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Wicked Blue

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Maryland
Home country: United States
Member since: Tue Aug 11, 2020, 08:58 PM
Number of posts: 5,066

Journal Archives

Coronavirus updates: E.U. feud with vaccine maker bursts into the open as Biden promises more doses

Source: Washington Post

Erin Cunningham, Paul Schemm and Marisa Iati
Jan. 27, 2021 at 9:15 a.m. EST

As the global number of coronavirus cases passed 100 million — a quarter of them in the United States alone — an increasingly acrimonious battle between the European Union and British-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca over delays in delivering supplies burst into the open Wednesday.

A suspicious package also sent a plant in Wales where the AstraZeneca vaccine is produced into lockdown. Pharmaceutical company Wockhardt UK, which operates the site, said it had partially evacuated the area while authorities investigate, according to the BBC.

The high-stakes clash between the E.U. and vaccine maker AstraZeneca intensified Wednesday when E.U. officials accused the firm of withdrawing from a planned meeting to discuss cuts to its supply.

Dana Spinant, a spokeswoman for the European Commission, the bloc’s executive branch, said that AstraZeneca had canceled the Wednesday meeting with the health steering group. A company spokesperson later denied that AstraZeneca pulled out of the talks.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2021/01/27/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/

California Man Texted Chilling Threats to Family of Lawmaker, Journalist: Feds

Daily Beast
Arya Hodjat

A California man has been arrested and charged with sending chilling text messages to the brother of a congressman, as well as ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos, according to unsealed court documents. Robert Lemke allegedly texted the brother of Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) on Jan. 6, the day of the Capitol riot, “your brother is putting your entire family at risk with his lies and other words. We are armed and nearby your house... We are not white supremacists. Most of us are active/retired law enforcement or military.” In a statement, Jeffries's office confirmed that he was the unnamed congressman mentioned in the complaint. The New York Times reported that Stephanopoulos was the unnamed journalist.

The Jeffries text message was allegedly accompanied by a photo of home in the brother’s neighborhood. Lemke allegedly made similar threats to a relative of Stephanopoulos, writing, “we are nearby armed and ready.” The complaint notes that Lemke’s cover photo on Facebook was a photo of the McCloskeys, the St. Louis couple accused of brandishing a gun at Black Lives Matter protesters.

While Lemke identified himself on Facebook as a former U.S. Air Force captain and a retired sergeant with the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office in California, according to his criminal complaint, both departments confirmed he had never worked for them.


Coronavirus vaccination appointments canceled in D.C. region as health officials confront scarce sup

Coronavirus vaccination appointments canceled in D.C. region as health officials confront scarce supply

Washington Post
By Jenna Portnoy, Rachel Chason, Rebecca Tan and Hannah Natanson

Prince George’s County closed coronavirus vaccination appointments to nonresidents on Monday, and Inova Health System canceled thousands of appointments for Fairfax County teachers as providers across the Washington region scrambled to compensate for a limited supply of vaccine doses.

Prince George’s halted vaccination appointments for nonresidents who were eager to get the shot wherever it was available. County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D) said the county canceled the appointments after hearing from residents who were unable to secure a time slot amid growing competition for doses.

The situation underscored the difficulty that localities and health departments face in balancing the ballooning eligibility pools while not having enough vaccine to go around. Local governments began the week pleading for more doses to meet the demand.

Inova late Monday said it canceled scheduled vaccinations for teachers and staff members in Fairfax County Public Schools “for the foreseeable future.” The decision affects at least 15,000 school district employees — roughly 60 percent of its workforce — all of whom registered for doses under the 1B phase of Virginia’s vaccine rollout.


Goya Foods moves to muzzle its Trump-supporting CEO

New York Post
By Josh Kosman

Goya Foods has voted to silence its pro-Trump CEO Robert Unanue following his recent television appearances questioning the results of the presidential election, The Post has learned.

The Hispanic foods giant on Friday agreed to censure Unanue, 67, for controversial remarks in the wake of the deadly Jan. 6 invasion of the US Capitol building, including on Jan. 20 when he called Biden’s election “unverified” during an appearance on Fox Business.

The vote by a majority of Goya’s nine-member board means Unanue must now obtain board permission before making any more media appearances, sources close to the situation said.

“Bob does not speak for Goya Foods when he speaks on TV,” Goya board member and third-generation owner Andy Unanue told The Post last week leading up to the vote. “The family has diverse views on politics, but politics is not part of our business. Our political point of views are irrelevant.”


