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NEWS CONCERNING THE FLORIDA MASSACRE
- Trump to support expanded background checks for gun ownership following an increased push for gun control after the Florida school shooting last week.
- Trump spoke to Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R., Texas) about such legislation, according to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
- Trump now supports expanded background checks for gun-ownership, a minimum gun-purchase age of 21, and a ban on bump stocks. He opposes a ban on semi-automatic rifles.
- Trump supports arming school teachers.
- Trump defends the NRA as a group of ‘patriots’ who want to ‘do the right thing’
- He held a press conference where he said this (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/22/politics/donald-trump-nra/index.html)
- Also, it has been made very clear that the president of the NRA (Wayne LaPierre) is ultra-conservative. This statement is reaffirmed when he says “You should be anxious and you should be frightened” about the potential of another Democratic takeover of the House, Senate and White House,”
- Republican Governor of a Vermont Phil Scott has reversed his beliefs on gun control. After police thwarted a potential attack by an eighteen year old who said he planned to “shoot up” a school, Scott said “That has a way of rocking your very core, and for that I had to do some reflecting, some soul searching myself to determine what we can do to protect our most precious resource, which is our kids,” Scott said. Scott now support restrictions on high capacity ammunition magazines, expanding background checks for private gun sales, and raising the legal gun ownership age to 21.
- Surviving teens ignite gun-control movement
- Teens that survived the Parkland shooting have created a sophisticated pro-gun-control social media operation.
- The number of the retweets of the hashtag #NeverAgain reached 100,000 retweets on Thursday—a 500% increase compared to a week earlier. The hashtag has been retweeted a total of over 500,000 times according to Twitter.
- They have raised $2.2 million is an internet fundraiser for a rally they plan to have in March.
NEWS ON THE ACTIVITIES OF THE STATES OF AMERICA
- Pennsylvania announces new district map.
- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court found the district map to unfairly benefit Republican candidates for the House of Representatives.
- Although Democratic and Republican voters are split equally in the state, Republicans have a 13-5 advantage in the House. They have been the leading party in Pennsylvania by proportion of Representatives since 2010, and the gerrymandered maps have been used since 2011.
- Even though this has passed, the issue remains very partisan. Democrats pro, republicans against. “I applaud the court for their decision and I respect their effort to remedy Pennsylvania’s unfair and unequal congressional elections,” said Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf.
- The Florida GOP backed raising the gun-ownership minimum age to 21.
- French President Emmanuel Macron attempts to boost economy with new legislation.
- The legislation reduces job protections and red tape that force companies to have unnecessary staff, and thus encourage job creation.
- Macron seeks to end decades of tension and volatility between business owners and labor unions.
- In September, Macron gave companies greater power to negotiate worker conditions with employees, among other measures.
- All these measures are apart of Macron’s plan for a labor-system overhaul aimed reinvigorating the economy and preventing mass-layoffs.
- Prime Minister of France Édouard Philippe France announces plan to decelerate Islamic extremism
- Private schools accused of cultivating Islamic extremism will be shut down
- Teachers will be trained to identify radicalized teens
- France will open 1,500 new spots in high security wards for radicals in prisons in a plan to isolate radicals from normal inmates
- France will work with the Prime Minister of the UK Theresa May to dampen online Islamic propaganda
WHITE HOUSE NEWS
- The US levied more sanctions than ever this Friday on North Korea.
- The new sanctions target dozens of companies and ships and one individual.
- The targeted individual was Tsang Yung Yuan, a Taiwanese citizen who has coordinated coal transfers between Russian brokers and North Korea to evade sanctions.
- The new sanctions are designed to prevent North Korea circumventing an international ban on its exportation of coal and its importation of certain fuel resources.
- Trump said that “If the sanctions don’t work, we’ll have to go to phase two.” He stated that alternative efforts to put pressure on North Korea would be very “rough” and “very, very, unfortunate for the world” during a speech at the Political Action Council in Maryland.
- Trump endorses Mitt Romney to be a Utah senator.
- Mitt Romney will be the likely successor to Orrin Hatch, who announced his retirement in January.
- Despite formerly calling Romney a “stone-cold loser,” Trump tweeted “He will make a great Senator and worthy successor to @OrrinHatch, and has my full support for endorsement!”
- US officials plan to open a new embassy in Jerusalem on May 14.
- The Financial Action Task Force of the US government has placed Pakistan on its terror-financing watchlist
- The US government is withholding $2 billion in security assistance
- Being on the list makes it more difficult for Pakistan to borrow, facilitate international banking transactions,and export, and it damages Pakistan’s prospects of foreign direct investment.
- Richard Gates plead guilty.
- Richard Gates was a former Trump campaign aide who was indicted by Robert Mueller on October 30.
- Gates pleaded guilty on Friday with providing false information and financial misdeeds.
- Gates and Manafort laundered $75,000,000 through secret offshore accounts in Cyprus, the Seychelles, Saint Vincent, and other locations, generating Gates $30,000,000 for personal expenses.
- Gates was paid millions of dollars to represent a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine from 2008 to 2016.
- Gates will serve up to six years in prison.
- Robert Mueller continues to maintain his innocence of the October 30 indictment, a position that will be difficult to maintain after Gates confessed.
- The indictment does not include meddling of Russia in the election.
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