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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- President Trump's address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night has drawn praise from pundits and fans on social media being more presidential than other speeches he has given since taking office.

There was a stark contrast between his congressional address -- during which he told Americans that the "time for trivial fighting is over" and asked them to "dream big" -- and his inaugural address 40 days earlier -- where he said that "American carnage stops right here" and talked about poverty, crimes, gangs and drugs.

A senior White House adviser said that the same roster of advisers who were involved in helping craft the inaugural speech were also involved in this speech. That said, the senior adviser confirmed to ABC News that while many people weighed in, policy adviser and frequent speechwriter Stephen Miller played a major role in the creation of Tuesday night’s speech.

Trump gathered with a key group of longtime advisers -- Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, spokeswoman Hope Hicks, senior adviser Jared Kushner, counselor Kellyanne Conway and Miller -- in the White House's map room on Tuesday, hours before the speech, the senior White House adviser told ABC News. They went around the room and offered suggestions to the draft, the adviser said.

White House officials say the change in tone is partly Trump realizing what is possible and understanding what he needs to do in order to get things done.

Just a few hours before the speech, Conway told Fox News that "it's a beautiful speech that will be delivered from the heart."

There could also be another untitled adviser who influenced the speech. A number of initiatives that Trump mentioned in his speech -- paid family leave, women's health, and clean air and water -- are close to his eldest daughter Ivanka’s heart.

It remains unclear what role she may have played in crafting the speech, however, there were two clear instances on Tuesday where her public presence was notable.

Earlier in the day, she was seen standing directly behind Trump when he signed two bills relating to helping promote women in science and technology fields and another bill relating to female entrepreneurship.

And then during Tuesday's speech, she was seated directly next to Carryn Owens, the widow of Navy SEAL William "Ryan" Owens, who was killed during a raid in Yemen in January.

Though Ivanka remains an informal adviser to her father and does not have an official White House role, she has been a regular presence throughout his term at both public events and behind the scenes. She and her husband, Jared, were in the car along with Donald and Melania Trump as they were shuttled to the Capitol, and it appeared that he was reading over some papers -- perhaps going through some last-minute speech prep.

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The White House has determined that Kellyanne Conway acted "inadvertently" and "without nefarious motive or intent" when she promoted Ivanka Trump's fashion line in an interview with Fox News last month, according to a White House letter to the Office of Government Ethics obtained by ABC News.

In a Feb. 28 letter to OGE Director Walter Shaub, White House deputy counsel Stefan Passantino said he met with Conway about the incident and briefed her on federal employee ethics laws.

"We concluded that Ms. Conway acted inadvertently and is highly unlikely to do so again," he wrote. "Ms. Conway has acknowledged her understanding of the Standards and has reiterated her commitment to abiding by them in the future."

After the incident last month, OGE sent a letter to the White House calling for an investigation and review of Conway's actions - which Shaub described as a "clear violation of the prohibition against misuse of position" - and recommended disciplinary action.

Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Maryland, the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, said the lack of disciplinary action is "a very bad sign."

"Other federal employees would likely be suspended for engaging in this conduct, and White House officials should not be held to a different standard," he said in a statement. "I hope that the President reconsiders his decision and that he and his staff will take their ethical obligations more seriously.”

While OGE can still recommend a specific penalty for Conway to the White House, that recommendation would be non-binding.

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US Congress(WASHINGTON) -- The Senate has confirmed another of President Donald Trump's Cabinet nominees, approving Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke by a 68-31 margin.

 

Congratulations to our new Secretary of @Interior, Ryan Zinke! pic.twitter.com/j4Tqcl5hmQ

— President Trump (@POTUS) March 1, 2017



The vote gives Zinke, a Republican congressman from Montana, responsibility to oversee 400 million acres of public land around the country.

Sixteen Democrats and one Independent joined the 51 voting Republicans to support Zinke's nomination. His confirmation means that 16 of Trump's 22 Cabinet and Cabinet-level nominations have now been confirmed.

