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Gun lobby pushes back on Trump's gun plans after Florida shooting

Gun lobby pushes back on Trump's gun plans after Florida shooting The National Rifle Association pushed back on Sunday against modest proposals by President Donald Trump and other Republicans to change U.S. gun laws after a school shooting in Florida that killed 17 students and staff. "The NRA doesn't back any ban," Dana Loesch said.


Alabama's aborted execution was botched and bloody -lawyer

Alabama's aborted execution was botched and bloody -lawyer On Thursday, Alabama tried to execute by lethal injection convicted murderer Doyle Hamm, 61, who has spent more than half his life on death row. After about 2-1/2 hours of trying, the state called it off because of issues with Hamm's veins it said could not be resolved before a death warrant expired at midnight.


Sheriff says only one deputy at fault in Florida school shooting

Sheriff says only one deputy at fault in Florida school shooting Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel also said his department acted properly in at least 16 of the 18 calls it received before the massacre, warning that Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old suspect, was dangerous. Israel rejected a call for his resignation from a state legislator and defended his department on the CNN program "State of the Union" on Sunday from criticism that deputies missed warning signs about Cruz, a former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Governor Rick Scott on Sunday asked the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the law enforcement response to the shooting, his office said in a statement, adding that the department would begin the probe immediately.


Support for stricter gun control rises 18 percent in latest poll

Support for stricter gun control rises 18 percent in latest poll 70 percent of Americans support stricter gun laws, an 18-point jump compared with October, according to a new poll released Sunday by CNN.


Gun lobby pushes back on Trump's gun plans after Florida shooting

Gun lobby pushes back on Trump's gun plans after Florida shooting By Pete Schroeder and Roberta Rampton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The National Rifle Association pushed back on Sunday against modest proposals by President Donald Trump and other Republicans to change U.S. gun laws in the wake of a school shooting in Florida that killed 17 students and staff. The powerful gun lobby group does not support Trump's proposals to raise the age limit for buying certain types of guns and to ban bump stocks that enable semi-automatic rifles to shoot hundreds of rounds a minute, a spokeswoman said on ABC's "This Week." "The NRA doesn't back any ban," Dana Loesch said.


Jefferson's 'tree of liberty' and the blood of schoolchildren

Jefferson's 'tree of liberty' and the blood of schoolchildren Why do we need assault rifles? According to some on the right, to fight off government tyranny, because you can't beat the U.S. Army with just handguns.


Letter from Pyeongchang: Finding beauty in the Olympic struggle

Letter from Pyeongchang: Finding beauty in the Olympic struggle “I kind of put pressure on myself today because I wanted to honor those who were lost and skate really well for them and kind of have somewhat of a happy moment for our country,” said Alexa through tears, shortly after their performance.


Texas's colonias: solution to housing crisis or moral blot on rich nation’s conscience?

Texas's colonias: solution to housing crisis or moral blot on rich nation’s conscience? Recommended: How much do you know about Texas? Across the Southwest, more than 2,000 of these colonias now exist along the US-Mexican border, the majority in Texas. To social justice advocates, the enduring presence of colonias symbolizes the growing gap between rich and poor, urban and rural in the United States.


Bank of America takes aim at gun-making clients

Bank of America takes aim at gun-making clients Bank of America, the second-biggest U.S. bank by assets, said its request to makers of the military-style weapons was in line with those taken by other financial industry companies to help prevent deadly gun rampages. "An immediate step we're taking is to engage the limited number of clients we have that manufacture assault weapons for non-military use to understand what they can contribute to this shared responsibility," the Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank said in a statement. It did not name the clients who make assault rifles.


Delta, United Airlines become latest companies to cut NRA ties

Delta, United Airlines become latest companies to cut NRA ties Delta Air Lines and United Airlines on Saturday became the latest major corporations to sever marketing ties with the National Rifle Association as the fallout from last week's massacre at a Florida high school took its toll on the gun advocacy group. The exodus of corporate names, ranging from a major insurer to car rental brands and a household moving company, began after the NRA launched a counter-offensive against a student-led campaign for tighter U.S. gun laws. The NRA responded by saying its members were being punished, but would not be intimidated, by what it called "a shameful display of political and civic cowardice" from some corporations.


Manafort asks U.S. court for release to attend New York funeral

Manafort asks U.S. court for release to attend New York funeral In a filing in federal court in Washington, Manafort said his father-in-law died on Saturday and that he would like to travel from his Virginia home to Long Island, New York, to attend the wake, funeral and burial services. Manafort has been charged with conspiring to launder money, lying on his tax returns and failing to register as a foreign agent for lobbying work for a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine, among other charges.


