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Good morning, here is your weekly briefing.
1. Sean Spicer resigns from his post at the White House, Anthony Scaramucci appointed communications director, and Sarah Huckabee Sanders becomes new press secretary.
Former Press Secretary Sean Spicer turns in his resignation in response to the hiring of financier and former Fox News contributor Anthony Scaramucci.
During the first on-camera press briefing in over one month, Mr. Scaramucci announced that Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders would be stepping up to become the new press secretary.
2. John McCain diagnosed with brain cancer.
The 80-year-old senator from Arizona was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a specific type of brain tumor, during a routine physical exam last week.
After the four-hour long surgery, brain scans show that the tissue that was causing concern has been removed. Senator McCain is currently recovering at his home in Arizona and does not show any sign of neurological problems.
Glioblastoma is the same type of cancer that claimed the life of Sen. Edward Kennedy and Beau Biden, the former vice president’s son.
3. Chester Bennington, Linkin Park lead singer, dies at 41.
The legendary lead singer of the platinum-selling band died in his apartment. The police investigating his death says he committed suicide.
The band had been scheduled to start a tour next week, which has been canceled. Linkin Park’s most recent album, “One More Light” debuted at No.1 on the Billboard album chart merely a little bit over a month ago.
4. O.J. Simpson has been granted parole.
As early as October 1st, the renowned 70-year-old football player, and TV personality will be released on parole from a Nevada prison.
He has served nine years out of the 33-year sentence for charges of an armed robbery in a Las Vegas hotel in 2007.
5. Tension rises between President Trump and Attorney General Sessions.
In an interview with The New York Times, Mr. Trump claimed that he would not have appointed Sessions to the position had he known that he would’ve recused himself from the Justice Department’s Russia investigation.
Intercepted communications from Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador, revealed reports made by him to Moscow in which Kislyak had stated that he had spoken with Sessions in regards to the presidential campaign in 2016.
6. Minneapolis police chief resigns after Australian woman was shot by police officer.
Justine Damond, a 40 year old Australian, had called in to report what she thought was sexual assault. For reasons still unknown, Officer Mohamed Noor shot Justine in the abdomen and killed her.
The event has led to both outrage and grief in the Australia and Minnesota. The police chief resigned at the request of the city’s mayor.
7. Senate health care bill was brought to a halt — until it wasn’t.
Senator Mitch McConnell keeps pushing forward in his attempt to have a health care vote this week, but nobody is sure what they are going to vote on.
There are currently two at play bills: one to repeal Obamacare and another one to replace it.
Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act is an updated version of the 2015 legislation that would repeal all funding for Obamacare’s insurance expansion. It does, however, keep the regulations on insurers.
McConnell can only afford to lose either one or two votes, depending on whether or not Senator McCain will be back.
8. Congress reaches a deal to put sanctions on Russia to punish election meddling.
The president will face one of the defining decisions of his presidency once the bill arrives at his desk: sign the bill or veto it.
Questions in regards to Trump relation to Russia and their election meddling efforts will make it hard for the president to veto the bill.
The legislation does sharply limit the ability of the president to terminate or suspend sanctions, which the administration strongly opposes.
Weekly Market Recap
The U.S. markets keep climbing. Over the past two weeks, U.S. large-cap stocks jumped over 2%; along the way, several record highs were set.
Investors seem to have largely ignored political headlines in regards to health care, Russia, and the like. The primary market driver seems to be the prospect of accelerating global growth.
This week we keep our eyes set on the 200 constituents in the S&P 500 who are releasing their financial statements for the second quarter. On Tuesday, we’ll see the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence report. Rates are expected to remain steady after Wednesday’s FOMC meeting. Lastly, second quarter GDP figures will be released on Friday.
Weekly Market Change (July 17-21)
The Brief is a weekly briefing which gives the reader the bread and butter of what happened in the previous week. Grab your cup of coffee this Monday morning and read a bite-sized version of what happened last week. Subscribe to The EC Journal mailing list to get The Brief in your e-mail inbox every Monday.
This week's read is one dealing with identity politics and why it's destroying free thought.