- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 24, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times local):

10 p.m.

President Donald Trump is offering to “send in the Feds” if Chicago can’t reduce its homicide figures.

Trump tweeted Tuesday night, “If Chicago doesn’t fix the horrible ‘carnage’ going on, 228 shootings in 2017 with 42 killings (up 24% from 2016), I will send in the Feds!”

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson responded late Tuesday, saying: “The Chicago Police Department is more than willing to work with the federal government to build on our partnerships with DOJ (Department of Justice), FBI, DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) and ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) and boost federal prosecution rates for gun crimes in Chicago.”

Mayor Rahm Emanuel criticized Trump on Monday for worrying about the size of the crowd at his inauguration. Emanuel, a longtime political ally of former President Barack Obama, also acknowledged his own frustration with Chicago’s crime rate.

Trump isn’t offering specifics about how the federal government could help. The White House website says, “Our country needs more law enforcement, more community engagement and more effective policing.”

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8 p.m.

President Donald Trump will begin rolling out executive actions on immigration Wednesday, beginning with plans for building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and other enforcement measures, according to two administration officials.

Trump is also expected to roll out plans for restricting refugee flows to the U.S. later in the week.

Trump campaigned on pledges to tighten U.S. immigration policies, including beefing up border security and stemming the flow of refugees. He also called for halting entry to the U.S. from Muslim countries, but later shifted to focus on “extreme vetting” of those coming from countries with terrorism ties.

The officials insisted on anonymity in order to confirm the plans ahead of Trump’s official announcement. The president is expected to sign the actions Wednesday during a trip to the Department of Homeland Security.

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6:20 p.m.

Three climate-related tweets sent out by Badlands National Park have been deleted after they went viral on Twitter, sparking debate over whether the park was defying the Trump administration.

The South Dakota park posted tweets Tuesday that accurately quoted climate science data, including the current record-setting high concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. President Donald Trump has called climate change a hoax.

The tweets were shared thousands of times, and the Democratic National Committee circulated the message by email with the subject line “Resist.”

The tweets came just three days after the Interior Department briefly suspended its Twitter accounts after the park service retweeted photos about turnout at Trump’s inauguration. The accounts were reactivated the next day.

The park service could not be reached for comment.

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6:15 p.m.

The retired head of the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co. is joining President Donald Trump’s administration as an adviser on veterans issues.

The Department of Veterans Affairs confirmed Tuesday that Jake Leinenkugel had accepted a position as a senior White House adviser at the VA.

Leinenkugel served as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps and is the father of two veterans. His brother, Dick, says the job will allow Jake Leinenkugel to make an impact on those who served their country.

Jake Leinenkugel ran the Wisconsin-based beer company for 25 years before retiring two years ago.

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6 p.m.

The Trump administration is moving to delay implementation of at least 30 environmental rules finalized in the closing months of President Barack Obama’s term. That could be a potential first step in seeking to kill the regulations.

A summary of actions published Tuesday in the Federal Register includes rulings that updated air pollution standards for several states, renewable fuel standards and limits on the amount of formaldehyde that can leach from wood products.

President Donald Trump signed a directive shortly after his inauguration Friday ordering a “regulatory freeze pending review” for all federal agency rules that had been finalized but have not yet taken effect.

The action sets the new effective date for all 30 regulations as March 21.

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5:55 p.m.

President Donald Trump says India is a “true friend” of the United States in addressing global challenges and has invited its prime minister to visit later in the year.

The White House says Trump spoke Tuesday with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

A statement says the two leaders discussed opportunities for cooperation in economy and defense, and security in South and Central Asia. They resolved that their nations “stand shoulder to shoulder in the global fight against terrorism.”

The U.S. and India are the world’s two largest democracies. They share concerns about militancy emanating from Pakistan and about the rise of China.

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5:50 p.m.

The acting deputy secretary of the Agriculture Department says he will ask officials at the Agricultural Research Service to rescind a memo that ordered employees not to release documents to the public.

Michael Young said on a call with reporters Tuesday evening that the memo did not reflect guidance asking agencies to route communications decisions and other matters through his office - standard procedure for new administrations.

Young says, “Frankly I don’t understand what the basis for the ARS email was.”

