Senate Republicans vow to block $3.5T Dem reconciliation bill 5 Aug 2021, 12:02 pm
UPDATED 9:02 AM PT – Thursday, August 5, 2021
Top Republicans have pledged to do all they can to stop Democrat efforts in passing a massive $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package. During a press conference on Wednesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) argued the proposal isn’t in the best interests of the American people or the economy.
He asserted passing the package would put the nation’s economic recovery at risk. McConnell went on to point out the economy has already been threatened by raging inflation caused by the COVID-19 relief bill passed earlier this year.
Additionally, Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) warned the bill would be a catastrophe for many Americans.
“We’re going to do everything we can to stop it. And I hope that we have some Democrats that will help because if this is in size and scope and scale of what we hear and believe, it’s going to be catastrophic for a lot of folks around the country, namely a lot of the farmers and ranchers who would get hit with the double death tax,” said Thune.
Dems are refusing to learn from their mistakes. Inflation is skyrocketing, & Americans are paying higher prices after Dems’ wild spending spree earlier this year. Now they want to spend $3.5 trillion MORE. Do they know this is taxpayers' hard-earned money – not monopoly money? pic.twitter.com/15JRT0QBGM
— Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) August 4, 2021
Under the current markup of the Senate, Republicans would need one Democrat to join them in order to block the budget from being passed through reconciliation. In the meantime, two of the more modest Democrats, Sens. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), have shown opposition towards the $3.5 trillion bill, suggesting they would fight to lower its price tag.
GOP-led House bill seeks to restore national forests, end overregulation of forest management 4 Aug 2021, 5:45 pm
UPDATED 2:44 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Members of the GOP introduced a bipartisan measure to protect the health of federal forests. Recent reports detailed the Resilient Federal Forests Act, which was introduced in recent weeks by Washington lawmakers Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Dan Newhouse. The bill was initially proposed by Arkansas Congressman Bruce Westerman, who serves as the ranking member of the House’s Natural Resources Committee.
Reports said more than 80 million acres of national forests are overgrown and fire-prone. They added the forests are in need of active land management. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) recently praised Westerman and the bill.
“This bill is especially critical to a state like California, where our communities are annually devastated by catastrophic wildfires,” said McCarthy.
ICYMI: Ranking Member @RepWesterman recently introduced the Resilient Federal Forests Act 🌲
— Natural Resources GOP (@NatResources) August 4, 2021
According to lawmakers, the bill would use state of the art science to determine the top 10 percent of high risk fire sheds, improve wildlife habitats, protect infrastructure and public safety where forests and urban areas intersect, encourage quick reforestation and remove hazardous trees while revitalizing the economy of rural areas. It also seeks to reduce frivolous lawsuits while increasing the pace and scale of critical restoration projects.
McMorris Rodgers pointed to the fires burning through the northwest, saying we can’t allow decades of overregulation and legal issues to stall forest management efforts any longer. She noted it’s time to cut through the red tape and give the forest service the tools it needs to better manage our forests.
The issue of forest management has long been on the Washington lawmaker’s plate, as she spoke about the issue at the beginning of last year.
“We should all, Republicans and Democrats, be able to come together to support healthy forests. When our forests are healthy, it becomes harder for these fires to take off,” stressed McMorris Rodgers. “But right now, we are not effectively managing our increasingly at risk forests.”
Both McMorris Rodgers and Newhouse have also sponsored an additional act that would give rural communities more resources to deal with wildfires. Fighting wildfires is also included in the Senate bipartisan infrastructure proposal with more than $3 billion devoted to wildland firefighting efforts and almost $6 billion toward national resource related infrastructure, including fire management and restoration.
Fla. Gov. DeSantis highlights monoclonal antibodies treatment at roundtable on COVID-19 4 Aug 2021, 5:44 pm
UPDATED 3:56 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said the use of monoclonal antibodies in people who have contracted COVID has shown promising results. Speaking during a Zoom roundtable with hospital CEO’s on Wednesday, DeSantis said he doesn’t think he’s spoken to anyone who wasn’t happy they underwent the treatment.
The treatment, which consists of COVID antibodies made in a lab, has been approved for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. DeSantis echoed comments from health officials who said the treatment has been very effective and has been most effective if administered five to seven days after a person gets sick.
DeSantis also pointed out the vast majority of new coronavirus hospitalizations are among a younger demographic that hasn’t gotten the vaccine. However, there have been breakthrough cases.
Watch: Gov. Ron DeSantis holds a roundtable with Florida hospital CEOs.https://t.co/qJbQNLnEtm
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) August 4, 2021
Calif. Republicans set to debate in Gov. Newsom recall election 4 Aug 2021, 5:44 pm
UPDATED 3:17 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
The race to recall California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has continued to intensify as Republican candidates prepare for their first debate on Wednesday. John Cox is one of four Republicans taking the stage for the first televised debate in the recall election. The businessman has labeled his campaign as the “Beauty Vs. the Beast” and said Californians are tired of pretty boy politicians.
