WORLD NEWS AS REPORTED

Army Special Operators Participate in Vigilant Guard Exercise

(USA) DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 19:36
Members of an Army Special Forces team conducted a search and rescue mission at Magens Bay, St. Thomas, during Vigilant Guard 17-03, a large-scale disaster response training exercise in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Russian boxers set to compete at AIBA European Championship in Ukraine

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 19:30
The European Championship will be held between June 14 and 26

Markus Ederer of German Foreign Ministry nominated new EU ambassador to Russia

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 19:14
Ederer is currently serving as State Secretary of the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany

Russia - Islamic World group working on how to stop terrorism ideas — diplomat

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 19:12
The group has organized meetings with Islamic theologians to try to find ideological alternatives to extremist ideas

US pauses unstoppable Russia at 2017 IIHF World Championship with 5-3 victory

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 18:43
The quarterfinal matches of the 2017 IIHF World Championship are scheduled to be held in Cologne and Paris on May 18

Human rights chief concerned over scale of illegal migration in Russia

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 18:26
Experts say that there are currently eight to ten million illegal migrants in Russia

Russia’s Mail.ru Group may lose 25 mln Ukrainian users because of Kiev sanctions

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 18:04
Earlier on Tuesday, Kiev banned Russian VKontakte and Odnoklassniki social networks, as well as Mail.ru and Yandex companies

Moscow slams Ukraine’s ban on Russian military valor symbol as anti-democratic move

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 17:46
It is interesting to see how Ukraine will celebrate Victory Day next year, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said

Kiev’s sanctions are aimed against Ukrainians themselves — Yandex

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 17:21
The company says the sanctions will not have an impact on its business

Ukrainian politician blasts social networks ban by Kiev as being on par with North Korea

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 17:11
According to the politician, such measures are not aimed at protecting national security, but to restrict the rights of the Ukrainian people

More than 50 Baltic Fleet warships conduct maritime drills in Russia's west

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 17:11
The fleet’s representative noted that ships will have more exercises in summer

Russia to create its own LNG production technology by 2020-2022

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 17:03
The Energy Ministry expects progress on establishing production facilities of foreign engineering companies in Russia this year

Gazprom builds 745 km of Power of Siberia gas pipeline as of May 16

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 16:52
The Power of Siberia pipeline’s total length will be 3,000 km

Russian scientists learn how to ‘squeeze’ more disease-fighting nutrients from grapes

TASS [Russian State News] - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 16:47
The scientists have succeeded in boosting the synthesis of the substance which has a beneficial effect on human health 3-8 fold in the grape cell culture

Australians sizzle over vegan sausage offer

BBC WORLD NEWS - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 12:20
Mother's Day barbecue outside DIY store shakes Australian meat-lovers.

Readout of President Donald J. Trump’s Meeting with Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 05:54

President Donald J. Trump welcomed Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates to the White House today to discuss steps to deepen our strategic partnership and promote stability and prosperity throughout the Middle East.  The two leaders discussed bilateral defense cooperation, counterterrorism, resolving the conflicts in Yemen and Syria, and the threat to regional stability posed by Iran.  They also explored ways to increase economic cooperation.  The United States and United Arab Emirates have a deep and wide-ranging relationship that has advanced both countries’ interests for years.  The President and the Crown Prince committed to continuing that positive cooperation.

President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Doug Manchester as Ambassador to the Bahamas

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Tue, 05/16/2017 - 00:24

President Donald J. Trump today announced his intent to nominate Doug Manchester as Ambassador to the Bahamas.

If confirmed, “Papa” Doug Manchester of California will serve as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Commonwealth of the Bahamas.  Mr. Manchester is a leading industrialist with accomplishments on a national and international scale in telecommunications, radio broadcast, medical instrumentation, publishing, and real estate development.  Since 1970, he has been Chairman of Manchester Financial Group, which has multiple divisions including Manchester Grand Resorts and M Commercial Properties.  He leads the Manchester Charitable Foundation and currently serves on the Board of Trustees of The Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute.  Mr. Manchester earned a B.S. from San Diego State University.

Press Daily Briefing by Press Secretary Sean Spicer -- #48

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 23:23

PRESS BRIEFING
BY PRESS SECRETARY SEAN SPICER
AND ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT FOR HOMELAND SECURITY AND COUNTERTERRORISM TOM BOSSERT
 
James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

2:19 P.M. EDT
 
 MR. SPICER:  Good afternoon.  Before we get started, I want to bring Homeland Security Tom Bossert back up here to discuss the administration’s response to the ransomware hacking.  And then I'll go on with the events of today and answer your questions.
 
Without further ado, Tom.
 
MR. BOSSERT:  Thanks, Sean.  Thank you.  Good afternoon.  I'm Tom Bossert, the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism.  And if I could, I'd like to start today by acknowledging the fallen police officers that the President and Vice President acknowledged today.  They are the frontlines of our homeland security.  And the event today was an honor for me to attend.
 
On cybersecurity, as the President’s Homeland Security Advisor, part of my responsibilities is to coordinate U.S. government cybersecurity efforts.  I want to give you an update today on the ransomware attack that's been known as WannaCry or WannaCrypt. 
 
We continue closely monitoring the situation around the clock at the highest levels of government.  We're bringing all the capabilities of the U.S. government to bear on this issue, and are working side-by-side with our partners in the private sector and our international partners.  I spoke moments ago with my counterpart in Great Britain and learned an update from them that they have a feeling of control over this ransomware event and that as their affected computers seemed to have been tied to this is a fact that there healthcare system is so large in network.
 
They are painfully aware, though, of the fact that this is a global attack, as are we.  As of this morning, it has reached approximately 150 countries and infected more than 300,000 machines.  The good news is the infection rates have slowed over the weekend.  We had been concerned about that when last we talked.
 
The ransomware has disrupted telecommunications companies, hospitals, and other organizations.  The UK National Health Care Service announced 48 of its organizations were affected, and that resulted in inaccessible computers and telephone service, but an extremely minimal effect on disruption to patient care.  That was something quite evident in my conversation.
 
Computers at the Spanish telecommunications company, Telefonica, were compromised, and we had a small number of affected parties in the U.S., including FedEx.
 
Secretary Kelly at the Department of Homeland Security continues to lead operations and public/private coordination.  His team is issuing twice daily situation reports, is holding multiple calls per day among experts in operational centers managing our response.  As of today, no federal systems are affected. 
 
Over all, the U.S. infection rate has been lower than many parts of the world, but we may still see a significant impact on additional networks as these malware attacks morph and change. 
 
Despite appearing to be criminal activity intended to raise money, it appears that less than $70,000 has been paid in ransoms, and we are not aware of payments that led to any data recovery. 
 
The Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center is also keeping us informed of the classified insights considering the investigation into the attacks. 
 
And let me talk about now briefly the way ahead.  It's important for our business and individuals to know that three variance of this ransomeware are reported to have emerged, using similar techniques.  We talked last I was here about variance in this malware.  If you follow the mitigation advice published by DHS, the FBI and Microsoft, and have patched your systems, you are protected against all these variance.
 
It's also important to know that pirated, stolen or otherwise unlicensed versions of affected software often will not receive patches.  So it's important to not use that unlicensed software.  If you do you’ll be subject to extraordinarily susceptible infection. 
 
While it would be satisfying to hold accountable those responsible for the attack, something that we are working on quite seriously, the worm is in the wild, so to speak, at this point, and patching is the most important message, as a result.  Our business and government have responded with upgrades and patches, defensive mitigations, and this has dramatically reduced the vulnerable population over the last three days.  But this needs to continue to be our focus.
 
I would finish by repeating advice that all organizations be vigilant in updating their software and that the only computers that can be compromised by the WannaCry or WannaCrypt virus are ones that do not have the latest security patches available from Microsoft. 
 
Q    So this is one episode of malware or ransomware.  Do you know from the documents and the cyber hacking tools that were stolen from NSA if there are potentially more out there?
 
MR. BOSSERT:  So there’s a little bit of a double question there.  Part of that has to do with the underlying vulnerability exploit here used.  I think if I could, I'd rather, instead of directly answering that, and can't speak to how we do or don't do our business as a government in that regard, I'd like to instead point out that this was a vulnerability exploit as one part of a much larger tool that was put together by the culpable parties and not by the U.S. government. 
 
So this was not a tool developed by the NSA to hold ransom data.  This was a tool developed by culpable parties, potentially criminals of foreign nation states, that was put together in such a way so to deliver it with phishing emails, put it into embedded documents, and cause an infection in encryption and locking.  So the problem -- and I think I said this morning -- of the underlying vulnerability is something that is a little bit less of a direct point for me.
 
Q    I guess a shorter way to put it would be is there more out there that you're worried about that would lead to more attacks in the future?
 
MR. BOSSERT:  I actually think that the United States, more than probably any other country, is extremely careful with their processes about how they handle any vulnerabilities that they’re aware of.  That's something that we do when we know of the vulnerability, not when we know we lost a vulnerability.  I think that's a key distinction between us and other countries -- and other adversaries that don't provide any such consideration to their people, customers, or industry.
 
Q    You mentioned your British counterparts are feeling a sense of control.  Was there any time that you monitored this here in the States where you felt there was any lack of control or this could get out of hand here?  And if not, what is it about what was here that was protected that didn’t exist, for example, in Europe or other parts that have obviously taken a much bigger hit?
 
