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U.S. Senate Republican Leader Backs Gun Violence Bill

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(C) Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A demonstrator holds a placard while taking part in the ‘March for Our Lives’, one of a series of nationwide protests against gun violence, in Washington, D.C., U.S., June 11, 2022. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo

By Richard Cowan and Moira Warburton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday he was “comfortable” with the framework of a bipartisan gun violence bill unveiled earlier this week and would vote for it if it is not changed substantially, adding momentum to a compromise that could pass the Senate as early as next week.

“The heavy lifting is done,” Senator Chris Murphy, the lead Democrat on the bill, told reporters.

Republican Senator John Cornyn, the lead Republican in the effort, said negotiators could finish writing the bill by the end of this week, clearing the way for a possible vote next week.

McConnell’s support is a significant boost to a growing group of bipartisan lawmakers who are expected to back the finished legislation. The bill needs 60 votes to advance in the evenly-split 100-seat chamber, including 10 Republicans.

Crafted in the aftermath of last month’s massacres at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas and a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, the framework is far less ambitious than proposals offered by President Joe Biden and other Democrats.

The plan, lauded by Biden, includes support for state “red flag” laws keeping firearms from potentially dangerous people, tougher criminal background checks for gun buyers under age 21 and a crackdown on “straw purchases” by people buying weapons for others who could not pass a background check.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer repeatedly has said he would work quickly to pass the bill once it is written. But thorny issues still need to be resolved.

Cornyn said negotiations were focused on the “red flag” provision.

The legislation would provide money to help other states set up their own laws, but it would not create a national red-flag program, he said. Sixteen states already have red flag laws in place, he said.

The provision should be broadened, he said, so that new federal funding could be targeted at various state programs, such as outpatient treatment programs for people suffering from mental illness.

McConnell said support for the package’s provisions was “off the charts” among current gun owners, according to a poll presented to Republican senators.

Ten Republicans, nine Democrats and one independent have joined forces in the Senate on what Democrats are calling a “first step” toward tackling mass murders, such as the recent ones in New York and Texas. In those shootings, semi-automatic weapons were used to kill 10 Black people in Buffalo and 19 elementary school children and two teachers in Uvalde.

Biden and other Democrats pushed to renew an assault weapons ban that expired in 2004. Senate Republicans made it clear this provision and one to raise the age for buying such weapons to 21 from 18 did not have enough support to pass.

U.S. Senate Republican leader backs gun violence bill

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U.S. May Extend Humanitarian Migrant Access Beyond Venezuelans, Mexico Says

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U.S. may extend humanitarian migrant access beyond Venezuelans, Mexico says By Reuters

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Sports & General 28 minutes ago (Oct 14, 2022 06:16PM ET)

(C) Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Mexico’s Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard speaks during the opening of the U.S.-Mexico High-Level Security Dialogue at the State Department in Washington, U.S., October 13, 2022. REUTERS/Michael A. McCoy

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -The United States has told Mexico it will consider granting humanitarian access for migrants of other nationalities following an accord this week for Venezuelans, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Friday.

Under a plan announced Wednesday, Washington will grant up to 24,000 Venezuelans humanitarian access to the United States by air, while enabling U.S. officials to expel to Mexico those caught trying to cross illegally by land.

The two countries launched the plan in a bid to contain record numbers of illegal crossings at the U.S.-Mexico border of Venezuelans and people from other countries, which have put U.S. President Joe Biden under pressure from political adversaries.

Speaking at a news conference, Ebrard described the 24,000 places for Venezuelans as a first step, and said U.S. officials had indicated the plan could be broadened.

“For now it’s Venezuelans, but they told us they would consider other nationalities in due course,” Ebrard told reporters. “We view this positively.”

He added Mexico had in recent months also seen a jump in migrant arrivals from Colombia, Brazil and Ecuador.

The Biden administration also considered including Cubans and Nicaraguans in the latest border management plan, two U.S. officials told Reuters this week.

U.S. may extend humanitarian migrant access beyond Venezuelans, Mexico says

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Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.

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Biden Takes Aim at Big Pharma, Republicans in California

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Biden takes aim at Big Pharma, Republicans in California By Reuters

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(C) Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the Build Back Better Act and its impact on the cost of prescription drugs during a speech in the East Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 6, 2021. REUTERS/Leah Millis

By Jeff Mason and Trevor Hunnicutt

IRVINE, Calif. (Reuters) -U.S. President Joe Biden criticized Republicans and drug companies during a stop at a California community college, as he campaigned for fellow Democrats in November’s midterm elections as his party tries to retain thin margins in Congress.