Protesters across Russia hold marches for jailed opposition leader Navalny

Washington Post
By Robyn Dixon and Isabelle Khurshudyan
Jan. 23, 2021 at 9:13 a.m. EST

MOSCOW — More than 1,000 people were arrested Saturday as protesters took to the streets across Russia calling for the release of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny — a broad show of defiance against President Vladimir Putin and his widening crackdowns against critics. Navalny's wife Yulia was among those detained.

The rallies — in nearly 100 cities and towns from Russia's Far East to central Moscow — came less than a week after Navalny returned from Germany, where he recovered from a nerve agent poisoning in August during a trip to Siberia. Navalny was arrested shortly after stepping off the plane.

Some 40,000 people participated in the Moscow protest, the Reuters news agency reported, while police said 4,000 people took part. Tens of thousands of others joined protests across the country.

According to human rights monitoring group OVD-Info, at least 1,090 people were arrested around Russia.


Judge says Treasury must give Trump 72 hours before releasing tax info to Democrats

The Hill
By Naomi Jagoda - 01/22/21 04:42 PM EST

A federal judge on Friday issued a temporary order that will require the Treasury Department to give former President Trump's personal lawyers 72 hours notice before providing Trump's tax returns to House Democrats.

Judge Trevor McFadden, a judge in federal district court in Washington, D.C., appointed by Trump, directed the Treasury Department and IRS to provide Trump’s personal lawyers with the three-days notice before providing the former president’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee.

The order lasts until Feb. 5.

McFadden announced the order at a teleconference held Friday.


Ethics complaint filed against Biggs, Cawthorn and Gosar over Capitol riot

The Hill
By Jordan Williams - 01/22/21 03:48 PM EST

A government watchdog group is asking the House Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate GOP Reps. Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Madison Cawthorn (N.C.) and Paul Gosar (Ariz.) over the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

The complaint from the liberal watchdog group Campaign for Accountability accuses the House Republicans of inciting the riot as part of “a seditious conspiracy to use force to prevent Congress from carrying out its constitutional and statutory duties to count the votes of the Electoral College.”

The group is also asking the House ethics office to recommend the congressmen be expelled from the House if it is found that they violated federal law.

The GOP lawmakers were vocal supporters of President Trump's baseless claims of widespread voter fraud, and all voted to uphold objections to Arizona and Pennsylvania’s electors after Congress resumed its count after the riot.


Denmark is sequencing all coronavirus samples and has an alarming view of the U.K. variant

Washington Post
By Michael Birnbaum and Martin Selsoe Sorensen
Jan. 22, 2021

Like a speeding car whose brake lines have been cut, the coronavirus variant first spotted in Britain is spreading at an alarming rate and isn’t responding to established ways of slowing the pandemic, according to Danish scientists who have one of the world’s best views into the new, more contagious strain.

Cases involving the variant are increasing 70 percent a week in Denmark, despite a strict lockdown, according to Denmark’s State Serum Institute, a government agency that tracks diseases and advises health policy.

“We’re losing some of the tools that we have to control the epidemic,” said Tyra Grove Krause, scientific director of the institute, which has begun sequencing every positive coronavirus test to check for mutations. By contrast, the United States is sequencing 0.3 percent of cases, ranking it 43rd in the world and leaving it largely blind to the variant’s spread.


Danish public health officials say that if it weren’t for their extensive monitoring, they would be feeling a false sense of confidence right now. Overall, new daily confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Denmark have been dropping for a month.


Biden remains opposed to eliminating filibuster, press secretary says

Washington Post
By John Wagner

President Biden remains opposed to eliminating the filibuster for legislation in the Senate, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said during a news briefing Friday.

The issue has come to the fore during negotiations between Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) over organizing the chamber, which is evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans.

McConnell is insisting that Democrats commit to keeping the filibuster, which requires 60 votes to move forward on most legislation.

“His position hasn’t changed,” Psaki said of Biden, a former senator from Delaware. “He opposes overturning a legislative filibuster. He has spoken to this many times. His position has not changed.”


GOP senator announces plan to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment

Raw Story
Bob Brigham
January 22, 2021

"Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex," the amendment declares. "The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification."

On Friday, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) joined with Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) for a bipartisan joint resolution to remove the deadline to ratify the ERA.

"As we begin a new Congress, I can think of no better legislation to lead with than one that removes impediments to find ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment — an amendment that firmly embeds in law equality between men and women. We first moved the ERA through Congress back in 1972, but we stalled out on certification by the states until last year when Virginia ratified the ERA," Murkowski said in a statement. "After years of work alongside Senator Cardin, I urge my colleagues to join us in ensuring equality for all."

The joint resolution is being introduced by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) and Rep. Tom Reed (D-NY) in the House of Representatives.

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