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Health Impasse

2 GOP senators suggest bill to repeal health care law ‘dead’. Associated Press: “‘The initial GOP bill to repeal and replace the nation’s health law is probably ‘dead and President Donald Trump’s proposal to just repeal it appears to be a “non-starter,’ two moderate Republican senators indicated Sunday as their party scrambled to salvage faltering legislation. ‘We don’t know what the plan is,’ said Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La. ‘Clearly, the draft plan is dead. Is the serious rewrite plan dead? I don’t know.'”

Senate Republicans head back to work with no health-care deal. WaPo: “Senate Republicans returned to Washington from a holiday recess with new and deepening disagreements about their health-care bill, with key Republicans differing Sunday not merely on how to amend the bill, but also on whether a bill could pass at all… Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s decision to push debate on the Better Care Reconciliation Act past the Independence Day recess was supposed to create space for dealmaking… Instead, Republicans have run in different directions, proposing everything from a bipartisan deal to pay for insurance subsidies to a “repeal and delay” plan that would give them a few years before the Affordable Care Act would be fully gutted.”

Majority of Americans now favor single-payer health care. NPR: “Americans really, really don’t like the Senate bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Only 17 percent of U.S. adults approve of the health care bill, according to a recent NPR/Marist/PBS NewsHour poll. In fact, a majority of Americans now approve of the ACA, also known as Obamacare — but just nine months ago, that wasn’t true. So what do they want? Maybe they want single-payer health care — a slight majority of Americans now say they would like that kind of system, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.”

No New Taxes for the Wealthy

“Treasury Secretary Mnuchin says no to tax hike on wealthy. WaPo: “Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday the Trump administration isn’t considering a tax increase on wealthier Americans, knocking down a report that White House adviser Steve Bannon had floated the idea as a way to pay for tax cuts for middle-income taxpayers… The administration is aiming to release its full tax plan by September and have Congress approve it by the end of the year, Mnuchin said on ABC News’ ‘This Week.’ So far, the administration has issued a one-page summary of broad principles for tax reform, but few details.”

Rolling Back the Minimum Wage

“Republicans in several states are lowering the minimum wage. Salon: “conservatives in several states have been working to decrease the minimum wage that businesses can pay to their workers.In Missouri, Republicans just passed a law overturning a local measure passed by the city of St. Louis that had raised the minimum wage to $10 per hour. The new law will prohibit counties and cities within Missouri from creating their own minimum wage laws. It will also roll back the St. Louis minimum hourly wage to the statewide floor of $7.70.”

Voting Commission Hires Dud

Former Ohio official who accidentally released Social Security numbers is on Trump’s voter fraud panel. LA Times: “Blackwell had served as mayor of Cincinnati and state treasurer before becoming Ohio’s top elections official… in March of that year, his office caused a stir: The full Social Security numbers of 1.2 million Ohio voters were posted accidentally on the secretary of state’s website. A month later, in a separate incident, Blackwell’s office inadvertently distributed voter lists with the Social Security numbers of 5.7 million voters. The numbers, by law, are supposed to remain private… Blackwell, 69, has been tapped to serve on the Trump administration’s bipartisan voter fraud commission, an endeavor election officials nationwide have called a waste of time.”

Russia Two-Step

Trump’s son met with russian lawyer after being promised damaging information on Clinton. NYT: “President Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton before agreeing to meet with a Kremlin-connected Russian lawyer during the 2016 campaign, according to three advisers to the White House briefed on the meeting and two others with knowledge of it.”

Trump backpedals from call for a joint cyber security team with Russia. Fortune: “Trump on Sunday backtracked on his push for a cyber security unit with Russia, tweeting that he did not think it could happen, hours after his proposal was harshly criticized by Republicans who said Moscow could not be trusted. Trump said on Twitter early on Sunday that he and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed on Friday forming “an impenetrable Cyber Security unit” to address issues like the risk of cyber meddling in elections.”

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American Workers Seek Trade Enforcement, Not Protection. Leo Gerard: “Importers try to characterize U.S. workers as crybabies seeking unfair protections. But all we really want is enforcement of existing trade laws, so there can be both fair competition and national security.”

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