Boastful Trump Ends Asia Trip Touting ‘Minimum’ $300B in Deals
Major trade announcement could slip to Thursday, president says

President Donald Trump boards Air Force One on Saturday. He did the same on Tuesday and is headed back to the United States. (Shealah Craighead/White House via Flickr)

President Donald Trump wrapped up his swing through Asia by boasting that he inked agreements to sell $300 billion in U.S.-made goods and predicting the total value of the deals could “quadruple.”

“I think the fruits of are going to be incredible,” Trump told reporters of his dealmaking during the 12-day trip just minutes before Air Force One lifted off from the Philippines.

Congress’ Gun Massacre Caucus
Dealing with mass shootings is becoming all too familiar for many members

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, center left, with Rep. Mark Sanford to his right and then-Gov. Nikki Haley, second from right, attend a memorial service commemorating the anniversary of the 2015 mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images file photo)

On Dec. 14, 2012, Elizabeth Esty was attending a social media workshop for new members of Congress at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. She had been elected to represent Connecticut’s 5th District a month earlier.

“I raised my hand and I said, ‘Here’s an example right now — I’m getting texts and alerts that there’s been a shooting and we don’t know what happened,’” she said.

Gohmert Claims Mueller Compromised National Security as FBI Director
Texas Republican says Mueller scrapped training materials about 'radical Islamists'

Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, accused special counsel Robert Mueller of undermining U.S. national security during his time as head of the FBI. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Louie Gohmert accused special counsel Robert Mueller of undermining national security while Mueller was head of the FBI.

The Texas Republican alleged Mueller “purged the training materials for the FBI of anything that offended the radical Islamists.”

Ahead of Asia Trip, White House Gives North Korea a Reprieve
McMaster: Sanctions need time, but U.S. ready to respond with ‘all capabilities‘

President Donald Trump meets with National security adviser H.R. McMaster and Nikki Haley, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, last month in the Oval Office. (Courtesy White House/Wikimedia Commons)

The Trump administration is pumping the brakes on new steps against North Korea — military or otherwise — for “a few months” as recent sanctions are implemented, the president’s top national security aide said Thursday. 

Air Force One will be wheels up Friday for President Donald Trump’s 11-day diplomatic trip to Asia that will take him to a handful of friendly Asian countries, including South Korea, Japan and China. Each is a key player in the standoff with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un over his atomic arsenal.

New York Attacker Won’t Be Sent to Guantanamo, Trump Says
President’s decision to use criminal courts breaks with Graham, McCain

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., wants President Donald Trump to send the New York truck attacker to Guantanamo Bay. Trump signaled Wednesday the suspect will head to the criminal justice system. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump broke with congressional Republican hawks Thursday morning, signaling the Islamic State-inspired New York truck attacker will not be sent to the military’s terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

As top GOP Senate Armed Services members like Chairman John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina call for Sayfullo Saipov to be held by the military as an “enemy combatant,” Trump used morning tweets to signal he will be prosecuted via the criminal court system.

Schumer: Trump Takes ‘Horrible Advantage’ of Tragedy
Trump criticized Schumer on immigration after New York attack

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., criticized President Donald Trump's “nasty, divisive habits” tweeting about immigration after a terrorist attack in New York City. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer criticized President Donald Trump for using Tuesday’s terror attack in New York to go after the Democratic leader.

Speaking at a press conference about Democrats’ plans to strengthen unions, the New York Democrat compared Trump’s actions to those of President George W. Bush after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

Trump Blames Schumer for New York Truck Attack
GOP President George H.W. Bush signed bill that established visa program Trump blasted

Police and emergency workers surround the truck that authorities say plowed down people on a Manhattan bike path Tuesday near the World Trade Center site. (Kena Betancur/Getty Images)

Updated at 9:44 a.m. | President Trump used a series of Wednesday morning tweets to blame Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer for the deadly Islamic State-inspired attack in New York.

Trump wrote the suspect entered the United States via a program pushed by Democrats — but it was codified in a bipartisan bill that was made law by a Republican president.

Kelly Says He’ll ‘Never’ Apologize to Wilson
Also defends Confederate monuments in interview with Fox News

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly said Monday he stands by his comments about Florida Democratic Rep. Frederica Wilson. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly said Monday night he won’t apologize for comments he made about Florida Democratic Rep. Frederica Wilson.

Earlier this month, Kelly criticized Wilson for divulging the details of President Donald Trump’s phone call to Myeshia Johnson, the wife of Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed in a firefight in Niger. He also criticized Wilson for what he characterized as bragging about acquiring money for an FBI building in her district.

Podcast: Congress Aims to Rein In Government Snoops
The Week Ahead, Episode 76

Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon has a bill that aims to protect Americans' privacy from government surveillance of foreigners.

A bipartisan cast of lawmakers, including Sen. Ron Wyden, plan to curtail the government's surveillance powers that must be renewed by the end of the year, says CQ intelligence reporter Gopal Ratnam.   

Show Notes:

Gold Star Families Getting Rushed Condolence Letters
The White House tried to quickly make the president’s overstatement accurate

Myeshia Johnson kisses the casket of her husband, U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson, during his burial service in Hollywood, Florida, on Saturday. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

A substantial number of families who have lost military servicemembers during the Trump presidency had not been contacted as of this weekend by President Donald Trump, despite his claim to the contrary several days earlier, according to news accounts.

And some of the families that the White House did contact were reached only in recent days by apparently rushed condolence letters that were sent in some cases months after the families lost their loved ones, the reports said.