In the fight for nonpartisan redistricting, “36 current and former members of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, filed yet another amicus brief that includes the chairman of the Freedom Caucus and the former chairman of the Progressive Caucus.” Notable signers include: Reps. Rod Blum (R-IA 01), Mike Coffman (R-CO 06), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL 26), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA 08), and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ 05). (Politico)
DACA. Some vulnerable Republicans weighed in on Trump’s DACA decision, many issuing statements supporting legislative action to protect recipients of the program. “The Trump administration’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program next year could have a broad effect on Democratic efforts to retake control of the House in 2018, and nowhere more so than in California, where more than a fourth of the estimated 800,000 recipients, often called Dreamers, are thought to live. … Stories of the 200,000 or so Californians affected by this decision will likely be a recurring theme of campaigns for the next year” for Democrats trying to oust nine of the state’s 14 GOP members. (Los Angeles Times)
Two “targeted members” — Reps. Ed Royce (R-CA 39) and Mimi Walters (R-CA 45) — “have spoken favorably of proposed legislation that would allow many of those brought to the country illegally as children to remain after DACA’s scheduled end next March.” Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA 49) “indicated he might also support such legislation.” (Orange County Register)
Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME 02) released a statement in support of a legislative solution for DACA recipients: “A child should not be held responsible for the actions of parents who chose to break our immigration laws.” (Portland Press-Herald)
Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX 23), “who represents a swing district in West Texas, said Congress should provide a ‘permanent, legislative solution’ for the program that shields roughly 800,000 immigrants from deportation, including roughly 124,000 in Texas.”
“Asked whether he supports allowing DACA recipients to remain in the U.S.,” Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX 32) “noted he has long favored a guest-worker plan that would take them into account. On Monday, he told CNN that granting legal status as a guest worker is the ‘minimum’ Congress should do.” (Dallas Morning News)
Meanwhile, dozens of House challengers have seized on the issue.
Former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ 01), who is challenging Rep. Martha McSally (R-AZ 02): “This is another self-inflicted wound to our country, courtesy of a President who cannot see beyond his own demons.” (release)
Stem cell biologist Hans Keirstead (D), who hopes to unseat Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA 48): “Washington needs to forget about the party labels, remember what this country represents, and do what is right for the American people by passing comprehensive immigration reform.” (release)
And former Army Ranger Jason Crow (D): “DACA has allowed thousands of innocent children the opportunity to achieve the American dream, contribute to our economy and proudly serve our country. Yet,” Coffman “literally called the DREAM Act ‘a nightmare’ as he voted against it in Congress.” (release)
MONEY MATTERS. The Hill noted the five House challengers with the biggest campaign war chests. In NY-19, attorney Antonio Delgado (D) and businessman Brian Flynn (D) both raised six figures. In CA-49, environmental attorney Mike Levin (D) raised more than $600,000. In MN-03, gelato tycoon Dean Phillips (D) hauled $530,000. In NC-09, clean-energy expert Dan McCready (D) has raised nearly $460,000 for his bid against Rep. Robert Pittenger (R). In TX-07, nonprofit executive Alex Triantaphyllis (D) raised more than $450,000.
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"The U.K. is sharing secret intelligence about the nerve agent attack on a former spy with key allies, in an effort to persuade them to expel Russian diplomats across Europe, people familiar with the matter said. ... May will deliver a hard-hitting warning over the threat posed to the whole of Europe by Vladimir Putin’s government during a dinner with fellow leaders at the EU summit in Brussels on Thursday."
President Trump is planning to announce new sanctions against Chinese technology companies Thursday, and China may respond "by targeting U.S. agricultural exports from Farm Belt states," including "soybeans, sorghum and live hogs ... The U.S. is among the top suppliers of these products to China." The Chinese sanctions are being calibrated to target states "that helped elect Donald Trump in 2016."
"Federal prosecutors have dropped charges against 11 of 15 members of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s security team who were accused in connection with the beating of protesters during their visit to Washington last year, the latest twist in a case that caused a diplomatic rift between the U.S. and Turkey. The decision by the U.S. to prosecute the 15 men added to political strains as the Trump administration was trying to reset relations with Turkey, a key U.S. ally in the fight against Islamic State. Prosecutors first asked a judge in November to dismiss charges against four members of Mr. Erdogan’s security detail. Then they dropped charges against seven others on Feb. 14, the day before Secretary of State Rex Tillerson flew to Ankara for a meeting with Mr. Erdogan meant to ease tensions."