GE Capital Gets Gun-Shy

GE Capital Gets Gun-Shy

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General Electric Capital is the latest major financial firm to stop funding the firearms industry since the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting last December, which claimed the lives of 20 first-graders and six teachers. This week, the major lender notified gun dealers  it had “made the difficult decision to stop providing financial services.”

Just days after the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, Cerberus Capital Management LP announced it would sell its stake in the Freedom Group, which makes brands including Bushmaster, the gun used in the slaying.“The moves highlight how companies, closely attuned to the concerns of investors and employees, have reacted to public horror caused by the attacks, even as complicated political considerations doomed new gun-control legislation in Congress,” The Wall Street Journal’s Joe Palazzolo and Kate Linebaugh write.    -  Read more at The Wall Street Journal

LAWMAKERS EXEMPT FROM INSURANCE EXCHANGES?   “Congressional leaders in both parties are engaged in high-level, confidential talks about exempting lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides from the insurance exchanges they are mandated to join as part of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul,” Politico’s John Bresnahan and Jake Sherman report. “The talks ... are extraordinarily sensitive, with both sides acutely aware of the potential for political fallout from giving carve-outs from the hugely controversial law to 535 lawmakers and thousands of their aides.” -  Read more at Politico

BURWELL TO LEAD OMB        The Senate unanimously approved Sylvia Burwell to serve as director of the Office of Management and Budget. Burwell previously served as president of the Walmart Foundation and before that as president of the Global Development Program of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She also served as deputy White House budget director during the Clinton administration. “Sylvia has spent a career fighting for working families, and she was part of an OMB team that presided over three budget surpluses in a row,” President Obama said. -  Read more at The Hill

DOJ SPARED FROM FURLOUGHS    The Justice Department on Wednesday said  it will manage to squeak through sequestration furlough-free. Last week, Attorney General Eric Holder asked lawmakers for authority to shift the department’s budget to cover sequester-induced shortfalls in salaries for thousands of employees. Congressional appropriators in both houses agreed. -  Read more at GovExec

WILL THE FAA BE AS LUCKY?  Also on Wednesday, the White House signaled the president was open to legislation that eliminates FAA furloughs, even if the rest of the $85 billion in sequester cuts remained intact.

Now senators of both parties are working on a bill that gives the FAA flexibility to move funds around (similar to the Justice Dept.). The AP reports there were 5,800 flight delays across the country in the three days the furloughs have been in effect – as  compared to 2,500 delays for the same period a year ago. Read more at the Associated Press

No, that’s not an Onion headline. According to The Washington Post, Uncle Sam will spend at least $890,000 on service fees for nearly 14,000 empty bank accounts this year. -  Read more at The Fiscal Times

Brianna Ehley is the former Washington Correspondent for The Fiscal Times. She is currently a reporter on Politico's health care team in Washington, D.C.