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Dem Rep Connolly: Healthcare, Infrastructure, Ethics, Checking Admin Part of Our Agenda

During Friday’s Democratic Weekly Address, Representative Gerry Connolly (D-VA) laid out the agenda for the incoming Democratic House majority, which includes improving Obamacare, infrastructure spending, stronger ethics rules, and providing “a constitutional check on the Trump administration.” Transcript as Follows:

Common opposition candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih won last week's election with 58.4 percent of the ballot, or 134,705 votes

Maldives Seeks Help from India, U.S. to Escape Chinese Debt

The new president of the Maldives, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, campaigned on criticism of his predecessor’s appetite for Chinese loans and investment. Solih signaled a strong desire to realign his country toward India and seek help from the India-U.S. alliance to relieve the burden of Chinese debt.

Trump water memo (Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)

California Republicans Cheer Donald Trump’s Water Memo

President Donald Trump signed a new memorandum Friday to provide more water to California’s farmers, lifting spirits in the Central Valley — and potentially lifting the fortunes of embattled Republican congressmen.

Xi Jinping (R) shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (L) in the Chinese city of Dalian earlier in May

North Korean Media Tout China’s ‘Belt and Road’

South Korea’s Yonhap News on Monday noticed North Korea’s state-run newspaper Rodong Sinmun lavishing extraordinary praise on China’s ‘Belt and Road’ initiative, an international infrastructure program China has invested a great deal of pride and money in.

Cyril Ramaphosa (Lintao Zhang / Getty)

China Gives South Africa $25 Billion in Stimulus Loans

The government of South Africa announced on Friday that President Cyril Ramaphosa secured another $10 billion in Chinese loans during his trip to Beijing last week, bring South Africa’s total economic stimulus and infrastructure financing from China up to $25 billion.

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta

Kenya Drowning in Chinese Debt but President Kenyatta Wants More

China’s debt colonization of Africa is well underway, as one African nation after another takes out gigantic loans from Chinese banks to build infrastructure projects that appear financially unsustainable. Kenya is one of the most heavily indebted countries, but President Uhuru Kenyatta is on his way to Beijing for a summit at which he will reaffirm his commitment to the Belt and Road initiative.

PODGORICA (Reuters) - Perched atop massive cement pillars that tower above Montenegro’s picturesque Moraca river canyon, scores of Chinese workers are building a state-of-the-art highway through some of the roughest terrain in southern Europe.

China’s Debt Imperialism Behind Montenegro’s ‘Highway to Nowhere’

Chinese companies are hard at work on building a road through the mountains to connect Montenegro’s port city of Bar with Serbia. The project is incredibly expensive, leaving Montenegro struggling to pay off titanic debt to Chinese financiers. Critics call it another example of Chinese debt imperialism: the slow-motion conquest of smaller countries through the “Belt and Road” infrastructure initiative by suckering them into taking loans from Beijing they will never be able to repay.

The latest visit by a North Korean delegation comes after Kim Jong Un made two trips over the border to see Xi Jinping

China Wants North Korea to Join ‘Belt and Road’ Project

Soon after President Donald Trump concluded his Tuesday summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, Chinese media predicted a new golden age of prosperity for Pyongyang and urged it to join China’s massive “Belt and Road” infrastructure project.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono (L) met Wang Yi when he visited Beijing in January

China Invites Japan to Take Bigger Role in One Belt, One Road Plan

China’s state-run Global Times expressed delight on Sunday with Japan’s growing participation in the “Belt and Road” infrastructure project, through which China hopes to extend economic and political influence from Asia through the Middle East and Europe. The editorial signaled that if the Japanese play ball with Belt and Road, Beijing might even stop referring to them as history’s greatest monsters.