MR. BOSSERT:  No comparative lack of control, but my conversation today led me to believe that he felt quite comfortable -- my counterparts felt quite comfortable with where they stood today.  Not compared --
 
Q    Right.  But was there any time that you felt here that things could spiral out of control?
 
MR. BOSSERT:  Well, as we were gaining and gathering more information, it was important for us to determine the parameters of this.  Once we got our hands around the parameters of the malware, that's, of course, in the beginning moments that you're trying to get ahold of -- get the malware, analyze it, determine what’s happening.  In that time frame, you don't feel entirely in control, but you're searching for information.  Once we got it and realized what the situation was, we realized there were patches available and had been available since March.  And so, from that point, operation centers and communications become the key and they’re imperative to how we handle this response. 
 
And from the British perspective, I thought it was important to pass along from them two points -- one, that they thought it was an extremely small number of patients that might have been inconvenienced and not necessarily a disruption to their clinical care, as opposed to their administrative processes.  And two, that they felt that some of those reports might have been misstated or overblown given how they had gotten themselves into a position of patching.
 
So we'll have to do the analysis and investigation later as to why certain organizations, systems or sectors were more greatly affected than others.  So that's the point I'd like to elaborate.
 
Q    What is this bottom line to the average consumer?  And what are we going forward to make sure that it doesn’t get out in the open and affect --
 
MR. BOSSERT:  The bottom line for the consumer is patch your software, provide automated patch support if you can -- turn that automated on.  Make sure your IT service providers or IT folks within your organizations are patching your software.  That’s the bottom line.  And this particular malware and the three reported variance that we've seen since are all fixable with patch.  And that's something that you can get from Microsoft. 
 
So that's our bottom line.  And I don't want to encroach too much here of Mr. Spicer’s time, but if I could, with that, maybe I'll take one more question, Sean, okay?
 
Q    Who did it?
 
MR. BOSSERT:  We don't know.  That's the attribution that we're after right now.  It would be satisfying for me and for all of our viewers, I think, that if we find them and bring them to justice.  I think that's something that sometimes -- attribution can be difficult here.  I don’t want to say we have no clues.  As I stand here today I feel that the best and brightest are working on that.
 
So thank you very much.  I’ll let you know.  Thank you very much.
 
MR. SPICER:  Thank you, Tom. 
 
The President was pleased to see this morning the National Association of Homebuilders and Wells Fargo announce earlier that recent reports show that U.S. homebuilder confidence continues to rise, with numbers now at their strongest since the housing bust.  According to the NAHB’s chairman, “This report shows that builders’ optimism in the housing market is solidifying.” 
 
We’ve already seen tremendous response in the economy in the wake of the President’s pro-growth agenda.  The unemployment rate is at the lowest it’s been in a decade.  The manufacturing job openings are higher than they’ve ever been since 2006.  And by nearly every measure of economic confidence, the future of the American economy looks very bright.
 
The President is also glad to see businesses once again making significant investments in America from Intel to General Motors to Walmart to Apple, who specifically just announced earlier this month they will start a $1 billion fund to promote advanced manufacturing jobs here in the United States.
 
And it’s not just the President’s domestic economic policies that are generating optimism.  Just last week, we announced the first 10 agreements as part of the 100-day action plan initiated by President Trump during his meeting at
Mar-a-Lago with President Xi of China.  As I noted last week, these arrangements are major wins for American companies across many different industries and sectors -- from natural gas to beef exporters to financial services -- who will all now have access to the massive Chinese market.
 
And, of course, those negotiations continue between our representatives.  We look forward to sharing future developments with you as this process continues to unfold.
 
This morning, the President and the Vice President joined tens of thousands of officers and friends of law enforcement at the annual Peace Officers Memorial Service at the United States Capitol.  This is the 36th year that the Paternal Order of Police has honored the memory of the brave men and women who have lost their lives in the line of duty with this service and ceremony. 
 
In the Vice President’s opening remarks, he reiterated the Trump administration’s commitment to standing with the men and women of law enforcement “without apology.”  And the President said that these men and women are “the Thin Blue Line between civilization and chaos.  Words cannot express the depth of our gratitude.”  But he hopes that the actions of this administration will show our men and women in blue “how deeply we care and how strongly we feel about protecting those who protect us all.”
 
Earlier today, the President had the honor of meeting with officers and guests from police departments that recently suffered the loss of a police officer from Ulster County Sheriff’s Department, Phoenix Police Department, and the New State Troopers.  He also signed a proclamation in honor of Peace Officers Memorial Day and National Police Week. 
 
The President was honored to just welcome recently in the last few minutes the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi to the White House for an official visit.  His Highness if a strong partner of the United States and a leader in the Middle East on a number of important topics, including defense cooperation, regional security, and counterterrorism.  The United States and the UAE recently concluded a defense cooperation agreement that will allow us to work more closely together to address common security threats.
 
The President hopes to work together even more closely to resolve regional conflicts that raged across the region for too long.  This is the President and His Highness’s first meeting, and they have a lot to discuss, including bilateral trade and investment, as well as regional security issues.  At the conclusion of the meeting we will make sure to have a readout.
 
Later this afternoon, the Vice President will swear in Robert Lighthizer as the United States Trade Representative.  Ambassador Lighthizer has spent decades working at the highest levels of American trade policy, including as Deputy U.S. Trade Representative under President Reagan.  The President is glad to finally have an unquestionably qualified individual in place as we fight for better trade deals that will put the American worker first. 
 
And now that he’s officially on board, this afternoon Ambassador Lighthizer is getting straight to work.  Tomorrow, he will have a series of meetings on Capitol Hill, and on Thursday he will travel to Vietnam for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings. 
 
With Ambassador Lighthizer’s swearing-in after an historic show of obstructionism by the Senate Democrats, the President will now finally have his entire Cabinet in place, able to fully implement the President’s America First agenda across the entire spectrum of the federal government.
 
In other Cabinet news, Secretary Chao kicked off Infrastructure Week with an event with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce this morning, noting the newly reopened I-85 bridge in Atlanta as an example of what can be better accomplished with federal, state and local governments working together.  Secretary Chao will be traveling to Atlanta on Thursday for the ceremonial ribbon-cutting. 
 
Secretary Perry is in Texas today as part of VA Research Week to announce the Vets Project, a joint effort between the Veterans Administration and the Department of Energy to help data-map veterans’ health records and solve health-related issues for veterans.  This partnership, part of the Trump administration’s commitment to modernizing the systems we use to care for our nation’s heroes, brings together the VA’s unparalleled healthcare and genetic data from its Million Veteran program with the Department of Energy’s world-class technology to improve healthcare and quality of life for our veterans.
 
Secretary Shulkin of the VA will also be traveling this week to commemorate VA Research Week, speaking at the Brain Trust Pathways event in Boston on Wednesday.  This event brings together public and private experts in research, treatment, prosthetics, IT and other specialties to focus on new and innovative ways to support veterans coping with the effects of traumatic brain injury and head trauma. 
 
The State Department also had a few briefings today on the next step in addressing the Assad regime and the horrors it has committed on the Syrian people.  The Trump administration believes that Syria’s political future should be decided by Syrians in a free, credible and transparent process.  However, we also believe that in a free process it’s unimaginable that Syrians would choose to continue under the Assad leadership.
 
Syria will never be stable and secure as long as Assad is in power.  The Assad regime has sunk to a new level of depravity, and it has done so with seemingly unconditional support from Russia and Iran.  For these reasons, we continue to support the political transition process contained in U.N. security resolution 2254, and support the political process taking place under U.N. oversight in Geneva.
 
As we’ve said before, the United States remains open to working together with both Russia and Iran to find a solution that leads to a stable and united Syria.  But in order for us to work together to bring an end to the violence in Syria, Russia and Iran need to acknowledge the atrocities of the Assad regime and use their influence to stop them. 
 
As you can see, it’s going to be a busy week for the President, the Cabinet and the staff, leading up to the President’s first foreign trip that launches this Friday.  We take off for Saudi Arabia later on Friday, and I plan to have General McMaster here hopefully tomorrow to walk through the trip with further detail.
 
And with that, your questions. 
 
Q    Thank you, Sean.  Just in China, NSC Senior Director  say the U.S. is forming a working group and say the U.S. company have much to offer.  So what’s the prospective of the U.S. future collaboration in this --
 
MR. SPICER:  As I mentioned with respect to the 100-day plan, I think there’s a lot of areas that we are going to continue to work with China to develop a way forward.  I think the relationship that the President established with President Xi down in Mar-a-Lago is continuing to pay dividends for our country.  And whether it’s this policy, or trade, or market access, we’re going to continue to see all of those individuals from the President’s Cabinet that were down in Mar-a-Lago continue to work with their counterparts in China to find a path forward.
 
John.
 
Q    Sean, a couple of topics, but first of all, back to what you said about Syria.  Is the official policy of this administration now regime change in Syria?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think I’ve made it very clear what our policy is and continues to be.
 
Q    Over the weekend, a lot of complaints from Democrats about the Comey replacement process.  First of all, that Jeff Sessions is leading the search -- there are a lot of Democrats who think that because he recused himself from the Russia investigation he should not be in that position.  Secondly, some Democrats in the Senate are saying that before they will consider the President’s next nominee, they want a special prosecutor appointed to look into the Russia investigation.  Can you respond to both of those?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think this is a process that’s running completely as it should.  It’s being headed by the Deputy Attorney General and the Attorney General.  As we've noted in the past, the FBI director reports to the Deputy Attorney General.  They continue to move through a series of highly qualified candidates, and it’s -- obviously this is a huge priority for the President to make sure that we have someone that has the ability to administer the proper leadership to the FBI.
 
