The Note: Congress starts pushing Trump out of the way


  • A new, new story: White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said President Trump weighed in “like any father would” on his son’s misleading statement about the meeting he had with a Russian lawyer. But she also asserted that the statement was “true” and that the president “certainly didn’t dictate” it.
  • The Senate is choosing to go its own way on health care: Bipartisan health care hearings will kick off next month without President Trump’s involvement.
  • The Justice Department plans on scrutinizing affirmative action policies to determine if white applicants are being discriminated against, The New York Times reports.
  • Christopher Wray steps into James Comey’s shoes as the new FBI director, after he was confirmed Tuesday 92-5.
  • Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said he and President Trump are not “very happy” about the new Russia sanctions bill, but adds that “all indications” are the president will sign off anyway.
  • THE TAKE with ABC News’ Rick Klein

    There’s a whole lot of jokes being told by White House officials these days, or so we are told. But this is not one of them: Congress is starting to treat President Trump as an interested – if not totally informed – bystander, and not the leader of a legislative agenda. Let Obamacare fail? Change the Senate rules? Bipartisanship has actually broken out on health care, with efforts brewing to shore up the individual insurance market. On Russia, Trump is reluctantly set to sign a sanctions bill his secretary of state says he and the president are not “very happy about,” forced by overwhelming numbers in Congress. Of course, Sen. Jeff Flake has a whole book out now about standing apart from Trump. And few on Capitol Hill are following the White House’s lead anymore when it comes to that supposed “witch hunt.” The cause is a volatile combination of vanishing credibility and eroding capability. If you can’t believe what the president says, and can’t trust him to do what he says must get done, leadership is hard to establish. Trump’s Washington can’t run on Trumpism alone.


    “He certainly didn’t dictate, but you know, he, like I said, he weighed in, offered suggestion, like any father would do.” —Sarah Sanders on President Trump’s involvement in crafting Donald Trump Jr.’s first statement on the meeting he had with a Russian lawyer in 2016.


    Trump makes an “announcement” at 11:30 a.m. ET with Republican Sens. Tom Cotton and David Perdue….

    Read the full article from the Source…

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