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FBI Raids Trump Lawyer Cohen

FBI raids office of Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen. NYT: “The F.B.I. raided the Rockefeller Center office and Park Avenue hotel room of President Trump’s longtime personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, on Monday morning, seizing business records, emails and documents related to several topics, including a payment to a pornographic film actress. Mr. Trump, in an extraordinarily angry response, lashed out hours later at what a person briefed on the matter said was an investigation into possible bank fraud by Mr. Cohen… The documents identified in the warrant date back years, according to a person briefed on the search. The prosecutors obtained the search warrant after receiving a referral from the special counsel in the Russia investigation, Robert S. Mueller III, according to Mr. Cohen’s lawyer, who called the search “completely inappropriate and unnecessary.” The search does not appear to be directly related to Mr. Mueller’s investigation, but most likely resulted from information that he had uncovered and gave to prosecutors in New York.”

Zuckerberg Testifies To Congress On Data Breach

What to expect when Zuckerberg goes to Capitol Hill. NPR: “Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will face Congress in two separate hearings this week, as his company grapples with intense scrutiny over privacy and security on the social media site. It will be Zuckerberg’s first appearance on Capitol Hill. On Tuesday afternoon, more than 40 senators will crowd into a hearing room, where members of the Senate judiciary and commerce committees will have four minutes each to question Zuckerberg. A similar scene will play out Wednesday when he is set to appear before members of House Energy and Commerce Committee. Both hearings are expected to be lengthy spectacles following in a long tradition of widely televised congressional inquisitions into corporate scandals — like the 1994 testimony of tobacco CEOs, the probe into steroids in baseball in 2005 and the interrogation of banking executives after the 2008 economic crash.”

China Offers Trade Concessions To U.S.

China’s president offers US possible trade concessions. AP: “President Xi Jinping promised Tuesday to cut China’s auto tariffs and improve intellectual property protection in possible concessions aimed at defusing a worsening dispute with Washington over trade and technology that investors worry could set back the global economic recovery. Speaking at a business conference, Xi made no direct mention of his American counterpart, Donald Trump, or the dispute. He promised progress on areas that are U.S. priorities including opening China’s banking industry and boosting imports but didn’t address key irritants for Washington such as a requirement for foreign companies to work through joint ventures that require them to give technology to potential local competitors. Private sector analysts saw Xi’s speech as an overture to help end the biggest trade dispute since World War II. It has fueled fears the global economic recovery might be set back if other governments are prompted to raise their own import barriers.”

DOJ Approves Pharma Mega Merger

DOJ approves Bayer-Monsanto mega merger despite significant concerns from farmers, consumers, environmentalists. Common Dreams: “The Department of Justice has chosen to green light the Bayer-Monsanto merger despite widespread opposition from farmers and other stakeholders across the country. The news comes after the delivery of more than 1 million public comments opposing the merger. A recent survey of farmers found that 93% of farmers are against the merger. After the merger, only four companies will control the vast majority of seeds and agrochemicals, threatening farmers, consumers and the environment.”

GOP Defends EPA’s Pruitt

Mission impossible: Replacing Scott Pruitt. Politico: “There’s one big reason Senate Republicans are standing staunchly with Scott Pruitt: Confirming a replacement might be impossible. Even as the embattled EPA administrator faced another day of difficult headlines on Monday, there is no push from the Senate GOP to shove Pruitt out. Instead, Republicans are gently rapping him for his ethical transgressions and praising his deregulatory regime. There’s no question that GOP senators are growing tired of defending Pruitt. But turning on him would likely backfire, as the shrunken Republican majority would struggle to confirm any EPA administrator, let alone another one as conservative and driven to overturn former President Barack Obama’s environmental rules and regulations. ‘I don’t think that would be easy, let me put it that way,’ said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah).”

EPA Rollbacks Challenged In Court

EPA rollbacks have a long road ahead. NPR: “Pruitt has moved aggressively to roll back a number of regulations the industry opposed, including President Obama’s signature measures to address climate change. The most consequential are the Clean Power Plan, which would have curbed emissions from power plants, and automobile fuel economy standards that aimed to nearly double fuel efficiency by 2025. Pruitt’s EPA has also formally suspended an Obama-era clean water regulation known as the Waters of the United States, and moved to reverse a range of other regulations on fossil fuel extraction. But many of these rollbacks are in the midst of a long, slow-moving regulatory process. ‘The big things that he set off to do are years away from being done,’ says David Doniger of the Natural Resources Defense Council. And then ‘they end up going into court battles.’ The big things that he set off to do are years away from being done. Some attempted rollbacks have already run into legal trouble. In March, a court found the administration broke the law by delaying implementation of an ozone pollution rule. Last year, a court blocked an effort to halt restrictions on methane emissions, and 14 states are now suing EPA over the standards.”

More from OurFuture.org:

Equal Pay Day at Your Local Coffee Shop! Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner: “It’s Equal Pay Day, America. That’s the day when women’s wages finally catch up with what men were paid in the previous year. How much more, you ask, did men receive? $840 billion. That’s a lot of lattes. So independent coffee shops and other small businesses all across the country have partnered with MomsRising and the Main Street Alliance to serve custom coffee sleeves and napkins featuring statistics, facts, and ways to take action on the gender wage gap that costs women, and our economy, over $800 billion each year. Come sit and sip, so we can close the wage gap, together!

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