Q    And on the special prosecutor?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think that’s -- there’s, frankly, no need for a special prosecutor.  We’ve discussed this before.  You have two Senate committees that are looking into this.  The FBI is conducting their own review.  And I think if you even look at what Acting Director McCabe said last week, he made it very clear that they had the resources that they need and that the work continues.
 
But the bottom line is, again, I think part of it is there’s a difference between what we’ve talked about in that -- and it’s been made very clear that there’s been, with respect to the President himself, both Senator Schumer, Senator Feinstein, Senator Manchin and everyone else who have been briefed on this have been very clear that there was no collusion with respect to the President himself and no investigation there.
 
Blake.
 
Q    Thank you.  Let me pick up where Mr. Bossert left off about this -- about the ransomeware attack.  In the short term  -- a short-term question and a long-term question.  In the short term, is it the advice of the administration -- should somebody be -- who has their computer system infected not to pay the ransom?
 
MR. SPICER:  As I said, I think that what we have seen so far that is the most effective is that if people take the necessary proper steps in advance and use the patches that are available to ensure that it doesn’t happen.  So prevention is right now the key that we’re stressing.
 
Q    As it relates to the long term, at the end of the day this is extortion from likely hostile foreign actors.  Might the administration set some sort of guidelines or policies as it relates to U.S. individuals, U.S. companies?  Should they be approached as to what to do and maybe what not to do?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think we can -- our immediate goal right now is to make sure we’re protecting our both individual, commercial and government enterprises.  And that work has proved to be -- the prudent steps that were taken have proven to be fruitful.  And I think we’re going to continue that.  Right now, obviously, that’s the number-one priority.
 
Q    Do you know what -- he mentioned FedEx.  Do you know if that was a -- something specific happened to FedEx? 
 
MR. SPICER:  I don’t.  I can have Tom follow up. 
 
Jim.  Fred, I’m sorry.
 
Q    Thank you.  Yeah, I wanted to ask about the election integrity commission.  Is the primary goal of this going to be looking for recommending reforms of the federal laws, like the NDRA, or looking at (inaudible) or is it going to be more of an audit of the 2016 election?
 
MR. SPICER:  The executive order that the President signed, and the Vice President and Secretary of State Kobach are leading, is a bipartisan commission of state elections officials that are going to look at all aspects of election integrity, including voter fraud and proper registration, and allegations of voter suppression.  So I think they're looking at this holistically.
    
Q    Okay, and one more.  As far as North Korea goes, with the new South Korean government coming in, does the administration advise against their reaching out or (inaudible) that they had towards the North Korean regime?
 
MR. SPICER:  I'm sorry, say the --
 
Q    Oh, the new South Korean government -- is the administration advising against South Korea reaching out to North Korea after this weekend's missile test?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think the President looks forward to having a conversation with the new President and discussing the way forward, but I'm not going to get ahead of that discussion at this point. 
 
John.
 
Q    Thanks a lot, Sean.  On the search for the new FBI director, the President today said that it's "moving rapidly."  One name that was put forward over the course of the past 24 hours by the Senate Majority Leader is that of Merrick Garland.  Is that a name that the President would possibly consider in the move to name a new FBI director?
 
MR. SPICER:  The search for a new FBI director is being handled by the Department of Justice.  My expectation would be that once they've conducted that search, they'll present names for consideration to the President.  But they are the ones that are leading that effort.
 
Alexis. 
 
Q    Sean, can I follow up on the tape question from last week?  As you know, several Republicans have joined Democrats in seeking additional information from the White House, in writing, about the existence of any tapes, producing the tapes, and any further information about the potential taping of conversations.  Is the White House intending to cooperate with those requests and furnish that information as requested in writing?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think I made it clear last week that the President has nothing further on that.
 
Hunter.
 
Q    Wait, wait -- Sean, does that mean that the President will deny the request?
 
MR. SPICER:  I said -- I was very clear that the President would have nothing further on that last week.
 
Q    You're describing a situation in which the President would defy the legislative branch's request.  That's what you're saying.
 
MR. SPICER:  Alexis, I made it clear what the President's position is on that issue.
 
Hunter.
 
Q    Sean, people clearly still have concerns about Russia's role in the election, even though the President has essentially said there's nothing to it.  If there is nothing to hide, why not back a special prosecutor or independent commission just to settle it beyond any doubt?
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, again, it's not a question of -- it's at what point -- you have a House and Senate -- a House committee, a Senate committee, the FBI.  I don’t know why you need additional resources when you already have three entities.
 
Q    Well, we saw polling this weekend from NBC News and The Wall Street Journal --
 
MR. SPICER:  I understand that, but that's --
 
Q    -- 80 percent of people want this, and they don’t have confidence in Congress.
 
MR. SPICER:  With all due respect, I think the bottom line is you have three entities already looking into this matter.  I think the President's position has been very clear that there's two issues at hand.  One is the involvement of Russia potentially in -- with respect to an election, and then the President's involvement.  The FBI director and others have made it very clear that the President is not a subject of anything.  I think we have plenty of entities looking into that.
    
Trey.
 
Q    Sean, two questions for you.  On North Korea, is there a new sense of urgency for President Trump to act following the successful ballistic missile test over the weekend?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think there is no question that North Korea continues to threaten the United States and our allies, Japan, South Korea, and its neighbors, including both China and Russia.  I think we are calling on all of those folks in the region, particularly China and Russia, to do everything they can in terms of sanctions to help resolve the situation and bring stability to the Peninsula.
 
Q    On a quick domestic issue, what characteristics is President Trump looking for in an FBI director?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think obviously he wants someone with high integrity and the leadership skills to lead the entity.  But I have not specifically discussed the qualities with him. 
 
Richard.
 
Q    Thank you, Sean.  Two questions.  First one -- you told us over and over that, for NAFTA, we were waiting for Lighthizer -- Robert Lighthizer -- to be confirmed.  Now he's going to be sworn in.  Can you give us a better idea on the pace of the renegotiation of NAFTA now that we have a Trade Representative?
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, I think -- I'd have to check the calendar, but I think we've got an hour or two before he's actually sworn in, so you may want to give him a little bit of time.
 
Q    Can we say like --
 
MR. SPICER:  I don’t -- because until he's sworn in and assumes the position -- as I mentioned, he's going to immediately go up to Capitol Hill and then off to APEC in Vietnam.  So I'm sure we'll get around to it, but right now we still need to just go through the process of getting him sworn in.

Q    Last week -- quickly -- H.R. McMaster touched the topic.  But when the President will be with NATO allies, is he going to ask for a larger, bigger involvement in Afghanistan with troops on the ground, from the members?
 
MR. SPICER:  I'm not going to get into what he will say or will not say.  He'll have an opportunity to make his position very clear when he goes. 
 
Q    But more allies with soldiers on the ground?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think until -- he hasn’t even -- I don’t think -- we haven’t announced the Afghan strategy yet.  I think he's been very clear.  With respect to NATO, there's two issues.  One is, he'd like to see a greater effort placed on counterterrorism -- on combatting terrorism.  And two is to see more of the countries living up to their financial obligation that they agreed to.
 
Jim.
 
Q    Thank you, Sean.  A two-part question.  Is President Trump still committed to his 15-percent corporate tax rate?  He's also under pressure to keep some existing loopholes, such as eliminating the state income tax write-off for high state taxes, such as New York and California.  So is he committed to the 15-percent corporate tax rate?  And is he also full steam ahead on getting rid of the write-off for high-tax states?
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, Secretary Mnuchin and Director Cohn outlined the principles of his tax reform plan.  We continue to meet with stakeholders and members of Capitol Hill, but that conversation continues.  As I said at the outset, they're continuing to meet with individuals and those are part of those talks.  So his plan has been pretty clear from the beginning as far as what he wants to see and the framework in which it's being guided.
 
Q    Should low-tax states, though, subsidize higher-tax states?  Because places like Florida and Tennessee can't write off zero income taxes.
 
MR. SPICER:  Again, I'm not going to get head of that debate.  I think the principles that were outlines explain where the President's starting point is.  He's going to continue to have those discussions.
 
Eamon.
 
Q    Thanks, Sean.  On the search for the new FBI director, there have been some critics who have said in this particular political climate, whoever it is shouldn’t be a current or former politician.  We saw the list of people who have been interviewed, and we see that at least two of them are either current or former political figures.  Does the President have a feeling on whether or not having held elective office is a plus or a minus to hold that job?
 
MR. SPICER:  I don’t -- as I mentioned just a minute ago, I have not talked to him about the specific qualities he's looking forward to seeing.  But I know the Department of Justice continues to meet with these individuals, and so we'll have to see who they put forward.
 
Hallie.
 
Q    Thanks, Sean.  I have two questions for you, but I guess I'm just looking for some clarity on one of my colleague's questions here.  Why won't you just explain whether or not there are recordings of the President's conversation?
 
MR. SPICER:  The President has made it clear what his position is.
 
Q    That's not my question, so why won't you explain it?
 
MR. SPICER:  I understand that.  Because that's what the President's position is.
 
Q    So given that you refuse to confirm or deny any of this, how is any senior official supposed to feel comfortable having a conversation privately with the President?
 
MR. SPICER:  As I've said, Hallie, the President has made it clear what his position is.
 
Q    Even with these congressional lawmakers calling --
 
MR. SPICER:  Hallie, I've answered the question over and over again the same way.
 
Q    So the second question that I have for you then is on the arguments that are happening now in the 9th Circuit regarding the administration's travel ban.  One of the lines of questioning has been why the President has not disavowed his Muslim ban.  Will he do that?
 
MR. SPICER:  The President -- the executive order is fully lawful and will be upheld.  We fully believe that.  I think there's no question -- in fact, in one of the arguments in the previous cases, it was made clear that if anyone else had proposed this -- which just shows that it is legally sound.  People are misinterpreting it.  It was based on the law and the authority that the President rightfully has.  That's it, plain and simple. 
 
Q    My question is more, will he disavow the ban?  He's never said it --
 
MR. SPICER:  But the point is, is that the ban -- the measures that he took in that executive order are fully lawful and fully compliant, and make it clear that they seek to keep this country safe.  That's it.
 
Q    But given these questions come up, is there any indication the President will come out and say, yes, I disavow what I said about not allowing --
 
MR. SPICER:  Right now the President is focused on making sure that we make the appropriate arguments to get the ban in place.
 
Jon-Christopher.
 
Q    Thank you.  Considering in contrast to much of the expression during the French presidential election -- and that has been reported in France, especially -- there may be a lot more in common between President Trump and the new President, Emmanuel Macron of France.  Both former successful businessmen, both leaders of two very powerful countries, and two of the oldest allies going, basically.  Knowing this, would the President look forward to an opportunity to bring this young President closer to him?  Maybe meeting on the borders in -- at the G7?  Or maybe even inviting him here to the Maison Blanche in the next few months?
 
MR. SPICER:  If we have updates to share on additional -- individual leaders that he will be meeting with or meetings that he’ll have during his trip, we’ll be sure to give you an update on that.  But with respect to whether it’s the French President or any other head of government, the President looks forward to reasserting America’s role in the world and reestablishing some of the relationships.
 
And I think what you've seen so far -- whether it’s President Xi, or Prime Minister Abe, or other individuals -- as you can see by the week that we're having this week with the UAE, Turkey, Colombia, the President has made it very clear that he is going to do everything he can to reestablish relationships around the globe to help protect and advance our national interests.
 
Q    This is a special one.
 
MR. SPICER:  They're all.  Look --
 
Q    The oldest one.  Before we were a republic.
 
MR. SPICER:  Look -- right.  I understand.  There’s a lot of relationships that the President wants to strengthen for the good of this country.
 
John.
 
Q    Thank you, Sean.  Two brief questions.  First, there are reports -- and it may be confirmed by now -- that Mrs. Callista Gingrich will be the third woman to be U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See.  Official?
 
MR. SPICER:  Nothing is official until it’s announced.
 
Q    All right.  Has her name been vetted with the Vatican?
 
MR. SPICER:  I’m not going to -- that's a nice back-try, but I’m not going to -- (laughter.)  The answer is we have no personnel announcements.  
 
Q    The other question is not related to personnel but process with the FBI director.  Sarah spoke last week about an interim or an acting director of the FBI.  But with the interviews that you describe with the Department of Justice, can we expect that the name who is nominated for the position from that podium will be for permanent director and promptly submitted to the Senate?
 
MR. SPICER:  That's what I believe the President’s expectation is, yes.
 
Q    So no interim or acting?
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, you have acting now until someone is selected.  But the reason that the President’s team is going through this process is to select the next director.
 
Mara.
 
Q    I have -- I know this isn’t on the front burner right now, but I have actually the healthcare question.
 
MR. SPICER:  Okay.
 
Q    As it goes to the Senate, I’m wondering if the President’s negotiating strategy will change.  Does he want to get involved earlier?  Does he want to wait till the Senate kind of comes up with something?  Does he have anything in particular he wants them to keep from the House bill, get rid of from the House bill?  What’s his approach to this new chapter in the AHCA repeal process?
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, I think he feels very strong about the product that came out of the House, but he recognizes that the Senate has a duty to review it and to come up with ideas.  And if it could be made stronger, then great.  He’s continued to have conversations with members of the Senate.  His staff has had them as well.  Our legislative team and others are in communication with the Senate and we’ll continue to work with them.
 
But obviously they’re an independent body.  They have a right to go through their own process.  And if we can make the bill stronger in any particular way, that’s something that he’ll support.
 
Q    But he kind of came in at the end to kind of close the deal in the House.  Does he want to get involve more in the earlier stages of the process in the Senate, or just stick with the same negotiating strategy?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think that the team has been intricately involved in the process for quite some time.  And the President by several accounts was involved in a way that people hadn’t seen on Capitol Hill in a long, long time.
 
Q    Two things.  Just going back to the FBI director search, should we expect the President to begin interviewing personally the short short list before he leaves on the trip?
 
MR. SPICER:  I think that’s going to be driven by the Department of Justice.  And as soon as the Department of Justice has a recommendation for the President, then we’ll move on.  But at this time, I don’t have -- there’s no update on where that is.
 
Q    And I want to go back to -- you started off with Syria there.  The State Department today, of course, announced that the Syrian government has apparently been carrying out mass killings, burning thousands of prisoners.  I’m wondering if that crosses any kind of red line for the President and whether we should expect to see any kind of military response to that.
 
MR. SPICER:  Well, the President has always been clear that he’s not going to telegraph actions that he takes.  So that’s number one.  Number two is, I think what was important about what the State Department did today was to really enumerate the atrocities and the human rights violations that have been committed, and then further ask the world community to join with us to put pressure on Syria.
 
Q    Should we expect any direct action by the President --
 
MR. SPICER:  Again, I don’t think -- the President has made clear over and over again that he doesn’t telegraph his actions.  He’s going to be continuing to raise this issue, but when he’s ready to act he’ll let everyone know.
 
Jen.
 
Q    When it comes to vetting for the FBI director, after the experience with Michael Flynn, is the White House recommending doing anything differently with vetting the FBI director?  Are you already doing something different with that vetting?
 
MR. SPICER:  I’m not going to get into internal processes that exist, but obviously, we will -- you’d have the full resources of the FBI.  So I’m not going to get into how that process is handled.
 
Q    But are you going to change things up?
 
MR. SPICER:  I’m not going to get into the processes of how that’s being done.
 
Q    Sean?
 
MR. SPICER:  Yeah.
 
Q    Okay.  Two questions.  Wanted to follow up on Hallie’s question.  How has the President made it clear what his position is on the --
 
MR. SPICER:  I’ve answered that several times. 
 
Q    -- he made it clear.  All I’ve seen is the tweet.
 
MR. SPICER:  Right.  So that’s his position.  He said that he has nothing further to add. 
 
Q    Okay, but he had “tapes” in quotes.
 
MR. SPICER:  Kaitlan, I understand. 
 
Q    Okay, I just wanted you to -- clarification on it.
 
MR. SPICER:  There’s nothing further to add on that.
 
Q    My second question is, has he made any other inquiries about the Russia investigation to any other FBI officials?
 
MR. SPICER:  I don’t -- no, not that I’m -- I haven’t asked him about that but I’m not aware of anything.
 
Q    Okay, and one small follow-up.  Last week, you said you would get back to us on who requested the dinner between him and Comey.
 
MR. SPICER:  I still don’t -- I apologize, I will follow up on that today.  I think one of the things that’s important with respect to that -- just to clear something up -- I think that there was clearly bipartisan support that Jim Comey wasn’t up to the job.  The President has every right to fire a person because he believed Director Comey lacked the judgment and the decision-making skills and wasn’t up to the job.
 
The President’s reaction to this, to what -- his position has been completely misrepresented.  If you think about what he said to NBC News, he said, one, he didn’t care that this action would made matter worse for him, that it “might even lengthen out the investigation” because he would take action against Jim Comey in firing him.  He said that he wants the investigation to be done “absolutely properly,” and he said that it might even confuse some people that he would take this action knowing it would make matters worse for him.
 
The actions that he took he knew could be detrimental to himself, but none of those things mattered because the President had to do the right thing for the American people because he believes that Jim Comey was the wrong man for that position.  And I think that we’ve got to be very clear as to the reason that the President took the actions that he did.  He knew that what he did could be detrimental to himself, it could lengthen the investigation, but he knew it was the right thing for the country, the right thing for the FBI, and the right thing to get to the bottom of this.
 
Q    Why does he feel that Comey was the wrong person for the American people?
 
MR. SPICER:  Because he didn’t have the leadership skills necessary to lead this -- that institution.  And as he said in the statement at the time, the FBI is the crown jewel of law enforcement and they deserve a leader that can properly lead the institution.
 
Thank you guys very much.  I’ll see you tomorrow.
 
END 
2:53 P.M. EDT

Remarks by the Vice President and USTR Lighthizer at a Swearing-in Ceremony

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 22:48

REMARKS BY VICE PRESIDENT MIKE PENCE
AND UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE ROBERT LIGHTHIZER
AT A SWEARING-IN CEREMONY


The Indian Treaty Room

3:42 P.M. EDT

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Well, thank you, Senator.  And to all of our honored guests, good afternoon.

On behalf of the President of the United States, today it will be my great privilege to administer the oath of office to the 18th United States Trade Representative -- Robert Lighthizer.  (Applause.) 

And with this ceremony, President Donald Trump’s Cabinet is finally complete.  (Applause.) 

This is a special occasion.  It’s an honor to have with us a couple of the people very special to Bob Lighthizer and very special to the American people.  

First off, join me in welcoming his daughter Claire, his son Bob, Jr.  (Applause.)  And Bob, Jr. has his family with us, as well, including two of his dad’s grandchildren.  Penelope and Emmet are with us today.  Thank you so much for coming.  (Applause.) 

I am grateful to be joined by a friend and a colleague of so many years of our new U.S. Trade Representative, Senator Pat Roberts.  Thank you for your great leadership for the people of Kansas.  And I must tell you -- though I could tell by the response of this crowd just a few moments ago -- it is always an honor to be with Senator Bob Dole, one of the greatest Americans of the last century.  (Applause.) 

To hear Bob Lighthizer tell it, he learned everything that he knows from Bob Dole, serving with him for nearly a decade and a half in his Senate office.  And, Senator, it’s great to see you here, and we're honored by your presence.

President Donald Trump made a promise to the American people -- to fight for trade that puts America first.  And in choosing Robert Lighthizer as the U.S. Trade Representative, President Trump is keeping his promise to put America first.  (Applause.) 

Robert Lighthizer is uniquely qualified for this vital role because he’s frankly one of the leading experts on trade in all of America.

Bob’s distinguished career stretches back to the 1970s.  He worked as a lawyer in private practice before joining the Senate Committee on Finance, where he eventually rose to serve as chief counsel and staff director.  

As his reputation grew, President Ronald Reagan took notice.  In 1983, the President named him as the deputy U.S. trade representative.  In this capacity, he directly contributed to the renewed growth and prosperity of that era by negotiating more than two dozen bilateral trade agreements with nations all across the wider world.

For the past 30 years, Robert has represented the American businesses that are the beating heart of our economy as a trade litigator.  From manufacturing to agriculture, high-tech to financial services, Robert Lighthizer has distinguished himself as a tireless defender of America’s workers and America’s future, and now he’ll be doing it for the United States of America.  (Applause.) 

Robert, President Trump has now called on you to bring your extraordinary career and considerable talents to help us restore trade that is both free and fair -- benefits the American people above all else. 

Given your experience, your integrity, and your unwavering commitment to promoting America’s interests and protecting the economic prosperity of the American people, President Trump and I are confident that with you as the United States Trade Representative, we will continue to restore opportunity and prosperity for working Americans for generations to come.  And we will make America prosperous again.  (Applause.) 

So, on behalf of President Donald Trump, it is now my great privilege to administer to you the oath of office. 

(The oath is administered.)  (Applause.) 

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Ladies and gentlemen, the United States Trade Representative, Bob Lighthizer.  (Applause.) 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER:  Thank you so much, Mr. Vice President.  Thank you for doing me the honor of being here today.  It’s a great privilege to be in this administration, but to have the Vice President administer the oath is a special privilege.  And I would like to thank you for all you do, including particularly Thursday’s speech, which I thought was quite meaningful and very important. 

I would like to thank the Chairman of the Agriculture Committee, Senator Roberts, who is really important because he’s on the finance committee, however.  (Laughter.)  

And I’d like to thank Secretary Ross who was here, but mostly Senator Dole, who I -- when I had my hearing I said, I wouldn’t be here but for you.  And he said, no, no, no.  I said, people say that, but it’s in fact true this time.  (Laughter.)  

So you're a great American and a great mentor, and I’m blessed to have you as a friend.

My close friends, many of whom are here today, know that I read a lot of history and particularly presidential history.  And I believe that when all the dust of partisan vitriol has settled and serious people provide thoughtful analysis, the Trump administration will be ranked as one of the greatest in American history.  (Applause.) 

I am grateful to have been asked by the President to serve him on this very important issue of international trade.  I further believe that when my grandchildren, who are here today, talk to their grandchildren, they will say that President Trump permanently reversed the dangerous trajectory of American trade, put America first, made our farmers, ranchers, and workers richer, and the country safer.  

And I hope I can make some small contribution to that accomplishment.  Thank you all very much for being here.  I’m very grateful for your friendship.  (Applause.) 

END  
3:50 P.M. EDT

Debt to the Penny for 05/12/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,310,534,454,246.45
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,535,649,265,609.06
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,183,719,855.51

Remarks by the Vice President at the National Peace Officers" Memorial Service

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 20:02

U.S. Capitol
Washington, D.C. 

11:48 A.M. EDT

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Linda.  Mr. President, members of the Cabinet, members of Congress, honored guests and dignitaries, members of the law enforcement community, and the precious families of our fallen, it is National Police Week.  And on behalf of the President of the United States of America, today it is my privilege to welcome so many courageous men and women of law enforcement and especially the families of the fallen who are gathered here to mark the 36th National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service

To the leadership of the Fraternal Order of Police, to all those who stand on the Thin Blue Line and our law enforcement community -- police, sheriffs, detectives, deputies -- to all who have traveled from near and far to join in this hallowed, annual ceremony, we are honored by your presence.  And our Nation’s Capital is better for you being here.

Every day, each one of you walks out the door of your homes to protect and serve our families at the risk of not returning to yours.

And today, be assured you have the gratitude of your President, this entire administration and national government, and you have the gratitude of every American. 

As we acknowledge your service, we gather to honor the sacrifice and we trust to comfort the families of members of our law enforcement community who lost their lives in the line of duty. 

It’s said that no greater love has a man than this -- that he should lay down his life for his friends.  It’s also said that the Lord is close to the broken-hearted.  And that's our prayer for each of you today.

Sacrifice and memory is what brings us to this place every year.  

In 1962, President John F. Kennedy declared this day as Peace Officers’ Memorial Day, and this week around the country will be National Police Week.

And every year since 1982, members of our law enforcement community, their families and friends have gathered on this day in Washington, D.C. to mourn the fallen and remember their heroism through this memorial service.

The men and women we remember today came from all across America and served at every level of law enforcement.

We mourn with those who mourn.  We grieve with those who grieve, but we do not grieve like the rest who have no hope -- because heroes give us hope.

The tens of thousands who stand here today continue a tradition of honoring you heroes of our law enforcement communities across America in cities large and small. 

And I’m confident to say, as I saw last year on the streets of Howard County, Indiana, where thousands spontaneously poured forth to line the streets to pay a solemn tribute to the late Sheriff’s Deputy Carl Koontz, I’m confident today that millions of Americans stand with us in spirit and are breathing a silent prayer for your service and your families.

We honor the memory of our heroic fallen in tributes like this across this nation all this week.  But we also honor their sacrifice by ensuring that those who protect and serve have the support and the resources and the training that the men and women of law enforcement deserve.  (Applause.) 

As those in uniform across this country already know, President Trump’s highest priority is the safety and security of the American people.

This President knows in his heart that to make America safe again we must also restore the tradition of respect and honor that is owed to every member of the law enforcement community in America.  (Applause.)  

President Trump stands with the men and women of law enforcement without apology -- and he always will. 

On this National Police Week, may God himself comfort the families of the fallen here and those looking on, may God bless each of you as you protect and serve, and may God bless the United States of America.  (Applause.) 

END  
11:53 A.M. EDT

Remarks by President Trump at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers' Memorial Service

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 19:49

U.S. Capitol
Washington, D.C.

12:02 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, everybody.  (Applause.)  Wow, what a beautiful introduction.  Thank you, Chuck.  That was above and beyond.  That's the way I'm going to be with you, too.  And it's a great honor -- thank you very much -- it's a great honor to address America’s heroes on this most solemn occasion.

Words cannot express the depths of our gratitude, but I hope that our actions will show you how deeply we care and how strongly we feel about protecting those who protect us.  America stands strong with our men and women in blue.  Believe me, we stand strong together.

I want to recognize Jim Pasco, Linda Hennie, Chaplain Wiggins, and everyone at the Fraternal Order of Police for all that you do to protect the law enforcement of this country and all of our communities.  Thank you very much.  Thank you.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)  As long as I’m President, you will always find an open door to the White House.  And you’ve already found it, believe me.  

Mr. Vice President, Cabinet Secretaries, and members of Congress, we are gathered here today at the U.S. Capitol to pay tribute to those brave law enforcement officers who gave their lives in the line of duty.  On this Peace Officers’ Memorial Day, we thank God for having blessed so many of us with such incredible heroes -- and we pledge our solidarity with their families and loved ones.  And many of those great families and survivors are here with us today, and I'd love you to stand up.  Families and survivors -- what great, incredible people.  (Applause.)  And your loved ones are looking down on you right now, believe me, and they’re very proud.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Thank you.  Thank you very much for being here.  Whatever you need, we are here for you, and we are praying for you.

As I look out today at this amazing assembly of police, detectives, marshals and sheriffs, I want to make all of you remember and heed this promise:  I will always support the incredible men and women of law enforcement as much as you have always supported me.  And you did, big league.  (Applause.)  
 
Your presence here reminds us all of what is at stake on this sacred day of remembrance.  Each May, during Police Week, new names of fallen police officers are added to the National Law Enforcement Memorial.  This year, 394 brave souls join the over 20,000 men and women who gave up their lives in the line of duty to protect us.

