News from the note…
A round up of the day’s news that might be of interest to you.
Consider this an OPEN THREAD, folks. Chat about any of the stories listed, share links to stories that caught your eye today, and generally have a good time discussing whatever you want.
From The Hill
Workers and family members of workers at a Texas steel pipe manufacturer have sent the White House more than 4,500 postcards urging President Trump to grant the company an exemption to his recent steel and aluminum tariffs.
Employees and their families at Borusan Mannesmann’s Baytown plant urged the Trump administration to support a tariff exemption for the Turkish company, which imports steel tubing and casing for its finished products from its parent company in Turkey.
“We ask for your help to obtain a short-term exemption for Section 232,” the postcards addressed to Trump read, “so we can unlock an investment in a $75 million dollar steel pipe mill, increase our U.S. production of [oil country tubular goods], and add 170 new jobs in Baytown which currently suffers from a 10% unemployment rate.”
After torching the White House with “Fire and Fury,” Michael Wolff is coming back for more:
Wolff tells me he has signed with the same publisher, Henry Holt, for a sequel — although he says it’s unclear what that means: His best sources (including Steve Bannon) have left the White House. And he’s lost the element of surprise that came with his soothing technique of acting as curious therapist to tortured, befuddled aides: “I’m just listening!” or “Tell me what it’s like!”
Democratic National Committee officials on Friday moved forward with a proposal to force the party’s presidential candidates to identify as Democrats, a move that drew immediate criticism from a top official in Bernie Sanders’ 2016 campaign.
The prospective rule change, approved by the DNC’s Rules and Bylaws Committee, would not necessarily impact Sanders, the independent Vermont senator who ran for president as a Democrat.
Sources familiar with the discussion said officials believed the rule change could help garner support for a separate bid to reduce the influence of superdelegates in the party’s presidential nomination process — a priority of Sanders’ supporters after the 2016 election. Both proposals are scheduled to be considered by the full DNC in August.
When John Kelly was Secretary of Homeland Security, he instructed an official to refrain from sending emails to staff about the department’s work to limit public scrutiny and leaks.
“As we discussed in NYC about the toxic atmosphere here in the D.C. cesspool, my folks are nervous about e-mails you send and ask that you no longer include them on any postings,” Kelly wrote in a June 8, 2017, email. Referring to the Freedom of Information Act, which allows journalists and the public to petition the federal government for emails and other official records, Kelly added: “FOIA is real and everyday here in the cesspool, and even federal court action on personal accounts is real.”
BuzzFeed News obtained Kelly’s email in response to a FOIA lawsuit.
From The Hill
Kim Kardashian West said Thursday that her husband, rapper Kanye West, gave President Trump “legitimacy.”
In an interview with CNN’s Van Jones, Kardashian West pushed back on critics who say that Trump “used” her fame to raise his profile. Following their meeting, Trump commuted the sentence of the woman she lobbied for, Alice Marie Johnson, a 63-year-old great-grandmother who was serving a life sentence on nonviolent drug and money laundering charges.
“I think Kanye’s already given him legitimacy in that way,” Kardashian West said. “I was working on this before. I don’t think I would be used. At the end of the day, he heard me out. We got the job done. What could he really use me for?”
It’s not true President Trump doesn’t read. It’s just exceptionally hard to get him to do it.
So the workarounds by savvy aides have become legendary in the West Wing. Many of them revolve around the briefing binder that goes to the White House residence each night, known internally as “The Book.”
- President Obama had a formal system for his homework book, which he would devour and send back to the staff with detailed notes in the margin, scrawled in his left-handed backhand.
- With President Trump, “The Book” is sometimes a notebook, sometimes a stack of papers with a big clip, and sometimes a stack of folders.
A Saturday Bonus Note From the “Must Read Article of the Week” File