Wednesday’s Mini-Report, 8.29.18

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Trade: “An independent trade panel on Wednesday derailed the Trump administration’s push to impose tariffs on imports of newsprint from Canada, handing a significant win to U.S. newspapers, union groups and scores of lawmakers who pressed for the change. The 5-0 decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission marks a significant win for newspapers that were reeling from increased costs of up to 30 percent for a core product.”

* An appeal worth watching: “Republican officials from 16 states are urging the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a lower court ruling that a transgender woman who was fired after coming out to her boss was unlawfully discriminated against, and rule that federal civil rights law does not provide protections on the basis of gender identity.”

* If recent history is any guide, the White House will badly misstate what this means: “Gross domestic product expanded at a 4.2% annual pace in the second quarter, up from a preliminary estimate of 4.1%, the government said. GDP is the official measuring stick for the U.S. economy.”

* Collins may regret this one: “Federal prosecutors offered Rep. Chris Collins a plea deal before indicting him on felony insider trading charges earlier this month, but the Republican from Clarence rejected it, two sources who asked not to be identified told The Buffalo News.”

* Hmm: “The U.S. Justice Department is investigating whether a fugitive Malaysian financier laundered tens of millions of dollars through two associates and used the funds to pay a U.S. legal team that includes former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and a lawyer who represents President Trump, according to people familiar with the matter.”

* Playing with fire: “President Trump, who levied extraordinary public attacks on Attorney General Jeff Sessions in recent weeks, has privately revived the idea of firing him in conversations with his aides and personal lawyers this month, according to three people familiar with the discussions.”

* This won’t end well: “Mexico’s foreign minister denied Tuesday that his country would pay for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, after President Donald Trump once again told reporters it would happen.”

* A whole lot of Republicans want to blame the opioid epidemic on Medicaid expansion. Don’t believe them.

* Another one: “[T]he Department of Homeland Security has denounced ‘all forms of violent extremism’ following the resignation of a policy analyst who had connections with white nationalists, according to leaked emails obtained by The Atlantic.”

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.