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Tuesday's Mini-Report, 1.24.17

Today's edition of quick hits.
Today's edition of quick hits:* Environmentalists who voted for Jill Stein may be having second thoughts today: "President Donald Trump signed a series of executive orders Tuesday to advance the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines. Trump signed a total of five orders regarding environmental issues in the Oval Office, including a pair addressing the pipeline projects as well as actions to expedite environmental reviews for high priority projects."* China: "A day after White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer vowed that the United States would stand up to China's military expansion in the South China Sea, officials [in Beijing] are firing back."* The consequences of the U.S. election: "Israel on Tuesday unveiled plans for 2,500 housing units in the West Bank, the second announcement of new construction in the occupied territory since President Donald Trump took office."* Brexit hits a possible hurdle: "It remains unclear whether Prime Minister Theresa May's plans or timetable for taking Britain out of the European Union will be altered by the Supreme Court's ruling on Tuesday that she must secure Parliament's approval before beginning the process. Most analysts, even those who opposed 'Brexit,' as the departure from the bloc is known, doubt that it will."* On a related note: "In a call with EU leadership, Trump transition officials asked which country would be next to leave the bloc, the departing U.S. ambassador to the EU, Anthony Gardner, said Friday. He suggested the call pointed to a Euroskeptic outlook within the new administration."* Mosul: "American-backed forces in Iraq have been keen to champion their imminent capture of the eastern half of ISIS stronghold Mosul. But humanitarian groups warned Tuesday that there are still hundreds of thousands of people in the besieged area facing severe food, water, fuel and medical shortages."* The year's least surprising news: "The F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, told his top agents from around the country that he had been asked by President Trump to stay on the job running the federal government's top law enforcement agency, according to people familiar with the matter."* Minnesota: "Gov. Mark Dayton, who collapsed Monday night during his annual State of the State address, said Tuesday that he's been diagnosed with prostate cancer and will be treated at the Mayo Clinic."* Maybe the Defense Secretary should talk to his boss? "Defense Secretary James Mattis, on his first full day in office Monday, called NATO allies and assured them of the U.S. commitment to the alliance, a notable stand that differs from the occasional skepticism of the organization voiced by President Trump."* Republican lawmakers in South Dakota "are ready to declare a legislative emergency so that they quickly and completely wipe out an ethics and campaign finance reform law adopted by popular vote in November."* Cabinet news from last night: "President Trump's cabinet continued to take shape on Monday, as Representative Mike Pompeo of Kansas earned approval to lead the Central Intelligence Agency and Rex W. Tillerson, the secretary of state nominee, cleared a key Senate hurdle to all but assure his own confirmation."* An interesting controversy: "President Donald Trump's pick for U.S. trade czar represented the Brazilian government during a trade dispute with American industry three decades ago, an issue that could complicate his confirmation under U.S. law."* Seems like a career-killer: "A senior U.S. Secret Service agent posted Facebook condemnations of President Trump during the past seven months, including one in which she said she wouldn't want to 'take a bullet' for him. She explained herself saying she viewed his presidential candidacy as a 'disaster' for the country, and especially for women and minorities."Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.