The White House • April 20, 2018
Driving the Day
• Vice President Mike Pence will join Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao for a roundtable on infrastructure this afternoon. See the President’s plan.
• First Lady Melania Trump and President Donald J. Trump prepare to host French President Emmanuel Macron Tuesday for the first State Visit of the Trump Administration.
• Today, Ivanka Trump and U.S. Treasurer Jovita Carranza travel to Rocky River, Ohio, for a town hall about wage hikes and boosted savings from President Trump’s tax cuts.
Meet the team that’s dismantling the illicit drug trade
President Trump visited the Joint Interagency Task Force South yesterday in Key West. The Task Force is a crucial team that many Americans have likely never heard about. Led by top officials from the Armed Services and key Federal agencies, its efforts to dismantle the illicit drug trade have saved countless American lives.
The Task Force faced record drug production during Fiscal Year 2017. In response, it supported the removal of a record 283 metric tons of cocaine and 5 kilograms of heroin, as well as the detention of 900 suspected members of drug trafficking organizations. Helping to lead an international coalition, the Task Force oversees a staggering area of 42 million square miles across the globe.
“We are behind you all the way,” President Trump said. “And we want to thank you.” The President called on Congressional Democrats to support the Task Force by closing loopholes that allow drugs and human traffickers to spill into the United States. “We need border protection; we need the wall,” he said.
President Trump visits the task force that saves American lives by fighting the flow of drugs.
‘Right from the beginning we hit it off’
The President concluded a productive summit with Japanese leader Shinzo Abe this week. It marked the sixth meeting and third major summit between the two men since President Trump took office. “Right from the beginning we hit it off,” the President said. “The relationship is a very good one.”
Denuclearization of North Korea topped the agenda. With a meeting between President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in the works, both the White House and Prime Minister Abe underscored that a global maximum pressure campaign on Pyongyang will continue until North Korea abandons all ballistic missiles and weapons of mass destruction. That point is nonnegotiable.
American and Japan also agreed to intensify trade talks. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will lead discussions for the U.S. side, guided by the President’s goal of free, fair, and reciprocal trade with each of our allies. “The relationship has been so good with all of us, and let’s see how we do with, right now, the trade deficit,” President Trump told Prime Minister Abe.
Watch the short highlight reel or read the full recap of this week’s summit at Mar-a-Lago.
Photo of the Day
Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead
President Donald J Trump, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen at the Joint Interagency Task Force South in Key West | April 19, 2018
The White House • April 19, 2018
Driving the Day
President Donald J. Trump will meet with the Joint Interagency Task Force South in Key West, Florida, today. He’ll say that to help the task force do its job, he is calling on Congress to close loopholes that allow drugs and criminals to enter our country.
Look at what’s happening in America’s heartland
America was founded because of taxes, rallying to the cry “No taxation without representation!” So when Americans elected a Washington outsider, Donald J. Trump, to reform government, the most sweeping overhaul of the tax code in American history was a natural place to start.
Tax cuts are key to the optimism spreading across our heartland. Today, several Midwest states boast among the lowest unemployment rates in the country. Key industries in America’s interior are thriving, with manufacturers anticipating their fastest wage growth in 17 years. “I ran on ‘tired of being 50th.’ And we’re finally first in all kinds of things,” Gov. Jim Justice (R-WV) told President Trump this month.
Here’s why: Cutting taxes and red tape isn’t about cutting services. In fact, it’s the opposite. President Trump is streamlining government to make it work better for the communities who need it most. One recent example is the Administration’s decision to expedite the environmental review process for major infrastructure projects.
The President’s plan is to expand opportunity in every part of the country. So far, it’s working.
The legacy of First Lady Barbara Bush
Barbara Bush was the “rock” of one of America’s most visible families. The mother of 6 and grandmother of 17 “kept us on our toes and kept us laughing until the end,” former President George W. Bush said this week. “I’m a lucky man that Barbara Bush was my mother.”
Mrs. Bush’s legacy extends far beyond her role as matriarch. She served as a trusted adviser to her husband, President George H. W. Bush, and she tirelessly championed the cause of literacy throughout her life. She attended more than 500 literacy events during the Reagan Administration—before she’d even become First Lady of the United States.
She was also a bipartisan symbol of women’s empowerment. When she famously wore fake pearls to her husband’s Presidential Inauguration and other White House events, her deputy press secretary quipped it was because “she just really likes them.” Polls showed that Americans loved her down-to-earth, no-nonsense style.
Barbara Bush put “family and country above all else,” First Lady Melania Trump says.
Photo of the Day
Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead
President Donald J. Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan | April 17, 2018
Op-Eds and Editorials Call for Mike Pompeo to be Confirmed as Secretary of State
Issued on: April 20, 2018
Senators, former national security officials, and editorial boards have called for Mike Pompeo to be “swiftly” confirmed as Secretary of State, praising him as a “foreign policy heavyweight,” an “excellent leader,” and “adept at tough diplomacy.”
SEN. JOHN BARRASSO (R-WY) IN THE HILL: Mike Pompeo is the Right Man for the State Department
“The president’s choice, Director of Central Intelligence Mike Pompeo, understands that safety and security at home require a world that is peaceful and stable. Mike Pompeo has the intelligence, the integrity, and the experience to serve as America’s secretary of State…. Mike knows the issues, he knows the people, and he is the right person for this job. He will be an excellent representative for our nation, and a seasoned veteran to implement President Trump’s foreign policy.”
