Democrats try to tempt Trump on guns as Beto beats drum for AR-15 buyback

Pelosi and Schumer speak to president on gun control while Buttigieg and Paul offer contrasting criticism of ORourkes rhetoric Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer on Sunday offered Donald Trump a rare and highly symbolic bipartisan win if he can somehow force Republicans in the Senate to enact gun control legislation containing background check measures passed by the House this year. The House speaker and Senate minority leader said they would both join the president at the White House for a historic signing ceremony at the Rose Garden, if he can get Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell to act. That remains highly unlikely: close ties between Republican leaders and the gun rights lobby have led to legislative stasis on gun control …

David Koch obituary

US businessman, free marketeer and rightwing activist David Koch, who has died aged 79, was ranked as the eleventh richest person in the world. Charles wanted to minimise the role of government and maximise the role of the private economy … and personal freedoms, but the brothers philosophy was self-serving, protecting their worth and working against regulation of their business interests. David was the more public of the two, his philanthropy extending beyond the brothers massive spending on rightwing thinktanks, academic programmes, activist organisations and campaign funding; he was a major donor to the arts and medicine, especially in New York, where he maintained homes in Manhattan and the Hamptons. He moved between them, Aspen (Colorado), Palm Beach (Florida) and …

In the retail crisis, the shutters are coming down even in New York

Visitors to Manhattan are finding that several retail landmarks are fading fast There is a lot to do in Manhattan but shopping? Maybe not so much these days. Once one of the hottest markets on the planet, New Yorks retail sector is suffering. Surveying the empty storefronts on Fifth Avenue, holidaymaker Gill Stewart, from Stokesley in Yorkshire, said she was surprised by the number of vacancies. Weve come across a few places that are empty or under refurbishment, certainly many more than we expected, she said. As the family wondered which direction to go in, Stewart noted that her teenage children, Nathan and Eleanor, werent even clamouring to visit the shops. Her daughter confirmed that the focus of their New …

Wanda Vzquez: Puerto Rico swears in new governor after ousting predecessor

Puerto Ricos supreme court overturned the swearing-in of Pedro Pierluisi, who was appointed by disgraced Ricardo Rossell Puerto Ricos supreme court on Wednesday overturned the swearing-in of Pedro Pierluisi as the islands governor less than a week ago, clearing the way for the justice secretary, Wanda Vzquez, to take up the post after weeks of turmoil. Vzquez took the oath of office in the early evening at the supreme court before leaving without making any public comment. She became just the second woman to hold the office. I will continue to focus on helping our people regain their way in an orderly and peaceful fashion, she said in a statement in which she promised to assume the position with humility …

Sole to the highest bidder: Sotheby’s to auction rare Nike sneakers

Nikes famous Moon Shoe and limited-edition trainers produced by Kanye West, Air Jordan and Adidas will be sold Sothebys in New York has announced its first-ever auction dedicated to sneakers. The auction house will sell 100 pairs of the rarest sneakers ever produced, including a sample of one of the first Nike running shoes with a pre-sale high estimate of $160,000. The Nike Moon Shoe is one of only 12 pairs created. It was designed by Nike co-founder and track coach Bill Bowerman for runners at the 1972 Olympics trials and the pair up for auction is handmade, according to streetwear marketplace Stadium Goods, which is teaming up with Sothebys for the event. Other sneakers include 2011 and 2016 versions …

California becomes first US state to ban discrimination over natural hairstyles

The law prohibits employers and schools from enforcing rules against styles that would unfairly target black people California became the first state in the US to ban discrimination over natural hair on Wednesday. Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Creating a Respectful and Open Workplace (Crown) Act into law, prohibiting employers and schools from enforcing rules against hairstyles including afros, braids, twists, and locks. Workplace policies that prohibit such styles have serious economic and health consequences, especially for black individuals, the bill said. In a society in which hair has historically been one of many determining factors of a persons race, and whether they were a second-class citizen, hair today remains a proxy for race, the bill said. Therefore, hair discrimination …

US briefing: Mueller report evidence, North Korea and Bannon’s return

Tuesdays top story: Watergate witness calls report a road map to investigating Trump. Plus, Warriors keep NBA hopes alive receive underlying evidence from Robert Muellers Russia investigation, a breakthrough in the standoff between Democrats and the justice department. The deal was announced on Monday, shortly before the former White House counsel John Dean a star witness in the Watergate investigation wrong person to defend and disseminate its findings? Kims assassinated half-brother was a CIA informant Kim Jong-nam, left, was the exiled half-brother of North Koreas leader, Kim Jong-un. Photograph: Shizuo Kambayashi, Wong Maye-E/AP Kim Jong-nam, un, was a CIA informant who had travelled to Malaysia to meet a contact from the US intelligence agency when he was assassinated at Kuala …

Ashton Kutcher ‘freaked out’ after date found killed, Los Angeles court told

Actor testifies at trial of Hollywood Ripper, who is charged with murder of Ashley Ellerin in 2001 along with two others Ashton Kutcher told a Los Angeles jury on Wednesday that he was freaking out after learning that a young woman was found dead in Hollywood the day after he called at her home for a date. The former Two and a Half Men star was testifying as a witness at the trial of a man dubbed the Hollywood Ripper, who is charged with the murder of the young woman and two others. Kutcher said he arrived at the Hollywood bungalow of fashion design student Ashley Ellerin on 22 February 2001, after speaking to her by phone earlier that evening …

Republican Justin Amash faces party’s wrath after call to impeach Trump

Congressman was dismissed by Republicans and rebuked by Trump after saying he engaged in impeachable conduct As the only Republican in Congress to call for the impeachment of Donald Trump, Justin Amash is impeachable conduct. He also accused the attorney general, William Barr, of misleading the US public. In the 48 hours that followed Amashs intervention, the five-term libertarian was rebuked by the president, dismissed by Republican colleagues and challenged from the right in his district. Jim Lowe, a Michigan state representative, said on Sunday he would run for Amashs seat in the Republican primary next year. I am a pro-Trump, pro-life, pro-jobs, pro-second amendment, pro-family values Republican, Lowe said in a statement. Justin Amashs tweets yesterday calling for President …

Ugg: kick in the guts as Aussie maker loses US trademark case

Sydney-based Eddie Oygur ordered to pay damages after footwear and apparel company Deckers puts its foot down The Australian ugg boot maker Eddie Oygur has suffered a $US450,000 ($A643,000) loss in his David versus Goliath legal fight with a major US footwear and apparel company. A jury in Chicago found Oygurs business, Sydney-based Australian Leather, wilfully infringed a trademark registered to California-based Deckers Outdoor by selling ugg boots online to customers in the US. After a four-day trial Oygur was ordered to pay Deckers statutory damages of $US450,000 and he may face an order to pay millions more in legal costs. Deckers generates more than $US1bn in annual sales from its UGG brands. Oygur argued ugg is a generic term …