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Morning Reads: Trump and Mexico, Nothing’s Changed; Taxpayers Subsidize Wall Street Execs

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Morning Reads: Trump and Mexico, Nothing's Changed

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gives a thumbs up to the crowd during a campaign rally on August 31, 2016, in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

Good morning! In celebration of Labor Day, the Morning Reads crew will be taking tomorrow and Monday off. Have a great weekend, and we’ll see you Tuesday!

Meeting in Mexico –> Donald Trump met with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto yesterday. Reports describe the close encounter as subdued. At a joint news conference afterwards, Trump said he did not discuss with Peña Nieto who would pay for his infamous proposed wall along the US-Mexico boarder — the signature policy of Trump’s that gets his supporters fired up and of which Peña Nieto has been highly critical.

The Mexican president had a different version of events. “At the beginning of the conversation with Donald Trump I made it clear that Mexico will not pay for the wall,” Peña Nieto tweeted in Spanish following the meeting, continuing: “From there, the conversation addressed other issues, and developed a respectful manner.”

But then came the speech. After his Mexican visit, Trump traveled to Phoenix, 200 miles north of the border, where he held a rally and, after more than a week of unclear messaging on immigration, brought back the angry, hardline stance that propelled him through the primaries. “On day one, we will begin working on an impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful, southern border wall,” he said, declaring, “Mexico will pay for the wall.” He said repeatedly, “We are going to take our country back,” and brought to the stage men and women who said that family members had been the victims of crimes by undocumented immigrants. NPR offers a fact check of Trump’s remarks.

Last night’s speech has Latino Trump surrogates questioning their support. Katie Glueck reports for Politico: “Jacob Monty, a member of Trump’s National Hispanic Advisory Council, has resigned, and Alfonso Aguilar, the president of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles, said in an interview that he is ‘inclined’ to pull his support. ‘I was a strong supporter of Donald Trump when I believed he was going to address the immigration problem realistically and compassionately,’ said Monty, a Houston attorney who has aggressively made the Latino case for Trump. ‘What I heard today was not realistic and not compassionate.'”

$725 million –> That’s the size of the tax break Wall Street banks got between 2012 and 2015 by deducting “performance pay” for their CEOs in the form of stock options, cash bonuses and other forms of creative accounting. That’s a loophole and a half — so says an important new analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies. The reports’ authors write that among the offenders, “Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf received the largest amount of such bonuses. Between 2012 and 2015, years in which his bank faced $10.4 billion in misconduct penalties, Wells Fargo received $54 million in tax subsidies — just for one man’s bonuses.”

Supreme Court gives NC the final word –> North Carolina’s voter ID laws will not be reinstated before the election. Governor Pat McCrory had asked the Supreme Court to stay a lower court ruling striking down the voter ID laws. The court split 4-4, so the lower court ruling will stand. “The Supreme Court acted in the best interest of North Carolina voters, allowing elections this fall to proceed absent the cloud and concern of racially discriminatory voting laws,” Allison Riggs, an attorney for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice who helped argue the case before the appeals court, told the Raleigh News & Observer.

Rousseff’s out –> The BBC: “Brazil’s Senate has voted to remove President Dilma Rousseff from office for manipulating the budget. It puts an end to the 13 years in power of her left-wing Workers’ Party. Ms Rousseff had denied the charges. Sixty-one senators voted in favour of her dismissal and 20 against, meeting the two-thirds majority needed to remove her from the presidency. Michel Temer has been sworn in as president and will serve out Ms Rousseff’s term until 1 January 2019.”

Critic of for-profit colleges joins Clinton –> Inside Higher Ed reports, “Hillary Clinton has named Rohit Chopra, the former student loans ombudsman at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, to her campaign’s transition team. Chopra brings both experience in the higher ed sector and progressive bona fides to the campaign. He was one of Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren’s first hires at the agency, where he was a frequent opponent of the for-profit industry and student loan servicers.”

Georgetown faces legacy of slavery –> Rachel Swarns for The New York Times: “Nearly two centuries after Georgetown University profited from the sale of 272 slaves, it will embark on a series of steps to atone for the past, including awarding preferential status in the admissions process to descendants of those it enslaved, officials said on Wednesday. Georgetown’s president, John J. DeGioia, who will discuss the measures in a speech on Thursday afternoon, also plans to offer a formal apology, create an institute for the study of slavery and erect a public memorial to the slaves whose labor benefited the institution, including those who were sold in 1838 to help keep the university afloat.”

Morning Reads was compiled by John Light and edited by Michael Winship. See a story that you think should be included in Morning Reads? Tell us in the comments!

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