Two brothers who came forward revealing what they say was years of sexual abuse at the hands of Father Michael Pfleger are now being accused of lying about Pfleger for financial gain. But they say their main motivation for coming forward is not money but telling the truth.
- The Independent
CPAC: Gaetz says media ‘biased’ over Ted Cruz’s Cancun trip and should have focused on ‘caravans’ of migrants instead
Outspoken GOP congressman complains ‘the left and the media’ were less concerned about ‘caravans going through Mexico’ than Texas senator visiting
- The Independent
CPAC 2021 – live: Roger Stone dances to pro-Trump rap as Kristi Noem and Mike Pompeo woo party faithful
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- The Independent
Republicans cite ‘public health emergency’ for skipping Covid relief votes while speaking at maskless CPAC
Lawmakers due to attend conservative conference where crowds booed hosts for asking guests to wear masks
The governor of Brazil's capital city, Brasilia, decreed a 24-hour lockdown for all but essential services on Friday to curb a worsening COVID-19 outbreak that has filled its intensive care wards to the brim. The drastic step came as right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro, who has repeatedly downplayed the gravity of the pandemic that has killed 250,000 Brazilians, renewed his attacks on state governors for destroying jobs with lockdowns. "The lockdown will start today and be total, it will be 24-hours a day," said a press aide for the federal district's Governor Ibaneis Rocha.
After video of the surgeon went viral, a medical and licensing agency in California said it would investigate the circumstances.
Holland's Marieke Lucas Rijneveld, the youngest author to win the International Booker Prize, stepped down from the role on Friday.
- Business Insider
GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy said he'd bet his 'personal house' that Republicans will 'get the majority back' in 2022
"I would bet my house. My personal house. Don't tell my wife, but I will bet it," McCarthy said on Saturday to a CPAC crowd.
- The New York Times
Texas has one of the most restrictive medical marijuana laws in the country, with sales allowed only by prescription for a handful of conditions. That has not stopped Lukas Gilkey, chief executive of Hometown Hero CBD, based in Austin. His company sells joints, blunts, gummy bears, vaping devices and tinctures that offer a recreational high. In fact, business is booming online as well, where he sells to many people in other states with strict marijuana laws. But Gilkey said that he is no outlaw and that he is not selling marijuana, just a close relation. He is offering products with a chemical compound — Delta-8-THC — extracted from hemp. It is only slightly chemically different from Delta 9, which is the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times And that small distinction, it turns out, may make a big difference in the eyes of the law. Under federal law, psychoactive Delta 9 is explicitly outlawed. But Delta-8-THC from hemp is not, a loophole that some entrepreneurs say allows them to sell it in many states where hemp possession is legal. The number of customers “coming into Delta 8 is staggering,” Gilkey said. “You have a drug that essentially gets you high but is fully legal,” he added. “The whole thing is comical.” The rise of Delta 8 is a case study in how industrious cannabis entrepreneurs are pulling apart hemp and marijuana to create myriad new product lines with different marketing angles. They are building brands from a variety of potencies, flavors and strains of THC, the intoxicating substance in cannabis, and of CBD, the nonintoxicating compound that is often sold as a health product. With Delta 8, entrepreneurs also believe they have found a way to take advantage of the country’s fractured and convoluted laws on recreational marijuana use. It is not quite that simple, though. Federal agencies, including the Drug Enforcement Administration, are still considering their options for enforcement and regulation. “Dealing in any way with Delta-8-THC is not without significant legal risk,” said Alex Buscher, a Colorado lawyer who specializes in cannabis law. Still, experts in the cannabis industry said Delta 8 sales had indeed exploded. Delta 8 is “the fastest-growing segment” of products derived from hemp, said Ian Laird, chief financial officer of New Leaf Data Services, which tracks the hemp and cannabis markets. He estimated consumer sales of at least $10 million, adding, “Delta 8 has really come out of nowhere over the past year.” Marijuana and hemp are essentially the same plant, but marijuana has higher concentrations of Delta-9-THC — and, as a source of intoxication, it has been a main focus of entrepreneurs as well as state and federal lawmakers. Delta 8, if discussed at all, was an esoteric, less potent byproduct of both plants. That changed with the 2018 Farm Bill, an enormous piece of federal legislation that, among other things, legalized widespread hemp farming and distribution. The law also specifically allowed the sale of the plant’s byproducts; the only exception was Delta 9 with a high-enough level of THC to define it as marijuana. Because the legislation made no mention of Delta 8, entrepreneurs leapt into the void and began extracting and packaging it as a legal edible and smokable alternative. Precisely what kind of high Delta 8 produces depends on whom you ask. Some think of it as “marijuana light,” while others “are pitching it as pain relief with less psychoactivity,” said David Downs, senior content editor for Leafly.com, a popular source