Zinke, a 55-year-old former Navy SEAL, told The Montana Standard in October 2016 that he would "never agree with the transfer or sale of public lands."

"I view our public lands as sacred, and access to our public lands has to be part of it, because we're shutting gates, we're closing roads and the public is losing access," he said.

In a tweet earlier this year, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said that Zinke's nomination could "[endanger] our [national] treasures & outdoor economy."

Why House- & Interior nom Rep Zinke's- vote on public lands endangers our natl treasures & outdoor economy. https://t.co/f2j0napyHs

— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) January 5, 2017



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Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/Pool/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump delivered his first address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, addressing a host of familiar themes from his campaign and calling for unity to address a litany of issues that he says are plaguing the country.

Trump's call for an end to the "pure unadulterated division" and "trivial fights" comes in the wake of a bruising campaign and a tumultuous start to his presidency, squaring off against critics as well as waging a pitched battle against the media. The speech also comes amid a flurry of questions about alleged contacts between Trump associates and suspected Russian officials, which the president has derided as "fake news."

"The time for small thinking is over," Trump said. "The time for trivial fights is behind us. We just need the courage to share the dreams that fill our hearts. The bravery to express the hopes that stir our souls. And the confidence to turn those hopes and those dreams into action."

READ THE FULL TEXT: President Trump's joint address to Congress

Trump began the address by condemning the recent threats against Jewish centers and a suspected hate crime in Kansas. The president had drawn fire for not immediately addressing the Jewish Community Center incidents and not making public comments about the fatal Kansas shooting until Tuesday night's speech.

"Recent threats targeting Jewish community centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries as well as last week's shooting in Kansas City remind us that while we may be a nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all of its very ugly forms," Trump said.

One of the most emotional moments — and possibly the longest standing ovation of the speech — came when Trump praised Carryn Owens, the widow of Senior Chief William "Ryan" Owens who died in a raid in Yemen. The moment has been a political hot point since Owens' father Bill Owens and Sen. John McCain criticized the president's choice to execute the mission. but Trump used the speech to call it "a highly successful raid."

During the speech, Trump revisited what he called the movement that propelled him into the White House.

"In 2016, the earth shifted beneath our feet," he said. "The rebellion started as a quiet protest, spoken by families of all colors and creeds — families who just wanted a fair shot for their children, and a fair hearing for their concerns. But then the quiet voices became a loud chorus — as thousands of citizens now spoke out together, from cities small and large, all across our country."

"Above all else, we will keep our promises to the American people," Trump said.

Trump ran through a series of his biggest campaign promises during much of the speech, giving updates on what he and his team plan to do about them. He talked about how "we will soon begin the construction of a great, great wall along our southern border," and later talked about plans for "a new program of national rebuilding."

Fact-checking President Trump's congressional address

His call for Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare was met with one of the loudest responses, with Republicans standing while some Democrats were seen giving a thumbs down.

He made a push for unity later in the speech, saying that "everything that is broken in our country can be fixed."

"Every problem can be solved. And every hurting family can find healing, and hope. Our citizens deserve this, and so much more — so why not join forces and finally get the job done? And get it done right. On this and so many other things, Democrats and Republicans should get together and unite for the good of our country, and for the good of the American people," he said.

Trump touched on paid family leave, the need to make childcare more affordable, an effort to promote clean air and water — all issues that his daughter Ivanka has reportedly championed — as areas where Republicans and Democrats could work together, along with rebuilding the military and the country's infrastructure.

He went on to call education "the civil rights issue of our time" before asking Congress to fund an education bill that allows children school choice.

"Our children will grow up in a nation of miracles. But to achieve this future, we must enrich the mind — and the souls — of every American child," he said.

While Trump did talk about his administration's plans to build a "great, great" wall, a regular theme of his campaign, he did not talk about who would pay for it; he said regularly during the campaign that Mexico would pay for the wall and he has since wavered about when and by whom those payments would be made.