Kevin Faulconer said his record on how he handled issues as San Diego’s mayor is a model of how he would tackle statewide issues. “I’ve won twice in the second largest city in California. A Republican who can win in Democrat strongholds. Why? Because we stand up and because I get the results,” said Faulconer.
Sacramento Assemblyman Kevin Kiley is also in the race. Kiley added this is a non-partisan movement started by Californians who are fed up with the failures of California’s Democrat controlled legislature.
.@GavinNewsom and his allies are lying when they say this recall is partisan.
It's not. It's a bipartisan effort uniting Californians of all walks of life who have had enough and believe like I do that Newsom is in over his head. @KyungLahCNN @CNN#RecallGavinNewsom #Recall pic.twitter.com/C8ExQlkhTo
— Kevin Faulconer (@Kevin_Faulconer) August 4, 2021
Joining the list is former Congressman Doug Ose who said it’s time for the governor to be replaced. However, some high profile Republicans won’t be on the debate stage.
Conservative radio host Larry Elder, who has led in recent polls, will instead be attending a fundraiser, while reality TV star Caitlyn Jenner will be in Australia filming Celebrity Big Brother. In addition, Gov. Newsom will also not be in attendance.
Analysists have advised Republican candidates to not focus on undercutting each other, but to pile up their attacks on Newsom. Voters will begin receiving their ballots later this month ahead of the Sept. 14 recall election. They’ll be asked two questions; should Gov. Newsom be replaced and which candidate should replace him?
Don Jr. praises USA gold medalist Tamyra Mensah-Stock 4 Aug 2021, 5:44 pm
UPDATED 3:42 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Donald Trump Jr. expressed his admiration for the young American wrestler who took gold at the Tokyo Olympics, commending her for her love of God and country. Tamyra Mensah-Stock, 28, beat a Nigerian wrestler 4 to 1 in the women’s freestyle light heavyweight category, making her the first Black woman to win wrestling gold for the U.S.
Don Jr. took to Rumble to share his thoughts on Mensah-Stock’s graceful win and pointed to the fact mainstream media outlets wouldn’t cover her story in depth because of her pro-America mantra. He praised the Texan for crediting the grace of God for her victory and expressing her faith, saying this is a rare occurrence these days.
Mensah-Stock called her win a dream come true and said she plans to give $30,000 of her prize money to her mother so she can open a food truck because it’s her dream.
America’s Tamyra Mensah-Stock won gold at Tokyo in wrestling:
“I love representing the US. I freakin love living there. I love it and I’m so happy I get to represent U.S.A!”
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) August 3, 2021
Democrats call for Gov. Cuomo to resign, threaten impeachment 4 Aug 2021, 3:02 pm
UPDATED 12:02 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Democrats have called for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) to resign following the release of the state’s attorney general’s report on allegations of sexual harassment. Cuomo has quickly lost favor within his own party after the investigation found the Democrat had sexually harassed multiple women who worked for the state.
Following the release of the report on Tuesday, multiple Democrats spoke out to condemn Cuomo for his actions while urging the governor to resign. Speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y) commended the multiple women for their bravery and for speaking out.
Additionally on CNN, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio blasted Cuomo and said the Democrat is not fit to hold office. Further, the leader of the Democrat Party severed ties with Cuomo after Joe Biden doubled down on his previous calls for the governor’s resignation.
"This is textbook sexual harassment… Disgusting and troubling and unacceptable and he needs to leave office immediately," says New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on the state attorney general's investigation report of sexual harassment allegations levied at Gov. Andrew Cuomo. pic.twitter.com/LZ3yCM4RCp
— The Situation Room (@CNNSitRoom) August 3, 2021
Despite the evidence against him and calls to step down, Cuomo claimed the real facts are much different from the investigation. In the meantime, Democrat state lawmakers are looking to finish their impeachment investigation as quickly as possible.
R.I. BLM PAC demands resignation of Dem strategist after crude tweet about Sen. Graham having COVID 4 Aug 2021, 3:01 pm
UPDATED 1:15 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
The Black Lives Matter Rhode Island PAC has called for the resignation of its Democrat strategist after she tweeted about Sen. Lindsey Graham’s (R-S.C.) COVID diagnosis. The organization said Kate Coyne-McCoy’s comments were “extremely distasteful and insensitive.”
Coyne-McCoy came under fire on Tuesday after asking in a now deleted tweet if it’s wrong to hope the Republican senator dies from COVID. Upon deleting her comment, she also responded saying she was not proud of her reaction.
However, the group also cited past remarks made by Coyne-McCoy in which she wished death on President Trump and his inner circle. They added that regardless of political affiliation, those kinds of comments are never acceptable.
