treated with “dignity, respect and special concern for their particular vulnerability as minors.” (ABC News / Washington Post / Wall Street Journal / NBC News / New York Times)
2/ The Trump administration is considering a plan to allow states and cities the ability to deny entry to refugees approved for resettlement in the United States. According to the draft order, “the federal government will resettle refugees only where both the relevant state and local governments have consented to participate” in the program. If a jurisdiction does not agree, the federal government will find another location. Trump, meanwhile, is debating whether to decrease refugee admissions starting on Oct. 1. In fiscal year 2016, the limit was 85,000 refugees; in fiscal year 2019, the number was 30,000. (NBC News)
3/ Trump accused Jewish Democrats of “show[ing] either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty,” repeating an anti-Semitic trope that Jews have a “dual loyalty” and are more devoted to Israel than they are to their own countries. Trump’s comments came in response to a question about Rep. Ilhan Omar’s suggestion that the U.S. should reconsider how much foreign aid it pays to Israel. Trump also tweet-quoted a conservative radio host and known conspiracy theorist, who praised Trump as “the greatest President for Jews,” that Israelis “love him like he is the second coming of God,” and that Trump is “the King of Israel.” (NBC News / New York Times / Associated Press / Washington Post / The Guardian)
4/ The federal budget deficit is growing faster than expected and the Congressional Budget Office forecasts the deficit will expand by about $800 billion more than previously expected over 10 years. The U.S. was already expected to hit about $1 trillion in annual deficits next year, but the shortfall will expand by $1.9 trillion in new spending over the next decade because of a budget deal to avoid the spending cliff and an emergency spending package for the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border. It would be the first time the deficit exceeded the $1 trillion mark since 2012, when the economy was recovering from the financial crisis. By 2029, the national debt will reach its highest level as a share of the economy since the end of World War II. (Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal / Washington Post / New York Times)
5/ Trump is no longer considering “a tax cut now,” because – he claimed – “we don’t need it. We have a strong economy.” Yesterday, Trump confirmed that he is considering “various tax reductions,” including a payroll tax cut, to stimulate a weakening American economy. Meanwhile, acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney promised top GOP donors that if an election-year recession hits, it would be “moderate and short.” (Wall Street Journal / Politico)
6/ Trump cancelled his trip to Denmark because the Danish prime minister would not sell him Greenland and had “no interest in discussing the purchase of Greenland.” Trump accused Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen of making “nasty” comments and that “she blew me off” and made “not a nice statement” about his interest in purchasing Greenland. Frederiksen called Trump’s idea of selling Greenland “absurd.” (NPR / BBC / New York Times / New York Times / NBC News / NBC News /Washington Post / Washington Post)
poll/ 65% of Americans say current economic conditions are good – down five percentage points since May. The drop is the first significant decline in public perception about the economy during Trump’s presidency. (CNN)
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