Here is the latest news from The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is marking his 100th day in office by talking tough on trade. The White House says the president will sign an executive order Saturday that will direct his Commerce Department and the U.S. trade representative to perform a comprehensive study of the nation’s trade agreements. The venue for the signing of the executive order is a shovel factory in Pennsylvania’s Cumberland County. In the evening, the president will appear at a rally in Harrisburg.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – North Korean test-fired a mid-range ballistic missile, though for the third time this month it ended in failure, according the U.S. and South Korea. Still it was a clear message of defiance by Pyongyang as U.S. supercarrier dispatched to the region in a show of force began joint drills in nearby waters. President Donald Trump said Saturday’s test disrespected China.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The latest unorthodox execution involving a disputed sedative likely will influence arguments in a rare hearing later this year by a federal appeals court. The effectiveness of midazolam (mih-DAY’-zoh-lam) has been questioned following executions in Ohio, Arizona and now Arkansas. The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals plans to hear a challenge by Ohio death row inmates of the state’s new three-drug method, which inmates say could lead to a substantial risk of harm.
UNDATED (AP) – Experts say Arkansas will have a harder time getting more lethal injection drugs after an unprecedented court challenge by a drug distributor and possible complications during at least one of the four executions the state carried out this month. Arkansas’ remaining supply of midazolam expires Sunday, and it’s not known where the state will be able to obtain more.
CAIRO (AP) – Pope Francis is leaving a military run stadium in Cairo where he led Mass for some 15,000 Egyptian Catholics on the second and final day of a historic visit to Egypt, where Christians have been targeted by Islamic militants. The Mass was conducted in Latin, Italian and Arabic amid scenes of jubilation and tight security, with police out in force and helicopters hovering over the site. Members of the congregation waved Holy See and Egyptian flags and swayed to the music of hymns.
China Won’t Confirm Sanction Threat…Arkansas Execution Under Investigation…US Economy Slows
BEIJING (AP) – China’s foreign ministry has refused to confirm or deny U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s assertion that Beijing has threatened to impose unilateral sanctions on North Korea if it conducts further nuclear tests. Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang repeatedly avoided giving a direct answer when asked about the matter at a daily press briefing. Tillerson said Thursday that Beijing told the U.S. it had informed North Korea China would respond to a test by “taking sanctions actions on their own.”
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – America’s top Pacific commander is confident in the ability of a contentious U.S. missile defense system soon to operate in South Korea to shoot down North Korean missiles. But like nearly everything associated with the world’s last Cold War standoff, the truth is muddier.
VARNER, Ark. (AP) – The last of four Arkansas executions over an eight-day period has prompted calls for an investigation after the inmate lurched and convulsed while strapped to the gurney. An Associated Press reporter who witnessed Kenneth Williams’ execution Thursday said that about three minutes into the lethal injection, his body jerked 15 times in quick succession. He lurched violently against the leather chest restraint, then the rate slowed for a final five movements.
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump seems destined to serve his 100th day in office without House passage of a major Republican health care bill or enactment of a budget financing the government for the rest of this year. But at least the government probably won’t be shut down – for at least another week. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy says the House won’t vote on the health care measure until at least next week. Trump’s 100th day in office is Saturday.
WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy likely slowed significantly in the first three months of the year, though economists foresee a sharp rebound in the current April-June quarter. On Friday, the government will release its first of three estimates of growth for the January-March quarter as measured by the gross domestic product. The expectation is that annualized GDP growth will amount to around 1 percent – less than half the 2.1 percent gain in the previous quarter.
Trump Won’t Pull Out of NAFTA…Agreement Close on Spending Bill…Trump Wants to “Break Up” 9th Circuit
WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House says President Donald Trump has told the leaders of Canada and Mexico that at least for now he won’t pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement. The surprise announcement came just hours after administration officials said Trump was considering a draft executive order to get out. The White House also says the U.S., Mexico and Canada are taking steps to renegotiate NAFTA to “the benefit of all three countries.”
UNDATED (AP) – As President Donald Trump marks his first 100 days in office, he is vowing to keep his campaign promise to build a wall along the border with Mexico. Physical barriers have proven effective at protecting borders around the world. But they can also have unwanted consequences, destroying city neighborhoods, harming the environment and preventing innocent victims from reaching safety.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Lawmakers and the White House are nearing agreement on a $1 trillion spending bill days ahead of a government shutdown deadline – and President Trump’s 100th day in office. The latest progress came after the White House backed off a threat to withhold payments for lower-income Americans under the Affordable Care Act.
DALLAS (AP) – Passengers on future United Airlines flights will be given more of an incentive to give up their seats when the plane is oversold. The airline says it’s raising the limit paid to willing customers to $10,000. The change in policy comes following the April 9 incident in which a 69-year-old passenger was violently removed from a United Express plane in Chicago to help make room for four Republic Airline employees whose plane was delayed because of a mechanical problem.
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump says he’s considered breaking up the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. When asked during a White House interview by the Washington Examiner if he had thought about proposals to break up the court, Trump replied “absolutely, I have.” Trump added, “There are many people that want to break up the 9th Circuit. It’s outrageous.” The comments echoed his Twitter criticism of the court Wednesday.