Good Monday morning. NEWS: PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP is extremely eager for legislative action on guns, and has pushed lawmakers he has spoken to for a vote in the House this week. Of course, this won’t happen -- the House is in session for just one day and things simply do not move that quickly. But lawmakers who have spoken to the president say the urgency with which he would like to proceed is unprecedented in his presidency.
-- HERE IS WHAT IS BEING DISCUSSED: Spending a pile of money on police programs. Funding some sort of volunteer program to protect schools. A new background-check system. The Fix NICS Act -- a bill that would penalize government entities for not reporting information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (this has already passed the House).
-- WHAT IS LESS LIKELY TO HAPPEN: Increasing the minimum age for purchasing some weapons, banning assault weapons.
-- INTERESTING PROPOSAL THAT’S QUIETLY BEING CONSIDERED: Giving cops the ability to confiscate a gun for 21 days if there are reports of domestic abuse, mental health issues or threats. The 21-day period could be renewed twice, under a plan that’s being discussed.
-- OF COURSE, all of this is in its infancy. But Trump is pushing hard behind the scenes.
NEW FROM SOUTH KOREA -- IVANKA TRUMP to NBC’S PETER ALEXANDER on arming students: ALEXANDER: “You’re a mom of three young children. Do you believe that arming teachers would make children safer?” TRUMP: “To be honest I don’t know. Obviously there would have to be an incredibly high standard for who would be able to bear arms in our school. But I think that there is no one solution to creating safety. … I think that having a teacher who is armed who cares deeply about her students or his students and who is capable and qualified to bear arms is not a bad idea. But it’s an idea that needs to be discussed.” Peter’s report http://nbcnews.to/2F5N8ov
THE LATEST IN FLORIDA -- “Florida Students Return, Gingerly, to Their Scarred High School,” by NYT’s Jack Healy in Parkland and Patricia Mazzei in Miami: “It was time to go back. Back into the high school where they had seen their teachers and classmates gunned down. Where friends from marching band or English class had been killed.
“Where they had cowered in closets, counted gunshots and wondered if they were going to die. Thousands of students and parents poured into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on Sunday afternoon, for the first time since the mass shooting at the school on Feb. 14.
“They walked past police cruisers and memorial flowers to gather the backpacks and books they had left behind as they fled, and to take their first steps toward resuming classes on a campus now indelibly linked to America’s wrenching cultural battle over gun laws and how to stop mass shootings.
“That debate largely stayed outside on Sunday. Inside Stoneman Douglas High, students said, they mostly just hugged. They hugged friends they hadn’t seen since the shooting, and they hugged friends who had been with them every day. They hugged their teachers, and friends’ parents, and classmates they barely knew, while their parents hugged other parents.” http://nyti.ms/2ERgjML
-- MATT DIXON in Tallahassee: “NRA battles Florida Republicans over gun crackdown”: “The National Rifle Association, equipped with a vaunted political email list and support from passionate single-issue voters, is gearing up to take on Florida Gov. Rick Scott and GOP leaders as they tee up a rarity in Florida lawmaking: gun control legislation. The central question for Republicans as the state’s legislative session enters its final weeks is whether the NRA, which opposes the GOP-written measures, will get rolled by a collection of lawmakers it helped get elected.” http://politi.co/2ERabUR
-- MORE ON SHERIFF ISRAEL: “Controversy over Parkland shooting is political and personal for Sheriff Scott Israel,” by the Miami Herald’s David Smiley: “Only days after thousands of grieving Parkland students and families gave him a standing ovation on national television, Scott Israel suddenly finds himself embroiled in controversy over his agency’s response to the worst high school shooting in U.S. history. Cheers from the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have been drowned out by demands from dozens of state lawmakers that he be suspended from office for ‘incompetence and neglect of duy.’
“Queries about acts of heroism have been replaced by a state investigation into why one of his deputies waited while teenage gunman Nikolas Cruz killed 17 and wounded 15 more with an assault rifle. Somehow, the worst stretch of Scott Israel’s life has gotten even worse.” http://hrld.us/2CkeYMR
-- HMM -- “Trump campaign emails photo of Parkland survivor, asks for donations,” by CNN’s Devan Cole: http://cnn.it/2FuVuE1
SIREN: AMERICAN ACTION NETWORK -- part of the constellation of outside groups boosting the House GOP and its agenda -- has Democrats ahead in the generic congressional ballot, 42.5% to 37.5%. That’s significantly tighter than the double-digit lead we’ve seen in other polls. The generic has tightened, partially due to tax reform.
