Washington Insider

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  • Congresswoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y. is in her fifteenth term in Congress, and serves as ranking member on the very important House Appropriations Committee. She has been vocal in her support for infrastructure spending. Likely as a result, the Hill is...

  • What happened with the White House budget proposal on Monday was a "budget surprise" for USDA that caught the attention of many, even the urban press. The surprise was proposal to return to an old approach which would some nutrition program...

  • Well, the president added a little flavor, if not much real detail, to the trade policy debate on Monday when he said that the United States would soon announce a "reciprocal tax" on countries that take advantage of the United States on trade, including...

  • There has been some significant attention to farm bill issues recently. For example, last week's budget bill included support for dairy and cotton producers which likely will make it easier for Congress to refine those programs in the coming farm bill debate...

  • One of the lingering concerns regarding the administration's aggressive trade policies is the possibility that they will lead to pushback from trading partners. Last week, the New York Times reported that the tariffs imposed by the United States late last...

  • The federal government shutdown briefly early Friday morning before the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives voted to approve a much-criticized spending bill that includes some key agricultural programs.

  • Despite the president's rhetoric, the trade deficit continues to grow. The gap between Chinese goods imported to the United States and American goods exported to China rose to $375.2 billion last year, up from $347 billion the prior year, the New York Times...

  • Republicans seem divided sharply over transportation, immigration and spending coming out of a retreat in West Virginia, The Hill is reporting. This lack of unity clouds the prospect of legislative progress in 2018.

  • Politico is reporting this week what almost everybody knows, and that is that Secretary Perdue has a tough job as the administration's rural envoy. The group says that ag secretary Sonny Perdue has kept up a steady travel schedule, visiting more than 30...

  • Well, ag producers were hoping for some reassurance on trade policy in last week's State of the Union message, but now things seem a little more threatening. The administration still seems to be threatening to withdraw from NAFTA and Canada has announced...

  • This is a fascinating moment, Bloomberg says, as "both parties are looking forward to the fall elections" and the GOP, especially, faces an election-year dilemma: push partisan bills, or compromise. The group thinks this issue will dominate the discussions at...

  • The Washington Post concludes that Trump's call for a massive infrastructure bill to fund new bridges, roads and other projects nationwide likely will be "shelved, at least for now," as lawmakers prepared to return to disputes over spending that have...

  • The New York Times is reporting this week amid the State of the Union hoopla that discussions to revamp NAFTA moved from stalemate to actual negotiation during the sixth round that concluded on Monday, but that a deal was still far from guaranteed as...

  • Since its inception. The Trump Administration has touted a plan to upgrade U.S. public works as something that can win Democratic backing. The President is expected to appeal to Democrats on infrastructure in tonight's State of the Union address with a...

  • Europe is approaching the next stop in its global market-opening drive aimed at countering a U.S. "protectionist tilt." Top officials from the European Union will meet with the Mercosur group of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay this week to gauge the...

  • The urban media is increasingly paying attention to the evolving U.S. trade policy these days. For example, the New York Times reported this week that President Trump is arriving at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to explain his "America First...

  • A four-page document released by the USDA on Wednesday considered as farm-bill principles calls for supporting "work as the pathway to self-sufficiency, well-being and economic mobility for individuals and families" on food stamps. The administration didn't...

  • Amazon has been giving the media peeks into its Amazon Go set up in Seattle, and the New York Times has provided a somewhat breathless view of a rather odd shop. It looks like a subway station, the Times says. Only people with the store's smartphone app...

  • Bloomberg is reporting this week that administration efforts to tie NAFTA talks to a Mexico wall may create a new "danger zone." The group says the talks are entering a pivotal moment as the U.S. turns up the pressure on Canada and Mexico to radically...

  • Politico says both sides are working hard on more cutting insults and are deeply dug in, suggesting that "they are prepared for a longer impasse. While some observers see hints of possible compromise, it seems clear that "the respective party leaders...

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