He says he will ask the agency to rescind the notice that banned news releases, photos, fact sheets and social media content.

President Donald Trump has nominated former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue as agriculture secretary. Young, a career official at USDA for three decades, is temporarily in charge.

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5:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump’s pick to be top U.S. diplomat is paying a visit to the State Department ahead of his expected confirmation.

The State Department says Rex Tillerson was in the building Tuesday for briefings. The former Exxon Mobil CEO is Trump’s nominee for secretary of state.

No additional details were released about Tillerson’s visit.

Tillerson won narrow approval Monday from the Republican-led Senate Foreign Relations Committee. That vote all but assures the full Senate will confirm Trump’s pick for the key Cabinet post.

A career U.S. diplomat is serving as acting secretary until the Trump pick is confirmed.

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2 p.m.

A spokesman says President Donald Trump’s belief that there were millions of illegal votes cast in the November election is based on “studies and evidence.”

But spokesman Sean Spicer did not provide examples of that evidence.

Trump first made the false claim during the transition. He reiterated the statement in a meeting Monday night with lawmakers, blaming illegal ballots for his loss of the popular vote.

Spicer says Trump “continues to maintain that belief.” There has been no evidence to support the claims that there was widespread voter fraud in the election.

Spicer’s only attempt to support Trump’s assertion was to point a 2008 Pew Research survey that showed a need to update voter registration systems.

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1:55 p.m.

An Agriculture Department research agency has banned the release of news releases, photos and other material to the public.

In a memo to employees at USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, chief of staff Sharon Drumm said the agency would immediately cease releasing any “public-facing” documents.

“This includes, but is not limited to, news releases, photos, fact sheets, news feeds, and social media content,” read the email memo obtained by The Associated Press.

A statement released by ARS spokesman Christopher Bentley said the agency “values and is committed to maintaining the free flow of information between our scientists and the American public as we strive to find solutions to agricultural problems affecting America.”

The statement said some material would still be available on the agency’s website.

Buzzfeed News first reported the memo.

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1:50 p.m.

The White House says President Donald Trump has accepted House Speaker Paul Ryan’s invitation to address a joint session of Congress on Feb. 28.

Ryan announced the invitation on Tuesday and informed reporters after a meeting with House Republicans. Ryan had met with Trump Monday night at the White House. Trump also met with Republican and Democratic congressional leaders on Monday.

Trump was meeting Tuesday at the White House with top Senate leaders.

The speech will be Trump’s first to Congress. He was sworn in to office on Friday.

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12:45 p.m.

The Trump administration has instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants.

Emails sent to EPA staff since President Donald Trump’s inauguration on Friday and reviewed by The Associated Press detailed the specific prohibitions banning press releases, blog updates or posts to the agency’s social media accounts.

The Trump administration has also ordered a “temporary suspension” of all new business activities at the department, including issuing task orders or work assignments to EPA contractors. The orders are expected to have a significant and immediate impact on EPA activities nationwide.

The EPA did not respond to phone calls and emails requesting comment Monday or Tuesday.

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12:25 p.m.

President Donald Trump is hanging up some new art in the White House press area - and it’s none too subtle.

The panoramic photo shows the crowds gathered near the U.S. Capitol for Trump’s inauguration on Friday. It’s a nod to the ongoing interest the president has in making it clear that his event was well-attended.

Trump tweeted: “A photo delivered yesterday that will be displayed in the upper/lower press hall. Thank you Abbas!” For emphasis, the official Twitter account of the president retweeted the @realDonaldTrump message. The photo was taken by Washington-area photographer Abbas Shirmohammadi, and it notes the wrong date - Jan. 21, although it does appear to depict the correct event.

Trump and press secretary Sean Spicer have taken pains to play up the crowd size, sometimes exaggerating the number in attendance. They’ve excoriated the media for what they said is an effort to downplay enthusiasm for Trump’s inauguration.

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11:50 a.m.

President Donald Trump has taken steps to streamline the permitting process for manufacturing.

He also wants pipelines to be made in the U.S., and an expedited process for environmental reviews and approvals.

The steps came as Trump signed executive actions to advance construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines. Former President Barack Obama blocked construction in late 2015 of the Keystone line from Canada to the U.S. Meanwhile, the Army Corps of Engineers is studying alternative routes for the Dakota Access pipeline.

