(Reuters) – Highlights of the day for U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration on Friday:
U.S. STRIKES SYRIA
Russia warns that U.S. cruise missile strikes on a Syrian air base could have “extremely serious” consequences, as Trump’s first major foray into a foreign conflict opens a rift between Moscow and Washington.
U.S. lawmakers from both parties back Trump’s strikes on Syria, but demand he spell out a broader strategy for dealing with the conflict and consult with Congress on any further action.
Many Trump voters interviewed by Reuters say his decision to attack the Syrian airfield was a decisive show of strength and resolve – just what they voted for in November; some far-right supporters of his candidacy condemn the strikes.
Allies around the world express support for the strikes, calling them a proportionate response to Syrian forces’ suspected use of chemical weapons, while Syria and its allies, Russia and Iran, denounce the attack.
Israeli leaders welcome the U.S. strikes in Syria, saying they send a strong message that the Trump administration would not accept the use of chemical weapons and are a warning to other hostile states, including Iran and North Korea.
SENATE CONFIRMS GORSUCH
The Republican-led Senate gives Trump the biggest triumph of his young presidency over stout Democratic opposition, confirming his Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, and restoring a conservative majority on the highest U.S. judicial body.
Gorsuch will have an immediate impact on cases already pending before the Supreme Court, including those touching on religious rights, employee lawsuits and other issues.
Trump presses Chinese President Xi Jingping to do more to curb North Korea’s nuclear program and help reduce the gaping U.S. trade deficit with Beijing in talks, even as he tones down the strident anti-China rhetoric of his election campaign.
COUNCIL OF ECONOMIC ADVISERS
Trump intends to nominate Kevin Hassett, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and fiscal policy expert, as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, the White House says.
MEXICAN DRUG WAR
For the first time in at least a decade, Mexico’s army is allowing the United States and the United Nations to observe opium poppy eradication, a step toward deeper cooperation to fight heroin traffickers, three sources in Mexico tell Reuters.
Twitter Inc drops a lawsuit it filed on Thursday against the U.S. Homeland Security Department, saying the government had withdrawn a summons for records about who was behind an account critical of Trump.
(Compiled by Jonathan Oatis; Editing by Leslie Adler and Tom Brown)