Ohio Gov. John Kasich, (R) “the two-term governor and possible 2020 presidential candidate, has checked off priorities such as lowering Ohio’s income tax and expanding Medicaid. He has moderated on conservative issues such as gun rights and labor unions. He has spoken out repeatedly against President Trump, losing allies among his fellow Republicans.
“So Tuesday night, in his last State of the State address, Kasich is likely to play the elder statesman passing on wisdom, not the hard-charging change-agent pushing through his agenda.
“Despite Kasich’s earlier focus on taxes and the economy, Ohio’s economic situation can best be described as ‘not great.’ … Only three states have a higher unemployment rate than Ohio’s 4.9 percent in December, compared with 4.1 percent nationally.” (Cincinnati.com)
TARIFFS. “House Republicans want President Donald Trump to scale back his plan to institute sweeping tariffs on steel and aluminum imports—apparently so they can avoid taking legislative action against him.” Speaker Paul Ryan “is urging the president not to move on the plan he announced Thursday to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports. … While congressional Republicans understand the president’s goal of trying to force better trade deals, most disagree with his approach. House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) said he and … Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA), who chairs the Trade Subcommittee, are circulating a letter for signatures that will encourage Trump to ‘tailor his actions’ on the tariffs.” (Roll Call)
“Mr. Trump appeared little moved by the pushback. One of his all-important barometers—the stock market —rebounded on Monday after falling sharply immediately after the announcement of the tariffs last week as the Republican dissent fueled optimism that Mr. Trump would ultimately reverse course. Opponents of tariffs, including many economists, warn they could damage economic growth by igniting a ruinous trade war, a prospect that Mr. Trump has alternately welcomed or dismissed as unlikely.” (New York Times)
NUNBERG. “Sam Nunberg, a onetime Trump campaign aide who recently met with investigators for the special counsel, set cable news alight on Monday when he declared that he was subpoenaed to go before a grand jury on Friday, but that he was unlikely to appear or to provide documents he was ordered to hand over.” (New York Times)
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"The United States is preparing to shelter as many as 20,000 migrant children on four American military bases" in Texas and Arkansas, "as federal officials struggled to carry out President Trump’s order to keep immigrant families together after they are apprehended at the border."
"House Republican leaders are further delaying a vote on a compromise immigration bill, planning to make changes to the legislation for a vote next week. The news comes after a two-hour Republican Conference meeting Thursday, in which authors of the bill walked through its contents and members raised concerns about issues the bill doesn’t address, multiple GOP lawmakers said. Many members requested the addition of a provision to require employers to use the E-Verify database to cheek the legal status of their employees."
After a conservative-backed immigration bill failed in the House, 193-231, leaders "postponed a vote on a 'compromise' immigration proposal until Friday. ... GOP leaders, however, are under no impression that they'll be able to secure the 218 votes needed in the next 24 hours to pass the text. Rather, the delay is to give members more time to read the bill."