Instead of voting on new fares at the January monthly board meeting Thursday morning, the MTA delayed fare increases for several months.
- National Review
A federal judge on Tuesday indefinitely banned the Biden administration from enforcing a 100-day pause on deportations of most illegal immigrants in response to a lawsuit from Texas, which argued that the moratorium violated federal law and could saddle the state with additional costs. U.S. district judge Drew Tipton issued a preliminary injunction Tuesday, dealing a blow to President Biden’s efforts to follow through on his campaign promise to pause most deportations. The pause would not have applied to those who have engaged in terrorism or espionage or who pose a danger to national security. It would also have excluded those who were not present in the U.S. before November 1, 2020, those who agreed to waive the right to remain, and those whom the ICE director individually determined need to be removed by law. Tipton first ruled on January 26 that the pause violated federal law on administrative procedure and that the U.S. failed to show why a deportation pause was justified. He issued a temporary two-week restraining order, which was set to expire Tuesday. Texas attorney general Ken Paxton argued that Biden’s January 20 memorandum violated federal law and an agreement with the Department of Homeland Security that Texas be consulted before reducing immigration enforcement or pausing deportations. As part of the agreement, DHS must give Texas 180 days notice of any proposed change on any matter that would reduce enforcement or increase the number of “removable or inadmissible aliens” in the United States. However, the ruling does not require deportations to resume at their previous pace and immigration agencies have broad discretion in enforcing removals and processing cases. In the wake of the first ruling, authorities deported hundreds of people to Central America and 15 people to Jamaica. The administration has also continued deportations that began under the Trump administration due to a public-health law in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
- The Week
The 'most encouraging' aspect of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine may be its effectiveness in South Africa, Brazil
The Food and Drug Administration appears to be closing in on an emergency use authorization for the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, which a large clinical trial has shown to be safe and effective. And the "most encouraging" aspect in the FDA's analysis may be the data that suggest the shot works in areas where highly contagious variants are spreading, like Brazil and South Africa. The overall efficacy rate — that is, protection against any symptomatic infection — in the South African trial was lower than it was in the United States initially, but the numbers did start to even out over time, and after a month, the shot's efficacy rate against severe infections was 82 percent. The figures out of Brazil show a similar trajectory, though the efficacy rate against severe infections was actually slightly higher than in the U.S. FDA just posted briefing documents for its expert panel discussing the J&J Covid shot Friday. This is the first clear breakdown I've seen of efficacy in areas w/ variant spread, but shows efficacy building over time: pic.twitter.com/YReI2QkvZa — Sarah Owermohle (@owermohle) February 24, 2021 Of course, the trial data is not a guarantee of the vaccine's effectiveness in a real-world setting, but the FDA's breakdown should still help alleviate growing concerns that the so-called South African variant, especially, can completely resist vaccinations, an outcome that would add to the challenge of slowing the pandemic going forward. More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpLate night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPACFDA confirms Johnson & Johnson vaccine prevented all deaths and hospitalizations in trial
- The Week
A few months after the Trump administration scrapped the Obama administration's robust net neutrality rules in 2018, California passed its own open-internet law. The Justice Department immediately sued to block California's net neutrality law, and it was in limbo until President Biden's administration dropped the lawsuit last month. A federal judge in California on Tuesday dismissed the last legal hurdle, a lawsuit by four telecom industry groups, opening the door to enforcement of the nation's first mandate that internet service providers treat all web traffic equally. The four telecom lobbying groups — America's Communications Association, Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association, the the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, and USTelecom — said Tuesday they "will review the court's opinion before deciding on next steps," suggesting they could appeal U.S. District Court Judge John Mendez's ruling. The broadband industry has successfully fought open-internet regulations for decades, but the industry groups said Tuesday that faced with a muddled "state-by-state approach," they think "Congress should codify rules for an open internet." Other states have been watching the California case for years, "hoping a legal resolution in the state's favor might open the door for them to try to craft their own open-Internet rules without facing a similar legal threat," The Washington Post reports. Congressional action is theoretically possible, but it's more likely Biden's FCC will act, once the Senate confirms his nominee, breaking the 2-2 gridlock. Net neutrality laws like the one in California prohibit internet service providers from slowing down traffic to certain sites or providing special fast access to sites that pay extra for the boost. Broadband companies and other opponents argue such rules will stifle innovation and curb investment in faster internet speeds. More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpLate night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPACFDA confirms Johnson & Johnson vaccine prevented all deaths and hospitalizations in trial
- The Week
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) told her fellow Republicans on Tuesday that they must "ignore the temptation to look away" and make it "clear that we aren't the party of white supremacy." Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, made her plea during an event hosted by the Reagan Institute. When supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, "you certainly saw anti-Semitism," Cheney said. "You saw the symbols of Holocaust denial ... you saw a Confederate flag being carried through the rotunda. We, as Republicans in particular, have a duty and an obligation to stand against that, to stand against insurrection." She is one of the few House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump last month, on a charge of incitement of insurrection. Earlier this month, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said a "9/11-type commission" will be created to investigate the Capitol attack, something Cheney supports. She wants investigators to take a "clear eyed look" at the baseless claims of voter fraud spread by Trump, his allies, and conservative news outlets, which Cheney said promoted these conspiracies and contributed "to a very dangerous set of circumstances." "The president and many around him pushed this idea that the election had been stolen," Cheney said. "And that is a dangerous claim. It wasn't true. There were over 60 court cases where judges, including judges appointed by President Trump and other Republican presidents, looked at the evidence in many cases and said there is not widespread fraud." More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpLate night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPACFDA confirms Johnson & Johnson vaccine prevented all deaths and hospitalizations in trial
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex say they will continue to support their royal patronages despite not being allowed to do so as royals.