of news and information about cannabis. Either way, Delta 8 has become “extremely ascendant,” Downs said, reflecting what he calls “prohibition downfall interregnum,” where consumer demand and entrepreneurial activity are exploiting the holes in rapidly evolving and fractured law. “We’re getting reports that you can walk into a truck stop in prohibition states like Georgia where you’re looking at what looks like a cannabis bud in a jar,” Downs said. The bud is hemp sprayed with high-concentration Delta 8 oil. Joe Salome owns the Georgia Hemp Co., which in October started selling Delta 8 locally and shipping nationally — about 25 orders a day, he said. “It’s taken off tremendously,” Salome said. His website heralds Delta 8 as “very similar to its psychoactive brother THC,” giving users the same relief from stress and inflammation, “without the same anxiety-producing high that some can experience with THC.” Salome said that he did not need to buy an expensive state license to sell medical marijuana because he felt protected by the farm bill. “It’s all right there,” he said, explaining it is now legal to “sell all parts of the plant.” The legal landscape is contradictory at best. Many states are more permissive than the federal government, which under the Controlled Substances Act considers marijuana an illegal and highly dangerous drug. In 36 states, marijuana is legal for medicinal use. In 14 states, it is legal for recreational use. But in a flip, under the farm bill, the federal government opened the door for the sale of hemp products even in states that have not legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Only a few states, like Idaho, ban hemp altogether, but in others, entrepreneurs of Delta 8 are finding a receptive market. Lawyers for Gilkey believe the farm bill is on their side. “Delta 8, if it is derived from hemp or extracted from hemp, that is considered hemp,” said Andrea Steel, co-chair of the cannabis business group at Coats Rose, a Houston law firm. She emphasized that the legality also depends on whether Delta 9 exceeds legal limits. Steel noted that when making a Delta 8 product, it can be hard, if not impossible, to filter out all the Delta 9 from hemp. “Adding another wrinkle,” she said, “a lot of labs do not have the capability of delineating between Delta 8 and Delta 9.” Lisa Pittman, the other co-chair of the cannabis business group at Coats Rose, said that in her reading of the issue, the authors of the farm bill may not have contemplated the consequences of the law. Pittman said that the ultimate question of a product’s legality may be dependent on other factors, including how the Delta 8 is produced and sourced. Specifically, the lawyers said, the DEA’s rule on the issue seems to suggest that Delta 8 could be illegal if it is made “synthetically” rather than derived organically. There are currently lawsuits pending over interpretation of the DEA rule. Gilkey said he had paid upward of $50,000 in legal fees to make sure that he will not run afoul of the law. A veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard, Gilkey worked in a counternarcotics unit on boats out of San Diego. He “saw some really tough stuff,” he said, and “wasn’t happy about the war on drugs.” He wound up running a business in Austin that sold e-liquid for vaping devices. Then in 2019, he started his current business focused on selling CBD. Late last spring, he said, he started getting calls from customers about Delta 8. “I said, please explain to me what that is,” he recalled. Gilkey, whose company supplies other retail shops around the country with products, saw a huge opportunity. After checking with the lawyers, he started full-scale packaging gummies and vape pens and other products using Delta 8 he said he got from a major hemp supplier. “It’s about to go mainstream,” he said. And it is just the beginning. “There’s a Delta 10 in the works,” Gilkey said. This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
The Nebraska Republican Party on Saturday formally "rebuked" Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) for his vote to impeach former President Trump earlier this year, though it stopped short of a formal censure, CNN reports.Why it matters: Sasse is the latest among a slate of Republicans who have faced some sort of punishment from their state party apparatus after voting to impeach the former president. The senator responded statement Saturday, per the Omaha World-Herald, saying "most Nebraskans don't think politics should be about the weird worship of one dude."Stay on top of the latest market trends and economic insights with Axios Markets. Subscribe for freeThe bottom line: "Senator Sasse's condemnation of President Trump and his support for President Trump's impeachment have been liberally used multiple times by Democrats as justification for a truncated impeachment process that denied the President due process," said the resolution, according to CNN.The party expressed "deep disappointment and sadness with respect to the service of Senator Ben Sasse and calls for an immediate readjustment whereby he represents the people of Nebraska to Washington and not Washington to the people of Nebraska."Sasse was first rebuked by the party in 2016, but was reelected last fall with 63% of the vote, which is around 5 more points than Trump won in Nebraska.Go deeper ... Trump’s blunt weapon: State GOP leadersLike this article? Get more from Axios and subscribe to Axios Markets for free.
- Business Insider
Justice Department attorneys on Saturday said they would appeal a Trump-appointed judge's ruling that the federal eviction moratorium is unlawful.
