Wed, May 3, 2017: Trump dines with religious leaders ahead of National Day of Prayer

On the eve of the first National Day of Prayer of his presidency, Donald Trump invited his closest evangelical advisors to join him for a private, long-awaited dinner celebration at the White House.

For the first time since they formed last June, the members of Trump’s campaign advisory board were meeting together not in weekly phone calls but in person, and having already accomplished what a year ago many thought was a long shot. Continue reading “Wed, May 3, 2017: Trump dines with religious leaders ahead of National Day of Prayer”

Wed, May 3, 2017: Trump meets with Palestinian Leader Mahmoud Abbas, wants Mideast peace deal

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met on Wednesday with US President Donald Trump at the White House for the first time. In their preliminary statements, Trump declared that he is committed to working with Israel and the Palestinians to reach an agreement and claimed that no accord can be imposed by a third party.

“The Palestinians and the Israelis must work to reach an agreement that will allow both people to live, worship, thrive, and prosper in peace,” said President Trump. “I would like to be a mediator or a facilitator to anything they wish to do and we will will get this done.”

President Abbas reiterated the Palestinian position supporting the two-state solution on the basis of the 1967 borders with eastern Jerusalem as its capital. He asserted that a comprehensive peace agreement would give impetus to both the Arab Peace Initiative and the fight against the Islamic State.

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Wed, May 3, 2017: Trump meets with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas

10:30 am: Receives his daily intelligence briefing

11:55 am: Begins meetings with President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority

12:15 pm: Gives a joint statement with President Abbas; Roosevelt Room

12:30 pm: Has a working luncheon with President Abbas; Cabinet Room

5:30 pm: Has dinner with religious leaders; Blue Room

Tue, May 2, 2017: Trump tweets U.S. needs ‘shutdown’ in September to fix Senate ‘mess’

President Donald Trump declared Tuesday the U.S. government “needs a good shutdown” to fix a “mess” in the Senate, signaling on Twitter his displeasure with a bill to keep operations running. But Republican leaders and Trump himself also praised the stopgap measure as a major accomplishment and a sign of his masterful negotiating with Democrats.

On the defensive, Trump and his allies issued a flurry of contradictory statements ahead of key votes in Congress on a $1.1 trillion spending bill to keep the government at full speed through September. After advocating for a future shutdown, the president hailed the budget agreement as a boost for the military, border security and other top priorities. Continue reading “Tue, May 2, 2017: Trump tweets U.S. needs ‘shutdown’ in September to fix Senate ‘mess’”

Tue, May 2, 2017: Trump calls Putin, leaders look to work together on Syria, possibly meet in July

U.S. President Donald J. Trump at the White House and Russian President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg. (EPA and Sputnik photos)

President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin signaled improving prospects for cooperation in Syria in what the White House called a “very good” phone discussion that included a focus on setting up safe zones in the war-torn nation.

The Kremlin said the leaders also agreed in Tuesday’s call to try to set up their first in-person meeting in July, on the sidelines of an international summit in Germany. The White House later confirmed that information. Continue reading “Tue, May 2, 2017: Trump calls Putin, leaders look to work together on Syria, possibly meet in July”

Mon, May 1, 2017: Trump meets with community bankers, says he wants to cut government regulations

President Trump told a group of community bankers Monday that he is trying to cut the number of government regulations they have long protested, even as he floated the idea of breaking up bigger banks.

Speaking to some 100 members of the Independent Community Bankers of America gathered in a White House garden, Trump said attempts to repeal the Dodd-Frank bill that tightened regulations on various financial practices is also the start of a long-term effort to “roll back burdensome regulations” – many of them imposed by during President Obama’s administration. Continue reading “Mon, May 1, 2017: Trump meets with community bankers, says he wants to cut government regulations”

Mon, May 1, 2017: Trump signs Law Day proclamation, visits bankers association

10:30 am: Receives his daily intelligence briefing

11:30 am: Signs a Law Day proclamation

11:50 am: Drops by the Independent Community Bankers Association; Kennedy Garden

12:30 pm: Has lunch with Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and Secretary of Defense James Mattis; Presidential Dining Room

1:30 pm: Meets with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson