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Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley is a White House correspondent for NPR News. He reports on the policy and politics of the Obama Administration, with a special emphasis on economic issues.

The 2012 campaign is the third presidential contest Horsley has covered for NPR. He previously reported on Senator John McCain's White House bid in 2008 and Senator John Kerry's campaign in 2004. Thanks to this experience, Horsley has become an expert in the motel shampoo offerings of various battleground states.

Horsley took up the White House beat after serving as a San Diego-based business correspondent for NPR where he covered fast food, gasoline prices, and the California electricity crunch of 2000. He reported from the Pentagon during the early phases of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Before joining NPR in 2001, Horsley was a reporter for member station KPBS-FM, where he received numerous honors, including a Public Radio News Directors' award for coverage of the California energy crisis.

Earlier in his career, Horsley worked as a reporter for WUSF-FM in Tampa, Florida, and as a news writer and reporter for commercial radio stations in Boston and Concord, New Hampshire. Horsley began his professional career as a production assistant for NPR's Morning Edition.

Horsley earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and an MBA from San Diego State University.

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The White House is celebrating some encouraging numbers this week. Factory jobs are up. Illegal border crossings are down.

The new administration is claiming credit on both fronts, although much of the change so far is psychological.

House Republicans' plan to replace the Affordable Care Act would make significant changes to the U.S. health insurance system. But that's just the beginning.

"There are three phases of this plan," Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price told reporters this week. And the bill now being marked up in House committees is just the first step.

President Trump is offering some Twitter support for the Obamacare replacement plan put forward by House Republicans.

In a tweet Tuesday morning, Trump described the GOP blueprint as "Our wonderful new Healthcare Bill." He suggested it would be a welcome change from the Affordable Care Act, which he called "a complete and total disaster."

"I'm proud to support the replacement plan released by the House of Representatives," the president said Tuesday afternoon during a White House meeting with GOP lawmakers.

President Trump and his advisers have begun putting some red meat on the bones of the president's "America First" agenda.

Trump is expected to talk more about that when he addresses a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night. As with Brexit and other nationalist movements, Trump sees his election as part of a broader rejection of globalization.

"Erasing national borders does not make people safer or more prosperous," Trump told supporters in Melbourne, Fla., this month. "It undermines democracy and trades away prosperity. We're giving it away."

President Trump signed an executive action on Friday aimed at reducing red tape. It directs each federal agency to set up a task force to identify costly regulations that could be scaled back.

"Every regulation should have to pass a simple test," Trump said. "Does it make life better or safer for American workers or consumers? If the answer is no, we will be getting rid of it — and getting rid of it quickly."

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At his White House news conference this week, President Trump painted a grim picture of the challenges facing the country.

(SOUNDBITE OF PRESS CONFERENCE)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: To be honest, I inherited a mess. It's a mess.

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So far, President Trump has tried to run the White House much the way he ran his family business. That means little rigid organization and a skeleton crew of loyal, but not necessarily experienced, staffers.

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And now for reaction from the White House, we turn to NPR's Scott Horsley, who's there. Scott, tell us about the administration's reaction tonight.

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President Trump is promising a concerted effort to destroy ISIS. And today, the president spoke to service members at the center of that fight when he visited MacDill Air Force Base, home to the U.S. Central Command in Florida.

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Next Friday, the Labor Department will issue its first jobs and unemployment report of Donald Trump's presidency. Forecasters expect little change in the jobless rate, which was 4.7 percent in December. That's down from 10 percent during the depths of the recession in late 2009.

Trump repeatedly claimed during the campaign that the federal government was understating the real unemployment rate.

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