- Business Insider
Ted Cruz said the Republican Party is 'not just the party of country clubs' but CPAC is fixated on Donald Trump - a man who literally lives at one
Trump, who lives at his private Mar-a-Lago club, has already stolen the show at CPAC and will deliver his own speech on the last day of the conference.
- Business Insider
Trump is expected to use his Florida speech to talk about the future of the Republican Party and the conservative movement.
- Business Insider
Fauci says he 'would have no hesitancy whatsoever' taking the newly authorized Johnson & Johnson vaccine
"All three (vaccines) are really quite good, and people should take the one that's most available to them," Fauci said on NBC News' "Meet the Press."
- USA TODAY
Charlotte Bennett told The New York Times she was repeatedly made to feel uncomfortable by Cuomo after she was hired in 2019 in the governor's office.
- The State
Once LaMelo Ball wins NBA MVP, he’s going to create a monster that could take on the likes of Godzilla and King Kong.
- The Daily Beast
This past week, Fox News finally lost its collective mind over Saturday Night Live’s reluctance to parody Joe Biden the way the show hammered Donald Trump for the previous four years. And while that trend continued on the latest episode, SNL did give any conservative viewers out there something to love by taking on not only Dr. Anthony Fauci but also a trio of Democratic governors in a cold open game show called “So You Think You Can Get the Vaccine.”“The vaccine rollout is going strong, but it is also very confusing,” Kate McKinnon’s Fauci said at the top of the sketch. “Who can get it? How? When? Where is it? Do both doses go in the same arm or different arms or what? I don’t know!”The convoluted game found regular Americans quizzing California’s Gavin Newsom, New York’s Andrew Cuomo, and Michigan’s Gretchen Whitmer about whether they qualified for vaccinations.SNL Destroys Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Batshit Transphobia“First, he’s hated by every single person in California except those 10 people he had dinner with in Napa that one time,” Fauci said, introducing Alex Moffat’s Newsom, who replied, “What can I say? I love dinner.”Next up was Pete Davidson’s Cuomo, who, in Fauci’s words is “currently under fire for futzing with old dead people and also for the kind of sexual harassment allegations that make you go, ‘Yeah, I can see that.’”“Yes, hello. Nice bodies, some of you,” Cuomo said. “I know, I’m in the friggin’ doghouse again. Remember when your favorite movie was my PowerPoints? Remember, ‘Today is Tuesday?’ When can we go back to that? I mean, come on!”And then there was Cecily Strong’s Whitmer, who complained that while people yell at her fellow governors about their policies, “They yell at me, ‘Get her!’ But hey, that’s life.”Of course, the sketch, which highlighted just how hard it can by for vulnerable Americans to figure out how and when they can get vaccinated against COVID-19, did feature one moment that will likely rub Fox News viewers the wrong way. That came when Aidy Bryant’s Ted Cruz returned fresh from his stand-up comedy performance at CPAC to share some new material.“It is great to be back in New York City,” Cruz began. “I’m sorry, my arms are tired because I just flew back from Cancun, Mexico. But can you really blame a brother for wanting some sun?” Then he threw out his new catchphrase for good measure: “Freedom!!!” For more, listen and subscribe to The Last Laugh podcast.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
After the Daily Mail posted photos of a shirtless Jonah Hill, the actor clapped back at "public mockery of his body" and said it "doesn't phase" him.
Children under age 12 will "very likely" be able to get vaccinated for coronavirus at the "earliest the end of the year, and very likely the first quarter of 2022," NIAID Director Anthony Fauci told "Meet the Press" Sunday. Why it matters: Children generally aren't at risk of serious coronavirus infections, but vaccinating them will be key to protecting the adults around them and, eventually, reaching herd immunity, writes Axios' Caitlin Owens. Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.The sooner children have a vaccine, the sooner schools and child care can go back to normal, which will greatly ease the burden on millions of parents.What he's saying: Fauci noted that some companies have already begun trials assessing whether the vaccines are safe for children."If you project realistically when we'll get enough data to be able to say that elementary school children will be able to be vaccinated, I would think that would be, at the earliest, the end of the year," Fauci said. "And very likely, the first quarter of 2022." Fauci added that high school kids should be able to get the vaccine "sometime this fall. I'm not sure it'll exactly be on the first day that school opens, but pretty close to that."More from Axios: Sign up to get the latest market trends with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free
- USA TODAY
'We're done with that lifestyle': Jessica Watkins, Ohio woman charged in Capitol riot, renounces Oath Keepers
Jessica Watkins, 38, says she has disbanded her local armed group and is canceling her Oath Keeper membership after her arrest.
- CBS News
"I just felt so incredibly helpless and frustrated," said Spoon by H owner and chef Yoonjin Hwang.