Trump: ‘I’m a Nationalist and a Globalist’

By: Penny Starr

On the eve of the 100 days in office milestone, President Donald Trump claims he is both a nationalist and a globalist — despite campaign promises that his presidency would reject globalism and put America first.

“Hey, I’m a nationalist and a globalist,” Trump told the Wall Street Journal on Thursday. “I’m both.”

“And I’m the only one who makes the decision, believe me,” Trump said.

But Trump also said that he would terminate NAFTA “if we’re unable to make a deal, but hopefully we won’t have to do that.”

Trump’s remarks come as debate swirls around his presidential campaign promise to end the North America Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA in contrast to his recent assertion that he will “negotiate” a revision of the treaty that has guided U.S. trade policy with Mexico and Canada since 1994.

The Journal reported that Trump received almost back-to-back calls from Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Following those conversations Trump said, “They’re serious about it and I will negotiate rather than terminate.”

“Meanwhile, Sonny Perdue—the agriculture secretary who took office two days earlier—and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross met with Mr. Trump and showed him a map indicating the states where jobs would be lost if the pact collapsed, according to a person familiar with the matter,” the Journal reported, noting that many of the states on the map supported Trump in the 2016 presidential election.

“Those conversations, along with a flood of calls to the White House from business executives, helped steer Mr. Trump away from an idea that some of his own advisers feared was a rash and unnecessary threat to two trading partners who fully expected to renegotiate the agreement anyway,” the Journal reported.

“I expect the administration to closely consult with Congress before such major trade-policy decisions are made,” said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which oversees trade. “Withdrawing from NAFTA would have significant effects on the America economy.”

Following Trump’s election in November, Chriss Street penned a commentary for Breitbart News focused on how Trump’s “America First” message would strike a blow to “world socialism.”

“The election of Donald Trump now represents an existential threat to World Socialism across the planet,” Street wrote. “Socialists know that when President Reagan went rogue with his muscular capitalist policies, communism quickly imploded. Trump has already torn up the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which would have internationalized the lawcovering $28 trillion in trade and investment, about 40 percent of global GDP.

“Trump seems determined to destroy “Socialist Globalization” with the same capitalist tax cuts and regulatory relief that President Reagan used to destroy communism,” Street wrote.

In an interview with conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham last month, former presidential candidate and conservative commentator Pat Buchanan said abandoning his populist economic message would be “fatal” for Trump’s presidency.

New York Times Editor Won’t Use Term Female Genital Mutilation: ‘Culturally Loaded’ and Divides People

By: Penny Starr

The health and science editor at the New York Times told a reader in the newspaper’s “mailbag” feature that she decided not to use the term “female genital mutilation” because it is a “culturally loaded” term that widens the “gulf” between the West and the countries where the abuse is practiced.

“I never minced words in describing exactly what form of cutting was involved, and there are many gradations of severity, and the terrible damage it did, and stayed away from the euphemistic circumcision, but chose to use the less culturally loaded term, genital cutting,” Dugger wrote in response to a reader’s question about the semantics.

Dugger said she made the decision following a trip to Africa in the 1990s.

“There’s a gulf between the Western (and some African) advocates who campaign against the practice and the people who follow the rite, and I felt the language used widened that chasm,” Dugger said.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) said that some 200 million girls “alive today” are believed to have suffered the abuse, according to the FAQ portion of its website.

“The term ‘female genital mutilation’ is used by a wide range of women’s health and human rights organizations,” the UN website states. “It establishes a clear distinction from male circumcision. Use of the word “mutilation” also emphasizes the gravity of the act and reinforces that the practice is a violation of women’s and girls’ basic human rights.

“This expression gained support in the late 1970s, and since 1994, it has been used in several United Nations conference documents and has served as a policy and advocacy tool.”

The website text notes that “female genital cutting” was introduced in the late 1990s because of “concern that communities could find the term ‘mutilation,’ demeaning, or that it could imply that parents or practitioners perform this procedure maliciously.”

In recent days three arrests were made in Detroit where two physicians and one physician’s wife are charged with performing the abuse on minor girls.