The names of these heroes are not only carved into that wall, but carved into the hearts of the American people.  And by the way, the American people love you, more than you will ever know.  I can tell you that.  (Applause.)  

Though your loved ones left us much too soon, the memory of their courage will live on forever.  To see so many names together is to gain only a small glimpse of the debt America owes to those who protect our cities and police on our streets.

We are privileged this morning to be joined by families of the fallen, to whom we owe that ultimate loyalty.  So many people -- even back here.  Please know that you do not grieve alone.  Though we cannot fathom the depths of your loss, nor fully appreciate the bond that forms in the precinct and between partners on the beat, your sadness is left and felt by all of us.  Every drop of blood spilled from our heroes in blue is a wound inflicted upon the whole country.  And every heartache known by your families in law enforcement is a sorrow shared by the entire family of the American nation.

No one asked these selfless men and women to enlist in this righteous cause, or to enroll as foot soldiers in the eternal struggle against crime and violence.  They joined the cause because their hearts were big and full of amazing courage.  They joined because they cared so deeply for the innocent and helpless and forgotten.  They put on the uniform because they believed to the very core of their souls, that it was their mission in life to serve and to protect.

As the Bible tells us, there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.  The names and stories on that wall are each a testament to this pure and unselfish love.  And that’s what it is -- pure and unselfish love.  And it is our duty as a people and as a nation to prove worthy of their sacrifice.  And that begins with showing our police the appreciation they have earned a thousand times over.  (Applause.) 

Living in New York, I gained a deep appreciation and lasting admiration for law enforcement.  Thousands of people are living and enjoying life today in New York who otherwise would be gone because our great police fought to bring safety to our streets and our communities.  The entire world witnessed the heroism of New York’s finest when they gave their lives on 9/11 -- I was there -- and sacrificed so much in that brutal, horrible aftermath.

Now, as President, my highest duty is to keep America safe.  We will keep America safe.  (Applause.)  And included in safe means safe from crimes, safe from terrorism, and safe from all enemies, foreign and domestic.  At the center of that duty is the requirement to ensure that our law enforcement personnel are given the tools and resources they need to do their jobs and to come home to their families safely.  (Applause.) 

You are the Thin Blue Line between civilization and chaos.  You come from every community and all walks of life.  You are mothers and fathers and sons and daughters.  You rush into unknown danger, risking your lives for people you have never met, people you don’t know, performing your duty under the most difficult conditions -- and often without any thanks at all.

Because you do not hear nearly enough, I want you to know that patriotic Americans of all backgrounds truly support and love our police.  (Applause.)  

And a very sad thing is that many of today’s politicians don’t want to say that, don’t want to talk about that because it’s not politically correct or they think it might hurt them with the voters.  I will say it and I will talk about it proudly.  (Applause.)  I will make it the personal priority of my administration to ensure that our police are finally treated fairly, with honor and respect that they deserve.  (Applause.)  

To all Americans watching this event today, next time you see a cop on the beat, take a moment to say two wonderful words, which they so readily deserve:  Thank you.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  

As you all know much too well, we are living through an era in which our police have been subject to unfair defamation and vilification, and, even worse -- really, I mean, you see what's going on, you see what's going -- even worse, hostility and violence.  More officers were slain last year in ambushes than in any year in more than two decades, including -- and that's so incredible to even have to be speaking about this -- the beloved officers killed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in yet another murderous attack of law enforcement.  And we have some of those incredible families and survivors with us.  (Applause.)  Thank you. 

The attacks on our police are a stain on the very fabric of our society, and you are entitled to leadership at the highest level that will draw a bright line in the sand -- not a red line in the sand that isn’t gone over -- but a bright line in the sand.  And we will protect you.  That I can tell you.  And we will say, "Enough is enough."  (Applause.)  The attacks on our police must end, and they must end right now.  (Applause.)  

And just to show you, by the way, how much I love our police, I said, oh, I'm going to need a hat because it's so windy today.  (Laughter.)  I said, when I got out of here, there's no way I'm going to put on this hat.  So we'll leave off the hat.   And this is for you, Micah.  That's for our beautiful Micah down there.  (Applause.)   

We must also end the reckless words of incitement that give rise to danger and give rise to violence.  It is time to work with our cops, not against them, but to support them in making our streets safe; not to obstruct them -- which we're doing, we obstruct them.  

It is time for all Americans, from all parties and beliefs, to join together in a simple goal to ensure that every child in America has the right to grow up in safety, security and peace.  True social justice means a future where every child, in every neighborhood, can play outside without fear, can walk home safely from school, and can live out the beautiful dreams that fill their heart -- like you, Mica.  (Applause.)  

Freedom includes the right to be free -- and I mean totally free -- from crime and from violence.  MS-13 is going to be gone from our streets very soon, believe me.  (Applause.)  

When policing is reduced, it’s often the poorest and most vulnerable Americans who are the first to suffer.  We have all seen the tragic rise in violence and crimes in many of our disadvantaged communities.  We’ve seen the unbearable horror of the shortcomings in Baltimore and Chicago that have cut short so many lives and so many beautiful, beautiful dreams.

We cannot stand for such violence.  We cannot tolerate such pain.  We cannot, under any circumstances, any longer turn a blind eye to this suffering that's going on any longer.  And we won't.  (Applause.)  

It's time for a grateful nation to join hands with our police and with our sheriffs to build the bridges of cooperation and trust, and to make our streets safer for every man, woman and child in America.  And someday, many of the young children you are protecting will decide that they, too, want to be police officers, that they, too, want to be sheriffs, they want to be cops -- they want to be cops.   They want to protect people because they love people.  And that's what they're going to do, and they're going to do it well.  They're going to be great at it.   

As we seek this better and brighter future, we do so in the memory of these brave but gentle souls who were stolen from this world when they had so much left to share and to give not only to us but to their incredible families.

Among them were Patrolman Justin Martin and Sergeant Tony Beminio, who were murdered last November.  Patrolman Martin was on the beat for less than a year, and leaves a beautiful, loving mom and dad, Randy and Jayne.  And thank you, Randy and Jayne.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Sergeant Beminio was a veteran of 11 years, and leaves behind his wife Zoe, and his wonderful children, Cameron, Haley and Maddox.  

Ashley Guindon of the Prince William County Police fell in the line of duty on her very first day on the beat.  She swore the oath to protect and serve only a day prior to her death.  One day.  Officer Gwin-Don was dedicated to serving our nation 
-- she also served in the Marines.  And today, our thoughts are with her and her incredible mother, Sharon.  Thank you, Sharon.  Thank you.  Thank you, Sharon.  (Applause.)  Thank you.  

I also had the privilege to meet at the White House just a little while ago with representatives from the Phoenix Police Department, New Jersey State Troopers, and the Ulster County Sheriff’s Department, who are mourning the deaths of State Trooper Frankie Williams and Sergeant Kerry Winters.  

I had the chance to spend time with Officer Glasser’s beautiful family, his wife, Kristen, and his six-year-old son Micah -- who has my hat and he’s now with us.  Micah, stand up.  Kristen, please stand up.  Great people.  (Applause.)  

Kristen and Micah, I know your beloved husband and father is looking down on you right now from heaven, and he is so proud of you both.  And thank you very much.  Thank you.  

We also remember those incredible heroes who were so cruelly targeted for execution in Dallas, Texas -- rushing into a hail of gunfire, never to return.  Dallas Police Sergeant Michael Smith was a 27-year veteran of the Dallas Police.  He was decorated a law enforcement officer at the highest level, and even paid his own way to attend advanced training sessions.  He leaves behind his cherished wife, Heidi, and his loving daughters, Victoria and Caroline.  Thank you.  Thank you very much.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  

Last Friday, in Kirkersville, Ohio, a gunman shot and killed Steven Eric Disario.  He was the Chief of the Kirkersville Police Department.  He died responding to a hostage situation at a local nursing home.  Chief Disario leaves behind six children and his wife, who is expecting another child.  Our hearts break for the Chief’s family.  We love you all.  We love you all.  (Applause.)  Thank you.

To every child in America who has lost a mom or a dad in the line of duty, I want you to know your parents are American heroes -- American heroes.  They died keeping us safe.  They are the pride of our nation.  And we will hold them in our hearts always and forever.  (Applause.)  Their sacrifice will never, ever be forgotten.

To everyone in the audience here today, I want you to know that my administration is determined -- totally determined -- to restore law and order and justice for all Americans, and we're going to do it quickly.  (Applause.)  

And that is why I’m so proud to be here today with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Homeland Security Director John Kelly, two men who are deeply committed to the rule of law, to the rank-and-file officers who enforce it, and to bringing the violent criminals, drug dealers, and gang members to justice.  And I mean bring them to justice quickly.  Thank you very much for being here.  (Applause.) 

All of you at this ceremony, the men and women who police the streets, or who send our loved ones to work with a really very, very, sometimes worried or heavy heart -- every single day you do that -- you've seen and you've heard things that no one else should ever have to see or hear.  You bear this burden on our behalf.  You have witnessed the evil of those who derive pleasure from inflicting pain on the innocent.  You've seen a lot of that more recently than maybe ever before.  It’s going to stop.  And you've watched great, great people suffer unthinkable harm and unthinkable death.  

America as a nation must always have the clarity to know the difference between good and evil, between right and wrong, and between those who uphold our laws and those who so easily break them.  We owe it to the fallen to act according to our best and highest ideals.  We owe it to their memory to put truth before politics, justice before agendas, and to put the safety and security of the American people above everything else.  (Applause.)  And we owe it to them to build a better future for all of America’s wonderful children.