First Lady Melania Trump attended the speech along with hand-picked guests, including Maureen Scalia, the widow of late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Trump's eldest daughter, Ivanka, and her husband Jared Kushner, who is a senior advisor to the president, were also seated in the first lady's box.

A group of female House Democrats all chose to wear white in an act of support for women's rights. Their sartorial choice was particularly noticeable because they all sat together in the chamber.

On Monday, Trump's team sent out an email to supporters asking for their "input on the direction of our country" before what they called his State of the Union address.

The email called the speech "his biggest speech to date."


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ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Vice President Mike Pence Wednesday said "no one is going to fall through the cracks" in President Trump's plan to repeal and replace Obamacare amid fears that those who have health coverage now will lose it.

"What the president wants the Congress to do is to create a framework for people to be able to afford coverage," Pence said on ABC News' Good Morning America. "I think the president has made it clear, no one is going to fall through the cracks in this."

Trump reiterated his legislative agenda, which includes repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, during his first address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night. The president's call to repeal and replace Obamacare was met with boos and thumbs down from Democrats.

"Obamacare is collapsing and we must act decisively to protect all Americans," Trump said in his address Tuesday night. "So I am calling on all Democrats and Republicans in the Congress to work with us to save Americans from this imploding Obamacare disaster."

The speech has received mixed reactions from lawmakers. House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., called the president's address a "home run" in a statement, while House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., expressed the opposite sentiment, tweeting that Trump's speech "was utterly disconnected from the cruel reality of his conduct."

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said in an interview with GMA Wednesday morning that Trump was "totally detached" from his speech to Congress and "didn't make any of the tough decisions."

But Pence said the address shows the president is making good on his campaign promises.

"The candidate Donald Trump is the President Donald Trump," the former Indiana governor said on GMA.

"I think what you saw last night was the president acting on the priorities that he ran on."

 

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Trump administration plans to announce its revised executive order banning travel from several Muslim-majority countries Wednesday afternoon, multiple government officials tell ABC News.

ABC News previously reported that a draft of the new executive order does not automatically reject refugees from Syria, and clarifies that green card holders and dual citizens of the U.S. and the seven previously identified countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen — are exempt.

The officials declined to discuss specific details of the new order, and one official said its language was still changing as of Tuesday afternoon, a notion that runs counter to claims last week by White House press secretary Sean Spicer that the order was "finalized" and was "awaiting implementation."

"What we are doing is now in the implementation phase of working with the respective departments and agencies to make sure that when we execute this, it’s done in a manner that’s flawless," Spicer said last Thursday.

Officials also confirmed that the president plans to announce the new order from the Department of Justice alongside Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly.

Trump's previous order faced legal challenges almost immediately after its signing on Jan. 27. A federal judge in Washington State issued a temporary restraining order halting the order on February 3, a move that was later upheld by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Feb. 9.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Former Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear delivered the Democratic response to President Donald Trump's first address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday. Here is the full text of Beshear's remarks, as prepared for delivery. Beshear delivered the remarks from a diner in Lexington, Kentucky.

I’m Steve Beshear. I was governor of Kentucky from 2007 to 2015. Now, I’m a private citizen. I'm here in Lexington, Kentucky — some 400 miles from Washington — at a diner with some neighbors — Democrats and Republicans — where we just watched the president’s address. I’m a proud Democrat, but first and foremost, I'm a proud Republican and Democrat and mostly American.

And like many of you, I’m worried about the future of our nation.

Look, I grew up in Kentucky in a small town called Dawson Springs. My dad and granddad were Baptist preachers. My family owned a funeral home.

And my wife, Jane, and I have been married for almost 50 years.

I became governor at the start of the global recession, and after eight years we left things a lot better than we found them.

By being fiscally responsible — I even cut my own pay — we balanced our budget and turned deficits into surpluses without raising taxes.

