Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California, vice S. James Otero, retired.
Cynthia L. Attwood, of Virginia, to be a Member of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission for a term expiring April 27, 2025. (Reappointment)
Adam L. Braverman, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of California, vice Roger T. Benitez, retired.
Almo J. Carter, of the District of Columbia, to be a Commissioner of the United States Parole Commission for a term of six years, vice Cranston J. Mitchell, term expired.
Thomas B. Chapman, of Maryland, to be a Member of the National Transportation Safety Board for a term expiring December 31, 2023, vice Tho Dinh-Zarr, term expired.
Hugh Nathanial Halpern, of Virginia, to be Director of the Government Publishing Office, vice Davita Vance-Cooks.
Bernard Maurice Jones, II, of Oklahoma, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Oklahoma, vice Joe L. Heaton, retired.
Amanda Wood Laihow, of Maine, to be a Member of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission for the remainder of a term expiring April 27, 2023, vice Heather L. MacDougall, resigned.
Sandy Nunes Leal, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California, vice Christina A. Snyder, retired.
Joseph Manso, of New York, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, for the rank of Ambassador during his tenure of service as United States Representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.
R. Shireen Matthews, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of California, vice Barry Ted Moskowitz, retired.
Jenny A. McGee, of Texas, to be an Assistant Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, vice R. David Harden.
Thomas Michael O'Connor, of Texas, to be United States Marshal for the Southern District of Texas for the term of four years, vice Gary Blankinship, term expired.
Rick Lloyd Richmond, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California, vice Manuel L. Real, retired.
Stephen Sidney Schwartz, of Virginia, to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims for a term of fifteen years, vice Marian Blank Horn, term expired.
Dorothy Shea, of North Carolina, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Lebanese Republic.
John Joseph Sullivan, of Maryland, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Russian Federation.
Stephen A. Vaden, of Tennessee, to be a Judge of the United States Court of International Trade, vice Delissa A. Ridgway, retired.
As a mark of respect for the memory and longstanding public service of Representative Elijah E. Cummings, of Maryland, I hereby order, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions through October 18, 2019. I also direct that the flag shall be flown at half‑staff for the same period at all United States embassies, legations, consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this seventeenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand nineteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fourth.
Schiff Pushed Volker to Say Ukraine Felt Pressure from Trump
“In a secret interview, Rep. Adam Schiff, leader of the House Democratic effort to impeach President Trump, pressed former United States special representative to Ukraine Kurt Volker to testify that Ukrainian officials felt pressured to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter as a result of Trump withholding U.S. military aid to Ukraine,” Byron York writes in the Washington Examiner.
The former Ambassador, however, flat-out denied Schiff’s version of events. “When Volker repeatedly declined to agree to Schiff's characterization of events, Schiff said, ‘Ambassador, you're making this much more complicated than it has to be.’”
It’s becoming clear why Schiff is trying to hide his proceedings behind closed doors.
“Ivanka Trump’s goal to boost women entrepreneurs in the developing world with an international $2.6 billion fund is taking root,” Paul Bedard writes in the Washington Examiner. “Two years after kicking off the Women’s Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative through the World Bank, [Ms.] Trump on Friday plans to herald its successes.”
“The clear benefits of the USMCA have fueled a growing chorus of support for the agreement — from farmers and ranchers to manufacturers, small business leaders to our largest employers, voters of all political persuasions, and, yes, Democrats and Republicans alike,” former Reps. Rick Boucher (D-VA) and Tom Davis (R-VA) write in the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “We see a nation competing confidently around the globe.”
“President Donald Trump campaigned on a very specific foreign policy. ‘America First’ has its roots in the less-interventionist policies of our Founding Fathers,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) writes in USA Today. “Then-candidate Trump said often that the Iraq War was a mistake, and that we were in too many places for too long. Fast-forward to 2019, and the president is now moving forward to stop the ‘endless wars.’ I stand with him.”
President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate and Appoint Individuals to Key Administration Posts
Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key positions in his Administration:
Sarah C. Arbes of Virginia, to be an Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services (Legislation).
Ms. Arbes currently serves as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In this role, she serves as a senior liaison between Congress and HHS. Before joining HHS, Ms. Arbes worked at Business Roundtable as the trade group’s chief advocate on healthcare and retirement policy. She also has nearly a decade of service in Congress, having worked on the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions as Chairman Lamar Alexander’s (R-TN) Deputy Health Policy Director, Senator Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) Legislative Assistant, and Senator Jim Talent’s (R-MO) Senior Constituent Caseworker. Ms. Arbes was also Vice President of Government Affairs at the Retail Industry Leaders Association and served in the George W. Bush administration as a congressional liaison at the Department of Labor. She earned her M.P.A. from Syracuse University and her B.A. from The University of Oklahoma. Ms. Arbes resides in Annandale, Virginia, with her husband and two children.