- The Week
In a two-page memo addressed to GOP donors, voters, leaders, and activists, Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) declared: "The Republican Civil War is now canceled." It isn't clear if his fellow Republicans, including former President Donald Trump, are listening. Scott is chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and in the memo, first obtained by Fox News, he writes that Democrats control the White House, Senate, and House, but Republicans have a path to victory in 2022. To win, the GOP must move on from the "impeachment show" and stop with the infighting, he said, adding that a Republican Civil War "does not need to be true, should not be true, and will not be true." While Scott wants unity, not all Republicans are on the same page. After Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), the No. 3 House Republican, voted to impeach Trump last month, she was censured by the Wyoming Republican Party and asked to resign. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) voted to acquit Trump, but still said there is "no question that former President Trump bears responsibility" for the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. This remark roused Trump, who had been flying under the radar during the trial. He called McConnell a "dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack," and said if Republican senators "are going to stay with him, they will not win again. Where necessary and appropriate, I will back primary rivals who espouse Making America Great Again." Three GOP senators are retiring in 2022 — Richard Burr (N.C.), Pat Toomey (Pa.), and Rob Portman (Ohio) — and Scott has said the NRSC will support the remaining incumbents from primary challenges. Trump is letting people know he isn't done with McConnell, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman tweeted Tuesday. Last week, Trump and former Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) met for golf and dinner, and people briefed on the day told Haberman "it did not go well." Trump reportedly had "retribution" on his mind, and was focused on McConnell and Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R), who did not go along with Trump's plot to overturn Georgia's election results. Perdue had been contemplating running again in 2022, but said Tuesday he won't. Although no longer in office, Trump still has the support of a majority of Republicans. A Suffolk University/USA Today poll of 1,000 Trump supporters conducted last week found that 46 percent would ditch the Republican Party and join a Trump party if he started one, with 27 percent saying they wouldn't and the rest undecided. A majority said they had more loyalty to Trump than the GOP, and 50 percent said the Republican Party should become "more loyal to Trump." More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpLate night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPACFDA confirms Johnson & Johnson vaccine prevented all deaths and hospitalizations in trial
- The Week
Sens. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) on Tuesday unveiled a plan to gradually raise the minimum wage to $10, rather than the $15 their Democratic colleagues are targeting. The reaction among conservatives was mixed. Brad Polumbo, writing in The Washington Examiner, called the plan an "abandonment" of fiscal conservatism, likening it to "something out of" Sen. Bernie Sanders' (I-Vt.) office. The plan, Polumbo continues, "ignores everything conservatives are supposed to understand about economics and the perils of big government," asserting that while both Romney and Cotton market themselves as "pro-family social conservatives," their plan "would hurt working families if implemented." At The National Review, however, John McCormack writes that research has shown the plan wouldn't cost any jobs at its median estimates, and high-end estimates point to around 100,000 losses. McCormack's colleague Robert VerBruggen thinks it will "resonate with the public" as a middle ground policy that comes attached to an immigration enforcement measure — in addition to the gradual wage increase, the Romney-Cotton plan would require businesses to use the "E-verify system" to ensure their employees are in the country legally and eligible to work. At Bloomberg, Michael Strain, the director of of economic policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, praised the Romney-Cotton plan for its patience, noting that it would delay the increase until after the coronavirus pandemic "is in the rear-view mirror," whereas the Democratic proposal backed by President Biden would start churning in June. But he doesn't believe it will prevent Democrats from continuing to lobby for further raises, and ultimately doesn't solve the fact that "Republicans would still be on the losing side of a popular issue." He is also skeptical of the immigration enforcement tradeoff. He described it as a "politically interesting pairing," but explained he'd "rather see a modest minimum wage increase paired with policies that would improve employment and skills." More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpLate night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPACFDA confirms Johnson & Johnson vaccine prevented all deaths and hospitalizations in trial
Sacha Baron Cohen and Isla Fisher are one of Hollywood's most private couples. Here's a timeline of their 20-year relationship.
Fisher has said being with Cohen is like "winning the lottery" ... even if she has to deal with his many shenanigans.