-- TRUMP’S APPROVAL RATING in the AAN poll: 43%. 52% disapprove, according to the survey. THE POLL’s main subject is net neutrality, which just 22% of respondents seem to have any idea about. http://bit.ly/2F6hh77
ELIANA JOHNSON: “Kelly and Kushner stuck at an impasse after Trump’s punt on clearance”: “President Donald Trump’s decision to punt the issue of whether Jared Kushner can keep his access to sensitive government secrets without a full security clearance to his chief of staff, John Kelly, has put him in a tricky position, stuck between the rules on one side and the president’s family on the other.
“Trump’s ad hoc decision not to intervene in the clearance process on behalf of his son-in-law and senior adviser in effect left both Kelly and Kushner in limbo, prolonging an uncomfortable situation that White House aides say is unlikely to be resolved anytime soon.
“Kelly does not plan to recommend to the president that he grant Kushner a waiver, but he is unlikely to resign if Trump ultimately decides to do so, according to a person familiar with his thinking.” http://politi.co/2HPiUVC
PRUITT UNDER FIRE -- EMILY HOLDEN: “The Environmental Protection Agency has experienced a huge surge in open records lawsuits since President Donald Trump took office, an analysis of data reviewed by POLITICO shows — a trend that comes amid mounting criticism of EPA’s secrecy about Administrator Scott Pruitt’s travels, meetings and policy decisions. The legal attacks also reflect widespread interest in the sweeping changes Pruitt is enacting at EPA. …
“Several of the cases involve requests for the administrator’s schedules and travel records, which EPA released routinely under past administrations but now refuses to make public except in response to lawsuits. Pruitt has drawn criticism for withholding information about those matters, and for the expenses he has run up by demanding round-the-clock security, installing an eavesdropping-proof chamber in his office and flying first class to avoid potential threats from critics in the coach cabins.
“All told, plaintiffs have filed 55 public records lawsuits against EPA since Trump’s inauguration, according to POLITICO’s review of a database of cases compiled by the FOIA Project, an initiative run by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University.” http://politi.co/2BTpcTE
-- MORE AT THE AGENCIES -- “AP Review: Trump’s red tape cuts slice into safety rules,” by Joan Lowy and Tom Krisher: “[T]he government in 2016 proposed requiring that new heavy trucks have potentially life-saving software that would electronically limit speeds. But now, like many other safety rules in the works before President Donald Trump took office, it has been delayed indefinitely by the Transportation Department as part of a sweeping retreat from regulations that the president says slow the economy.
“An Associated Press review of the department’s rulemaking activities in Trump’s first year in office shows at least a dozen safety rules that were under development or already adopted have been repealed, withdrawn, delayed or put on the back burner. In most cases, those rules are opposed by powerful industries. And the political appointees running the agencies that write the rules often come from the industries they regulate. Meanwhile, there have been no significant new safety rules adopted over the same period.” http://bit.ly/2F8rjVA
2020 WATCH -- Elizabeth Warren’s stealth campaign to shed ‘Pocahontas’,” by Gabe Debenedetti: “Elizabeth Warren’s surprise address this month on her disputed Native American heritage was just one piece of a concerted campaign by the Massachusetts senator and potential 2020 hopeful to put the controversy behind her. Derisively nicknamed ‘Pocahontas’ by President Donald Trump over allegations that she used claims of Native American heritage to get a head start in her job search — a claim she and former colleagues strongly deny — Warren has met with close to a dozen tribal leaders and prominent activists recently.
“She has also signed onto at least six bills directly related to Native American policy. It’s clearly an organized effort: Four of those co-sponsorships came within two days of her speech, and Warren endorsed two bills around that time even though they’d been introduced months earlier.” http://politi.co/2Cl7VDE
FOR YOUR RADAR -- “China Moves to Let Xi Stay in Power by Abolishing Term Limit,” by NYT’s Chris Buckley and Keith Bradsher in Beijing: “China’s Communist Party has cleared the way for President Xi Jinping to stay in power indefinitely, by announcing Sunday that it intends to abolish term limits on the presidency, a momentous break with decades-old rules meant to prevent the country from returning to the days when Mao was shown cultish obedience. The surprise move, revealed in a dryly worded proposal to amend the Constitution, is the boldest yet by Mr. Xi as he seeks to strengthen the party’s control over a modernizing society and restore China to what he considers its rightful place as a global power — an agenda that his allies have suggested requires his personal leadership.” http://nyti.ms/2CHWP7E
COMING ATTRACTIONS – “Michelle Obama to release memoir in November,” by AP’s Hillel Italie: “Michelle Obama’s memoir, one of the most highly anticipated books in recent years, is coming out Nov. 13. The former first lady tweeted Sunday that the book, to come out a week after the 2018 midterm elections, is called ‘Becoming.’ By Sunday night, her memoir was in the top 20 on Amazon.com.” http://bit.ly/2EVADZA
-- SPOTTED last night: Michelle Obama at the Woolly Mammoth production of Danai Gurira’s “Familiar” – pic of her backstage with the cast after the show: http://bit.ly/2Cm6moS (h/t @IsaacDovere)
TRUMP’S MONDAY -- The president is hosting a “business session” with governors in the morning. He will have lunch with VP Mike Pence, Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. In the afternoon, Trump will meet with credit union representatives and later sit down with House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas).
-- TRUMP’S WEEK: TUESDAY: THE PRESIDENT is hosting meetings with House and Senate Republicans at the White House. He has a meeting with Boy Scouts of America. THURSDAY: Opioids summit. FRIDAY: Trump is attending Billy Graham’s funeral.
THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION -- “Trump privately pushing personal pilot to run FAA,” by Axios’ Jonathan Swan: “Trump has told a host of administration officials and associates that he wants John Dunkin — his longtime personal pilot, who flew him around the country on Trump Force One during the campaign — to helm the agency, which has a budget in the billions and which oversees all civil aviation in the United States. One industry insider equated this to the Seinfeld episode when Cosmo Kramer used his golf caddy as a jury consultant. A senior administration official told me that comparison is completely unfair. The source confirmed Trump recommended Dunkin and that he’s sat for an interview for the post. That source said he was impressive.” http://bit.ly/2EV3XU4
-- THIS IS A position that needs confirmation from the Senate.
PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER -- “Behind a Key Anti-Labor Case, a Web of Conservative Donors,” by NYT’s Noam Scheiber and Ken Vogel: “In the summer of 2016, government workers in Illinois received a mailing that offered them tips on how to leave their union. By paying a so-called fair-share fee instead of standard union dues, the mailing said, they would no longer be bound by union rules and could not be punished for refusing to strike. ‘To put it simply,’ the document concluded, ‘becoming a fair-share payer means you will have more freedom.’
“The mailing, sent by a group called the Illinois Policy Institute, may have seemed like disinterested advice. In fact, it was one prong of a broader campaign against public-sector unions, backed by some of the biggest donors on the right. It is an effort that will reach its apex on Monday, when the Supreme Court hears a case that could cripple public-sector unions by allowing the workers they represent to avoid paying fees.
“One of the institute’s largest donors is a foundation bankrolled by Richard Uihlein, an Illinois industrialist who has spent millions backing Republican candidates in recent years, including Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas and Gov. Bruce Rauner of Illinois. Tax filings show that Mr. Uihlein has also been the chief financial backer in recent years of the Liberty Justice Center, which represents Mark Janus, the Illinois child support specialist who is the plaintiff in the Supreme Court case.” http://nyti.ms/2GJqsb0
L.A. TIMES: “Weinstein Co. is set to file for bankruptcy after sale talks collapse,” by Ryan Faughnder: “Weinstein Co., the New York studio co-founded by Harvey Weinstein, will file for bankruptcy protection after last-ditch talks to sell its assets to an investor group collapsed, the company’s board of directors said Sunday night. ‘While we recognize that this is an extremely unfortunate outcome for our employees, our creditors and any victims, the Board has no choice but to pursue the only viable option to maximize the company’s remaining value: an orderly bankruptcy process,’ the board said in a statement.” http://lat.ms/2Cmp5Rp
MONICA LEWINSKY in VANITY FAIR: “EMERGING FROM ‘THE HOUSE OF GASLIGHT’ IN THE AGE OF #METOO” http://bit.ly/2HOiVsM
MEDIAWATCH – “Newsweek in Turmoil: Probe Into Finances and Ties to Bible College Widens,” by WSJ’s Lukas I. Alpert, Mark Maremont and Rebecca Davis O’Brien: “Two years ago, a loan application from the parent company of Newsweek raised the suspicions of an employee at a small Minnesota bank. The bank staffer’s misgivings helped trigger what has become a wide-ranging fraud probe by the Manhattan district attorney’s office, people familiar with the matter say.
“The investigation has touched off an unraveling at Newsweek that has left one of the most storied brands in American media in crisis. It has expanded from an inquiry into suspected bank fraud to a look at possible advertising abuses and ties between the parent company, Newsweek Media Group, and a bible college in California.” http://on.wsj.com/2sRiVEM
SPOTTED: Bernie Sanders on a 10:30 p.m. flight from Detroit to DCA, in coach. “Coming back from a weekend of rallies in Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan against the GOP tax bill (among other events),” per a tipster ... Ernest Moniz in first class on an American flight last night from BOS to DCA ... Heather Podesta in first class on an American flight to DCA from LAX; Tim Mak was in coach ... Marty Baron at the Landmark E Street Cinema.
BIRTHDAYS OF THE DAY: Arden Farhi, CBS News White House producer and producer of Major Garrett’s podcast “The Takeout”. How he got his start in journalism: “I was a student runner for CBS News at the 2004 Bush-Kerry debate at Washington University in St. Louis (Go Bears!). I was 19 years old. A couple days before the debate, I overslept and forgot to get the crew breakfast. Somehow I’m still employed by CBS.” Read his Playbook Plus Q&A: http://politi.co/2F32V7N
--Bruce Cohen, co-founder of the nonprofit Talent Beyond Boundaries and an Arlen Specter alum. A trend he thinks deserves more attention: “Displacement of people -- through conflict, threat, extreme weather and technological developments. We are trying to do our part through Talent Beyond Boundaries to open a labor mobility pathway for refugees.” Q&A: http://politi.co/2oxMiqt
BIRTHDAYS: Kelley Gannon Russell, Bush alum ... Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) is 6-0. He celebrated this weekend with visits to three Virginia microbreweries (Winchester Brew Works, Old Bust Head, and Garden Grove) (hat tip: Ian Sams) ... Washington Times White House correspondent Dave Boyer … the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is 64 ... former Turkish PM Ahmet Davutoğlu is 59 … Fae Jencks … former S.C. Gov. David Beasley is 61 … Politico’s Sophie Willis, Katie Ellsworth, Li Zhou, Sarah Eppler and Ryan Martin ... Carrie Meadows, COS to Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.) ... Amanda Alpert Loveday, senior project manager at NP Strategy ... A’shanti Gholar, political director for Emerge America ... Ashli Palmer, director of federal government affairs at CVS Health ... Courtney Paul, manager of comms at the U.S. Chamber’s Global IP Center ... CAA’s Zara Haq ... USAID alum Clay Doherty ... Jo Schopper ... Jeff Abers is 63 ... Celia Meyer … Will Mitchell, LD for Rep. Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) as well as a competitive cyclist for the District Taco racing team, is 3-0 (h/t wife Sacha Haworth) ...
... Corry Bliss, executive director of American Action Network and Congressional Leadership Fund, is 37 ... Ronald Lauder is 74. He celebrated in Palm Beach this weekend with his family -- daughter Aerin’s Instapic http://bit.ly/2F7Qesf ... Maddie Sawyer Keane ... Reuters’ Nicholas Brown is 33 ... Adam Baer, an investment bank analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch (h/t Dad, Don) ... BCG’s Val Young ... Alan Rosenblatt, director of digital research at Lake Research Partners … Tim Brant … Jonathan Nabavi, the NFL’s VP of public policy and government affairs (h/t Kam Mumtaz) ... Eric Kleefeld ... Emily West … Bassima Alghussein ... Peter Scheer ... Samantha Lugo ... Kathy Park ... Scott Sanders ... Sydney Ellis ... Jonathan Sporn ... Lisa Shin ... Sarah Budds, FSO at State ... Debbie Timko ... Ryan Falk ... Bill Pishotta ... George Agurkis ... Mark Gersh ... Cathey Park ... Kevin Thurman (h/ts Teresa Vilmain)