2020年1月20日 星期一

Your Monday Evening Briefing

Virginia, Davos, Coco Gauff

Your Monday Evening Briefing

Good evening. Here’s the latest.

Calla Kessler/The New York Times

1. This was the capital today.

President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence visited the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington to honor the civil rights leader’s federal holiday.

And the House impeachment managers and the president’s defense team took turns touring the Senate chamber and surrounding offices, which have been transformed into a court for the nation’s third-ever impeachment trial, which opens Tuesday with a debate on rules for the proceedings.

Mr. Trump’s legal team called on the Senate to “swiftly reject” the impeachment charges and acquit him, arguing that Democrats would “permanently weaken the presidency” if they succeeded in removing him from office over what the team characterized as policy and political differences.

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Parker Michels-Boyce for The New York Times

2. Thousands of pro-gun advocates, many of them armed, converged in Virginia.

They gathered outside the Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, most in an area where guns were allowed, to oppose a series of gun-control measures being considered in the State Legislature.

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Despite fears of potential violence, as of this writing there were no official reports of skirmishes or major incidents among the 22,000 in attendance, with 16,000 outside the perimeter and 6,000 inside.

“It was like a family gathering,” said one protester who drove from Texas to participate.

The State Senate last week approved three gun control bills, which the House of Delegates could approve as early as this week.

Mike Belleme for The New York Times

3. A united front for Democrats.

Several Democratic presidential candidates — including Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren — put aside their recent sparring and marched arm in arm through the streets of South Carolina’s capital to honor Dr. King.

Former Vice President Joe Biden has a strong lead in South Carolina polls and is widely favored among black voters. His rivals didn’t take him on directly but sought to make the case to African-Americans about how the next president could benefit their interests.

After the march, most of the candidates headed to an Iowa forum focused on minority communities, a scant two weeks before the state caucuses there.

Ade Johnson/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

4. A deadly Boeing 737 crash in 2009 held lessons that were never learned.

Documents and interviews show that the Dutch Safety Board either excluded or played down criticisms of the plane manufacturer in its final report on a crash near Amsterdam, after pushback from a team of Americans that included Boeing and federal safety officials.

The muted criticism fits within a broader pattern, brought to light since the more recent 737 Max tragedies, of how the company has benefited from a light touch by safety officials.

In the 2009 crash and the Max accidents, the failure of a single sensor caused systems to misfire, and Boeing had not provided pilots with information that could have helped them react to the malfunction.

Alyssa Schukar for The New York Times

5. Just don’t call it climate change.

States that apply for billions of dollars in a federal natural-disaster program must first explain why they need the money. And some conservative states feel compelled to avoid mentioning climate change.

A 306-page draft proposal from Texas — hit by Hurricane Harvey, above, in 2017 — doesn’t use the term, nor does South Carolina’s. Louisiana includes it in an appendix on the final page.

There are exceptions, like Florida. “Climate change is a key overarching challenge which threatens to compound the extent and effects of hazards,” state officials wrote in their application.

Nicolas Asfouri/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

6. Disposable plastic’s new enemy: China.

The government introduced measures to drastically cut the amount of disposable plastic items like bags and cutlery.

Previous efforts to reduce the use of plastic bags have faltered in China, but the government has indicated that, this time, it will be more serious and systematic in tackling the problem.

The Chinese generally generate less plastic waste per capita than Americans, but almost three-quarters of China’s ends up in poorly managed landfills, or out in the open.

Denis Balibouse/Reuters

7. A new view of President Trump at Davos.

Mr. Trump leaves tonight for the World Economic Forum in Switzerland, where he is likely to see an increasing sense of acceptance.

The U.S.’s growing economy, stock market boom and trade deals speak loudly to C.E.O.s, our DealBook columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin writes.

For this year’s forum as a whole, climate change is at the top of the priorities. Several groups will be pushing companies toward greater disclosure and action on emissions. The question for many is: Will all the talk matter?

Stringer/EPA, via Shutterstock

8. A virus in China grows more threatening.

A top Chinese government-appointed expert says a new respiratory virus is now being transmitted human to human, heightening fears of a possible pandemic.

The World Health Organization said it was convening an emergency meeting on Wednesday to evaluate the risk of the newly identified coronavirus. The known death toll so far is three, but human transmission could vastly expand its range.

Chinese authorities said cases had been detected for the first time in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, far from the original outbreak focused on a live-animal market in Wuhan. Cases have also been reported in Japan, South Korea and Thailand.

Hannah Peters/Getty Images

9. “I think the sky’s the limit for her.”

That’s the tennis star Venus Williams talking about 15-year-old Coco Gauff, who beat Williams in first-round action at the Australian Open in Melbourne today.

Elsewhere in Australia, dozens of fires are still burning, some out of control, in New South Wales and Victoria.

But some places were hit by hailstones as large as baseballs, wind gusts topping 70 miles per hour and an inch of rain in just 30 minutes. Thousands of people were left without power.

Ring.Com

10. Who’s at the door?

Dramas are being performed daily on a new American stage: the front porch.

Images from video-enabled doorbells linked to smartphones are meant to let owners see and speak with visitors. But more than 500 police departments have partnered with Ring, the surveillance-device maker acquired by Amazon, to use them to help solve crimes.

Not everyone is aware of the camera, which captures everything from the boring to the surprising. How about a dog who figures out how to ring the bell?

Have a resourceful evening.

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