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First Read’s Morning Clips: Meeting with Auto CEOs

TRUMP AGENDA: Meeting with auto-industry leaders

Trump will meet with Detroit auto CEOs today.

Our economics team writes on what Trump’s withdrawal from the TPP could mean for consumers.

“As corporate executives around the globe try to understand the implications of the Trump administration on their businesses, they seem to be having an almost bipolar reaction: a euphoric sense that regulations and taxes could soon be lowered — which would likely increase their profits and paychecks — yet a simultaneous anxiety that they could become a target of one of the president’s Twitter tirades, which could undo their businesses or possibly their careers,” writes the New York Times.

“For CEOs, the moves have sent a message that their stock is rising in Washington, with some betting that they will have a louder say in running the country,” reports the Wall Street Journal. “To be sure, Mr. Trump’s Twitter pronouncements targeting companies and threats to punish firms with tariffs are causing anxiety among corporate chieftans, many of whom didn’t support his candidacy. Yet corporate leaders welcome his willingness to tap CEOs for important jobs and advice is a welcome change.”

Trump has formally resigned from his company and more than 400 affiliates.

The Washington Post has a big, detailed look at the behind-the-scenes of the Trump White House over the weekend, including Sean Spicer’s statement about crowd size. “Many critics thought Spicer went too far and compromised his integrity. But in Trump’s mind, Spicer’s attack on the news media was not forceful enough. The president was also bothered that the spokesman read, at times haltingly, from a printed statement. Trump has been resentful, even furious, at what he views as the media’s failure to reflect the magnitude of his achievements, and he feels demoralized that the public’s perception of his presidency so far does not necessarily align with his own sense of accomplishment.”

NBC's Kasie Hunt reports that Trump is still repeating his debunked claim that “illegals” cost him the popular vote.

“The FBI in late December reviewed intercepts of communications between the Russian ambassador to the United States and retired Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn - national security adviser to then-President-elect Donald Trump - but has not found any evidence of wrongdoing or illicit ties to the Russian government, U.S. officials said,” according to the Washington Post.

The New York Times previews the next set of Capitol Hill hearings for Trump’s Cabinet picks.

And the Wall Street Journal reports on how lawmakers will scrutinize HHS pick Tom Price’s record and his controversial stock trades.

From POLITICO: “Top GOP lawmakers and President Donald Trump are coalescing around a plan to turn Medicaid over to the states as part of their Obamacare replacement. But the push is already driving a wedge between congressional Republicans and could gum up the repeal process altogether… At the crux of the matter is an impossible task set forth by Trump: In recent interviews he has said he wants to block-grant Medicaid funding to the states but also ensure the roughly 11 million people who received coverage under the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion do not lose it.”

The Washington Post looks at the effect that Trump’s hiring freeze could have on the federal workforce.

CEO head Mike Pompeo was confirmed and sworn in last night.

“The White House is installing senior aides atop major federal agencies to shadow the administration's Cabinet secretaries, creating a direct line with loyalists who can monitor and shape White House goals across the federal bureaucracy,” writes POLITICO. “The aides chosen by the White House—given the title of senior adviser in each agency—have already been responsible for hiring at some departments and crafting the blueprint of Trump policy before the Cabinet members win Senate confirmation to take office.”

DEM WATCH: Unveiling their own infrastructure plan

From the Washington Post: “A group of senior Senate Democrats on Tuesday plan to unveil their own $1 trillion plan to revamp the nation’s airports, bridges, roads and seaports, urging President Trump to back their proposal, which they say would create 15 million jobs over 10 years. The Democrats said their infrastructure plan would rely on direct federal spending and would span a range of projects including not only roads and bridges, but also the nation’s broadband network, hospitals run by the Department of Veterans Affairs and schools.”