The trip includes stops in California on Friday and Oregon on Saturday as Biden positions his party as a champion of consumers and lower healthcare costs at a time that inflation ranks among voters’ top concerns. The midterm elections are on Nov. 8.

“We took on Big Pharma and we beat them, finally,” Biden said, referring to the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act’s provisions allowing Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices; caps the costs senior citizens will pay for prescriptions; and brings insulin prescriptions down to $35 for Medicare beneficiaries.

Biden promised to cap the insulin price at $35 for all Americans if Democrats keep the House and Senate. Most forecasts show Democrats with a slight advantage in the Senate and Republicans with a larger advantage in the House.

Biden alleged that Republicans will repeal the prescription drug price caps and take away Medicare’s ability to negotiate drug prices if they take control.

Biden was introduced by Representative Katie Porter, who has grilled bank and drug company executives on their profits in widely viewed Congressional hearings.

“Here’s the stone cold truth. Corporate greed worsens health outcomes, rips off taxpayers and threatens our capitalist economy,” Porter said, alleging the pharmaceutical industry was crushing competition and price transparency.

Biden signed an order Friday requiring the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) to outline within 90 days how it will use new models of care and payment to cut drug costs.

Data on Thursday showed U.S. consumer prices jumped 8.2% in the 12 months through September, after peaking above 9% in the summer and growing at their fastest pace since 1981. Healthcare costs were partly to blame in the most recent month, along with food and rent.

“Americans are squeezed by the cost of living – that’s been true for years and is a key reason the president ran,” the White House said in a fact sheet blaming pharmaceutical companies for raising prices. “Health care costs in particular are driving inflation.”

HHS was given the power to promote new approaches to lowering costs and widening care through an Innovation Center, created by a 2010 healthcare reform law known as Obamacare and housed at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

In August, Biden signed the $430 billion Inflation Reduction Act.

Some 65 million Americans are enrolled in Medicare programs, which have repeatedly come under fire for its cost to taxpayers.

Biden takes aim at Big Pharma, Republicans in California

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Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.

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Hyundai to Break Ground on $5.5 Billion Georgia Plant This Month

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Hyundai to break ground on $5.5 billion Georgia plant this month By Reuters

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Stock Markets 11 minutes ago (Oct 14, 2022 07:45PM ET)

(C) Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Hyundai Motors is seen at the company’s headquarters in Seoul, South Korea, March 22, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji/File Photo

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co said Friday it will break ground this month on a $5.5 billion electric vehicle and battery plant in the United States.

Hyundai plans to begin commercial production in the first half of 2025 with an annual capacity of 300,000 units. The Oct. 25 groundbreaking for the Hyundai Group “metaplant” in Savannah, Georgia is part of the Hyundai Group’s “commitment of $10 billion by 2025 to foster future mobility in the U.S., including production of EVs,” the company said.

The groundbreaking comes amid anger from Korea and the European Union over U.S. electric vehicle tax policy.

The Inflation Reduction Act, signed by Biden in August, requires EVs assembled in North America to qualify for tax credits in the United States, but excluded Hyundai and its affiliate Kia Corp from EV subsidies, as they do not yet make the vehicles there, along with major European automakers.

The law made about 70% of EVs immediately ineligible for the tax credits of up to $7,500 per vehicle.

Biden has expressed willingness to continue talks with South Korea over recent U.S. legislation that denies subsidies to most foreign makers of electric vehicles (EVs), South Korea said earlier this month.

Biden has also repeatedly praised investments by major foreign automakers to build electric vehicles and battery plants in the United States, including an announcement on Tuesday by Honda Motor and LG Energy that they would locate a $4.4 billion battery plant in Ohio.

Biden gave the assurance in a letter to South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, who had asked the U.S. president last month for help to allay Seoul’s concerns that the new U.S. rules would hurt South Korea’s automakers, Reuters reported.

As a result of the August law, only about 20 EVs qualify for subsidies under the new rules, among them models from Ford Motor (NYSE:F) Co and BMW.

Hyundai to break ground on $5.5 billion Georgia plant this month

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Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.

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