Manafort says father-in-law died, seeks to attend N.Y. funeral

Manafort says father-in-law died, seeks to attend N.Y. funeral Manafort, who also managed Trump's presidential campaign for several months in 2016, filed court papers asking the judge overseeing his criminal case to allow him to travel to New York on Monday for the funeral and related services. Manafort has been indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller for laundering more than $30 million, duping banks into lending money and other charges, along with his former business partner Rick Gates.


Florida students take on NRA, set eyes on midterm elections

Florida students take on NRA, set eyes on midterm elections Staring boldly into TV cameras, Hogg and other students who survived the Feb. 14 Parkland school massacre, have demanded lawmakers restrict gun sales and are targeting politicians funded by the pro-gun National Rifle Association (NRA) lobby.


Delta, United Airlines become latest companies to cut NRA ties

Delta, United Airlines become latest companies to cut NRA ties Delta Air Lines and United Airlines on Saturday became the latest major corporations to sever marketing ties with the National Rifle Association as the fallout from last week's massacre at a Florida high school took its toll on the gun advocacy group. The exodus of corporate names, ranging from a major insurer to car rental brands and a household moving company, began after the NRA launched a counter-offensive against a student-led campaign for tighter U.S. gun laws. The NRA responded by saying its members were being punished, but would not be intimidated, by what it called "a shameful display of political and civic cowardice" from some corporations.


Woman stabbed to death, man wounded at Massachusetts library

Woman stabbed to death, man wounded at Massachusetts library The suspect, Jeffery Yao, 23, of Winchester, approached the woman and stabbed her multiple times with a 10-inch hunting knife at a library reading room table, Middlesex County District Attorney Marian Ryan said at a news conference. The woman, a resident of Winchester, a Boston suburb, was slashed and stabbed in the upper torso and head and died at a hospital.


Prestigious U.S. colleges won't reject students who protest guns

Prestigious U.S. colleges won't reject students who protest guns Many school districts officials have threatened to suspend high school students who take part in nationwide gun control walkouts and other demonstrations called by survivors of the mass shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Such disciplinary action can sometimes hurt a student's chances of getting into a preferred college.


Florida school shooting prompts gun-control rallies

Florida school shooting prompts gun-control rallies The Feb. 14 rampage at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., the latest in a series of deadly shootings at U.S. schools, has spurred unprecedented protests in cities across the country.


Readers write: Reporter’s experiences over the decades in China

Readers write: Reporter’s experiences over the decades in China Regarding the Jan. 22 cover story, “My return to China”: Rarely have I read such a remarkable essay as this one. The stories of Ann Scott Tyson’s two visits are filled with keen observation, emotion, and compassionate comparisons of social norms past and present, leaving one with an early warning signal that demonstrates how quickly invasive governmental surveillance can cast a chill on a nation’s populace, silencing natural desires to communicate in even the simplest conversations with others. Recommended: How much do you know about China?


Rex Tillerson’s Monroe Doctrine invocation was bizarre, Meeting between North and South Korea sparks hope, War between Israel, Syria, and Iran looks imminent, Social media normalizes stalking, Elon Musk proves the benefits of privatized space programs

Rex Tillerson’s Monroe Doctrine invocation was bizarre, Meeting between North and South Korea sparks hope, War between Israel, Syria, and Iran looks imminent, Social media normalizes stalking, Elon Musk proves the benefits of privatized space programs The South China MORNING Post / Hong Kong


NRA honors FCC chair with rifle for repealing 'net neutrality'

NRA honors FCC chair with rifle for repealing 'net neutrality' By David Shepardson WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The National Rifle Association (NRA) on Friday honored the head of the Federal Communications Commission with a rifle after braving death threats and other opposition as he worked to undo the Obama administration's 2015 net neutrality rules. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai was honored at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Oxon Hill, Maryland, by the NRA with the "Charlton Heston Courage Under Fire Award," an honor named for the late actor who was an NRA president.


Woman in van arrested after striking White House barrier

Woman in van arrested after striking White House barrier A Tennessee woman driving a white van on Friday intentionally drove into a White House security barrier but did not breach it, and she was immediately apprehended and put under arrest, the U.S. Secret Service said. No shots were fired and no law enforcement personnel were hurt, the Secret Service said in a statement. Previous encounters with the 35-year-old woman from La Vergne, Tennessee, near the White House had resulted "in numerous arrests for a variety of criminal violations," it added, without giving her name.


Trump company settles lawsuit over disputed golf club deposits

Trump company settles lawsuit over disputed golf club deposits The payout is more than 94 percent of the $5.77 million that U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra, who must approve the settlement, last February had ordered the Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Florida, to pay. Lawyers for the golf club and the Trump Organization did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The lawsuit began after Trump changed membership rules for the club, which he had acquired from Ritz-Carlton in November 2012.


California man sentenced to over two years in prison for penny stock fraud

California man sentenced to over two years in prison for penny stock fraud A California stock promoter was sentenced on Friday to two years and three months in prison for his role in what U.S. prosecutors say was a nearly $100 million penny stock pump-and-dump scheme. Songkram Roy Sahachaisere, 48, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Eric Vitaliano in Brooklyn, federal prosecutors announced. A lawyer for Sahachaisere could not immediately be reached for comment.


Woman in van arrested after striking White House barrier

Woman in van arrested after striking White House barrier A Tennessee woman driving a white van on Friday intentionally drove into a White House security barrier but did not breach it, and she was immediately apprehended and put under arrest, the U.S. Secret Service said. No shots were fired and no law enforcement personnel were hurt, the Secret Service said in a statement. Previous encounters with the 35-year-old woman from La Vergne, Tennessee, near the White House had resulted "in numerous arrests for a variety of criminal violations," it added, without giving her name.


New charges filed against parents in California abused siblings case

New charges filed against parents in California abused siblings case A California couple accused of keeping 13 children imprisoned, chained and starved in a squalid suburban home were hit with additional charges on Friday as defense lawyers said they were overwhelmed by the sheer amount of evidence in the case. David Turpin, 57, and his wife Louise, 49, were advised of the new charges during a brief hearing in Riverside County Superior Court at which they appeared dressed in black at a table with their attorneys but did not speak. A spokesman for the Riverside County District Attorney's Office said the new charges included three counts of child abuse against both defendants.


Former Trump campaign aide pleads guilty in Russia probe

Former Trump campaign aide pleads guilty in Russia probe By Sarah N. Lynch and Karen Freifeld WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A former senior official in Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, Rick Gates, pleaded guilty on Friday to conspiracy against the United States and lying to investigators, and he is cooperating with a federal probe into Russia's role in the election. Gates, who was a deputy campaign manager for Trump, is being investigated by the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which is probing alleged Russian meddling in the U.S. election. Prosecutors said they could ask the judge for a reduction in Gates' sentence based on the extent of his cooperation with Mueller's probe.


Corporate partners cut cord with NRA as gun control debate rages

Corporate partners cut cord with NRA as gun control debate rages The fallout over this week's shooting rampage at a Florida high school started to take its toll on National Rifle Association's roster of corporate partners on Friday as a half dozen companies severed marketing ties with the gun advocacy organization. The exodus of corporate names, ranging from a major insurer to car rental brands and a household moving company, occurred after the NRA launched a counter-offensive against a student-led campaign for tighter U.S. gun ownership laws. At the same time, gun control activists are stepping up pressure on Amazon.com Inc and other online streaming platforms to drop the online video channel NRATV, featuring gun-friendly programming produced by the NRA.


New indictment alleges Manafort payments to former European politicians

New indictment alleges Manafort payments to former European politicians A new indictment filed on Friday by special counsel Robert Mueller alleges that President Donald Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort secretly paid former senior European politicians in 2012 and 2013 to lobby for the pro-Russia government of Ukraine. The superseding indictment says that Manafort wired more than 2 million euros to the unnamed former European politicians.


Alabama's aborted execution comes under court review

Alabama's aborted execution comes under court review Alabama was planning to execute Doyle Hamm, 61, on Thursday for the 1987 murder of a motel clerk but called it off due to venous issues it said could not be solved before a death warrant expired at midnight. The case in Alabama comes after states including Oklahoma and Arizona have had botched executions that raised questions about death chamber protocols in the 31 U.S. states with the capital punishment. Chief U.S. District Judge Karon Bowdre in Alabama called for a medical check on Hamm and ordered the state to preserve the clothes the inmate was wearing on the execution night.


Detroit mayor proposes 'last' budget under state oversight

Detroit mayor proposes 'last' budget under state oversight Michigan's largest city is expecting its post-bankruptcy financial review commission to go dormant this spring after audits showed balanced budgets in fiscal years 2015, 2016 and 2017. "Once we get this budget passed we have the opportunity to get out from active state oversight," the mayor told the city council. Detroit ended what was then the biggest-ever U.S. municipal bankruptcy in December 2014 after shedding about $7 billion of its $18 billion of debt and obligations.


