On Politics: Trump’s Checks to Cohen

Good Wednesday morning. Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today.


On Oct. 18, 2017, President Trump took the time to sign a $35,000 check to Michael D. Cohen, his longtime lawyer and fixer who had made hush payments to prevent alleged sexual misconduct by Mr. Trump from being exposed before the 2016 presidential election. It was one of 11 occasions that Mr. Trump or his trust cut such checks, six of which were provided this week to the The Times.

Mr. Trump signaled that he did not intend to cooperate with the 81 document requests sent out by House lawmakers scrutinizing whether the president obstructed justice, and he called the investigation a “disgrace to our country.”

The House’s Democratic leadership, responding to statements by Representative Ilhan Omar characterized as hurtful to Jews, will put to a vote a resolution condemning anti-Semitism. The resolution has started a furious generational debate between older House Democrats and their young, liberal counterparts.

More than 76,000 migrants crossed the border without authorization in February, an 11-year high and a sign that the Trump administration’s aggressive policies have not discouraged new migration.

Michael R. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, says he will not run for president in 2020. Instead, he plans to use his considerable wealth to finance the opposition to Mr. Trump, and to support causes like gun control and climate change.

Jeff Merkley, a two-term senator from Oregon, has also opted out of running for the 2020 presidential nomination, forgoing what would have been a long-shot bid against some of the most famous names in Democratic politics.

Mr. Trump often accuses China of destroying American jobs. But the president’s appointments at the Federal Trade Commission have done little to crack down on four companies that falsely marketed products from China as American-made.

Mr. Trump has decided to strip India of a special status that exempts billions of dollars’ worth of Indian exports from American tariffs, raising new trade tensions with the world’s second-most populous country.