SEN. DAVID PERDUE (R-GA) AT FOX NEWS: Trump’s North Korea Policy is Succeeding
“Moving forward, we must remember what got us to this point: President Trump’s maximum pressure campaign. We should recognize and act on the additional efforts to keep up the pressure. The U.S. Senate should also move swiftly to confirm Mike Pompeo as secretary of state, given the critical talks at hand.”
FORMER STATE DEPARTMENT SENIOR ADVISER CHRISTIAN WHITON IN THE HILL: North Korea is Moved by Pompeo Diplomacy, But Dems Dig in Deeper
“By essentially all accounts, Pompeo performed extremely well as CIA director, managing and reforming that sprawling bureaucracy and helping to defeat ISIS, among other accomplishments. Now he’s shown himself to be adept at tough diplomacy even without the title and trappings of being secretary of State.”
FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL SENIOR DIRECTOR MICHAEL ALLEN IN THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER: Mike Pompeo Isn’t Just Qualified to be Secretary of State — He’s Ready
“We would be hard-pressed to find a nominee with greater experience and expertise. As a West Point graduate, a Harvard-trained lawyer, a former member of Congress, and director of the CIA, Pompeo is more than qualified to lead the State Department…. Pompeo’s deep understanding of world affairs, his clear-eyed view of the threats to our national security, and his key relationships with world leaders make him an excellent choice to be our top diplomat.”
FORMER DEPUTY UNDERSECRETARY OF DEFENSE LT. GEN. WILLIAM BOYKIN AT REAL CLEAR DEFENSE: Pompeo Is Ready to Lead
“Mike Pompeo has the leadership, experience, instincts, and training to be successful as the next Secretary of State…. Mike Pompeo has proven to be an asset to President Trump. Throughout his time at the CIA, he has focused on helping beef up our cybersecurity capabilities and pushing back against Russian aggression, terrorist organizations, and North Korea and Iranian nuclear ambitions. He has all the qualifications to be an outstanding Secretary of State.”
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL BOARD: Who Needs a Secretary of State?
“Sens. Feinstein and Kaine and 12 other Democrats voted to confirm Mr. Pompeo as CIA director—he was confirmed 66-32—perhaps because he’s so well qualified. Mr. Pompeo is a West Point and Harvard Law graduate who served three terms in Congress, and along with fellow Republican Tom Cotton unearthed the Obama Administration’s secret side deals with Tehran. He has invigorated the CIA clandestine service, tried to give Mr. Trump options on North Korea, and has gained the President’s trust.”
NEW HAMPSHIRE UNION LEADER EDITORIAL BOARD: Opposing Pompeo: Shaheen’s Skewed Priorities
“Shaheen, for all of our differences, has been one of the grown-ups in Washington on foreign policy. Yet she will not support Pompeo, a distinguished and qualified foreign policy heavyweight, because he is a conservative…. As CIA director, he has been a professional, demonstrating his competence and qualification to be secretary of state…. Pompeo deserves Senate confirmation.”
THE WEEKLY STANDARD EDITORIAL BOARD: Party Over Country
“There is no question Pompeo is qualified. He graduated from West Point at the top of his class. He served as a tank officer in the U.S. Army and patrolled the Berlin Wall before its fall. He went to Harvard Law School and was an editor of its famous law review. He built a successful business and, after his election to the House of Representatives from Kansas’s Fourth District, established himself as a leader on foreign policy and national security issues. He served three terms in Congress, and then Trump picked him to run the Central Intelligence Agency…. Pompeo is a smart, thoughtful leader who has the trust and the ear of the country’s president. He’s used his influence to shape Trump’s thinking on such difficult issues as Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, and North Korea.”
AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY COUNCIL FOUNDING PRESIDENT HERMAN PIRCHNER, JR IN THE HILL: Democrats Have Good Reason to Confirm Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State
“Mike Pompeo should be promptly confirmed as secretary of State because he is well qualified, but also because this is an extraordinarily dangerous time for the United States to be without an effective secretary of State…. Pompeo’s credentials are, or course, superb: first in his class at West Point, a Harvard law degree, a distinguished (if brief) career in the House of Representatives, a tenure as CIA director marked by both competence and vision. The accolades go on and on.”
NATIONAL SECURITY INSTITUTE SENIOR FELLOWS ANDY KEISER AND LESTER MUNSON AT REAL CLEAR POLITICS: “Pompeo Will Make an Impressive Secretary of State”
“President Trump’s nomination of CIA Director Mike Pompeo as the next secretary of state is a wise choice for the future of our nation’s foreign policy. Pompeo is a knowledgeable foreign policy leader and excellent representative of the United States on the world stage…. Pompeo has proven himself to be an excellent leader of a critical national security agency, a successful negotiator and diplomat. His qualifications were hailed across party lines when 14 Democratic senators voted to confirm him as CIA director.”
Memorandum for the Secretary of State
SUBJECT: Eligibility of the Organisation Conjointe
de Cooperation en matiere d’Armement to
Receive Defense Articles and Defense Services
Under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as
Amended, and the Arms Export Control Act, as
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including section 503(a) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as amended, and section 3(a)(1) of the Arms Export Control Act, as amended, I hereby find that the furnishing of defense articles and defense services to the Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation en matiere d’Armement will strengthen the security of the United States and promote world peace.
You are authorized and directed to transmit this determination to the Congress and publish this determination in the Federal Register.
DONALD J. TRUMP