Todd C. Chapman of Texas, to be Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Federative Republic of Brazil.
Mr. Chapman, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Minister-Counselor, most recently served as Ambassador to the Republic of Ecuador. He previously served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Political Military Affairs, Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in Brasilia, Brazil, and Senior Deputy Coordinator for Economic Affairs at the United States Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. Mr. Chapman was also Chargé d’Affaires and Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in Maputo, Mozambique, Political/Economic/Commercial Counselor at the United States Embassy in La Paz, Bolivia, and Economic Officer at the United States Embassy in San Jose, Costa Rica. Earlier in his career, Mr. Chapman held positions in the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs and in Nigeria, Uganda, Mozambique, and Taiwan. Before joining the Foreign Service, he worked as a Consultant in Brazil and Texas and as a Commercial Banker in New York and Saudi Arabia. Mr. Chapman earned an A.B. from Duke University and an M.S. from the Joint Military Intelligence College.
Robert J. Feitel of Maryland, to be Inspector General of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Mr. Feitel currently serves as a Trial Attorney in the Capital Case Section of the Department of Justice. Before joining the Capital Case Section of Main Justice, in early 2011, Mr. Feitel served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the criminal division at the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where he also served in 2002. In 2010, he was detailed to the Justice Department's National Security Division, Office of Intelligence, Counter-Terrorism Unit. Previously, he served as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia from 2001-2002. In 1995, Mr. Feitel joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation as an Assistant General Counsel. Following law school, he clerked for the Honorable Stephen M. Waldron, Circuit Court for Harford County, Maryland. Mr. Feitel earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law.
Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to appoint the following individuals to be Members of the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board:
Sarah Huckabee Sanders of Arkansas, for the remainder of a three-year term expiring September 22, 2022.
Shahira E. Knight of the District of Columbia, for the remainder of a three-year term expiring September 22, 2020.
Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to appoint the following individuals to be Members to the Board of Visitors to the United States Merchant Marine Academy for terms of two years expiring January 2, 2022:
Jennifer Boykin of Virginia (Academy Graduate).
Stephen M. Carmel of Virginia (Maritime Rep).
Robert Scott Volkert of New Jersey.
Kevin James Walsh of New Jersey (Academy Graduate).
Vice Admiral Johnny R. Wolfe, Jr. of Texas (Flag Officer).
REMARKS BY PRESIDENT TRUMP AND PRESIDENT MATTARELLA OF THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC AT A RECEPTION
6:54 P.M. EDT
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Well, thank you very much, everyone. It’s an honor to have you all at the White House. You hear that beautiful music in the background? Normally, we wait until it ends, but you’re Italian; we move fast, right? (Laughter.) You definitely move fast.
Tonight, we celebrate the extraordinary friendship between Italy and the United States. And we honor the faith, courage, and countless achievements of our incredible Italian-American community. Those people in that community have done so much for our country.
We are grateful to be joined by a very special man -- a highly respected man in Italy and far beyond -- President Sergio Mattarella of Italy. (Applause.) And his beautiful daughter, Laura. Laura, would you like to come up? Please, come up. Please. Come on up, Laura. Thank you. Great.
And thank you both for coming today to reaffirm the powerful bonds between our people.
I want to thank the many amazing members of my Cabinet, hardworking members of Congress, members of both Italian and American diplomatic missions, and many other distinguished guests with us tonight. We have so many. Senator John Barrasso is here someplace. John?
We have Senator Joe Manchin. Where is Joe? Joe? You’re not Italian, are you, Joe? (Laughter.) Oh, do you have Italian? What percentage Italian, Joe? Huh?
SENATOR MANCHIN: 50 percent. Half.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Well, that’s half. Well, I knew I liked him for a reason, huh? (Laughter.)
House GOP Whip, Steve Scalise. Steve? Where is my Steve? (Applause.) The bravest guy in the room, Steve Scalise.
Representative Mark Amodei. Mark? Where’s Mark? Thank you, Mark. Representative Jeff Fortenberry. Representative Virginia Foxx. Representative Greg Gianforte. Hi, Greg. I hear you’re doing well out there, huh? I hear -- I hear, he’s good. Great man. Representative Doug LaMalfa.
