Posts by David McNamara:
Career Scientists And Frontline Staff At CDC To Blame For Coronavirus Shortfalls, Not Just Trump Administration, Report Finds
Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, President Donald Trump was blamed almost exclusively for the highly infectious virus from China. New evidence suggests that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s actions and inactions helped the virus wreak havoc on the United States. Reuters reported Friday that the CDC “missed chances to spot COVID’s silent spread” early on in the pandemic when 57 people with the virus showed up at a Nebraska military base in February after being evacuated from Wuhan, China, where the virus was discovered. The people were quarantined, but the CDC refused to allow University of Nebraska Medical Center researchers from testing the group. The agency, according to a letter from the CDC, brought up consent issues from the quarantined group, worrying they may feel coerced into testing and therefore the test would be unethical. “CDC does not approve this study,” a CDC official wrote.
Texas Sues Biden Over 100-Day Freeze On Deportations: Will ‘Endanger Our Citizens And Law Enforcement’
Texas sued the federal government on Friday after President Joe Biden ordered deportations of illegal immigrants halted for the first 100 days of his administration. “In one of its first of dozens of steps that harm Texas and the nation as a whole, the Biden administration directed DHS to violate federal immigration law and breach an agreement to consult and cooperate with Texas on that law. Our state defends the largest section of the southern border in the nation. Failure to properly enforce the law will directly and immediately endanger our citizens and law enforcement personnel,” Paxton said in a statement. “DHS itself has previously acknowledged that such a freeze on deportations will cause concrete injuries to Texas. I am confident that these unlawful and perilous actions cannot stand. The rule of law and security of our citizens must prevail.”
The new administration will apparently re-evaluate the executive action from President Donald Trump toward the end of March. It remains unclear if it will be reinstated. “The HHS Thursday froze the former Trump administration’s December drug policy that requires community health centers to pass on all their insulin and epinephrine discount savings to patients,” Bloomberg Law reported Thursday. “Centers that don’t pass on the savings wouldn’t qualify for federal grants.” “This freeze is part of the Biden administration’s large-scale effort announced this week that will scrutinize the Trump administration’s health policies,” the report noted. “If the previous administration’s policies raise ‘fact, law, or policy’ concerns, the Biden HHS will delay them and consult with the Office of Management and Budget about other actions.”
When the coronavirus pandemic first began, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA) claimed his decisions would be based on science and data, which would be shared with Californians to ensure transparency. The Associated Press reported, however, that Newsom’s administration has been hiding COVID-19 data, saying that data is too complex for Californians to understand. The hidden data relates to how the California government projects intensive care unit (ICU) capacity. Just days before President Joe Biden was inaugurated, California’s daily updated map of ICU capacity showed that the state’s stay-at-home order wouldn’t be lifted any time soon, yet just a day later, the AP reported, suddenly the order was lifted for the Greater Sacramento area.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki danced around questions at Friday’s press conference about recent left-wing riots on the West Coast and on China’s human rights abuses. Psaki also did not appear to have to answer any questions about a story that blew up late last night regarding National Guardsmen who were having to rest in parking garages — a story that sparked backlash from top lawmakers after photos of the National Guardsmen went viral online. However, Psaki did address the story without delving into details or calling too much attention to it. The troops were later reportedly let back inside the Capitol following backlash over the story. “Earlier this morning — or late this morning, I should say — the president called General Daniel Hokanson, who is head of the National Guard, to thank him for not just his work of the last few weeks, but the work of the National Guard over the last several years,” she said.
Tara Reade: ‘It Is Unspeakably Hard To Watch The Man Who Assaulted Me Go To The Most Powerful Position In The Land’
Speaking to Fox News, Tara Reade — the “former Senate staffer who came forward during the 2020 campaign with a sexual assault allegation against Joe Biden” — described witnessing her alleged attacker taking the oath of office on Inauguration Day as “exceptionally hard.” “Yesterday was exceptionally hard on many levels, because the media, certain media outlets made it so clear that I was to be smeared, ignored, and erased. And they were pretty successful in doing so,” Reade told Fox News on Thursday. “To watch this powerful man who I’ve worked for, who I had admired when I first worked for him and then later became horrified of what he did, to watch him ascend to the most powerful job in the world. I can’t really describe the feeling except I keep wanting to wake up from a nightmare.”
Biden: ‘There’s Nothing We Can Do To Change The Trajectory Of The Pandemic In The Next Several Months’
President Joe Biden was slammed on Friday after stating during a press conference that there was “nothing” his administration could do to “change the trajectory of the pandemic over the next several months,” which comes after he campaigned on ending the pandemic. Biden made the remarks about not being able to change the course of the pandemic over the next several months while talking about his “American Rescue Plan,” and how millions of Americans could lose their homes unless urgent action is taken. As The New York Times reported, Biden issued a series of executive orders on his first full day in office and pledged to wage a “full-scale wartime effort” to combat the pandemic. On Friday, he issued two more orders “aimed at steering additional federal aid to families struggling to afford food amid the pandemic and helping workers stay safe on the job,” the paper reported.
New cases of COVID-19 have steadily dropped over the last 12 days, a downward trend that experts say offers reason for hope even as the second wave pushes hospitals dangerously close to capacity. Tracking by CTVNews.ca shows the country’s seven-day average has consistently fallen since Jan. 10, from 8,260 cases to 5,957 cases by Jan. 22. Twelve days may seem brief, but infectious disease specialist Dr. Isaac Bogoch said the trajectory is a clear trend in the right direction. “It looks like we have at least started to turn the corner, but we have a long road ahead,” Bogoch told CTVNews.ca on Friday. The downward trend is particularly good news because respiratory viruses typically flourish during the winter, said infectious disease specialist Dr. Zain Chagla. “Clearly it’s not just a few days’ numbers. There is a significant decrease, which is great,” Chagla said.
Fear that Quebecers will catch a new variant of COVID-19 on vacation is what’s driving demands by the Quebec premier for Ottawa to ban non-essential flights to the country. Premier Francois Legault repeated once again this week that his government believes it was vacationing Quebecers during spring break in 2020 who brought the virus home, allowing it to spread earlier and more widely in the province than elsewhere in Canada. Legal experts say a ban on non-essential travel would violate the mobility rights guaranteed in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which states, “Every citizen of Canada has the right to enter, remain in and leave Canada.” The question, experts say, is whether a ban can be justified.