By Holly Thomas

Thursday, December 3

100,000 AMERICANS HOSPITALIZED WITH COVID-19 More than 100,000 Americans are hospitalized with COVID-19, a grim record amid three straight weeks of them: Every day since Nov. 9 has seen more Americans hospitalized than at the peak of the first wave of this virus this spring, with more admissions every day. Of the 100,226 currently hospitalized, 19,396 are in intensive care units and 6,855 are on a ventilator. Los Angeles issued a stay-at-home order as lockdowns return. [HuffPost]‌

SIDNEY POWELL URGES BOYCOTT OF GEORGIA RUNOFFS Sidney Powell, a former lawyer for the Trump campaign, told Georgia residents to boycott the Senate runoffs on Jan. 5 because their state’s voting machines are archaic and cannot be trusted. The conspiracy theorist made the eyebrow-raising remarks during a “Stop the Steal” rally in Atlanta. The two runoffs will decide which party ends up controlling power in the Senate. [HuffPost]‌

KATIE PORTER PUMMMELS MNUCHIN AT HEARING Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin sparred over COVID-19 relief funding during a House Financial Services Committee hearing. Porter questioned Mnuchin’s plan to claw back $455 billion in unspent stimulus package funding to the Treasury’s general fund, which would make it harder for his successor to access the money. She noted that funds can’t be transferred back to the Treasury sooner than Jan. 1, 2026. “Is it currently the year 2026? Yes or no,” Porter asked. [HuffPost]


Ivanka Trump has been deposed by attorneys alleging that President Donald Trump’s 2017 inauguration committee misused donor funds. A court filing notes that Ivanka Trump, the president’s oldest daughter and a senior White House adviser, was interviewed Tuesday by attorneys from the Washington attorney general’s office. [AP]‌

OBAMA, CLINTON, BUSH VOLUNTEER FOR COVID VACCINE Former President Barack Obama said he planned to take a COVID-19 vaccine, possibly on television in an effort to encourage Americans to do the same, if officials said it was safe. Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton also said they’d support a vaccine deemed to be safe by public health officials. Bush’s chief of staff told CNN: “When the time is right, [Bush] wants to do what he can to help encourage his fellow citizens to get vaccinated.” [HuffPost]‌

TRUMP RELEASES 46 MINUTES OF LIES Trump released a lie-packed, self-pitying video diatribe on Facebook falsely claiming there was massive “fraud” in last month’s election, which he lost by 7 million votes to President-elect Joe Biden. “Like other authoritarians, Trump is unable to admit defeat and doubles down on his propaganda points, hoping to save face with his followers,” said Ruth Ben-Ghiat, an authoritarianism expert at New York University. [HuffPost]‌

OFFICIALS STILL DON’T PRACTICE WHAT THEY PREACH Democratic Mayor Steve Adler of Austin,Texas, told residents last month to stay home while he boarded a private jet with several others to vacation for a week in Cabo San Lucas. The November trip reportedly came a day after Adler hosted an outdoor wedding with 20 guests for his daughter. A Hawaiian couple, meanwhile, were arrested and charged with second-degree reckless endangerment after they boarded a flight while being aware they had COVID-19. And White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said holiday parties will continue as usual, masks optional. [HuffPost]‌

YEARS AFTER ‘ZERO TOLERANCE,’ HUNDREDS OF FAMILIES STILL SEPARATED The parents of at least 628 migrant children who were separated from their families by the Trump administration in 2017 and 2018 still haven’t been located, lawyers tasked with reuniting the families said in a court filing. The affected children — whose families were torn asunder under the Trump administration’s so-called zero tolerance border policy — have now been without their parents for at least two years. [HuffPost]‌

COVID STIMULUS TALKS BACK ON With coronavirus benefits ending this month for millions, Congress is scrambling to revive talks on a new stimulus package. A bipartisan Senate group lured Majority Leader Mitch McConnell into negotiations, and Biden has said economic relief is his top priority. [CNN]‌

QUARANTINE GUIDANCE SHORTENED The standard 14-day coronavirus quarantine guidance can potentially be shortened to 10 or even seven days if certain conditions are met. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention still recommends the full 14-day quarantine for those who have been exposed to the disease, new guidance would allow exceptions for a shorter quarantine in communities with adequate testing. For example, a quarantine could end after a week if the person tests negative for the virus at some point in the final two days of that period. [HuffPost]‌

JOHN BOYEGA ISN’T AFRAID TO USE HIS VOICE This year has been maddening for John Boyega. “I never knew the plot twist could be so mad,” he says. “I feel like God just maybe went to the toilet for a bit too long.” While the devil has been working hard, it’s no doubt that the British-Nigerian actor has been aiming to outwork him in more ways than one. Boyega has been using his platform for good, especially while the communities that look like him are suffering the most. [HuffPost]‌

WHY SOME EVANGELICALS WON’T ADMIT TRUMP LOST Even as his position grows increasingly isolated, Trump is not walking alone in his suspended state of disbelief about the results of the 2020 election. He is being propped up by his loyal evangelical Christian fans. While some evangelical leaders and institutions have congratulated Biden on his win, there is a large segment of the group that is staying mum ― or clinging to the Trump campaign’s lies about widespread fraud. [HuffPost]‌

CRYSTAL MASON, IMPRISONED FOR ILLEGAL VOTING, APPEALS Crystal Mason, a Black woman who was imprisoned in Texas for casting a provisional ballot in 2016 while she was ineligible to vote, is appealing to overturn her conviction. “This is one of the most important voting rights cases in modern Texas history,” said Andre Segura, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas. [HuffPost]

Leave a Reply