Thursday, October 5, 2017

Thursday’s Briefing: New BART Cars Delayed Again; GOP Leaders May Be Open to Banning Gun Bump Stocks

By Robert Gammon
Thu, Oct 5, 2017 at 10:17 AM

click to enlarge bart_new_trains.jpg
Stories you shouldn’t miss for Oct. 5, 2017:

1. BART has once again delayed the roll out of its new train cars, as the transit agency continues to struggle with mechanical glitches, reports Michael Cabanatuan of the San Francisco Chronicle. BART had planned to launch 10 of its new trains in June and then delayed them to September. Now, it plans to put them in service around Thanksgiving. “The problems with the cars included mechanical trouble with their friction brakes, and glitches with their lights, air conditioning, heating system, and propulsion.”

2. Republican Congressional leaders appear to be open to U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s proposal to ban the sale of so-called “bump stock” devices like the ones used by the Las Vegas mass killer, the Washington Post$ reports. GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan said he would consider restricting bump stocks. Gunman Stephen Paddock used bump stocks to turn semi-automatic weapons into automatic killing machines.

3. The Trump administration Department of Justice has rolled back Obama-era protections of transgender people, BuzzFeed News reports. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has reversed a federal government policy that stated that transgender workers were protected from discrimination under a 1964 civil rights law.

4. Although U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson denied that he considered quitting this summer, The New York Times$ reports that Tillerson talked openly about drafting a letter of resignation. Tillerson also did not deny reports that he called President Trump a “moron,” and the Times reports that he has been astonished about the president’s basic lack of understanding of foreign policy.

5. And Silicon Valley billionaire Vinod Khosla finally reopened road access to Martin’s Beach near Half Moon Bay after courts ruled that he had illegally blocked the public from using the shoreline after purchasing the beach in 2010, reports Peter Fimrite of the San Francisco Chronicle.

$ = news stories that may require payment to read.

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