Trump essentially calls out atheles kneeling for the anthem, makes prison reform a front-page issue (due in no small part to, of all people, reality TV star Kim Kardashian West), Florida went a full year without NICS checks, and an ingenious way to pay for infrastructure.
Thanks to my InSov colleague Catty Conservative for help in gathering the newsroom.
1.) Prison reform. Out of nowhere, prison/sentencing reform is very much on the front burner. Trump has spoken to Kardashian, which led to the pardoning a first-time non-violent drug offender named Alice Marie Johnson, and now is turning to the NFL atheltes who kneeled during the National Anthem to recommend people for pardoning. (A rather ingenious “put up or shut up” move.)
We will absolutely be dealing with prison reform in the Run later this year.
2.) NICS. Somebody in Florida couldn’t log into the Federal NICS system, apparently told nobody, and as a result, nobody reviewed concealed carry applications for upwards of a year.
The problem was discovered by another worker who did bring up the issue. But basically, CCW permits got approved for a year without background checks, a sort of de-facto Constitutional (concealed) carry.
3.) Otto. Ahead of the summit between Trump and the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong Un, another name is coming to the forefront. That of Otto Warmbier, the American student who was imprisoned for 15 months in North Korea, returned home in horrid condition, and eventually died as a result.
Vice President Mike Pence, speaking this week at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s “Road to Majority” convention, said that he had spoken with Otto’s father, and assured him that “their beloved son, Otto Warmbier, will not have died in vain.”
4.) Infrastructure. The government is the biggest landowner in the country. A bipartisan bill introduced this week suggests selling off a ton of government assets in order to pay down the debt and finance desperately-needed infrastructure projects. According to the draft:
Currently, federal agencies hold more than $2 trillion in debt and lease asset. The sale of a portion of these assets, if expedited, could raise a significant amount of money. The sale of these fixed-rated debt assets at this time will maximize asset value. Interest rates are on the rise, and the Federal Reserve’s quantitative tightening program is on the horizon. As interest rates rise, the value of the agency assets will decline — perhaps substantially. Importantly, the sales will not alter the terms of the loans. The consumer protection obligations associated with eligible Department of Agriculture loans and guarantees will convey with the sale, thereby minimizing impact on borrowers.
Two trillion dollars in assets. I’m realtively sure we’d be able to find a few million dollars worth in there we could could get rid of.
Regardless, it took long enough for Congress to start thinking the path to greater revenue wasn’t taxing citizens to death from every angle imaginable. Progress.
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