• President Trump is open to improvements in federal background checks for prospective gun buyers, the White House said on Monday. Such changes are the focus of proposed legislation that the National Rifle Association supports.
Crooked deals pay for a war machine
• In a nearly four-year war against rebels armed by Russia, Ukraine’s defense spending has soared, from around 2.5 percent of its gross domestic product in 2013 to more than 5 percent this year, when it will total around $6 billion.
But the money that has rejuvenated Ukraine’s military has opened avenues for the graft and cronyism that many see as the country’s biggest enemy.
• “It serves no purpose for Ukraine to fight for its body in Donbas if it loses its soul to corruption,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned last year, referring to regions seized by Russian-backed separatists.
An Obamacare dilemma
• One tension at the heart of the Affordable Care Act is that, while it aims to provide health…