The Past 24 Hours or So

10/8

Read Time: 9 Minutes

Coronavirus/COVID-19

  • The U.S. reported 50,602 new cases and 916 additional deaths. 14,571 patients are receiving critical care. 
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci warned that as many as 400,000 Americans could die from COVID-19 if action isn’t taken in the fall and winter. He acknowledged the decreasing trust in him as a public official, especially among Republicans and those who believe the country needs to reopen fully, but pleaded for compliance to public health guidelines. 

“Maybe 50 percent of you hate me because you think I’m trying to destroy the country, but listen to me for six weeks or so, and do what I say, and you’ll see the numbers go down.”

  • Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) called on President Trump and his fellow senators to pass more coronavirus relief legislation, the day after Trump called off bipartisan talks on another round of aid.
  • President Trump reports feeling “great” and experiencing no symptoms less than six days after being diagnosed with the novel coronavirus, according to a memo from the White House physician issued Wednesday.

“He’s now been fever-free for more than 4 days, symptom-free for over 24 hours, and has not needed nor received any supplemental oxygen since initial hospitalization,” White House physician Sean Conley wrote.

  • Regeneron says it has applied to the FDA for emergency use authorization for its experimental monoclonal antibody therapy, the same antibody cocktail given to President Trump.
  • President Trump returned to work in the Oval Office, six days after testing positive for the coronavirus. His dismissal of the CDC recommendation that coronavirus patients self-isolate for at least 10 days after the onset of their symptoms raises concerns that White House staff may be at risk of further increased cases.
  • In a new video, President Trump sang the praises of an experimental drug he was given that is not widely available to the American public to tread COVID-19, saying: “For me, I walked in, I didn’t feel good. A short 24 hours later I was feeling great…  I feel great. I feel, like, perfect. So, I think this was a blessing from God that I caught it. This was a blessing in disguise.”
  • Neurological symptoms are extremely common among COVID-19 patients sick enough to be hospitalized, a study published Monday finds. The symptoms range from mild to severe, and can include headaches, dizziness and altered brain function.
  • William Foege, the former director of the CDC, is calling on the agency’s current leader Robert Redfield to expose what he says is President Trump’s mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic. 

“I start each day thinking about the terrible burden you bear,” Foege wrote in a newly obtained letter. “Don’t shy away from the fact this has been an unacceptable toll on our country … it is a slaughter and not just a political dispute.”

  • Corey Lewandowski, a top Trump campaign advisor, was spotted at a kids’ football game over the weekend without wearing a mask even though he had said he would isolate himself because he had been exposed to people with the coronavirus.
  • Thirty-four White House staffers and “other contacts” have been infected with the coronavirus in recent days, a figure that is 10 more than 24 staffers previously reported.
  • The Marine Corps’ No. 2 officer has tested positive for coronavirus, the service announced on Wednesday.

Assistant Marine Commandant Gen. Gary Thomas was among top military officers who put themselves under quarantine this week after Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Charles Ray tested positive on Monday.

  • A top White House security official, Crede Bailey, is “gravely ill” after contracting COVID-19 in September.

Bailey is in charge of the White House security office, which handles credentialing for access to the White House and works closely with the U.S. Secret Service on security measures throughout the compound.

  • President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani says in a new interview that he is taking hydroxychloroquine despite testing negative twice for the coronavirus, praising his doctor as a “genius” at COVID-19 treatment.
  • Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele blasted President Trump as a “super spreader” as a growing number of White House officials test positive for the coronavirus.

“He takes his mask off in contravention of everything we know. He is the super spreader. He is the problem in the White House, and everyone wants to tiptoe around it,” Steele said.

  • The NFL’s chief medical officer, Dr. Allen Sills, was asked about the possibility of the league pausing the season since COVID-19 cases have already forced games to be postponed and team facilities to close.

“We’ve said all along every option is on the table. We’ve never taken any option off the table, which includes…some type of pause or reset or any other kind of alternative arrangements,”

  • Boston Public Schools delayed its reopening plan after the city saw an alarming surge in coronavirus cases. Mayor Marty Walsh (D) announced the setback after Boston’s coronavirus positivity rate spiked beyond 4 percent.
  • New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is warning that residents will face “a couple tough weeks ahead” as the city prepares to close some nonessential businesses and schools, increase fines for social gatherings and limit houses of worship amid a spike in COVID-19 cases. 

“Let’s support each other, let’s work with each other, let’s listen to each other, and overcome this challenge,” de Blasio said.

  • The state of Tennessee this week began auctioning off “surplus” coronavirus testing materials, listing 13 pallets of test swabs and other supplies on GovDeals.com, a government liquidation website.

But soon after being asked about the auction by The Tennessean on Thursday, state officials said the supplies were put up for sale in error and promptly removed the auction listing.

  • Wisconsin health officials are activating a 530-bed field hospital located at the state’s fairgrounds to relieve medical facilities overwhelmed by a massive influx of COVID-19 patients.

“We hoped this day wouldn’t come, but unfortunately, Wisconsin is in a much different, more dire place today and our healthcare systems are beginning to become overwhelmed by the surge of COVID-19 cases,” Gov. Tony Evers (D) said.