The three suspects represent the first prosecution in the United States for the practice, which is common primarily in Muslim countries, particularly in Africa.

Paul Ryan Under Fire as Health Care Is Delayed Again

By: Ian Mason

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) leadership was called into question by new voices Thursday night as hopes expire of passing a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare before President Donald Trump’s first 100 days end on Saturday.

At a meeting on the Hill late Thursday night, the speaker and his House Republican leadership team decided to further delay the vote. With what appeared to be the acquiescence of conservatives in the Freedom Caucus and think-tanks like Club for Growth and FreedomWorks, who took much of the blame for the failure of the first attempt to pass the American Health Care Act (AHCA) in March, hopes were buoyed that passage was imminent. Instead, according to Politico, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told reporters as he left the meeting, “We are not voting on health care tomorrow. We’re still educating members.”

Syndicated radio host Laura Ingraham joined Fox News’s Hannity to vent her frustration with House Republicans. “This is another loss for Paul Ryan,” she told host Sean Hannity:

Paul Ryan was given this assignment to quarterback this legislation through the House. It wasn’t easy. It was going to be difficult. You have a lot of different factions, different people, different values, different personalities, but this is something you had to do. If you can’t get health care done, and done right, eight years after saying you were gonna do it … I don’t even know what to say about that. What does that say about your ability to lead at a critical time for our economy?

Ingraham then hinted she may be at the end of her patience with Speaker Ryan’s leadership. “I’m not gonna sugarcoat this. This is an embarrassment that this couldn’t get done,” she fumed. “You’ve got to get better communications. You have to know your caucus. Otherwise, just give it to someone who can do it. That’s all I can say”:

Hannity’s next guest, fellow Fox host Lou Dobbs, went even further in his condemnation of Ryan’s handling of healthcare legislation. “Laura, bless her heart, is trying to be nice to Paul Ryan,” he said. “I think the man is absolutely a disaster. He’s become nothing less than a caricature as House speaker. He’s inept, and the conference, if they don’t get rid of him, we’re going to watch this nonsense go on in perpetuity.”

Dobbs explained that, in his view, President Trump was doing all he could to move his political agenda along and that House GOP leadership had to be held responsible for the sluggish pace on legislative priorities. He then explicitly called for Speaker Ryan’s ouster and replacement by Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), chairman of the hard-line Freedom Caucus, or his predecessor in that position, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH):

Paul Ryan is not a conservative, never has been. His leadership team is a mixed bag of conservatives [and] moderates. The Freedom Caucus are traditional conservatives and great Americans, all of them. … You and I both know Mark [Meadows] and Jim Jordan … for the great Republicans they are. I think either one of those two would make such a terrific speaker.

Dobbs’s suggestion would not be the first time Paul Ryan and the Freedom Caucus found themselves in contention. Members of the Freedom Caucus themselves have called Ryan’s continuation as speaker of the House into question. The entire Freedom Caucus leadership also refused to endorse Ryan in his 2016 primary challenge from the right by businessman Paul Nehlen, although they did assent to Ryan’s speakership the previous year.

Ingraham and Dobbs’s comments add to a growing chorus of voices on the right of the Republican Party calling for Ryan to relinquish the speaker’s mace in the wake of the failure to see through the key GOP platform plank of repealing and replacing Obamacare.

Donald Trump Invites Conservative Media to White House for Exclusive Briefing

By: Charlie Spiering

President Donald Trump met with a group of conservative media reporters, columnists, and radio hosts to discuss his first 100 days as president, speaking about trade issues, foreign policy, and infrastructure spending.

The event was billed as a reception, as White House aides and members of the press office mingled with about 20-30 individuals from conservative media outlets to discuss Trump’s first 100 days and issues of importance.

But the event turned into an impromptu press conference after the president entered the room flanked by senior advisers Reince Priebus, Steve Bannon, and Jared Kushner. At one point economic advisor Gary Cohn peered in the door to view the event.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer was also present, as Trump held a discussion, which the White House press staff put on the record afterwards.

Conservative journalists asked Trump policy questions — particularly about trade; foreign affairs in North Korea, Iran, and Syria; and social policy.

