Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: April 2, 2018

Trump tweets "NO MORE DACA DEAL," China imposes tariffs on some U.S. goods in response to Trump's steel and aluminum levies, and more


Trump rescinds offer for DACA deal in Sunday tweet

President Trump on Twitter on Sunday rescinded his offer to work with Democrats to pass a law formalizing protections for young immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children. "Border Patrol Agents are not allowed to properly do their job at the Border because of ridiculous liberal (Democrat) laws like Catch & Release," he wrote. "Getting more dangerous. 'Caravans' coming. Republicans must go to Nuclear Option to pass tough laws NOW. NO MORE DACA DEAL!" Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was implemented by the Obama administration via executive order in 2012. Trump rescinded it in September and gave Congress until March 5 to renew the protections with a law. The deadline passed without a deal, though challenges to the order are still working their way through the courts.


China imposes tariffs on some U.S. goods in response to U.S. duties

China announced Sunday that it was imposing tariffs as high as 25 percent on 128 kinds of imported U.S. products, including meat and fruit, in retaliation for U.S. duties on imported steel and aluminum that took effect March 23. Chinese officials had warned for weeks that the response was coming. Beijing's move threatened to boost fears of a trade war between the world's two largest economies, after reports of behind-the-scenes talks had soothed investors in recent days. China's tariffs target just $3 billion in annual U.S. imports, a tiny fraction of the total, which reached $115.6 billion in 2016, but a bigger clash is looming over Trump's plans to raise duties on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods in response to Beijing's technology policies.


Ousted Veterans Affairs secretary says he didn't quit

Former Veterans Affairs secretary David Shulkin on Sunday contradicted the White House account of his departure, saying he did not voluntarily step down. "I would not resign, because I'm committed to making sure this job was seen through to the very end," Shulkin said on CNN's State of the Union with Jake Tapper. "I did not resign." The White House responded by reiterating that Shulkin left willingly, facing an ethics scandal and internal agency turmoil. The question of whether Shulkin quit or was fired could influence who runs the department until a replacement is confirmed. Shulkin also declined to give a full endorsement of Ronny Jackson, whom President Trump chose as his replacement. "The Senate has to make up their own mind," he said.


Author of new White House book says Conway 'No. 1 leaker'

Ronald Kessler, the author of the new book The Trump White House: Changing the Rules of the Game, said Sunday in an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper that Kellyanne Conway is the "No. 1 leaker" in the Trump White House. Kessler, whose book comes out Tuesday, told Tapper that in one interview Conway, Trump's counselor and former campaign manager, forgot she was on the record, and harshly criticized colleagues, saying "mean, cutting, and honestly untrue" things about former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. She also "dissed" the president's daughter, Ivanka Trump, and son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner. The White House made no immediate comment.


Hackers steal card numbers of Saks, Lord & Taylor customers

The Hudson's Bay Company, the Canadian corporation that owns the Saks and Lord & Taylor luxury department store chains, confirmed Sunday that it had been targeted in a massive cyberattack. A cybersecurity research firm said a well-known ring of hackers had obtained the credit and debit card numbers of five million customers. "We have become aware of a data security issue involving customer payment card data at certain Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Off 5th, and Lord & Taylor stores in North America," the company said in a statement. "We have identified the issue, and have taken steps to contain it."


Chinese space station crashes to Earth over South Pacific

China's defunct Tiangong-1 space station re-entered the Earth's atmosphere over the South Pacific on Monday morning, local time. The spacecraft is believed to have burned up on re-entry, with little chance of any damage on the Earth's surface, the China Manned Space Engineering Office said on its website. The 34-foot-long, 18,000 pound Tiangong-1 was launched in 2011, and was run by two separate crews of three astronauts each in 2012 and 2013. The Tiangong-1, or "Heavenly Palace," was intended as a first step toward China's plan to launch a permanent space lab in 2022. China announced in 2016 that the Tiangong-1 had ceased functioning, and went ahead with the launch of the Tiangong-2 months later.


Ruling party minister wins Costa Rica presidency in unexpected runoff landslide

Former governing party labor minister and novelist Carlos Alvarado Quesada won Costa Rica's presidential runoff election in a landslide on Sunday, defeating evangelical Christian singer and gay-marriage opponent Fabricio Alvarado Munoz. Polls had shown the rival candidates in a close race in recent weeks, but Carlos Alvarado, who backed a call for same-sex marriage, won with three-fifths of the vote. "Costa Rica once again delivered a beautiful democratic message," said Carlos Alvarado, 38, late Sunday. "What unites us is much greater than what divides us!" The current president, Luis Guillermo Solis of the center-left Citizen Action Party, was barred by law from seeking a second consecutive term.


Ex-Guatemalan ruler Gen. Efrain Rios Montt dies at 91

Former Guatemalan dictator Gen. Efrain Rios Montt died of a heart attack Sunday in Guatemala City. He was 91. Rios Montt was convicted in 2013 of trying to exterminate the Ixil ethnic group, a Mayan Indian community. During his reign in the 1980s, his forces wiped out entire Ixil villages. A judge found that Rios Montt had known about the massacres and done nothing to stop them, nor did he stem the bombings against survivors who fled into the mountains. The conviction was praised as a major human rights victory but it was promptly overturned. Rios Montt was being tried in absentia at the time of his death.


NYPD Blue, L.A. Law creator Steven Bochco dies at 74

Emmy-winning TV writer and producer Steven Bochco, the creator of Hill Street Blues and NYPD Blue, died Sunday morning, his family's spokesman told The Hollywood Reporter. He was 74. Bochco had leukemia, and spokesman Phillip Arnold said he "fought cancer with strength, courage, grace, and his unsurpassed sense of humor." The New York City native earned a theater degree from Carnegie Mellon University, but made his name in Hollywood as the creator of such hits as L.A. Law, Doogie Howser, M.D., and Murder in the First. Disney CEO Bob Iger, president of ABC when NYPD Blue started, said Bochco was a "visionary, a creative force, a risk taker, a witty urbane story teller with an uncanny ability to know what the world wanted."


Notre Dame wins NCAA women's basketball title with last-second shot

Notre Dame's Arike Ogunbowale, a second-team All-American, sank a three-pointer at the buzzer to give her team a 61-58 victory over Mississippi State in the finals of the NCAA women's basketball tournament on Sunday. It was the second title for the Fighting Irish, who also won in 2001 but lost four championship games over five years, from 2011 to 2015. It was the biggest comeback ever in the championship game, after Mississippi State was up 40-25 with six minutes to go in the third quarter. The Irish tied the game by scoring 16 of the last 17 points in that period.


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