Trump describes the regulatory process as a “tangled up mess.” He says if the answer is no, it should be a quick no. If the answer is yes, Trump says “let’s start building.”

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11:35 a.m.

President Donald Trump says he will announce his pick to fill the vacant Supreme Court seat sometime next week.

Trump told reporters in the Oval Office on Tuesday that he’ll be “making my decision this week” and “we’ll be announcing it next week.”

“We have some outstanding candidates,” the president said. “And we’ll pick a truly great Supreme Court justice.”

The Supreme Court has only had eight justices since Justice Antonin Scalia died last year. President Barack Obama nominated a replacement but Republicans in the Senate refused to bring the choice up for a vote.

During his campaign, Trump publicly identified nearly two dozen candidates for the vacancy.

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11:25 a.m.

President Donald Trump has signed executive actions to advance the construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines.

Trump tells reporters in the Oval Office that the moves on the pipelines will be subject to the terms and conditions being renegotiated by the U.S.

President Barack Obama killed the proposed Keystone XL pipeline in late 2015, saying it would hurt American efforts to reach a global climate change deal.

The pipeline would run from Canada to U.S. refineries in the Gulf Coast. The U.S. government needs to approve the pipeline because it crossed the border.

The Army decided last year to explore alternate routes for the Dakota pipeline after the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its supporters said the pipeline threatened1 drinking water and Native American cultural sites.

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10:50 a.m.

FBI Director James Comey is staying in his job. A Justice Department memo lists him among officials remaining in their positions.

FBI directors are appointed to 10-year terms intended to carry across presidential administrations, even when a new party takes over the White House.

President Donald Trump criticized the FBI during the campaign for its decision not to recommend charges against his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton. But he also appeared to warmly greet Comey at a law enforcement gathering over the weekend.

Comey is in his fourth year in the job.

The New York Times first reported that Comey would stay on.

The director’s job has been a 10-year term since 1976. Since then, only one has been removed prematurely - Reagan appointee William Sessions by Bill Clinton in 1993.

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9:48 a.m.

President Donald Trump is expected to take executive action Tuesday to advance construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines.

That’s according to a person with knowledge of the action. The president is scheduled to sign orders at the White House late Tuesday morning.

Former President Barack Obama killed the proposed Keystone XL pipeline in late 2015, declaring it would have undercut U.S. efforts to clinch a global climate change deal that was a centerpiece of his environmental legacy. The pipeline would run from Canada to U.S. refineries in the Gulf Coast. The U.S. government needed to approve the pipeline because it crossed the border.

The Army decided last year to explore alternate routes for the Dakota pipeline after the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its supporters said the pipeline threatened drinking water and Native American cultural sites.

The person with knowledge of the decisions insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to confirm the moves ahead of a formal announcement.

-By Julie Pace

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9:45 a.m.

President Donald Trump says he’s an environmentalist.

The president made the comments Tuesday at a breakfast with auto industry executives.

He didn’t elaborate on why he sees himself as an environmentalist, but the comments came after urging companies from the auto industry and beyond to bring jobs back to the U.S.

On Monday, he made similar comments at a business breakfast, stating, again without elaborating, “I’m a very big person when it comes to the environment. I have received awards on the environment.”

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9:30 a.m.

President Donald Trump is spending the morning meeting with auto executives as part of his push to bring jobs back to the U.S.

Trump told his guests Tuesday at the White House that he’s looking to ease regulations to help auto companies and any other businesses wishing to do business in the U.S.

Among the attendees of the breakfast are Ford Motor Co. chief executive Mark Fields, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne and General Motors chief executive Mary Barra.

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3:30 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s efforts to build bridges and push through his agenda have been overshadowed once again with his continued fixation on the election and more false claims.

During a bipartisan reception with lawmakers at the White House late Monday, Trump claimed the reason he’d lost the popular vote to his Democratic rival was that 3 million to 5 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally had voted.

That’s according to a Democratic aide familiar with the exchange who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the private meeting. There is no evidence to support Trump’s claim.

Trump on Tuesday will continue his outreach efforts as he meets with executives from the auto industry and speaks by phone with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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