Missouri's Governor Resigns, Talking Trade With China, Will We or Won't We Have a Summit with North Korea? and A Racist Tweet

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens (R) resigned today. In a statement from the Governor's office Greitens said, “Today, I am announcing that I will resign as governor of Missouri effective Friday, June 1st, at 5 p.m.” Greitens was indicted this past February for alleged invasion of privacy over accusations that he’d had an affair with a woman whom he took photos of. The allegation further contends that Greitens then used those photos as blackmail. A Missouri house committee reported in April that Greitens had also engaged in inappropriate sexual conduct with a woman in March of 2015. The woman anonymously testified that she performed oral sex on Greitens because she thought “that would allow me to leave” and feared for her “physical self.” Greitens is not only being charged for sexual misconduct, this past April he was charged with his second felony charge for allegedly  obtaining using a donor list from his charity for campaign fundraising. Last week Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker was appointed to be the special prosecutor for Greitens case.

In an attempt to protect U.S. intellectual property Trump announced this morning he would be punishing China with broad investment restrictions, litigation at the World Trade Organization and hefty tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods. This announcement comes a week after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the trade war was “on hold”. At the beginning of May officials from the Trump administration traveled to China to discuss tariffs. Two weeks later the visit was reciprocated by a Chinese delegation visiting Washington. It was announced after this series of meetings that Beijing would buy significantly more U.S. agricultural and energy products in a bid to reduce the bilateral trade deficit, and they said they established a framework for addressing technology trade irritants.“We’re putting the trade war on hold,” Mnuchin said at the close of those meetings on May 20. “Right now, we have agreed to put tariffs on hold while we try to execute the framework.” The announcement today was three pronged; first the tariffs which scheduled to be announced in full on June 15th, they are reportedly targeted specifically at Chinese imports “containing industrially significant technology, including those related to the ‘Made in China 2025’ program”. Next, on June 30th the administration is scheduled to announce investment restrictions and strengthened export controls targeted to curb Chinese acquisition of “industrially significant” technology. Finally, litigation which began back in March at the World Trade Organization will continue. The Case was first brought up do to accusations that China’s intellectual property practices violate international trade law.

This past Thursday Trump announced that he was canceling the nuclear summit with North Korea which had been scheduled for June 12th in Singapore. Trump wrote a letter to Kim which stated; "Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting”. In a statement of response North Korean President, Moon Jae-in stated; “It is very regretful and disconcerting that the US-NK summit will not happen as planned. Denuclearization and the lasting peace on the Korean peninsula cannot be abandoned or delayed as they are the historical assignment. The sincerity of the affected parties who have been working to resolve the problem has not changed. It is hard to resolve sensitive and difficult diplomatic issues with the current way of communications. (We) hope that the leaders resolve problems through direct and close dialogue”. Less than a week later, the summit may be back on. There are reports coming from the White House that they are once again scrambling to move forward with the June 12th meeting. Top national security staff  have come forward with concerns that there isn't enough time to prepare, but this does not seem to worry Trump as he continues to push to the meeting to be rescheduled.

It is no secret that issues of race remain prevalent in the United States. Back in April two black men were arrested in a Philadelphia Starbucks - the manager of the store had called the police after the two men declined to make a purchase, explaining they were waiting for a business associate. Today Starbucks locations across the country will closed their doors this afternoon to train 175,000 employees about racial bias. Simultaneously as baristas were undergoing training, ABC cancelled its hit sitcom "Roseanne". The network took swift action after Roseanne Barr herself published a racially insensitive remark on Twitter. The network  went momentarily silent today before issuing their response and ultimately stated that "It's a question of right and wrong. And it's a question of our company's values”. ICM Partners, Barr’s talent agency also dropped her as a client. Barr deleted the tweet and followed up with an apology stating, “I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste”. This is not the first time Barr has received criticism for her tweets, she has been caught in several controversial Twitter remarks including posts about pro-Trump conspiracy theories.