We cut our unemployment rate in half.

We made huge gains in high school graduation rates.

And we found health coverage for over half a million Kentuckians.

We did that through trust and mutual respect.

I listened.

And I built partnerships with business leaders and with Republicans in our legislature.

We put people first and politics second.

The America I love allowed a small-town preacher’s kid to be elected governor, and it taught me to embrace people who are different from me, not vilify them.

The America I love has always been about looking forward, not backward ... about working together to find solutions, regardless of party, instead of allowing our differences to divide us and hold us back.

And we Democrats are committed to creating the opportunity for every American to succeed by growing our economy with good-paying jobs, educating and training our young people to fill those jobs, giving our businesses the freedom to innovate, keeping our country safe and providing health care that families can afford and rely on.

Mr. President, as a candidate, you promised to be a champion for families struggling to make ends meet ... and I hope you live up to that promise.

But one of your very first executive orders makes it harder for those families to even afford a mortgage.

Then you started rolling back rules that provide oversight of the financial industry and safeguard us against another national economic meltdown.

And you picked a Cabinet of billionaires and Wall Street insiders who want to eviscerate the protections that most Americans count on and that help level the playing field.

That’s not being our champion.

That’s being Wall Street’s champion.

And even more troubling — you and your Republican allies in Congress seem determined to rip affordable health insurance away from millions of Americans who most need it.

Does the Affordable Care Act need some repairs?

Sure it does.

But so far, every Republican idea to “replace” the Affordable Care Act would reduce the number of Americans covered, despite your promises to the contrary.

Mr. President, folks here in Kentucky expect you to keep your word. Because this isn’t a game — it’s life and death for people.

These ideas promise “access” to care but deny the importance of making care affordable and effective. They would charge families more for fewer benefits and put the insurance companies back in control.

Behind these ideas is the belief that folks at the lower end of the economic ladder just don’t deserve health care — that it’s somehow their fault that their employer doesn’t offer insurance or that they can’t afford to buy expensive health plans.

But just who are these 22 million Americans, including 500,000 people right here in Kentucky, who now have health care that didn’t have it before?

Look, they're not aliens from some distant planet.

They’re our friends and our neighbors.

We sit in the bleachers with them on Friday night. We worship in the pews with them on Sunday morning.

They’re farmers, restaurant workers, part-time teachers, nurses’ aides, construction workers and entrepreneurs working at high-tech start-ups.

And before the Affordable Care Act, they woke up every morning and went to work, just hoping and praying they wouldn’t get sick. Because they knew that they were just one bad diagnosis away from bankruptcy.

You know, in 2010, this country made a commitment: that every American deserved health care they could afford and rely on.

And we Democrats are going to do everything in our power to keep President Trump and the Republican Congress from reneging on that commitment.

But we’re going to need your help...by speaking out.

Another commitment now being tested is to our national security.

Make no mistake, I’m a military veteran myself and I know that protecting America is a president’s highest duty.

Yet, President Trump is ignoring serious threats to our national security from Russia, who’s not our friend — while alienating our allies, who’ve fought with us side by side and are our friends in a dangerous world.

His approach makes us less safe and should worry every freedom-loving American.

Instead, President Trump has all but declared war on refugees and immigrants.

Look, the president can and should enforce our immigration laws.

But we can protect America without abandoning our principles and our moral obligation to help those fleeing war and terror...without tearing families apart...and without needlessly jeopardizing our military men and women fighting overseas.

You know, another Republican president, Ronald Reagan, once said, “In America, our origins matter less than our destination, and that is what democracy is all about.”

President Trump also needs to understand that people may disagree with him from time to time — but that doesn’t make them his enemies.

When the president attacks the loyalty and credibility of our intelligence agencies, the court system, the military, the free press, individual Americans — simply because he doesn’t like what they say — he is eroding our democracy.

And that’s reckless.