May today be the beginning of a new era of respect and appreciation for law enforcement.  May this ceremony bring new hope to those in search of healing, harmony and peace.  May Americans learn from the example of the heroes we have lost, and always remember to trust each other, work with each other, and love each other.

And finally, and so importantly, may God bless you.  May God bless our police.  And may God bless the United States of America.  Thank you.  (Applause.) 

END                
12:27 P.M. EDT

President Donald J. Trump Proclaims May 15, 2017, as Peace Officers Memorial Day and May 14 through May 20, 2017, as Police Week

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 17:24

PEACE OFFICERS MEMORIAL DAY AND POLICE WEEK, 2017

- - - - - - -

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

During Peace Officers Memorial Day and Police Week, we honor the men and women of law enforcement who have been killed or disabled in the course of serving our communities.  Police officers are the thin blue line whose sacrifices protect and serve us every day, and we pledge to support them as they risk their lives to safeguard ours.

Last year, 118 officers died in the line of duty, and of those, 66 were victims of malicious attacks.  These attacks increased by nearly 40 percent from 2015.  This must end.  That is why one of my first actions was to direct the Department of Justice to develop a strategy to better prevent and prosecute crimes of violence against our Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers.

In addition, my Administration will continue to further the efforts of the Department of Justice to improve the lives of law enforcement officers and their families.  This includes supporting the Officer Safety and Wellness Group, which improves officer safety on the job, and accelerating the processing of benefits through the Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program, which provides vital resources to the families of fallen officers.

Our liberties depend on the rule of law, and that means supporting the incredible men and women of law enforcement.  By a joint resolution approved October 1, 1962, as amended (76 Stat. 676), and by Public Law 103-322, as amended (36 U.S.C. 136 and 137), the President has been authorized and requested to designate May 15 of each year as "Peace Officers Memorial Day" and the week in which it falls as "Police Week."

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 15, 2017, as Peace Officers Memorial Day and May 14 through May 20, 2017, as Police Week.  In humble appreciation of our hard-working law enforcement officers, Melania and I will light the White House in blue on May 15.  I call upon all Americans to observe Peace Officers Memorial Day and Police Week with appropriate ceremonies and activities.  I also call on the Governors of the States and Territories and officials of other areas subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, to direct that the flag be flown at half-staff on Peace Officers Memorial Day.  I further encourage all Americans to display the flag at half-staff from their homes and businesses on that day.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-first.

 

DONALD J. TRUMP

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled “Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty”

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 17:18

Statement from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney:

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled
“Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty”

This executive order directs Federal departments and agencies to take certain steps to ensure that the freedom of persons and organizations to engage in religious and political speech is respected and protected. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on costs and revenues to the Federal Government. The benefits of this executive order include reorienting executive branch policy towards vigorously protecting religious freedom. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on mandatory and discretionary obligations and outlays, as well as on revenues to the Federal Government, in the 5-fiscal year period beginning in fiscal year 2017. The agencies anticipated to be impacted by this executive order include the Departments of Treasury, Justice, Labor, and Health and Human Services.

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled “Addressing Trade Agreement Violations and Abuses”

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 17:05

Statement from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney:

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled
“Addressing Trade Agreement Violations and Abuses”

This executive order requires the Secretary of Commerce and the United States Trade Representative to conduct performance reviews of certain trade agreements. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on costs and revenues to the Federal Government. The benefits of this executive order include ensuring that trade agreements and preference programs enhance economic growth and strengthen the American manufacturing base. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on mandatory and discretionary obligations and outlays, as well as on revenues to the Federal Government, in the 5-fiscal year period beginning in fiscal year 2017. The agencies anticipated to be impacted by this executive order include the Department of Commerce, the Executive Office of the President, and those agencies consulted in the preparation of the performance reviews.

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled “Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy”

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 16:58

Statement from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney:

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled
“Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy”

This executive order instructs the Secretaries of the Interior and Commerce to take certain regulatory steps intended to encourage energy exploration and production. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on costs and revenues to the Federal Government. The benefits of this executive order include the potential for lower energy prices, leading to reinvigorated American manufacturing and job growth as well as improvements in military readiness. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on mandatory and discretionary obligations and outlays, as well as on revenues to the Federal Government, in the 5-fiscal year period beginning in fiscal year 2017. The agencies anticipated to be impacted by this executive order include the Departments of the Interior and Commerce.

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled “Establishment of the American Technology Council”

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 16:44

Statement from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney:

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled
“Establishment of the American Technology Council”

This executive order establishes the American Technology Council. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on costs and revenues to the Federal Government. The benefits of this executive order include the promotion of secure, efficient, and economical use of information technology across the Federal Government. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on mandatory and discretionary obligations and outlays, as well as on revenues to the Federal Government, in the 5-fiscal year period beginning in fiscal year 2017. The agencies anticipated to be impacted by this executive order include the Departments of Defense, Commerce, and Homeland Security, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the General Services Administration, and the Executive Office of the President.

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled “Establishment of Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy”

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 16:15

Statement from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney:

Budgetary Impact Analysis for Executive Order Entitled
“Establishment of Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy”

This executive order establishes the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on costs and revenues to the Federal Government. The benefits of this executive order include a renewed focus on developing and implementing policies that will assist American workers and domestic manufacturers. Implementing this executive order would have a de minimis impact on mandatory and discretionary obligations and outlays, as well as on revenues to the Federal Government, in the 5-fiscal year period beginning in fiscal year 2017. The agency anticipated to be impacted by this executive order is the Executive Office of the President.

Statement from President Donald J. Trump on Women’s Health Week

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Mon, 05/15/2017 - 00:02

As we celebrate Women’s Health Week, beginning with Mother’s Day, we recognize the importance of providing women access to the best, evidence-based health information and care, and growing our medical knowledge through basic and applied research support.

Today, women are living longer, healthier lives than their mothers.  The number of women dying from heart disease and cancer – the top two killers of women in America – has been decreasing for decades.  Thanks to new breast cancer treatments, our health care professionals have saved lives and improved the quality of life for millions of women.  We must continue to foster an environment that rewards these needed advances in research.

Ensuring affordable, accessible, and quality healthcare is critical to improving women’s health and ensuring that it fits their priorities at any stage of life.  In particular, women should have access to quality prenatal, maternal, and newborn care.  Under the current healthcare system, however, the lack of choice in health insurance and in healthcare providers, along with skyrocketing premium and out-of-pocket costs, are failing our citizens, our families, and, in particular, our women.  Studies show that women are often the primary healthcare decision-maker for their family and they deserve better options. 

I am committed to working with Congress to help mothers—and fathers—have paid family leave so that childcare is accessible and affordable, and to invest in the comprehensive care that women receive at community health centers.  Through these reforms, and my 2018 Presidential Budget, we will enable access to the critical healthcare services women need.

President Donald J. Trump Proclaims May 14, 2017, as Mother's Day

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Sun, 05/14/2017 - 14:40

Mother's Day, 2017 

- - - - - - -

By the President of the United StateS of America

A Proclamation

 

      Mother's Day is a special celebration in America.  It is an occasion to thank our mothers for the life and love they have given us and to emphasize our affection for them, affection they deserve every day of the year.  But it is also an opportunity to honor mothers across our Nation and celebrate motherhood as a pillar of our country's stability and success.

      Our deep appreciation for the strength and spirit of mothers and their resolve to do what is right for their children and families cannot be overstated.  They are often the first to lend a hand during hard times and the first to celebrate our proudest victories.  The boundless energy of our mothers inspires us to be people of action, people who strive relentlessly toward our goals.  Above all, they teach us the power and joy of unconditional love.

      Today and every day, we honor the incredible women whose influence on the world is beyond measure.  They brighten America's future by shaping the character of each new generation.  They lead us through our deepest lessons about perseverance and hard work, preparing us for life's responsibilities.  Whether by birth, adoption, or foster care, our Nation's mothers give selflessly of themselves for the well‑being of the lives and futures of others.  We humbly thank them for this greatest gift.

      In recognition of the contributions of mothers to American families and to our Nation, the Congress, by joint resolution approved May 8, 1914 (38 Stat. 770), has designated the second Sunday in May each year as Mother's Day and requested the President to call for its appropriate observance.

      NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 14, 2017, as Mother's Day.  I encourage all Americans to express their love and respect for their mothers or beloved mother figures, whether with us in person or in spirit, and to reflect on the importance of motherhood to the prosperity of our families, communities, and Nation.

      IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this

twelfth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-first.

 

                                  DONALD J. TRUMP

Statement from the Press Secretary on the North Korea Missile Test

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Sun, 05/14/2017 - 04:44

The President has been briefed on the latest missile test by North Korea.

With the missile impacting so close to Russian soil – in fact, closer to Russia than to Japan – the President cannot imagine that Russia is pleased.

North Korea has been a flagrant menace for far too long.  South Korea and Japan have been watching this situation closely with us.  The United States maintains our ironclad commitment to stand with our allies in the face of the serious threat posed by North Korea.  Let this latest provocation serve as a call for all nations to implement far stronger sanctions against North Korea.

