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n our news wrap Wednesday, the Trump administration urged a federal judge in Sacramento to block three California laws that protect undocumented immigrants. Also, on this World Refugee Day, Hungary intensified its immigration crackdown, as lawmakers amended the constitution to say that "alien population" cannot be settled in their country.
And in the day's other news, the Trump administration urged a federal judge in Sacramento to block three California laws that protect undocumented immigrants. Among other things, the laws bar police from giving out information on people in jail, and ban immigration officials from entering work sites without a warrant.
The immigration issue is roiling the European Union as well, and, today, Hungary intensified its crackdown. Lawmakers there amended the constitution to say what they call alien population cannot be settled in Hungary. The vote came on World Refugee Day.
The civil war in South Sudan has created Africa's worst refugee crisis in a quarter-century. Today, the president and opposition leader met for the first time in nearly two years. The talks took place in nearby Ethiopia, amid international efforts to negotiate an end to the five-year conflict.
Trade tensions between the United States and allied nations drew fire today at a Senate hearing. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was the target. Senators from both parties warned that steel and aluminum tariffs will hurt U.S. manufacturers, consumers and farmers.
Democrat Michael Bennet of Colorado demanded to know how tariffs on Canada will punish the real culprit, China.
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo.:
I understand what we are supposed to be doing with China. I don't understand why the president is not focused on it. I don't understand it. What is the national security rationale for putting a tariff on the Canadian steel industry, with whom we have a trade surplus?
The only way we are going to solve the global steel overproduction and overcapacity is by getting all the other countries to play ball with us.
And while they are complaining bitterly about the tariffs, the fact is, they are starting to take the kind of action which if they had taken sooner would have prevented this crisis.
Secretary Ross argued the objective is not to fuel a trade war, but to revive America's steel and aluminum industries.
The European Union, meanwhile, is speeding up plans for new tariffs on $3 billion worth of American products. The announcement today said the penalties will take effect this Friday, instead of next month. They will target a range of U.S. products, from Harley-Davidson motorcycles to bourbon to peanut butter.
South Korea pressed North Korea today to follow through on dismantling its nuclear program. In Seoul, President Moon Jae-in called for far more concrete plans from Pyongyang. Moon's comments came as North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, was in Beijing for a second day for talks with China's President Xi Jinping. Kim returned home later.
In Afghanistan, Taliban fighters killed 30 government soldiers in the first attacks since the end of a three-day cease-fire. Officials said that the militants assaulted two checkpoints at a town in Badghis province. Then ambushed reinforcements as they arrived.
Pro-government forces in Yemen say they have scored a new gain in the battle for the Red Sea port of Hodeidah. They say they captured the southern runway at the city's airport today.
Meanwhile, workers with the World Health Organization issued a new warning about the consequences of the fighting.
WHO is deeply concerned at the increased fighting in Al Hodeidah. Al Hodeidah — this fighting puts people, puts more than 600,000 people at risk in Al Hodeidah. And we are deeply concerned that the risk that this has for the port; 70 percent of people in Yemen rely on the port for food and medicines.
Also today, the Associated Press reported hundreds of detainees in Southern Yemen were tortured and sexually abused last March. It happened at a secret facility run by the United Arab Emirates.
Back in this country, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg plans to spend $80 million to help Democrats in 2018 midterm elections. The billionaire said in a statement that the last year-and-a-half shows it's — quote — "a bad idea for one party to control both the White House and the Congress." His spending appears likely to exceed that of other big donors.
FBI agents arrested a West Virginia state Supreme Court justice today, Allen Lawry — Loughry, that is, on a 22-count indictment. He's accused of mail fraud, making false statements and witness tampering. The charges stem from allegations that he lied about allegedly using his office for personal gain.
Pope Francis ordered the retired archbishop of Washington, D.C., Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, removed from public ministry today. The Vatican said there's a — quote — "credible and substantiated" claim that McCarrick abused a teenager in New York more than 40 years ago. In a statement, the 87-year-old cardinal said he has no recollection of the incident.
And on Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 42 points to close at 24657. The Nasdaq rose 56 points, and the S&P 500 added almost five.
Still to come on the "NewsHour," what causes so many Central American migrants to seek refuge in the United States?; talking with Trump supporters about family separation, trade and more; inside the effort to provide running water to the Navajo Nation; and much more.
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