BLM RI PAC Response to RI Democratic Party Chief Political Strategist @katecoynemccoy’s Comments:
In a time where many human lives have been lost to COVID-19 all across Rhode Island, this comment is extremely distasteful and insensitive. Regardless of political affiliation–
— Black Lives Matter RI PAC (@blmripac) August 3, 2021
FDA authorizes antibody cocktail as preventative COVID treatment 4 Aug 2021, 3:01 pm
UPDATED 1:54 PM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized a monoclonal antibody cocktail as a treatment for immunocompromised people who are at risk of COVID exposure. Reports on Tuesday detailed the authorization made last week, which said those with compromised immune systems could receive the optional treatment.
“It’s good to know that for people who do not respond well to vaccines, including those who do not make antibodies, we can now help protect them against getting infected with SARS-CoV-2 by giving them antibodies following exposure,” said Dr. Ghady Haidar, a transplant infectious diseases physician at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday expanded its emergency use authorization for the antibody cocktail from Regeneron, making it the first preventive therapy authorized for unvaccinated and immunocompromised people in high-risk settings. https://t.co/CFNC4uduRT pic.twitter.com/A5lcOEwK9l
— WebMD (@WebMD) July 31, 2021
Experts said the antibodies prevent illness by overwhelming the infection while it’s still in the nose or throat. This marks the first antibody treatment approved as a preventative measure for the three percent of Americans who are immunocompromised.
Child predator sting results in 17 arrests 4 Aug 2021, 12:15 pm
UPDATED 9:14 AM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
There have been a total of 17 people arrested as part of a Florida undercover child predator sting operation. Following a six-day undercover operation, authorities in Florida arrested over a dozen suspects who allegedly were trying to coerce minors into engaging in unlawful sexual activity.
During a press conference on Tuesday, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd explained the joint investigation dubbed “Operation Child Protector.” From July 27 to Aug. 1, detectives went undercover as minors across different social media platforms and mobile apps in hopes of apprehending individuals who prey on children online.
According to Judd, the suspects showed up at an undisclosed location in Polk County at separate times to meet who they thought were children. In total, authorities arrested the 17 suspects ranging in age from 26 to 47. Upon further investigation, police said three of the suspects revealed they were Walt Disney employees.
Sheriff Judd is briefing the media about Operation Child Protector, a 6 day long investigation focusing on those who prey upon children online with @Auburndalegov Chief Andy Ray & @WHPoliceDept Dir Charlie Bird. Read https://t.co/rLSq65y6DQ & watch on https://t.co/rKNE28jFQl pic.twitter.com/zketpzki7b
— Polk County Sheriff 🚔 (@PolkCoSheriff) August 3, 2021
Kenneth Javier Aquino, 26, worked as a lifeguard at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge hotel in Orlando. Judd then identified the two other individuals as 34-year-old Jonathan McGrew and his girlfriend Savannah Lawrence, 29, who were custodians at Walt Disney World Hollywood Studios.
He noted none of the suspects engaged in any illegal activity while on park property. Judd went on to express his disgust over the content obtained throughout the sting from the suspects. He then commended the detectives who worked diligently to capture the predators.
Meanwhile, all of the suspects face a total of 49 felony charges and two misdemeanor charges.
Suspect who stabbed, killed Pentagon officer identified 4 Aug 2021, 12:14 pm
UPDATED 10:21 AM PT – Wednesday, August 4, 2021
The suspect who is believed to have killed a Pentagon officer has been identified. Law enforcement officials identified the suspect on Tuesday as 27-year-old Austin William Lanz.
Lanz is originally from Georgia and has been arrested multiple times in the state for differing charges. He was enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 2012, but according to the branch, he was administratively separated less than a month later and was never given the title of Marine.
The 27-year-old allegedly attacked a Pentagon officer, stabbing and killing him. The suspect was shot and pronounced dead at the scene.
The Pentagon police officer died after the incident that occurred outside the Defense Department headquarters. Officials said the attack happened Tuesday morning on a metro bus platform.
@PFPAOfficial mourns the tragic loss of a Pentagon Police Officer killed during this morning’s incident at the Pentagon. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Officer’s family. Additional info on the officer will be forthcoming, following full next of kin notification.
— Pentagon Force Protection Agency (Official) (@PFPAOfficial) August 3, 2021
Reports added the officer was ambushed by the suspect and stabbed in the neck later confirming his death. The Pentagon was temporarily placed on lockdown and the public was ordered to stay away from the area.
During a Defense Department briefing, authorities said the investigation was still ongoing and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had been placed in charge. Chief of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency Woodrow Kusse gave remarks as to the status of the incident during the briefing.
Kusse also responded to a question regarding the Pentagon metro entrance that asked if additional force protection measures would be necessary due to the incident. He said there were a number of measures in place already, but that they would reevaluate.
Additional details on the officer have not yet been released. In the meantime, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin ordered flags on the Pentagon reservation be flown at half-staff “in honor of his loss.”