Real leaders don’t spread derision and division.

Real leaders strengthen. They unify, they partner and they offer real solutions instead of ultimatums and blame.

Look, I may be old-fashioned but I still believe that dignity, compassion, honesty and accountability are basic American values.

And as a Democrat, I believe that if you work hard, you deserve the opportunity to realize the American Dream — regardless of whether you’re a coal miner in Kentucky, a teacher in Rhode Island, an autoworker in Detroit or a software engineer in San Antonio.

Our political system is broken. It's broken because too many of our leaders think it's all about them.

They need to remember that they work for us and helping us is their work.

Kentucky made real progress while I was governor because we were motivated by one thing: Helping families.

Democrats are trying to bring that same focus back to Washington, D.C.

Americans are a diverse people. We may disagree on a lot of things ... but we’ve always come together when we remember that we are one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Thank you.

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images(CHICAGO) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel slammed President Trump Tuesday night for his remarks during his joint address to Congress about the Windy City's murder rate.

"We have repeatedly made specific requests of the administration for greater law enforcement integration and resources; a higher priority placed on federal gun prosecutions; and funds restored toward mentoring and after-school and summer jobs programs that have proven to be positive alternatives for our young people,” Emanuel said in a statement following Trump's address. "Because this is so important, I’ll always be ready with this list whenever the President asks."

Emanuel added, "The better question, I’d suggest, is whether the President cares enough about violence in our city to do more than talk or tweet about it."

During his address, while calling out the scourge of violence in the U.S., Trump said, "In Chicago, more than 4,000 people were shot last year alone — and the murder rate so far this year has been even higher ... This is not acceptable in our society."

It's not the first time Trump has been critical of Chicago or its leaders.

In a tweet last month, Trump said, “If Chicago doesn't fix the horrible "carnage" going on ... I will send in the Feds!"

If Chicago doesn't fix the horrible "carnage" going on, 228 shootings in 2017 with 42 killings (up 24% from 2016), I will send in the Feds!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 25, 2017

In a subsequent interview with ABC News' David Muir, Trump reiterated his point, saying that Chicago's leadership was “not doing the job."

"Now, if they want help, I would love to help them. I will send in what we have to send in," he said.

Last week, Trump tweeted, "Seven people shot and killed yesterday in Chicago. What is going on there — totally out of control. Chicago needs help!"

Seven people shot and killed yesterday in Chicago. What is going on there - totally out of control. Chicago needs help!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2017

In response, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said in a statement last week that while the violence there was "unacceptable to me, to the Mayor and to everyone who lives in Chicago," he hadn't heard from the White House about appeals the city had made for help.

"We've made requests to the White House and the Justice Department for them to support our work — from increasing federal gun prosecution to more FBI, DEA and ATF agents to more funding for mentoring, job training and more,” his statement read. “We are still waiting for the administration's response to our request."

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- President Donald Trump, who staked his campaign on a hard-line approach to illegal immigration, now says he is open to considering possible legal status for some undocumented
immigrants as part of a compromise to overhaul the nation’s immigration system.

“The time is right for an immigration bill, as long as there is compromise on both sides,” Trump told news anchors and correspondents attending a White House luncheon today.

The president is floating the idea ahead of his first address to a joint session of Congress tonight, signaling a willingness to negotiate on an issue that has pitted Democrats against some
Republicans for years. It was not immediately clear whether the president would raise the issue in his speech.

Trump indicated openness to moving beyond a strict focus on law enforcement to addressing the legal status of some of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. – including a
possible path to citizenship for “DREAMers,” who were brought to the country illegally as children.

“They shouldn't be very worried. They are here illegally. They shouldn't be very worried. I do have a big heart. We're going to take care of everybody,” Trump told ABC News' David Muir in his first
televised White House interview in January.

“Now we have criminals that are here. We have really bad people that are here. Those people have to be worried 'cause they're getting out. We're gonna get them out. We're gonna get 'em out fast,”
he added.

