February 12, 2019 / 12:59 PM / 6 months ago

Tuesday Morning Briefing

U.S. lawmakers reach tentative deal to avoid government shutdown, Pentagon to review certification of Elon Musk’s SpaceX launch vehicles and new study shows North Korea may have made more nuclear bombs but threat reduced. Catch up on the latest headlines.

Politics

“We reached an agreement in principle” on funding border security programs through Sept. 30, Republican Senator Richard Shelby told reporters. U.S. congressional negotiators reached a tentative deal to try to avert another partial government shutdown on Saturday, but congressional aides said it did not contain the $5.7 billion President Trump wants for a border wall. California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an order withdrawing more than two-thirds of the state’s National Guard troops from the U.S.-Mexico border, calling claims of an illegal immigration crisis there nothing but “political theater.”

The decision by Patrick Hope, Democratic member of Virginia’s House of Delegates, not to initiate impeachment proceedings against Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax, 39, over accusations of sexual assault has left the next move unclear. Ensuring that the uncertainly that has swirled around the Virginia statehouse for more than a week shows no signs of waning.

A year after Florida lawmakers rushed through far-reaching legislation on school safety and gun control in response to the deadliest high school shooting in U.S. history, the state is on the verge of reopening the heart-wrenching debate. “A lot of those nerves are still raw, and there are still a lot of debates about all of these things,” said Max Eden, a senior fellow at the conservative Manhattan Institute who is working on a book about the shooting with a victim’s father.

In dueling rallies that could preview the tenor of the 2020 election campaign, potential White House hopeful Beto O’Rourke accused Donald Trump of fear-mongering on Monday and the Republican president mocked the Democrat as a “young man who lost”.

World

People carry flags in front of statues of North Korea founder Kim Il Sung (L) and late leader Kim Jong Il during a military parade marking the 70th anniversary of North Korea's foundation in Pyongyang, North Korea, September 9, 2018. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

North Korea has continued to produce bomb fuel while in denuclearization talks with the United States and may have produced enough in the past year to add as many as seven nuclear weapons to its arsenal, according to a study released just weeks before a planned second summit between the North Korean leader and President Trump. But the country’s freeze in nuclear and missile testing since 2017 mean that North Korea’s weapons program probably poses less of a threat than it did at the end of that year, the report by Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation found.

Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan arrived in Baghdad for an unannounced visit during which he said he would stress the importance of Iraqi sovereignty and broach the issue of the future of U.S. troops there.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May will tell British lawmakers they must hold their nerve over Brexit to force the European Union to accept changes to the divorce deal that would pave the way for an orderly exit.

Myanmar police fired rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon to disperse a protest over a statue of independence hero General Aung San that is opposed by members of the Karenni ethnic minority, police and a protest leader said.

For the latest update on jailed Reuters reporters.

Business

The Pentagon will evaluate the certification for Elon Musk's SpaceX launch vehicles to determine whether the U.S. Air Force complied with certain guidelines.

Nissan Motor said it had booked around $84 million in charges related to under-reported compensation for ousted chairman Carlos Ghosn, and slashed its annual profit outlook on weaker global sales.

Walmart and logistics firm Deliv pulled the plug on a key same-day grocery delivery partnership, dealing a setback in the retailer’s race against rival Amazon.com Inc to deliver groceries to customers’ homes.

The number of jobs in the U.S. solar industry dropped by 3.2 percent in 2018, a second year of losses, as the Trump administration’s tariffs on foreign panels and state-level policy changes hit demand for installations, according to an industry report released.

Reuters TV

Gucci owner Kering on Tuesday became the latest European luxury brand to defy fears of a slowdown in Chinese demand.

Gucci joins luxe brands defying China slowdown
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