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Vox Sentences: Collusion confusion

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Trump pushes steep steel and aluminum tariffs back by a month; Mueller’s questions for the president go public.


Trump turns back the clock on tariffs

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  • Mere minutes before steep steel and aluminum tariffs were set to go into effect for key US allies, Trump announced he would push the effective date back from May 1 to June 1. [WSJ / Michael C. Bender and William Mauldin]
  • The White House says the extension to the 25 percent tariff on steel and 10 percent tariff on aluminum for the European Union, Canada, and Mexico will allow for more time to strike a deal with the countries. But the EU, in particular, is not impressed. [Vox / Jen Kirby]
  • European leaders see the move as giving them another 30 days of instability, which could harm economic growth. [NYT / Jack Ewing]
  • European leaders are irritated that they aren’t exempted from the tariffs altogether. Threatening $3.5 billion in retaliatory tariffs on jeans, motorcycles, and orange juice if Trump doesn’t back down, the European Trade Commission said in a statement that “The EU should be fully and permanently exempted from these measures, as they cannot be justified on the grounds of national security.” [The Hill / Vicki Needham]
  • Europe’s response has many analysts worried about the conflict escalating into a full-blown trade war. In March, Trump had threatened that if the EU retaliated, he would retaliate to their retaliation by imposing tariffs on European cars. If the EU then retaliated to that, well, it’d be bad news for the economy. [Vox / Zeeshan Aleem]
  • Meanwhile, in the same announcement, Trump said that agreements had already been reached with Argentina, Australia, and Brazil, which also would have been affected by the metals tariffs. The White House also said it had struck a final and permanent agreement with South Korea. [Washington Post / Tory Newmyer]
  • Things are a little different for Canada and Mexico, which are already in talks with the US to renegotiate NAFTA. Although the countries aren’t happy that Trump is likely using the steel and aluminum tariffs as a bargaining chip in the negotiations, they will likely continue to receive exemptions until the countries strike a final deal on NAFTA. [Reuters / David Lawder]
  • Aluminum and steel producers, who were obviously expecting the tariffs to go into effect today, saw their stock prices fall in response. [WSJ / Bob Tita and Andrew Tangel]

Mueller’s questions for Trump go public

  • The New York Times got its hands on a copy of the questions special counsel Robert Mueller plans to ask President Trump as part of his investigation into Russian election interference, and they’re a doozy. [NYT / Michael S. Schmidt]
  • Mueller’s questions cover four major topics: two firings — James Comey’s and Michael Flynn’s — as well as the president’s business interests and the 2016 meeting at Trump Tower between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer. [ABC News / Katherine Faulders and John Santucci]
  • In response to the Monday night publication of the questions, Trump tweeted Tuesday morning that the leak was “disgraceful” and claimed there were no questions about collusion on the list. (In reality, there are many.) [Washington Post / John Wagner]
  • While the existence of the questions might suggest otherwise, Trump still hasn’t agreed to be interviewed, and it’s possible the publication of the list will end up affecting his decision. [Politico / Louis Nelson and Darren Samuelsohn]

Miscellaneous


Verbatim

“The hardest part about teaching before I retired was seeing the disintegration of support for public schools. ... What I’ve seen over time, especially in the last 10 years, [is that] there are so many new, unfunded demands and programs.” [Rebecca Palacios, a teacher, to the Atlantic / Kristina Rizga]


Watch this: Why America still uses Fahrenheit

Fahrenheit, explained to the rest of the world. [YouTube / Dion Lee and Zack Beauchamp]


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