Trump campaigned as a “law and order” candidate, vowing strict enforcement of existing immigration laws and sweeping effort to step up deportations. The Department of Homeland Security last week
issued a directive to initiate stricter enforcement measures.

The White House is also preparing to unveil a new, revised executive order restricting travel and immigration from seven majority Muslim countries after the original order was put on hold by a
federal court. That order could come down as early as Wednesday.

The president has said he is most sympathetic to the plight of "DREAMers," saying at a press conference earlier this month that he finds it “very, very hard doing what the law says exactly to do."

“I's a very difficult thing for me because, you know, I love these kids. I love kids,” he said.

Immigrant advocates reacted cautiously to the president’s comments.

“We are not ready to praise him or Republicans,” said Cesar Vargas, director of the Dream Action Coalition in a statement. “Before Trump can be taken seriously, we need to see details.”

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Ingram Publishing/iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The full details of President Trump’s budget aren’t even out yet, and already the blowback against the White House is, in a word, tremendous.

Former top military leaders who served on the frontlines and congressional leaders in the president’s party are all speaking out, trying to stop the administration from slashing funds for foreign
aid and American diplomacy.

"It's going nowhere," Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said of the likelihood that Congress would approved such a budget.

The White House announced Monday that it wants a 10 percent increase in military spending, roughly equal to $54 billion, with an equal amount of cuts from the “non-defense” budget -- historic
levels not seen since the early Reagan administration.

Executive agencies, including the State Department, are reviewing the plan now before the White House submits a final budget to Congress by March 16, but there have been reports that the plan could
include up to a 30 percent cut to the State Department’s budget or the elimination of whole divisions, such as the envoys for climate change and anti-Semitism.

While the administration gave no details, Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget, said foreign aid would be a top priority to cut.

“The president said we're going to spend less money overseas and spend more of it here. That's going to be reflected with the number we send to the State Department,” Mulvaney said Monday.

The State Department wouldn’t confirm any numbers, but acting spokesman Mark Toner said in a statement, “The Department is working with the White House and OMB to review its budget priorities ...
[and] remains committed to a U.S. foreign policy that advances the security and prosperity of the American people."

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with Trump at the White House on Monday, but it remains unclear how hard the former businessman will push back on proposed cuts. The budget for the State
Department and foreign aid together totaled $50.1 billion last year.

But the White House proposal drew a sharp response from even Republicans on the Hill.

Sen. Graham blasted the idea, telling reporters it would not stand a chance in Congress.

“This budget destroys soft power, it puts our diplomats at risk, and it's going nowhere,” he said today. “Clearly they don't understand how soft power is essential to winning the war.”

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., a foreign policy hawk like Graham, tweeted his opposition as well.

“Foreign Aid is not charity. We must make sure it is well spent, but it is less than 1% of budget & critical to our national security,” the former Republican presidential candidate wrote.

Over 120 retired senior military leaders also wrote a letter to Congress, urging it to save the State Department’s budget out of “our strong conviction that elevating and strengthening diplomacy
and development alongside defense are critical to keeping America safe.”

“Many of the crises our nation faces do not have military solutions alone,” they wrote, highlighting the foreign service’s non-military counter-terror tools and calling for “strong civilian
partners in the battle against the drivers of extremism -- lack of opportunity, insecurity, injustice, and hopelessness.”

They also cited foreign aid’s role in addressing other challenges, from efforts to prevent and contain epidemics like Ebola, to support for fragile but vital ally governments or the world’s 21
million refugees.

“Now is not the time to retreat,” wrote the military leaders, including David Petraeus, the former top commander in Iraq and Afghanistan and CIA director. Most recently, he was considered for
national security adviser, meeting with President Trump but ultimately withdrawing his name.

The list also includes prominent leaders like former National Security Agency and Cyber Command chief Keith Alexander, former top Iraq war commander George Casey, former top Afghan war commander
John Allen, and former Marine Corps commandants James Conway, Michael Hagee and Charles Krulak.

