On Politics: This Week’s Biggest Stories

From Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh’s all-but-assured confirmation to revelations about President Trump’s wealth, here are some of this week’s biggest stories in American politics. (And some links if you wish to read further.)

After devastatingly divisive confirmation hearings and an F.B.I. review of sexual misconduct allegations, Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court was secured Friday after Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia said they would back him. [Read the story]

A final vote is expected late Saturday afternoon. [Here’s how they voted Friday on advancing the confirmation.]

After Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska said she would be the lone Republican to withhold support for Judge Kavanaugh, Ms. Collins delivered a 45-minute defense of her decision to confirm the judge. [Read Friday’s On Washington here.]

New York officials said on Thursday that they had joined state regulators in investigating whether taxes had been underpaid on the elder Mr. Trump’s wealth. [Read the story]

Additional Reading

Sanders Dismisses The Times’s Trump-Tax Story as ‘Very Boring’

How the Trump Family Got Rich

11 Takeaways From The Times’s Investigation Into Trump’s Wealth

After a year of negotiations, the United States and Canada reached an agreement this week that would salvage the North American Free Trade Agreement. The new agreement, renamed the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or U.S.M.C.A., is also a sign of the growing trade war with China. [Read the story]

The new name, however, has proved to be a mouthful. [Read the story]

After the agreement was signed, Mr. Trump said that the United States and Canada had “always had actually a very good relationship” — a claim that many Canadians scoffed at. [Read the story]

Additional Reading

With 8 Years of Job Gains, Unemployment Is at Its Lowest Since 1969

Lindsey Graham Welcomed Trump’s China Tariffs, Then Helped Companies Avoid Them

Trump Just Ripped Up Nafta. Here’s What’s in the New Deal.

Republican strategists are hopeful that the Kavanaugh nomination — and the anger over how the sexual misconduct allegations were handled — will motivate voters to go to the polls in November. [Read the story]

The president’s advisers are planning an aggressive campaign schedule for Mr. Trump to help woo voters — and are warning candidates against distancing themselves from him. [Read the story] Elsewhere, few candidates are choosing to run on climate change. [Read the story]

Black women, motivated by the divisions caused by race and Mr. Trump’s presidency, are using networks forged in segregation to turn out voters this fall. [Read the story]

Additional Reading

Ron DeSantis Reboots in Close Florida Governor’s Race, After Early Stumble

Biden Is Preparing for 2020. Can He Overcome the Hill-Thomas Hearings?

Everything You Need to Know for the Midterm Elections

How to Vote Early in the 2018 Midterm Elections

On a four-nation trip in Africa, Melania Trump has seemed far more at ease than in Washington, showering her hosts with appreciation for their hospitality. [Read the story]

Vice President Mike Pence delivered a harsh speech against China on Thursday, prompting Beijing officials to perceive the public remarks as the first step of a long battle between the countries. [Read the story]

Mr. Trump toured part of the country to appear at a number of political rallies: ostensibly to stump for the local conservative candidate, but he often indulged in off-script tangents, including attacking the credibility of the first woman to come forward with allegations against Judge Kavanaugh. [Read the story from Tuesday’s rally here]

Other News

Viruses Spread by Insects to Crops Sound Scary. The Military Calls It Food Security.

Terrorist Threat ‘More Fluid and Complex Than Ever,’ White House Says