Feb 20, 2018

How banks could control gun sales if D.C. won’t

Students and supporters protest against gun violence outside of the White House after the Parkland shooting. Photo: Bill Clark / CQ Roll Call

A big idea for the gun control debate, leveraging banks — DealBook column by N.Y. Times' Andrew Ross Sorkin: "What if the finance industry — credit card companies ... credit card processors ... and banks ... were to effectively set new rules for the sales of guns in America?"

Why it matters: "Collectively, they have more leverage over the gun industry than any lawmaker. And it wouldn’t be hard for them to take a stand."

  • The backdrop: "For the past year, chief executives have often talked about the new sense of moral responsibility that corporations have to help their communities and confront social challenges even when Washington won’t."
  • The companies could change their "terms of service to say that it won’t do business with retailers that sell assault weapons, high-capacity magazines and bump stocks."
  • What's next: "I spent the last 72 hours calling and emailing a handful of chief executives to discuss these ideas. ... [S]ome said they had already been thinking about it. A few ... called their peers to begin a conversation."

N.Y. Times Quote of the Day, from "Educators Face Daunting Role: Student Shield," on the front page:

  • Robert Parish, a teacher at a Florida elementary school near Stoneman Douglas High: “Last night I told my wife I would take a bullet for the kids.”

Happening today ... "A hundred Stoneman Douglas High School students are busing 400 miles to Florida's capital [Tallahassee] to urge lawmakers to act to prevent a repeat of the massacre that killed" 14 students and three faculty. (AP)

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In photos: India welcomes president with massive "Namaste Trump" rally

First Lady Melania Trump, President Trump and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend the "Namaste Trump" rally at Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, on Monday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump told a massive crowd at a rally in Ahmedabad, northwest India, Monday he hopes to reach a trade deal with his ""true friend" Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his two-day visit to the country "except he's a very tough negotiator."

Why it matters: The countries are forging deeper ties, particularly in the military dimension, as India’s location, size and economic growth making it the "obvious counterweight to China" for American policymakers, per Axios' Dave Lawler and Zachary Basu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi demonstrated the importance of the visit with a "Namaste Trump Rally" at a packed 110,000-capacity Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad — the world's largest cricket venue.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 33 mins ago - World

Coronavirus spreads to more countries as cases in South Korea surge

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

Afghanistan, Kuwait and Bahrain each reported their first cases of the novel coronavirus, Al Jazeera first reported, as infections in South Korea, Italy and mainland China continued to increase on Monday.

The big picture: As South Korea and Italy stepped up emergency measures in efforts to thwart the spread of the virus, World Health Organization officials expressed concern about infections with no clear link to China. COVID-19 has killed at least 2,619 people and infected almost 80,000 others, with all but 27 deaths occurring in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 46 mins ago - Health

Sanders reveals free childcare plan for preschoolers

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday in El Paso, Texas. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday a new plan to guarantee free child care and pre-kindergarten to all American children from infancy to age four.

Details: In the wide-ranging interview, Sanders told Anderson Cooper he planned to pay for universal childcare with a wealth tax. "It's taxes on billionaires," he said.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy