Oct 22, 2017

Abe set for big win, could revise Japan's pacifist constitution

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Photo: David Guttenfelder / AP

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's party appeared to win a large majority in the Japanese general election on Sunday. That could allow him to amend Japan's Constitution to "remove any doubt about the military's legitimacy," according to the New York Times.

  • Why it matters: Abe seems to have the two-thirds majority needed to change the constitution, which calls for "the renunciation of war," but the public is split on the change, and Abe will need a majority of voters to make the amendments.
  • The case for change: With North Korea's hostility and missile tests growing, Abe focused on voters' fears in his campaign message, per the Times.

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Assault weapons ban dies in Virginia Senate despite Democratic control

Gun-rights ralliers at a protest outside the Virginia Capitol Building in January. Photo ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP via Getty Images.

An assault weapons ban died in the Virginia Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday despite a Democratic majority in the assembly, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: Democrats flipped the Virginia House and Senate last year after campaigning hard on gun control. The assault weapons bill would have banned future transfers and sales of all assault weapons in the state.

What we know: Deadly Storm Dennis whips at England, Wales and Ireland

Photo: OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images.

At least two deaths are being attributed to Storm Dennis on Monday as it continues to strike at parts of England, Wales and Ireland, per AccuWeather.

The big picture: Dennis is the second-strongest nontropical storm ever recorded in the North Atlantic Ocean. Its hurricane-force winds and heavy rains have caused widespread flooding across the United Kingdom. The army has been deployed in the U.K. to help with flood relief.

Go deeperArrow25 mins ago - Science

Coronavirus cases rise as 14 American evacuees infected

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

14 Americans evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship tested positive for the novel coronavirus before being flown in a "specialist containment" on a plane repatriating U.S. citizens back home, the U.S. government said early Monday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,775 people and infected more than 70,000 others. Most cases and all but five of the deaths have occurred in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health