President Donald J. Trump Proclaims Friday, May 19, 2017, as National Defense Transportation Day and May 14 through May 20, 2017, as National Transportation Week

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Sat, 05/13/2017 - 02:07

NATIONAL DEFENSE TRANSPORTATION DAY AND NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION WEEK, 2017

- - - - - - - 

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

During National Defense Transportation Day and National Transportation Week, we celebrate our Nation's land, air, and sea infrastructure systems.  These critical systems connect Americans to one another, provide vital national security capabilities, and serve as a cornerstone of our economy.  We also recognize the transportation professionals who are dedicated to keeping our Nation's transportation networks secure, efficient, and reliable.

Quality infrastructure provides Americans with the freedom they need and deserve to move themselves and their families, and the vast array of products they want to buy and sell.  But in too many cases, our roads, waterways, bridges, airports, and mass transit systems have fallen into disrepair.  That is why my Administration is committed to rebuilding a world-class transportation infrastructure that works for all Americans. 

Revitalizing our infrastructure is all the more important because American transportation enhancements have played and will continue to play a critical role in our national defense.  During World War II, our ability to refuel ships at sea was, in the words of Admiral Chester Nimitz, the "Navy's secret weapon."  Today, our military logistics system is essential to the defense of our homeland and our ability to project power around the world. 

To remain effective, the transportation industry must constantly innovate.  That is why, in addition to rebuilding our current infrastructure, my Administration is removing regulatory hurdles that have, for too long, impeded necessary infrastructure improvements.  This will allow creative companies to transform how we use our roads, waterways, rails, and the skies, making them both safer for travelers and more effective for our national security.  

To recognize the men and women who work in the transportation industry and who contribute to our Nation's well being and defense, the Congress, by joint resolution approved May 16, 1957, as amended (36 U.S.C. 120), has designated the third Friday in May of each year as "National Defense Transportation Day," and, by joint resolution approved May 14, 1962, as amended (36 U.S.C. 133), has declared that the week during which that Friday falls be designated as "National Transportation Week." 

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Friday, May 19, 2017, as National Defense Transportation Day and May 14 through May 20, 2017, as National Transportation Week.  I encourage all Americans to celebrate these observances with appropriate ceremonies and activities to learn more about how our transportation system contributes to the security of our citizens and the prosperity of our Nation.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twelfth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-first.

DONALD J. TRUMP

 

President Donald J. Trump Proclaims May 14, 2017, as Mother's Day

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Sat, 05/13/2017 - 01:35

MOTHER'S DAY, 2017

- - - - - - - 

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION


Mother's Day is a special celebration in America.  It is an occasion to thank our mothers for the life and love they have given us and to emphasize our affection for them, affection they deserve every day of the year.  But it is also an opportunity to honor mothers across our Nation and celebrate motherhood as a pillar of our country's stability and success.

Our deep appreciation for the strength and spirit of mothers and their resolve to do what is right for their children and families cannot be overstated.  They are often the first to lend a hand during hard times and the first to celebrate our proudest victories.  The boundless energy of our mothers inspires us to be people of action, people who strive relentlessly toward our goals.  Above all, they teach us the power and joy of unconditional love.

Today and every day, we honor the incredible women whose influence on the world is beyond measure.  They brighten America's future by shaping the character of each new generation.  They lead us through our deepest lessons about perseverance and hard work, preparing us for life's responsibilities.  Whether by birth, adoption, or foster care, our Nation's mothers give selflessly of themselves for the well being of the lives and futures of others.  We humbly thank them for this greatest gift.

In recognition of the contributions of mothers to American families and to our Nation, the Congress, by joint resolution approved May 8, 1914 (38 Stat. 770), has designated the second Sunday in May each year as Mother's Day and requested the President to call for its appropriate observance.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 14, 2017, as Mother's Day.  I encourage all Americans to express their love and respect for their mothers or beloved mother figures, whether with us in person or in spirit, and to reflect on the importance of motherhood to the prosperity of our families, communities, and Nation.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twelfth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-first.

DONALD J. TRUMP

President Donald J. Trump Announces Key Additions to his Administration

THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS OFFICE - Sat, 05/13/2017 - 00:12

President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Personnel to Key Administration Posts

President Donald J. Trump today announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key positions in his Administration:

Susan Parker Bodine of Maryland to be an Assistant Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. Ms. Bodine is Chief Counsel for the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, a position she has held since January 2015. Ms. Bodine’s nearly 29 years of environmental law experience includes both government service and private practice. Ms. Bodine served in the George W. Bush administration as the assistant administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. Prior to that, Ms. Bodine was staff director and counsel for the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.  She also was an associate at Covington & Burling and a partner at Barnes & Thornburg. Ms. Bodine’s undergraduate degree is from Princeton University and her law degree is from the University of Pennsylvania School of Law.

Brian D. Quintenz of Ohio to be a Commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission for the remainder of a five-year term expiring April 13, 2020. Mr. Quintenz was the Founder, Managing Principal, and Chief Investment Officer of Saeculum Capital Management LLC from November 2013 to November 2016.  Before holding that position, Mr. Quintenz was a consultant with Rose International from June 2013 until November 2013.  Prior to this, he worked at Hill-Townsend Capital LLC from 2009 to 2012, first as an Analyst and then as the Senior Associate. Mr. Quintenz served in the office of U.S. Representative Deborah Pryce from 2001 to 2007, first as a Staff Assistant, then a Legislative Assistant, and finally Senior Policy Advisor. Mr. Quintenz received a B.S. from Duke University and an M.B.A. from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.

James J. Sullivan, Jr. of Pennsylvania to be a Member of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Mr. Sullivan has 37 years of experience representing employers throughout the United States in matters involving labor, employment, and occupational safety and health law. He has been a partner at Pepper, Klett Rooney and, most recently, Buchanan Ingersoll and Rooney. From 2014 to 2017, Mr. Sullivan served as the management co-chair of the Occupational Safety and Health Law Committee of the American Bar Association’s Labor Law Section. He received a BA from The Pennsylvania State University and a JD from The Georgetown University Law Center.

Brooks D. Tucker of Maryland to be an Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Congressional and Legislative Affairs. Mr. Tucker currently serves as a Senior Adviser to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. He previously served as a policy adviser on the Presidential Transition Team and as Senior Policy Adviser, National Security, and Veterans' Affairs for Senator Richard Burr. Prior to his government service, Mr. Tucker was an investment adviser with Deutsche Bank and Merrill Lynch. He is a retired Lieutenant Colonel and infantry officer in the United States Marine Corps. Mr. Tucker received his Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature from the University of Maryland.

___

 

President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Appoint William Ellison Grayson to the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust

President Donald J. Trump today announced his intent to appoint William Ellison Grayson of California to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust (S.F. Bay Area Rep.).

Debt to the Penny for 05/11/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Fri, 05/12/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,310,969,938,720.78
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,535,257,353,530.29
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,227,292,251.07

Saudi authorities say no romance in the staff room

BBC WORLD NEWS - Fri, 05/12/2017 - 15:59
One husband's lavish attempt to placate an angry wife gets a stern response when he stages it in her staffroom.

Debt to the Penny for 05/10/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Thu, 05/11/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,312,904,082,096.46
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,533,077,567,411.53
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,845,981,649,507.99

Debt to the Penny for 05/09/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Wed, 05/10/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,299,435,294,544.99
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,546,589,131,294.25
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,024,425,839.24

Debt to the Penny for 05/08/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Tue, 05/09/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,305,061,877,082.93
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,541,005,323,739.80
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,067,200,822.73

Debt to the Penny for 05/05/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Mon, 05/08/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,311,376,945,689.99
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,534,818,575,636.20
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,195,521,326.19

Debt to the Penny for 05/04/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,311,633,308,614.24
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,534,604,982,928.35
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,238,291,542.59

Debt to the Penny for 05/03/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Thu, 05/04/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,318,594,693,410.98
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,527,408,618,124.73
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,003,311,535.71

Debt to the Penny for 05/02/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Wed, 05/03/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,305,283,387,282.09
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,540,761,921,910.10
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,045,309,192.19

Debt to the Penny for 05/01/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Tue, 05/02/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,323,288,296,038.26
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,522,799,009,459.94
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,087,305,498.20

Syria war: Many dead in IS attack on displaced people's camp

BBC WORLD NEWS - Tue, 05/02/2017 - 19:22
Many civilians are among more than 30 people killed in the incident near the Iraqi border.

Debt to the Penny for 04/28/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Mon, 05/01/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,293,344,777,463.61
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,552,784,531,172.11
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,129,308,635.72

Debt to the Penny for 04/27/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Fri, 04/28/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,297,979,002,617.38
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,548,512,743,228.56
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,491,745,845.94

Debt to the Penny for 04/26/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,302,205,452,495.14
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,543,838,983,988.51
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,044,436,483.65

Debt to the Penny for 04/25/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,294,148,093,981.59
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,551,937,885,014.07
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,085,978,995.66

Debt to the Penny for 04/24/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Tue, 04/25/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,304,727,434,255.00
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,541,400,085,862.48
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,127,520,117.48

Debt to the Penny for 04/21/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Mon, 04/24/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,316,448,297,578.41
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,529,803,844,010.85
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,252,141,589.26

Debt to the Penny for 04/20/2017

US TRESURY DEBT DAY-TO-DAY - Fri, 04/21/2017 - 22:15
Debt Held by the Public: 14,319,510,296,937.08
Intragovernmental Holdings: 5,526,783,380,500.72
Total Public Debt Outstanding: 19,846,293,677,437.80

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