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In the aftermath of the mass shooting in Nashville, most major companies have remained noticeably silent on the issue of gun violence. Corporate America has grown quiet on guns for fear of political blowback and antagonizing gun rights supporters, analysts say. But now, executives are facing mounting pressure to take a more active role in America’s gun debate – even though most of them would prefer to stay on the sidelines.
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1. Gun reform
Congress remains gridlocked on gun control measures in the wake of the school shooting in Nashville that killed six people, including three children. President Joe Biden has said that he’s done all he can do to address gun control and urged members on Capitol Hill to act. “I can’t do anything except plead with the Congress to act reasonably,” Biden told CNN Tuesday. But the shooting, so far, has not compelled lawmakers in Washington – particularly Republican leadership and some Tennessee lawmakers – to push forward gun control. The House, where Republicans are in control, has rejected Biden’s calls for an assault weapons ban. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy also would not answer questions Tuesday on whether any congressional action should be taken on guns after the latest mass shooting. Meanwhile, Democrats in Congress are slamming House Republicans for their disinterest. “All we’re going to get are thoughts and prayers out of their Twitter accounts, and that’s not enough,” Democratic Caucus Chairman Pete Aguilar said.
Healthy kids and teenagers may not need to get a Covid-19 shot, according to revised global vaccination recommendations from the World Health Organization. The updated roadmap is designed to prioritize Covid-19 vaccines for those at greatest risk of death and severe disease, according to the organization’s vaccine experts. While this latest guidance could change if the pandemic evolves, it comes as some countries are already making their own choices about vaccine recommendations based on their vaccine supply and progress. US officials, for example, are weighing whether to offer people who are at high risk of severe Covid-19 the chance to get another bivalent booster. The UK and Canada have already begun allowing certain people to get an additional bivalent booster.
3. Debt ceiling
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy urged the White House in a letter sent Tuesday to start more robust negotiations over raising the nation’s borrowing limit, the first major action in weeks on either side of the debt ceiling issue. McCarthy proposed a series of places to start saving money, including reclaiming unspent Covid-19 relief funds and strengthening work requirements for social programs. The White House, however, said it does not want to continue negotiations until Republicans are ready to offer a counter proposal to the White House’s budget request, which the Biden administration unveiled earlier this month. Currently, the US is $31.4 trillion in debt, putting the federal government at risk of not being able to pay all its bills within a few months if Congress doesn’t act.
More than a week after former President Donald Trump predicted – incorrectly – that he would be arrested in a New York criminal case, no action has come from the district attorney’s office investigating the matter. All eyes are on the Manhattan grand jury investigating Trump’s alleged role in a scheme to pay hush money to adult film star Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election. The grand jury is not expected to consider the case again this week, court sources told CNN. This means next week is the earliest the panel could be asked to take a vote on whether to indict Trump, although prosecutors do not have a hard deadline to conclude their case. Separately, former Vice President Mike Pence must testify to another grand jury about conversations he had with Trump leading up to January 6, 2021, a judge ruled.
5. France protests
Massive protests in France are showing no signs of letting up as angry demonstrators take to the streets over French President Emmanuel Macron’s pension reforms. Major services have come to a halt across the country in recent weeks over Macron’s proposal to raise the retirement age for most workers from 62 to 64 – a move that has riled opposition lawmakers and trade unions. Some 740,000 protesters joined 240 rallies held throughout France on Tuesday, with more than 93,000 demonstrators filling the streets of Paris alone, according to the French Interior Ministry. Today marks the 11th day of nationwide demonstrations, which have turned violent in recent days with some protestors hurling objects at the police, including smoke bombs, rocks and bottles.
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That’s about how many Tesla Model X vehicles are being investigated for a potential issue with their front seatbelt attachments. At this stage in the investigation, the problem has been detected in only two vehicles, safety regulators said. However, an investigation may, or may not, result in a recall. Meanwhile, Tesla is already facing investigations into its Autopilot and “Full Self Driving” driver assistance system and for steering wheels that can fall off.
“It’s one of the greatest rip-offs in modern American history.”
– California Gov. Gavin Newsom, accusing oil companies of price gouging California residents with high gas prices – even when crude oil prices started to decrease. “Why is it that we are paying at peak $2.61 more per gallon of gasoline than the national average?” Newsom said Tuesday, after signing a bill into law giving the state’s energy commission oversight power on oil companies to determine potential price gouging and impose corresponding penalties.
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