Almost all of the signatories to the letter are not politically involved, but two were big Trump critics: John Allen, was a vocal Hillary Clinton campaign supporter, and Michael Hayden, who was
George W. Bush’s CIA director and was a Never Trumper.

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US Congress(WASHINGTON) -- For 29 years, Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., has camped out in the House chamber ahead of a presidential address to Congress -- spending hours saving an aisle seat to greet the president as he entered and exited the chamber.

But on Tuesday, the notorious "aisle hog" announced that he would be breaking his tradition, and skip taking an aisle seat to wish President Trump well as he addresses Congress for the first time tonight.

Engel, the ranking member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said he made the decision in response to Trump's policies on refugees, criticism of the media and praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"I have deep respect for the Presidency, and I will attend the joint session. But that respect between branches must be mutual," Engel said on the House floor Tuesday.

"This goes beyond ideological and political differences. The President needs to work with all people. And therefore, I will listen to what he has to say today, but I will not greet him and shake his hand," he added.

In 2015, Engel told ABC News he enjoys sitting in the aisle of the House chamber and being in the middle of the action.

“When it happens, it’s electrifying. There’s so much energy, it’s wonderful to be a part of it,” he said at the time.

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US Congress(WASHINGTON) -- A liberal House Democrat from California plans to skip President Donald Trump's address to Congress Tuesday evening.

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., the ranking member on the House Financial Services Committee, told House Democrats Tuesday morning that she will not attend the speech because she doesn't think she would be able to control herself, according to Democrats in the room for the caucus meeting.

"The president is not going to say what I want him to say," Waters told ABC News in an interview after the meeting. "He's gonna take credit for everything."

Waters has emerged as one of Trump's loudest critics on Capitol Hill. She has called his team a "bunch of scumbags" and said he is "leading himself" to impeachment.

Overall, Democrats have little appetite for causing a ruckus similar to GOP Rep. Joe Wilson's outburst against President Obama in 2009. The South Carolina congressman's "You Lie!" moment in response to a comment from Obama about health care was swiftly condemned on Capitol Hill as a breach of decorum.

House Democratic Caucus Chairman Joe Crowley, D-N.Y., said he doesn't anticipate any organized protests during the remarks tonight from Democrats -- though some will be wearing commemorative pins.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and other Democrats are wearing white as a tribute to women's rights and the suffragettes.

"We're taking the Michelle Obama" route, Rep. Lois Frankel, D-Fla., said. "We're going to be as dignified as possible under the circumstances."

"I think we intend to be polite, and listen and obviously comment afterwards," said Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif. "There is a place for torches and pitchforks but not in the House of Representatives."

Kentucky Rep. John Yarmuth, who, like Waters, skipped Trump's inauguration, plans to attend the speech Tuesday night to "show solidarity with my fellow Democrats."

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- President Trump responded to the father calling for an investigation of his Navy SEAL son's death in a Yemen military raid, expressing sympathy for the service member's family but defending the mission as one "that started before I got here."

"This was something that they were looking at for a long time doing," the president said in an interview with Fox & Friends that aired Tuesday morning. "And according to Gen. [James] Mattis it was a very successful mission. They got tremendous amounts of information."

"This was a mission that started before I got here," Trump said.

The January raid in Yemen resulted in the death of Navy SEAL William "Ryan" Owens, 36, and injuries to three other Navy SEALS. Fourteen militants were killed in the raid. U.S. Central Command also said in early February that "civilian noncombatants likely were killed," and that may have included children.

Owens' father, Bill, told the Miami Herald in a recent interview that he did not want to meet Trump when the president attended Owens' dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware on Feb. 1.

“I told them I didn’t want to make a scene about it, but my conscience wouldn’t let me talk to him,” Bill Owens told the Florida newspaper on Friday.