REPRESENTATIVE LAMALFA: Yes, sir!
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Doug?
REPRESENTATIVE LAMALFA: Back here.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: He’s all Italian. He’s all Italian. (Laughter.)
Those last two guys we have -- now, Carol Miller, I -- I’m not so sure. (Laughter.) Where’s Carol? Carol Miller? Yeah, she’s got a little piece of Italian in there someplace. (Laughter.)
Representative Brad Wenstrup. Brad, thank you. Thank you. Thank you very much, Brad.
Secretary Alex Azar is here someplace. Alex? Thank you, Alex. How we doing? Cures for everything, right? He’s finding more cures for problems. You’re doing a great job and you’re getting drug prices down.
Secretary David Bernhardt. David. Thank you. Thank you, David. He’s the biggest landlord in the world right now. (Laughter.) He controls, actually, half of the United States, right? From the Mississippi, right over to the rest. Great job you’re doing.
Secretary Ben Carson. My friend, Ben. Thank you, Ben. He’s my friend. (Applause.) Whoa. Listen to that. They’re all jealous now, Ben. (Laughter.) Ben’s doing a fantastic job. I said, “What do you know about housing?” “Not too much.” “Would you like to head HUD?” And, you know what? He did a great job. Better than the people that knew a lot. Right, Ben? (Laughter.) He’s -- now he knows more than anybody.
Secretary Betsy DeVos. Betsy, thank you Betsy. Good job. Good job. (Applause.)
Ambassador Robert Lighthizer. He’s got more things that he’s negotiating. Robert, thank you. (Applause.) Just did a deal with China; will be one of the biggest deals. That’s good. It’s really incredible. Now we’re getting it papered out, but they’re starting to buy all of that farm product anyway. Great job.
Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Treasury. Hi, Steve. Thanks. Now, you I know don’t have too much Italian in you, Steve. I’m pretty sure about that. But he loves the Italians. (Laughter.)
Administrator Andrew Wheeler, EPA. He’s done a fantastic job. Thank you, Andrew. Great job. Thanks to have you.
A brand-new Secretary. Somebody that’s so respected and -- in Labor -- but one of the most successful lawyers in the country. And he gave it all up to be Secretary of Labor. Just got confirmed with a very good margin, meaning he won by about five or six votes -- which, today, is considered a landslide, okay? (Laughter.) You know, it used to be you get 100 to nothing. Today, those -- those days are gone. But if you win by as many votes as you did that’s a great testament to you. Eugene Scalia, thank you. (Applause.) Thank you. Great. Congratulations.
Secretary Elaine Chao, one of my favorite people. Where is Elaine? Hi, Elaine. (Applause.) Beautiful woman and a great woman.
And Secretary Wilbur Ross. (Applause.) Why, Wilbur -- and I owe you a call, Wilbur.
But I want to thank you all for being here very much. And our nation and our civilization have been profoundly enriched by Italian faith, courage, creativity, brilliance, and spirit.
The timeless legacy of the Roman Republic -- what two beautiful words, “Roman Republic” -- influenced nations around the globe to pursue the ideals of citizenship, representative government, and the rule of law. Sounds so familiar, doesn’t it?
The Italian Renaissance opened new horizons of human endeavor and uplifted the world with immortal works of genius. And when I go to Italy and I look and I see, and I see the greatest artists in history. Michelangelo carved life into marble, and da Vinci inspired wonder with feats of divine beauty. You just don’t see it anywhere else, to that extent.
Through the centuries, Italy gave us everything from Galileo’s telescope, to Verdi’s opera, to Versace’s fashion, to the voice of my friend -- he was a great friend of mine -- Pavarotti. He was a diva. He was the greatest of all divas. He was a male -- he was a male diva, but we loved him. And the young man that just sang, it reminded me so much -- his voice reminded me so much of Luciano. And the cars of Lamborghini and Ferrari. Think of what you’ve done. Think of it -- how brilliant it is, artistically.
From the hallowed dome of Saint Peter’s, to the beautiful frescos of our own Capitol Building, the Italian heritage has wonderfully shaped all of our country. Indeed, our name, “America,” is derived from the great Italian navigator and mapmaker, Amerigo Vespucci. That’s right. (Applause.)
