President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un abruptly cut short their two-day summit Thursday amid contradictory accounts over why they were unable to reach an agreement to dismantle Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons. Talks collapsed unexpectedly amid a disagreement about the trade-off between sanctions relief and denuclearization steps, leaving questions about the next possible moves for each side to keep alive the diplomatic outreach.
President Trump, who aides said has been seething about news coverage of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis’s pointed resignation letter, abruptly announced Sunday that he was removing Mattis two months before his planned departure and installing Patrick Shanahan as acting defense secretary.
For two years, they tried to tutor and confine him. They taught him history, explained nuances and gamed out reverberations. They urged careful deliberation, counseled restraint and prepared talking points to try to sell mainstream actions to a restive conservative base hungry for disruption. But in the end, they failed.
President Trump’s disapproval rating has hit a high point of 60 percent, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll that also finds that clear majorities of Americans support the special counsel’s Russia investigation and say the president should not fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
President Trump refused to support the conclusion of U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election, saying at the end of his summit here Monday with Russian President Vladimir Putin that the autocrat privately gave him an “extremely strong and powerful” denial.
President Trump on Sunday explicitly advocated depriving undocumented immigrants of their due-process rights, arguing that people who cross the border into the United States illegally must immediately be deported without trial — and sowing more confusion among Republicans ahead of a planned immigration vote this week.
Current and former law enforcement officials said it would be very unusual for someone to get a full security clearance if there were an ongoing criminal investigation that had the potential to result in charges for that person. Mark Zaid, a lawyer who specializes in security clearance issues for government employees, said the decision — absent any new facts coming out — “is a very positive sign for Kushner that he is substantively in the clear with the special counsel’s office.”
The Trump administration on Monday ordered the expulsion of 60 Russian intelligence and diplomatic officers in New York and Washington and the closure of the Russian Consulate in Seattle, joining European allies in retaliation for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain.
Hope Hicks, the White House communications director and one of President Trump’s longest-serving and closest advisers, abruptly announced Wednesday that she plans to resign — sending a jolt through a West Wing besieged by internal tumult and the intensifying Russia investigation. Hicks has been interviewed by Mueller’s team, and on Tuesday she testified for nine hours before the House Intelligence Committee as part of its separate Russia investigation. She admitted to telling what one person familiar with her testimony characterized as white lies.
President Trump served notice Thursday that he may pull back federal relief workers from Puerto Rico, effectively threatening to abandon the U.S. territory amid a staggering humanitarian crisis in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Declaring the U.S. territory's electrical grid and infrastructure to have been a “disaster before hurricanes,” Trump wrote Thursday that it will be up to Congress how much federal money to appropriate to the island for its recovery efforts and that recovery workers will not stay “forever.”
In his first public speaking appearance since Trump took office, Bannon said of the news media, “If you think they are giving you your country back without a fight, you are sadly mistaken.”