Trump announced that he wanted to levy a 20 percent tax on Canadian soft lumber and suggested he wanted to address milk imports as well.

“It means we’re going to start doing lumber in our country, it’s going to mean that farmers are going to start selling milk in our country,” Trump said.

A senior administration trade official said that the issue was a “long simmering problem” with Canada, accusing them of charging lumber companies low subsidized rates.

“We love Canada, wonderful people, wonderful country, but they have been very good about taking advantage of us through NAFTA,” Trump said.

Trump said that he would explore allowing more logging on federal lands with the Department of Interior and the Environmental Protection Agency.

“We’re actually having some of those horrific fires because this stuff is sitting there, virgin stuff for so long, and it’s in very bad shape,” he said.

Trump seemed to think that Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad would not use chemical weapons again.

“Wait and see if he uses them again, OK?” he said, adding that the Obama administration was wrong about Syria getting rid of their chemical weapons.

“That turned out to be false,” he said. “They duped the Obama administration.”

Trump continued to highlight the problems with North Korea but remained elusive about what he was planning to do in the country.

He mused that North Korea’s dictator Kim Jong-Un was probably not as strong militarily as he appeared.

“I’m not so sure he’s so strong like he says he is; I’m not so sure at all,” he said.

Trump criticized modern presidents for not acting decisively on the North Korea threat.

“This should have been done by Obama and it should have been done by every president since, really, Clinton,” he said, referring to the former president’s memoirs.

He also discussed the ongoing crisis of persecuted Christians in the Middle East.

“Nobody’s been treated worse, it seems to me, than Christians in the Middle East,” he said, arguing that it was easier for Muslims to come into the United States as refugees than Christians, although it was far more dangerous there for Christians.

“We’re going to be helping the Christians big league,” he said.

Trump defended his plan to spend big on infrastructure, pointing out that the United States spent $6 trillion in the Middle East with little to show for it.

“I tell you what we got, it’s 20 times worse than it first was when we first started bombing the hell out of Iraq,” he said. “Iraq was thrown in the hornets nest and it’s a disaster, far worse than anybody understands.”

Trump said he wanted to spend $1 trillion on building new infrastructure and repairing existing infrastructure projects like bridges, roads, and airports.

When asked if he still believed DACA was illegal, Trump demurred, instead focusing on his efforts to crack down on MS-13 gang members.

“We’re getting rid of people, and people in towns, they’re cheering. These are rough people,” Trump said, saying that DHS Secretary Gen. John Kelly called MS-13 members as bad as Al-Qaeda. “We have people that came into this country that should have never ever in a million years been allowed into this country.”

Ted Cruz Calls for $14 Billion Seized from ‘El Chapo’ to Fund Border Wall

By: Bob Price

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) introduced a bill calling for the use of $14 billion seized from cartel drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman to be used to pay for the President’s border wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

“Fourteen billion dollars will go a long way toward building a wall that will keep Americans safe and hinder the illegal flow of drugs, weapons, and individuals across our southern border,” Senator Cruz stated, according to a statement obtained by Breitbart Texas from the senator’s office. “Ensuring the safety and security of Texans is one of my top priorities.”

The Texas senator said that leveraging criminally forfeited assets from El Chapo and other Mexican cartel members and drug dealers can “offset the wall’s cost and make meaningful progress toward achieving President Trump’s stated border security objectives.”

Senator Cruz introduced the Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order (EL CHAPO) Act on Tuesday. “The U.S. Government is currently seeking the criminal forfeiture of more than $14 billion in drug proceeds and illicit profits from El Chapo, the former leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel who was recently extradited to the U.S. to face criminal prosecution for numerous alleged drug-related crimes, including conspiracy to commit murder and money laundering,” Cruz stated.

The Mexican government extradited the former Mexican drug kingpin in January, Breitbart Texas’ Ildefonso Ortiz reported. The move to an American prison cell followed months of court battles in Mexico and multiple escapes from prison by Guzman. As part of the agreement with Mexico, Guzman will not face the death penalty in the U.S. for his crimes. Prosecutors filed murder charges against the former drug lord in relation to the killings of a U.S. citizen and two relatives.