On Monday, our nation commemorated the legendary achievements of an intrepid Italian explorer: Christopher Columbus. (Applause.) And today, from Columbus Circle -- and you know all about Columbus Circle. We love Columbus Circle in New York. And Columbus, Ohio -- what a great place that is. (Applause.) To our nation’s capital, the District of Columbia, his memory stands as an enduring testament to the daring spirit that built our great civilization. And as long as I have anything to say about this -- and I hope that’s going to be a long time -- it will always be Columbus Day. (Applause.)
Since the earliest days of our republic, the United States has also been uplifted by the contributions, sacrifices, and accomplishments of a vibrant, thriving, and proud Italian-American community. You come from a great, great community. Great achievers. Great people.
Italian-Americans have invigorated every aspect of our society, culture, and history, from Frank Sinatra -- a friend of mine; to Frank Capra; from Joe DiMaggio -- he was a great player, great player; to Vince Lombardi -- what a coach; and from Mother Cabrini, to the late, great Justice Antonin Scalia, the father of Gene. (Applause.) Soon he’ll be known as “the father of Gene.” Right, Gene? (Laughter.) He was a great man and a great guy.
Countless Italian-Americans have answered the call to defend our nation in uniform, serving in every war and every branch of our armed forces.
Among those we’re honored to have with us tonight, the first Marine to be Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a proud Italian American: General Peter Pace. Peter? Where are you, Peter? Peter? (Applause.) Wow. Great. That’s fantastic. The Chairman -- that’s a big position, Peter, right? That’s a great position. We have a great new Chairman, now, as you know. I want to thank you, Peter, for being here and heroism on the battlefield, your lifetime of service to our nation. Thank you very much.
This evening, we’re also thrilled to be joined by another very special guest -- an Italian-American legend who truly knows about winning and he knows about speed. I had the privilege of being driven by him one day along -- we were doing a show along Central Park West. He took off in a car -- four blocks. We covered the blocks in about one second. And I said, “Get me -- get me out of here.” (Laughter.) And you’ll see what I’m talking about. But it was a seriously fast and I’m very happy to be with you tonight.
His family immigrated to the United States in 1955 with just $125 dollars to their name. As a boy, he dreamed to be like his heroes in Formula One racing. And sure enough, he grew up to be one of the fastest men alive, one of the greatest racers of all time. He is the only driver in world history to win the Indy 500, the Daytona 500, and the Formula One World Championship. Not bad. I guess he likes speed. He has 111 career wins in races all across the globe, which has to be a record of some kind. That’s a lot of wins. That’s a lot of non-choking. There’s no choke when you win that much. A lot of people choke. He doesn’t choke.
He is a legendary racecar driver, and somebody that’s very special in the annals of sport, Mario Andretti. (Applause.) Mario, wherever you are, come on up. Come up, Mario. Come up, Mario. There he is. Boy, you look good, Mario.
You remember you took me on that ride? I said, “Get me out of here.” He said -- we were together. I said, “Mario, get me out of here. I want to get out of this car.” We went so fast. We literally -- we covered four blocks in like a second. (Laughter.) And he said, “Sir, that’s actually going very slow.” He wanted to go faster. I said, “We did it enough.” That was for “The Apprentice.” We had fun.
Say a few words to your friends, please. Thank you, Mario.
MR. ANDRETTI: I’m also not very tall, as you can see. (Laughter.) Well, thank you so much. And as you said, I’m an Italian immigrant. I’m very, very -- as you can imagine -- proud of my heritage. But I also found we, as a family -- we found our home here in America. And I’m the true, true, I think, example of what the American Dream is about.
And I always said, because of that, with pride and gratitude, I salute the Stars and Stripes.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: That’s great, Mario.
MR. ANDRETTI: Yes, indeed. And, again, I can only thank you and thank you for having me up here. And I know that you made the show, right?
PRESIDENT TRUMP: That’s right.
MR. ANDRETTI: And we made it so --
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Absolutely.
MR. ANDRETTI: -- so that was mission accomplished. And I appreciate that fact. So thank you very much, Mr. President.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Do you remember that day?
MR. ANDRETTI: Yeah, I remember. Yes, I -- actually it’s on YouTube. I showed it to some of our friends back here. (Laughter.) Yeah.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: I’m not sure I want to watch.
MR. ANDRETTI: I didn’t mess up your hair either. (Laughter.)
PRESIDENT TRUMP: No, he didn’t. (Applause.) Thank you, Mario.
MR. ANDRETTI: Thank you.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: One hundred and eleven wins -- think about that -- for speed. And that has to be in your blood, Mario, right?
