National Recap #2

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By: Parker Williamson

In this week’s National Recap we take a look at Warren’s poll progress, wall building funds and the war on assault weapons.

Warren pulled ahead of Biden in the recent Iowa poll

In the latest Iowa poll, Senator Elizabeth Warren took at two-point lead over Joe Biden. This is the first time the Massachusetts senator or anyone other than Biden has taken the lead. The Iowa poll also indicated that Warren’s overall favorable rating has risen to 75 percent with only 17 percent of Iowa caucus-goers considering her unfavorable. 

Here are the favorable/unfavorable ratings for the top democratic candidates:

Warren, 75/17

Biden, 66/29

Sanders, 58/63

Buttigieg, 69/13

Harris, 63/24

Warren may have taken the lead with 22% in the poll however, 14% of those surveyed said they were unsure of who their first choice would be. Only 20% of likely Iowa caucus-goers say they have their mind set on who to vote for and 63% say they could be persuaded to vote for someone else. With the historically pivotal Iowa caucus being 19 weeks away the race is still wide open.

Trump administration may turn to the Pentagon for additional wall building funds

In order to pay for upcoming construction on the U.S./Mexico border wall, senior Trump Administration officials are considering a plan that would take billions of additional dollars in military funds.

The President’s goal is to have 500 miles of barriers built by the 2020 election. Administration projections show that this will require $18.4 billion in funding, a much higher number than the administration has previously disclosed. The White House has already requested $5 billion from the budget for Homeland Security, if those funds are not approved the administration plans to repeat their actions from this fiscal year and divert an additional $3.6 billion from the Pentagon.

House Democrats made it clear that they will oppose any government for the construction of a border wall when they did so in the 2019 budget. The Trump Administration decided to bypass Congress in search for its funding. If even one of the administration’s funding requests succeed it will have diverted $7.2 billion without Congressional approval.

Colt will no longer produce AR-15s for civilians

Thursday gun manufacturer Colt announced that it will pause production of the AR-15 and other sporting rifles for civilian use. This announcement comes amid controversy over the role of these weapons’ in a recent bout of mass shootings. 

The company has attributed the decision to a decline in demand for assault-style rifles among civilians. In a statement, Colt CEO Dennis Veilleux said that in recent years the market for modern sporting rifles has experienced significant excess manufacturing capacity. 

“Given this level of manufacturing capacity, we believe there is adequate supply for modern sporting rifles for the foreseeable future,” Veilleux said.

The company has said that it will still fulfill contracts to produce rifles for law enforcement and the military. Veilleux also reaffirmed Colt’s “unwavering” commitment to the consumer market and the Second Amendment.

 Colt’s senior vice president for commercial business, Paul Spitale said that the basis for this decision was consumer feedback. Spitale added that this pause in production is “not forever.”