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Denmark in disbelief as Trump cancels trip over Greenland sale: The Morning Rundown

"Are parts of the U.S. for sale? Alaska? Please show more respect," one Danish lawmaker said.
Image: U.S. Embassy building in Copenhagen, Denmark.
U.S. Embassy building in Copenhagen, Denmark.Mads Claus Rasmussen / Reuters file

Good morning, NBC News readers.

President Donald Trump canceled a trip to Denmark after it refused to sell him Greenland, plus we look at the latest details from the Jeffrey Epstein case.

Here's all that and everything else we're covering today:

Trump sparks disbelief over Greenland move

The president tweeted late Tuesday that he had canceled his state visit to Denmark after its prime minister made clear the autonomous territory of Greenland wasn't for sale

The move was met with disbelief in Denmark and beyond. Though Trump has mused about the purchase, he previously said the trip did not concern Greenland, which is rich in mineral deposits (and looks really, really big on a Mercator projection map).

"Trump assumes that (an autonomous) part of our country is for sale, then insultingly cancels a visit that everybody was preparing for," one Danish lawmaker tweeted. "Are parts of the U.S. for sale? Alaska? Please show more respect."

Residents in Kulusuk, Greenland, last week.Jonathan Nackstrand / AFP - Getty Images

Epstein employed 'disciples' to recruit girls, according to lawsuits

New details in the Jeffrey Epstein case allege he employed an army of "disciples" to recruit girls and young women to have sex with him.

Three lawsuits filed Tuesday say the financier even arranged to have one of the women marry another woman so she could get permanent U.S. residence to stay in the country.

One of the suits alleges he continued to have sex with underage girls while he was on work release serving a Florida jail sentence under the watch of sheriff's deputies.

Promised a boost by Trump, coal workers take up the fight as their industry struggles

As a candidate, Trump promised miners he would restore the industry after years of steady decline. But as the president gears up for the 2020 campaign, coal magnates with histories of labor violations have been among the biggest beneficiaries of his agenda.

The actual miners Trump showered with attention in 2016 have been less fortunate, as their job prospects dwindle and their communities languish.

Dozens of retired miners, some in wheelchairs and using oxygen tanks to manage black lung disease, recently visited the Capitol seeking federal help. "I don’t like doing this, but we have no choice," said Tom Gibson, a miner of 33 years, who has been walking the halls of Congress.

Trump sought to downplay fears of an imminent recession Tuesday, but his own advisers aren’t so calm. The president said he's considering a payroll tax cut to boost the economy.

Police union urges 'caution' after dismissal of officer accused of Eric Garner chokehold

After a New York City police officer was dismissed over the 2014 death of Eric Garner, the police union's leader sent a forceful letter to the rank-and-file.

Patrick Lynch, president of the Police Benevolent Association, warned officers to use "the utmost caution" and claimed they were dealing with a "new reality, in which they may be deemed 'reckless' just for doing their job."

It was a warning to the public as well, criminologists say, with Lynch alluding to the "Ferguson effect." This is the idea that police will pull back, leading to a work slowdown because of criticism or administrative decisions perceived to endanger their well-being on the streets.

Inside the secretive media outlet that became one of Trump's biggest supporters

Joanna Neborsky for NBC News / Getty Images

By the numbers, there is no bigger advocate of Trump on Facebook than The Epoch Times. It looks like many of the conservative outlets that have gained followings on social media in recent years. But it isn’t.

Behind the scenes, its ownership and operation is closely tied to Falun Gong, a Chinese spiritual community with the stated goal of taking down China’s government.

It's that motivation that helped drive the organization toward Trump, former staffers told NBC News.

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  • Trump is facing a backlash after accusing Jewish people who vote Democrat of "great disloyalty."

THINK about it

Popeyes started a chicken sandwich war with Chick-fil-A. This is why they'll win it, writes author Michael Arceneaux in an opinion piece.

Science + Tech = MACH

You didn't feel it, but last week a ripple in space-time passed through Earth. It was originally generated by a catastrophic cosmic event 900 million years ago. Scientists believe it may have been caused by a black hole swallowing a neutron star. An artist's depiction of a black hole swallowing a neutron star.

An artist's depiction of a black hole swallowing a neutron star.Carl Knox / /OzGrav ARC Centre of Excellence

Quote of the day

"What an absurd theater ... I was not a fan of Trump's visit to Denmark, but this is a disrespectful and almost childish reaction. Obviously we do not want to sell Greenland. What the hell is that man doing?"

— Danish lawmaker Charlotte Mølbæk reacts to the president's decision to cancel his trip to Denmark.

One awesome thing

Twista was once named as the Guinness World Records' fastest rapper of all time, but at a recent performance in Charlotte, N.C., he had to share the limelight. American Sign Language interpreter Amber Galloway Gallego kept apace with Twista's lyrical onslaught, prompting a wild response from the audience and props from the rapper.

Amber on-stage signing for Ukrainian rock back 'The Hardkiss.'The HardKiss

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Thanks, Alexander Smith