Let him say hello to the President. (Laughter.) I think they like each other.
Hey, Mario, so when you have 111 wins, that’s in your blood, right? It’s got to be in the blood. Can you do that if you don’t like going fast, huh? Yeah, you get -- you get a driver, that’s the way you do it, right? (Laughter.)
Anyway, thank you very much. Stay up here if you’d like, Mario. Thank you very much.
To all Italian-Americans in the room and across our country: Again, thank you for uplifting our communities, thank you for strengthening our nation, and thank you for everything you’ve done to unleash American greatness. You’re an amazing group of people. I know so many people in the room tonight. We have so many successful people, great people.
As many of you know, our guest of honor tonight, President Sergio Mattarella, entered politics to combat the mafia -- that means he’s tough; that’s a tough deal -- and spent much of his career rooting out corruption. He is a crime-fighter and a patriot -- two things we love in America. He’s also the first Sicilian President of the Italian Republic. (Applause.)
Mr. President, we are delighted to have you both with us at the White House. And I really have a lot of respect for you. We spent the day together. It was a wild day. He said, “You know, your news conferences are tougher than most.” (Laughter.) It’s -- every question is a kill. They go in for the kill -- the fake news back there. Every question is a kill. But he got it. He’s a pro. He’s really amazing. He’s an amazing guy.
And I’d like to invite you up, Mr. President, to say a few words. Please. (Applause.)
PRESIDENT MATTARELLA: (As interpreted.) Mr. President, I am very grateful for your words of friendship -- words that I wish to reciprocate. Also, on behalf of my daughter and of my accompanying delegation, thank you also very much for your very, very warm welcome here in Washington, D.C.
And I also listened with a great deal of pleasure to the words you have spoke a few minutes ago, mentioning all of the bonds we share and all the great people that are of Italian heritage.
And I am happy to be able to greet representatives of the U.S. institutions and civil society, along with representatives of the American community of Italian descent, all of whom are citizens who, through their labor, their dignity, and their sacrifice, have contributed to the progress of this great nation and to its identity, thereby honoring the motto, “E Pluribus Unum,” which has been accompanying the country for over two centuries.
More and more people, including many youngsters, now consider the United States and Italy as a home which they can live in and move back and forth in, and therefore supporting our countries with passion and determination as they head towards the future.
And by doing so, our deep friendship is strengthened. It is a friendship fostered by the Trans-Atlantic Alliance, and it was fostered very much after World War Two. The United States contribution to the liberation of Europe from Nazi fascism is priceless, and Italy and Europe’s gratitude towards your American people is everlasting. We are part of a community of values and principles.
The United States of America’s responsible leadership in the free world, also thanks to the impulse it gave to the creation of the United Nations, has had Italy’s full support in striving towards peace and international security, as recently happened in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Balkans, the Horn of Africa, and the Sahel, within the framework of the Coalition to Defeat Daesh and Transnational Terrorism. And, together, as loyal allies, Washington and Rome have faced the challenges of an ever-changing global context.
Mr. President, peace and development in Europe have been guaranteed by the integration of countries which used to be opponents. The United States were a key player in calling for intense cooperation between European countries after World War Two, and we still acknowledge the importance of that choice in striking a global balance in which freedom and the rights of mankind are respected.
To us, the European Union -- besides being a driver for growth and prosperity, much like the Atlantic Alliance, is a community we were destined for -- one founded on the values and rights we share with the United States.
To our countries, Mr. President, the Trans-Atlantic bond resonates in our common foreign and defense policies, and in our close social relations, our cultural cooperation, our traditional economic cooperation, and trade -- which we hope will develop with the broadest and fairest freedom of trade and growth and investments.
Our bond embraces research and involves scholars, universities, businesses, and professionals from both our countries. It’s something we’re witnessing in the fascinating quest to increase our knowledge regarding space -- a journey which was started when the U.S., and mankind with it, allowed the first human being to step onto the moon’s soil.
And I wish to celebrate that feat by sending my thoughts to the astronauts, including Nick Hague, Andrew Morgan, Christina Koch, and our own Luca Parmitano, who are currently working on the International Space Station. (Applause.)
Mr. President, these women and men orbiting the Earth speak to us of hope, and they speak to us of the future of mankind. They represent the progress shared by the U.S., Europe, and Italy. Thank you, Mr. President.
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. (Applause.)
Thank you very much. And, Mrs. Scalia, thank you very much. A special woman. I just spotted you. Thank you. (Applause.)