Team Trump and the Russians

READ enough stories about alleged collusion between Donald Trump, his inner circle and Russia, and it is easy to feel lost in a hall of mirrors. That will be the feeling for many digesting the latest astonishing charge set out in the Washington Post on the evening of May 26th: that in December 2016 Jared…

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Donald Trump fails to endorse NATO’s mutual defence pledge

IT WOULD have been so easy, but Donald Trump could not bring himself to do it. On May 25th, in a 900-word speech made in front of a monument to 9/11 at NATO’s new headquarters in Brussels, the president failed to mention the alliance’s Article 5—the bedrock commitment to regard an attack on one member…

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An appeals court deals another blow to Donald Trump’s travel ban

THE president’s plan to ban travel from six Muslim-majority countries, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals said on May 25th, “drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination”. By a 10-3 vote, the appeals court based in Richmond rebuffed Donald Trump’s attempt to have his second try at a travel ban reinstated after it was blocked…

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Greg Gianforte is charged with assaulting a journalist

WHILE historical comparisons are dicey, it is safe to assume that being charged with assaulting a journalist, hours before election day, might once have been disadvantageous to a candidate’s chances in a House congressional race. Whether or not that turns out to be the case for Greg Gianforte, the Republican candidate for Montana’s special election…

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The parable of Italians in the South

A house with a story THE cellar is flooded and Chris Ranalli worries about snakes. From the safety of the back door, he points out the sturdy walls—two feet thick, as if to withstand Mediterranean earthquakes—and the elegantly vaulted ceilings. “They lived in the top two storeys and made wine in the basement,” explains Mr…

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Before Republicans replace Obamacare, the White House is killing it

WHETHER or not their bid to reform health care succeeds, Republicans think Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act will founder. For years, critics of the law have said that its health-insurance markets will enter a “death spiral” in which rising premiums drive out healthy buyers, forcing premiums higher still. “Obamacare is absolutely dead” President Donald Trump…

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Congressional hearings on election meddling grind on

John Brennan, optimist “IT SHOULD be clear to everyone that Russia brazenly interfered in our 2016 presidential election process.” So declared John Brennan, former director of the CIA, at a hearing of the House Intelligence Committee on May 23rd, adding that he had seen intelligence of “contacts and interactions between Russian officials and US persons…

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The White House’s budget goes from unrealistic to innumerate

THE Budget Act of 1921 requires the president to propose a budget, but Congress holds the power of the purse. Since Mick Mulvaney, the budget director, sketched out the Trump administration’s proposal in February, it has been clear that lawmakers would end up rewriting it. Mr Mulvaney wants immediate deep cuts across government that are…

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Schemes to topple the president quickly would hurt the country

AMERICA has elected a man of frightening impatience as president. That is no reason for Donald Trump’s opponents to copy him. Four months into the Trump presidency his sternest critics seem ready to tear the country apart, just to see him gone. Democrats and activists on the left, including members of Congress, are already calling…

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Donald Trump meets Pope Francis

WHEN Donald Trump laid into the bishop of Rome during his electoral campaign, some in America—where Catholics represent around a quarter of all voters—wondered whether it would cost him the presidency. The pope had chided Mr Trump for his plan to build a wall on the border with Mexico—it was “not Christian”, the pontiff said—and…

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