(SL) – Arizona Senator John McCain is heading back to Arizona after spending several days in a Maryland hospital and will miss a vote on the upcoming GOP tax plan. CBS News reports McCain left Washington today to spend the holidays with his family. It is unclear when McCain might return to Washington. Despite McCain’s trip to Arizona, the GOP believes it has enough Senate votes to pass the measure. Senators Bob Corker and Marco Rubio both announced they’ll vote yes for the tax bill, possibly as soon as Tuesday.
Earlier today, McCain’s son-in-law says the senator is “doing well” as he deals with brain cancer. Ben Domenech tweeted that McCain “remains one of the toughest men on the face of the earth.”
(New York, NY) — Stocks are heading into Tuesday in the red after word a “gradual” corporate tax plan is being discussed in the House of Representatives. Bloomberg first reported the plan that would keep the corporate rate at 20 percent by 2022. It said the plan was being discussed, and not final. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 85 points to finish at 23-349. The S&P 500 was down by eight points to 25-73, and the Nasdaq dropped two points to close at 66-99.
(Washington, DC) — The White House says an initial tax reform bill will be introduced on Wednesday. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said a committee will begin marking up the bill next Monday, with the hope that the U.S. House will pass it by Thanksgiving. Sanders remarked that it’s an aggressive timeline, but it will give Americans tax cuts this year.
(New York, NY) — Wall Street is set to hand out bigger bonuses this year than last. That’s largely thanks to the surging stock market, up 18 percent this year. Securities profits were up to 12-point-three billion dollars for the first half of the year compared with nine-point-three billion dollars for the same period last year. That has analysts expecting bonuses to top last year’s average of nearly 140-thousand dollars.
Samsung is the world’s biggest smartphone maker and is reporting its biggest third quarter ever. The South Korean electronics giant reported an operating profit of more than 12-point-nine billion dollars for July through September. Samsung also had revenue of about 55-billion dollars in the third quarter. That’s up nearly 30-percent from the third quarter of 2016. Samsung is the world’s leading manufacturer of TVs and memory chips, as well as smartphones. It’s expecting a full-year record profit as analysts forecast even bigger numbers in the fourth quarter.
(Washington, DC) — The FBI is reportedly looking into how a small Montana energy company got a 300-million-dollar contract to restore power to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico. The “Wall Street Journal” reports that the Bureau has opened a preliminary probe into the contract to Whitefish Energy Holdings. The company had just two full time employees when Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico. After the contract came under scrutiny, Governor Ricardo Rossello of Puerto Rico moved to cancel it. The Whitefish company is also located in Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s [[ ZINK-eez ]] hometown in Montana.
(Geneva) — Carbon Dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere hit a record high in 2016. That’s according to data from the World Meteorological Organization which looked at measurements taken in more than 50 countries. Levels increased more than 50 percent over the average of the past decade, driving CO2 concentrations higher than in the past 800-thousand years. Scientists say the massive spike was the result of human activity combined with an El Niño weather pattern.