DC Daily: Guam's governor says he's 'never felt' safer
Mark Saunders, Scripps
8:02 AM, Aug 12, 2017
6:05 AM, Aug 13, 2017
Here's what's happening in the political world today, Saturday, Aug. 12.
Guam Governor: "I have never felt more safe or confident" with President Trump
-- President Donald Trump called the leaders of China and Guam Friday to offer assurances over growing tensions between North Korea and the United States.
Guam's Governor Eddie Baza Calvo posted an excerpt of his call with the president on Facebook.
"Good morning...It's great to speak to you and I just wanted to pay my respects and we are with you 1000 percent, you are safe, we are with you 1000 percent," President Trump said.
Gov. Calvo went on to express his faith in President Trump's handling of the North Korea threat.
"Mr. President as the Governor of Guam representing the people of Guam and as an American citizen, I have never felt more safe or more confident with you at the helm," Gov. Calvo said during the call. "With all the criticism going over there, from a guy that's being targeted we need a president like you."
Japan has also deployed their missile interception system to military bases, video showed Saturday.
Chinese President Xi Jinping also called for restraint Saturday, according to CNN, during a phone call with President Trump. Trump reportedly urged China to exert more pressure on North Korea, but with little success.
Trump also informed Jinping of intentions to announce an investigation into Chinese trade practices this week.
-- Rep. Keith Ellison, the Democratic National Committee's deputy chairman, lashed out across the aisle, calling the Republican Party "the party of racism" at a conference Friday.
Ellison was speaking as part of a panel at the Netroots Nation conference, according to CNN.
"You hear Republicans say, 'We're the party of Lincoln.' He wouldn't recognize these people," Ellison, a congressman from Minnesota, said. "The fact is that the Republican Party today is the party of racism. Now I'm not saying every Republican is a racist, but I'm saying their party does hold that up.
"...It is the Republican Party in 2017 that says, 'wall them off, ban them out, no transgender in the military.' If it's mean, if it's racist, if it's greedy, it's coming from them."
Ellison also addressed the DNC scandal that leaders favored Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential primaries, a revelation that forced out then-DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
"We will be scrupulously neutral," Ellison said. "If you hear the Democratic Party is helping out some incumbent or not playing straight and fair, then I would like to know about it."
How involved is Congress with North Korea? Not much, some say...
-- Democratic congressional leaders say the engagement from White House to Congress over North Korea tensions has been minimal - and that's concerning.
"We are not receiving updates or briefings at all. The legislative branch of the US government is hearing about these developments on Twitter at the same time as Kim Jong Un," Ben Marter, a spokesman for the Senate's No. 2 Democrat, Dick Durbin of Illinois, told CNN.
There has reportedly been some discussion, however, with the intelligence committee and the "Gang of Eight" — the Republican and Democrat leaders of House and Senate and the intelligence committees briefed on intelligence matters.
A Senate intelligence committee source told CNN the intelligence community has held a series of briefings on the threat. The source said the committee had not heard from the White House or National Security Council.
An aide to House Speaker Paul Ryan told CNN the "Gang of Eight" is "briefed and updated regularly from all relevant departments and agencies as well as the White House."