Gates Pleads Guilty
Rick Gates, former campaign adviser to Donald Trump, will enter a guilty plea in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Gates purportedly lied about a meeting regarding Ukraine in 2013, which was attended by a member of Congress and Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman. The investigation, which shows no signs of slowing down, has implicated multiple high-level officials in the Trump administration.
Beijing Busts Anbang
The Chinese government seized control of conglomerate Anbang Insurance Group Co., which has made many high-profile acquisitions over the past years, most notably with its purchase of New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel. With about $315 billion in assets, Anbang is the largest private company to be taken over by the Chinese government. Anbang had previously been believed to be in Beijing’s good graces, but its chairman now faces fraud allegations.
Anbang’s downfall is a cogent microcosm of President Xi Xinping’s broader efforts to crack down on corruption and insulate the Chinese economy from fluctuations in international markets, a stark turnaround from the aggressive acquisition practices Chinese companies were undertaking in America just a few years earlier.
Gun Control vs. Gun Patrol
Debate and activism over gun control in America is surging after another deadly high school shooting in Florida, with survivors from the shooting planning to march on Washington D.C. to demand stricter gun laws. President Trump, who seems to be lending a deaf ear to public discourse, responded by endorsing the NRA, calling for bonuses for gun-trained teachers, and, in a surprising capitulation, hinted at support for stricter background checks relating to mental health.
Regardless, a large disparity between policy and public opinion persists. A recent poll released this week finds 97% of Americans support universal background checks, and 67% backed a ban on assault weapons.