Racial & Social Issues

  • Derek Chauvin — the former Minneapolis police officer who knelt on George Floyd’s neck for over eight minutes in May, resulting in his death — has been released from custody after posting bond. Chauvin’s bond was set at $1 million, as he’s facing multiple charges in connection to Floyd’s death, including second-degree murder.
  • Jacob Blake has been released from the hospital, over a month after he was shot seven times in the back at point-blank range by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
  • Ted Cruz and billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban, went head-to-head on Twitter this week, with the GOP lawmaker accusing the NBA of turning “every game into a left-wing political lecture.” 

“You haven’t watched a game of the finals, how would you know what is being said or done?” Cuban shot back. “Since when is a desire to end racism an insult to anyone or political?”

  • Former NFL star Colin Kaepernick penned a fiery new essay calling for fundamental shifts in law enforcement and the prison system in the United States, writing “Fuck reform.” 

“Ultimately, I realized that seeking reform would make me an active participant in reforming, reshaping, and rebranding institutional white supremacy, oppression, and death,” he writes.

Trump Administration

  • A federal appeals court ruled that President Trump cannot block enforcement of a New York grand jury subpoena for 8 years of his tax returns.
  • Donald Trump mounted an overnight Twitter blitz demanding the jailing of his political enemies and calling out allies he says are failing to arrest his rivals swiftly enough.

Trump retweeted supporters’ criticisms of Attorney General William Barr. He wondered why his rivals, like President Barack Obama, Democratic nominee Joe Biden and former Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton hadn’t been imprisoned for launching a “coup” against his administration.

“Where are all of the arrests?” Trump said, after several dozen tweets on the subject over the past 24 hours. “Can you imagine if the roles were reversed? Long term sentences would have started two years ago. Shameful!”

By early afternoon, Trump was letting loose his frustrations in an all-caps missive that seemed aimed at nobody in particular.

“DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS, THE BIGGEST OF ALL POLITICAL SCANDALS (IN HISTORY)!!! BIDEN, OBAMA AND CROOKED HILLARY LED THIS TREASONOUS PLOT!!! BIDEN SHOULDN’T BE ALLOWED TO RUN – GOT CAUGHT!!!” Trump tweeted.

  • Attorneys for E. Jean Carroll, the writer who accused President Trump of raping her in the 1990s, moved to block the Justice Department from intervening in her defamation case against him. The agency claimed Trump was “acting within the scope of his office” when he said he didn’t know her and denied her allegations. 

“There is not a single person in the United States — not the President and not anyone else —  whose job description includes slandering women they sexually assaulted.”

  • The Trump administration has just filed a last-minute emergency request to the Supreme Court seeking to halt the 2020 Census count. Critics say the moves by the Trump administration risk undercounting minority populations composed of both legal and undocumented immigrants.
  • The DOJ “inadvertently” altered a document it filed in court in its ongoing effort to dismiss charges against former national security adviser Michael Flynn, prosecutors said today, attributing it to a wayward “sticky note” that was scanned onto a key piece of evidence department officials have cited in seeking to abandon the case.
  • The Justice Department announced an indictment against two British citizens accused of being part of an ISIS cell that beheaded western hostages, including four Americans, in Syria. The pair will be flown from Iraq to the U.S. to face prosecution.
  • The Department of Justice asked the Supreme Court to reinstate the death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, saying the federal appeals court made the incorrect call in abandoning the sentence “in one of the most important terrorism prosecutions in our nation’s history.”

Presidential Campaign

  • Steve Cortes, a senior adviser to President Trump’s reelection campaign, said there’s no guarantee that the next presidential debate with Democratic rival Joe Biden will take place and that Trump will need medical clearance to participate after testing positive for COVID-19.
  • A postal employee in New Jersey who dumped more than 1,800 pieces of mail, including 99 ballots for the upcoming election that were intended for households in heavily Democratic areas, faced arraignment on Wednesday in federal court on charges of delay, secretion or detention of mail and obstruction of mail. 
  • Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s campaign plans to resume running negative digital and television advertisements against President Trump as he recovers from COVID-19, after temporarily stopping the ads while Trump was receiving treatment. Trump did not stop running negative ads of Biden during the same time span.
  • The New England Journal of Medicine in an unprecedented editorial denounced the Trump administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic and called for voting out “current political leaders” who are “dangerously incompetent.” 

The editorial marks the first time the prestigious medical journal, which usually stays out of politics, has weighed in on an election.

  • Retired Gen. Michael Hayden, who served as director of both the CIA and the National Security Agency under multiple presidents, endorsed Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and denounced President Trump in a moving testimonial. 

“If there is another term for President Trump, I don’t know what happens to America. Truth is really important, but especially in intelligence. President Trump doesn’t care about facts. President Trump doesn’t care about the truth. He doesn’t listen to his experts.”

  • The New York Times editorial board endorsed Joe Biden’s White House bid on Tuesday, throwing its support behind the former vice president four weeks before Election Day.

“In the midst of unrelenting chaos, Mr. Biden is offering an anxious, exhausted nation something beyond policy or ideology. His campaign is rooted in steadiness, experience, compassion and decency.”

Sources:  ABC News, Associated Press, The Atlantic, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Chicago Tribune, Financial Times, Forbes,  Fox News,The Hill, Independent, MSNBC, NBC News, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

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