Day 50: Fri., March 10
• The Bureau of Labor Statistics issues latest jobs report: U.S. employers added 235,000 jobs in February.
• At the White House press briefing, Press Secretary Sean Spicer clarifies Trump’s frequent criticisms of the BLS jobs reports being “phony.”: “I talked to the president prior to this, and he said to quote him very clearly, ‘They may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now.’”
• LOCAL: Pittsburgh printing company Cotton Bureau finds big success with “resistance” T-shirts, plus a cease-and-desist letter for a popular tee.
• Reversing January’s decline, Ivanka Trump’s clothing line sees a surge in online sales in February.
• The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that at the recent Mercer County Republican PA Lincoln dinner, Republican Congressman Mike Kelly (Butler) offered his theory why former President Obama is staying in Washington, D.C.: “He is there for one purpose and for one purpose only. And that is to run a shadow government that is going to totally upset the new agenda.”
• “I think one of your children has just walked in.” Video of Pusan National University professor Robert Kelly being interrupted by his kids while doing a live BBC interview goes instantly viral.
Day 51: Sat., March 11
• High-profile U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, for the Southern District of New York, says he won’t resign as requested. Trump fires him, despite having told Bharara in November that he could stay on.
• President Trump is at Trump National Golf Club in Potomac Falls, Va., per pool report. It’s his ninth golf-course trip since taking office seven weeks ago.
Day 52: Sun., March 12
• Clocks move ahead. There is one less hour of Trump news.
• On CNN’s State of the Union, Sen. John McCain refutes Trump’s claim that Obama wiretapped Trump Tower and expresses concern about the Trump administration’s possible ties to Russia: “There’s a lot of aspects of this whole relationship with Russia and Vladimir Putin that requires further scrutiny, and so far, I don’t think the American people have gotten all the answers. In fact, I think there’s a lot more shoes to drop from this centipede.”
• In an interview with New Jersey’s Bergen Record, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway discusses surveillance: “You can surveil people through their phones, through their — certainly through their television sets, any number of different ways. And microwaves that turn into cameras, et cetera.”
Day 53: Mon., March 13
• The state of Washington, joined by several others, asks a federal judge to stop the revised federal immigration/refugee rules from taking effect on Thu., March 16.
• When questioned by Chris Cuomo on CNN’s New Day about Trump’s claims to have been wiretapped, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway says, “I’m not in the job of having evidence.”
• After pledging during the campaign to donate his salary, Trump declines to provide proof.
• In a new music video, rapper Snoop Dogg features an orangish clown president named Ronald Klump.
• At the White House press briefing:
>> NBC’s Peter Alexander: “Can you say affirmatively that whenever the president says something, we can trust it to be real?”
>> Press Secretary Sean Spicer: “If he’s not joking, of course.”
>> Alexander: “How do we know he’s joking?”
• The Congressional Budget Office releases its “score” of the Republican’s American Health Care Act and finds, among other concerns, that it would cover 24 million fewer people than Obamacare by 2026.
• According to the CBO, 64-year-olds making $26,500 per year would see premiums increase from $1,700 currently to $14,600 in 2026.
• Rep. Paul Ryan releases a statement: “This [CBO] report confirms that the American Health Care Act will lower premiums and improve access to quality, affordable care.”
Day 54: Tue., March 14
• At the White House press briefing, Sean Spicer says that media coverage of AHCA doesn’t reflect that it’s “prong one of three prongs.”
• Hidden Figures, an inspirational movie about real-life female mathematicians, hits $162.8 million in box-office totals, topping totals set by X-Men: Apocalypse and Star Trek Beyond.
• The Girl Guides of Canada suspends trips to the U.S., citing concerns that members may encounter difficulties at the border.
• On The Rachel Maddow Show, journalist David Cay Johnston explains the two-page portion of Donald Trump’s 2005 tax return, which he says he received anonymously in the mail. He says it shows that Donald and Melania Trump had earned more than $150 million, and had paid $5.3 million in federal income tax, as well as $31 million under the alternative minimum tax.
• Just prior to the show, the White House confirms the document.
Day 55: Wed., March 15
• Senate confirms GOP Sen. Dan Coats as Trump’s director of national intelligence.
• LOCAL: Modcloth, the online fashion retailer started in Pittsburgh, is acquired by a division of Walmart.
• Basketball fan Barack Obama releases his long-form March Madness bracket. He picks North Carolina for the win.
• U.S. District Court Judge Derrick Watson, in Honolulu, grants the state of Hawaii’s motion for a nationwide temporary restraining order on Trump’s revised travel ban, hours before it was set to take effect.
• At a rally in Nashville, Tenn., Trump says that “the order [Judge Watson] blocked was a watered-down version of the first one.” He adds: “And let me tell you something, I think we ought to go back to the first one and go all the way, which is what I wanted to do in the first place.”
Day 56: Thu., March 16
• LOCAL: City Paper reports on Rep. Mike Doyle’s defense of the Affordable Care Act.
• Trump administration releases its federal budget proposal for 2018, which makes deep cuts to programs benefiting science, arts and the poor, as well as agencies such as the EPA, and the departments of Agriculture, Labor and State. More than $4 billion in funding is cited for the border wall.
• Interviewed at the White House, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney says, “Regarding the question as to climate change, I think the president was fairly straightforward. We’re not spending money on that anymore.”
• “There’s this assumption in Washington that if you get less money, it’s a cut.” — White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer
• Joint statement from Senate Intelligence Committee leaders Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.): “Based on the information available to us, we see no indications that Trump Tower was the subject of surveillance by any element of the United States government either before or after Election Day 2016.”
• At the White House press briefing, Press Secretary Sean Spicer reads comments made by Judge Andrew Napolitano, on Fox News on March 14, regarding alleged wiretapping of Trump by Obama: “Three intelligence sources have informed Fox News that President Obama went outside the chain of command. He didn’t use the NSA, he didn’t use the CIA, he didn’t use the FBI, and he didn’t use the Department of Justice. He used GCHQ, what is that? It’s the initials for the British Intelligence Spying Agency.”
• A spokesman for British intelligence agency GCHQ says: “Recent allegations made by media commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano about GCHQ being asked to conduct ‘wiretapping’ against the then-president-elect are nonsense. They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored.”
• The House Budget Committee advances GOP health-care bill. Three Republicans vote no.