Indicted Missouri governor resigns from post with GOP governors group

Indicted Missouri governor resigns from post with GOP governors group (Reuters) - Missouri Governor Eric Greitens, under indictment for invasion of privacy in connection with the cover-up of an extramarital affair, has resigned from a leadership position with the Republican Governors Association, the organization said on Friday. Greitens will not attend the group's winter meeting currently under way in Washington, the association's executive director, Paul Bennecke, said in a statement. "Given his desire to focus his full attention on moving forward in Missouri, he also no longer intends to serve on the Executive Committee of the" Republican Governors Association, Bennecke said.


Some conservatives seek safe spaces as Florida teens fight for gun control

Some conservatives seek safe spaces as Florida teens fight for gun control As survivors of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting have mobilized to pressure public officials on gun control while rebutting the arguments of right-wing commentators, hurt conservatives are suggesting they would like a safe space from the teenagers’ insults.


Add another item to Trump's list of frustrations: his bald spot

Add another item to Trump's list of frustrations: his bald spot U.S. President Donald Trump has a bald spot and it evidently annoys him. The former reality television star, who is very aware of his appearance, smirked on Friday when he saw himself on a screen as he spoke to the Conservative Political Action Conference. "What a nice picture that is. Look at that. I'd love to watch that guy speak," said Trump, drawing friendly laughter from a crowd of cheering supporters.


Trump: Chief of staff Kelly to settle Kushner security dispute

Trump: Chief of staff Kelly to settle Kushner security dispute By Steve Holland WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump said on Friday he will leave it to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly to settle a security clearance dispute involving son-in-law and top aide Jared Kushner, but left little doubt he wants the case settled in a way that allows Kushner to keep his job. Problems with security clearance for White House aides surfaced this month in fallout over the abrupt resignation of White House staff secretary Rob Porter over allegations of domestic abuse against two former wives. Kushner is one of dozens of aides operating under an interim clearance, not yet fully cleared due to complications in their backgrounds.


Florida governor proposes new gun sale limits after school shooting

Florida governor proposes new gun sale limits after school shooting By Zachary Fagenson PARKLAND, Fla. (Reuters) - Florida Governor Rick Scott urged state lawmakers on Friday to increase restrictions on buying guns and to strengthen school safety after a gunman killed 17 people at a school last week, proposals that gun control advocates said did not go far enough. Scott said he would work with legislators during the next two weeks to raise the minimum age for buying any kind of gun in Florida from 18 to 21, with some exceptions for younger military or law enforcement officers. Echoing similar calls by U.S. President Donald Trump, Scott also said he wanted to change laws to make it "virtually impossible for anyone who has mental issues to use a gun." The Republican governor's proposals come amid a reignited national debate on gun rights, led in part by some of the student survivors of the Feb. 14 attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.


New York City law survives gun rights group's legal challenge

New York City law survives gun rights group's legal challenge A federal appeals court on Friday rejected a gun rights group's constitutional challenge to strict New York City limits on how licensed handgun owners may use their weapons outside the home. By a 3-0 vote, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said the restrictions on people who have licenses to have guns at home, known as "premises" licenses, did not violate the Second Amendment.


Trump extends funding for Puerto Rico following storms: White House

Trump extends funding for Puerto Rico following storms: White House WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday extended federal funding for Puerto Rico to help remove debris and provide emergency protections following last year's devastating storms that battered the U.S. territorial island.


U.S. firm accused of plagiarizing bid for Puerto Rico food supply contract

U.S. firm accused of plagiarizing bid for Puerto Rico food supply contract The allegation marked the latest twist in the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency’s contract with Tribute, which the agency known as FEMA eventually canceled. Democrats on the U.S. House Oversight Committee earlier this month revealed Tribute had signed up to deliver 30 million meals in Puerto Rico, but provided just 50,000 before FEMA scrapped the deal.


Fees case may enable U.S. Supreme Court to curb union power

Fees case may enable U.S. Supreme Court to curb union power By Robert Iafolla and Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday will consider for the second time in two years whether to choke off a critical funding stream for public-employee unions, potentially reducing organized labor's influence in the workplace and at the ballot box. The nine justices will hear a challenge backed by anti-union groups to the legality of fees that workers who are not members of unions representing teachers, police, firefighters and certain other government employees must pay to help cover the costs of collective bargaining with state and local governments. Two dozen states require payment of these so-called agency fees, covering roughly 5 million public-sector workers, that provide millions of dollars annually to unions.


Scenes From CPAC 2018

Scenes From CPAC 2018 As thousands of Republicans converged on CPAC, it was impossible to ignore the tragedy of gun violence, which has put gun rights advocates and opponents under a hot spotlight.


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