The father also called for an investigation into his son's death and additionally said he was troubled by Trump's treatment of the Khans, a Gold Star family of a Muslim soldier killed in Iraq.

Trump said in the interview with Fox News Tuesday, "I was at the airport when the casket came in, the body came in and it was very sad with the family and it's a great family - incredible wife and children. I met most of the family."

"And I can understand people saying that. I would feel -- I would feel what's worse? There is nothing worse," Trump said.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said during Monday's press briefing that the administration continues to be "very comfortable" with the Yemen raid.

"We're very comfortable with how the mission was executed and, you know, we'll let the Department of Defense go through that review process," Spicer said.

Spicer added there will be a three-pronged investigation done by the Department of Defense.

U.S. Central Command confirmed Sunday that there is what is called a 15-6 investigation underway into Owen’s death, which is standard for the death of any deployed U.S. military service member. U.S. Central Command is also conducting a review known as a credibility assessment into civilian casualties during the raid.

The president in the Fox News interview on Tuesday went after Arizona Sen. John McCain for his criticism of the Yemen mission.

“I felt badly when a young man dies, and John McCain said that was a failed mission,” Trump said. “I thought it was inappropriate that he goes to foreign soil and he criticizes our government.”

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Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — President Trump's budget plan sends a "very powerful message" that he wants to move spending "from overseas to back in this country," Mick Mulvaney, the administration's Office of Management and Budget Director, said on ABC's Good Morning America Tuesday.

"The president is doing what he'd say he'd do when he ran," Mulvaney said to ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos. "What you see in this budget is exactly what the president ran on."

Mulvaney, a former South Carolina congressman and favorite of Tea Party Republicans, was sworn in earlier this month after being confirmed by a narrow 51-49 vote in the GOP-controlled Senate.

Stephanopoulos asked Mulvaney on GMA if the president would also try to reduce the federal deficit and how he could do that if he greatly boosts military spending without touching Social Security or Medicare.

Mulvaney said that subject will require "bigger discussions for another day."


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MIKE THEILER/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Angry social media users flew into an uproar Monday evening after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos issued a statement that some said ignored the context under which historically black universities were created.

The statement called historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) “real pioneers when it comes to school choice,” and came shortly after President Donald Trump held a meeting with several HBCU leaders on Monday.

Some social media users said DeVos ignored the history of how black Americans were denied access to higher education. Meanwhile, others said the statement applauded the segregated Jim Crow education system for giving black students “more options.”

The hashtag “HBCUs” trended on Monday evening and was briefly the most-mentioned hashtag on the social networking platform.

Some argued that the statement presents HBCUs as if they were created as a better option to traditionally white universities. The Department of Education lays out on its website that HBCUs were established because “there was no structured higher education system for black students.”

“At a time when many schools barred their doors to black Americans, these colleges offered the best, and often the only, opportunity for a higher education," the Department of Education notes on its website.

President Trump has said he will help HBCUs as a part of his so-called New Deal For Black America plan.

Trump is expected to sign an executive order on historically black colleges and universities later on Tuesday.

Thank you to the great presidents of our #HBCUs for their commitment to higher education. Read more here: https://t.co/m2Adyvvu6a pic.twitter.com/zjXWSX9cdE

— President Trump (@POTUS) February 28, 2017

A senior White House official says this move will reposition an existing initiative on HBCUs and allow it to work with all the different executive agencies and “serve as a strategic partner to the president’s urban agenda,” with the full force of the White House behind it.

However, the official said the order should be viewed as more of a framework and “infrastructure” and not a policy roll-out, which will come at a later time.

This #BlackHistoryMonth, @POTUS & I thank the presidents of our Historically Black Colleges & Universities for their commitment to higher ed pic.twitter.com/HPBrAgh9Ti

— Vice President Pence (@VP) February 27, 2017

DeVos is delivering the keynote address Tuesday at an HBCU event at the Library of Congress.

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