- The Daily Beast
ABCOn Tuesday night, The Late Show’s Stephen Colbert dragged the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) for branding this year’s edition “America Uncanceled” and then canceling a speaker over his history of anti-Semitic comments. And Jimmy Kimmel joined in on the fun—but also set his sights on someone who’s become such a colossal embarrassment he won’t be speaking at CPAC: Rudy Giuliani, the president’s ex-attorney who once married his cousin. “Rudy Giuliani isn’t on the list at CPAC. He is no longer representing Donald Trump, and his next client could be himself,” cracked Kimmel. “Last month, Rudy got hit with a $1.3 billion lawsuit from Dominion Voting Systems. They’re suing him for spreading misinformation about their machines, and apparently, they had a heck of a time serving him with papers.”Yes, Dominion filed a whopping $1.3 billion lawsuit against Giuliani—citing 50 “demonstrably false” (Dominion’s words) claims he made that their voting machines flipped votes from Trump to Biden—and even tied Giuliani’s baseless claims about rigged Dominion machines to the rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, referencing a speech that Giuliani gave earlier that day in the lawsuit.“Having been deceived by Giuliani and his allies into thinking that they were not criminals — but patriots ‘Defend[ing] the Republic’ from Dominion and its co-conspirators — they then bragged about their involvement in the crime on social media,” the lawsuit read.And Giuliani—of Borat 2, Four Seasons Total Landscaping, leaking head, and courtroom-farting fame—has continued to embarrass himself during the Dominion saga. According to a report in the New York Daily News, Dominion struggled to serve Giuliani with the 107-page lawsuit. First, he refused to receive it by email, and it took them a week to try to serve Giuliani in person.Stephen Colbert Hammers ‘America Uncanceled’ CPAC for Canceling Speaker“A doorman, knowing process servers were looking for Giuliani, locked the door to the building whenever the former mayor entered the lobby,” reported the Daily News. “On Feb. 7, a pair of process servers and Giuliani got into an awkward standoff during a nasty winter storm. That morning, the doorman to the building waved to a Ford Explorer SUV parked down the street. Giuliani got in the passenger seat and closed the SUV door as a process server lunged forward with a bag full of documents.”Then, as Kimmel elaborated, something truly ridiculous happened: “At one point, the server jammed the lawsuit into the door of an SUV Giuliani got into, but Rudy’s doorman grabbed an umbrella and pried it out onto the ground,” Kimmel explained, adding, “You know, if they really want to get those papers to Rudy, they should’ve just had Borat’s daughter stuff them in his pants.”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.
- Associated Press
Twenty20 specialist Mohammad Hafeez has declined a central contract offer from the Pakistan Cricket Board. The allrounder “politely turned down” a contract offer in category C for 2020-21, the cricket board said Wednesday. “While I am disappointed, I fully respect his decision,” PCB chief executive Wasim Khan said in a statement.
A 22-year-old Russian social media influencer is facing heavy criticism online for posing naked on top of an endangered elephant in Bali, Indonesia for her 553,000 Instagram followers. Alesya Kafelnikova received backlash for the short video she posted on Feb. 13, where she was filmed lying naked on top of a “critically endangered” Sumatran elephant, according to The Sun. In a follow-up post, Kafelnikova shared an image presumably with the same elephant and said in the caption, “To love nature is human nature.”
- LA Times
The Rams lost seven coaching assistants this offseason, but after some hires and promotions coach Sean McVay has completed his staff for the 2021 season.
- The Independent
‘Zero respect’: Ted Cruz pictured scrolling through phone during harrowing opening testimony into Capitol riot
Senator caused controversy last week after he flew to Mexico while a winter storm battered Texas
'Superman & Lois' showrunner and star paid homage to the superhero's first comic appearance in the series premiere
Showrunner Todd Helbing and star Tyler Hoechlin tell Insider what it was like paying homage to Superman's early days in the comics and cartoons.
- Associated Press
Visiting Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has proclaimed his Muslim-majority nation a choice destination for religious tourism by Sri Lankans, most of whom are Buddhists. In talks with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Wednesday, Khan highlighted Buddhist heritage sites in Pakistan and stressed the building of cultural ties, the Pakistan Embassy said in a statement.
- Business Insider
What we learned during the first major hearing into the Capitol riots. Plus, the latest on Tiger Woods' condition.
- The Independent
Reports suggest meeting with former president last week ‘did not go well’
- Reuters Videos
This wild sheep had a much-needed shearingrelieving him of over 78 lbs of fleeceThat's nearly half the weight of an adult kangarooBaarackLocation: Lancefield, AustraliaRescuers say he used to have an ownerbut was found wandering in a forestBaarack is now settling in with other rescued sheep in a farm sanctuary
- Reuters Videos
Amnesty International, the human rights NGO, says that it no longer considers jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny a "prisoner of conscience" due to past comments he made that it believes -- qualify as advocacy of hate.In a statement sent to Reuters Amnesty said, “some of these comments, which Navalny has not publicly denounced, reach the threshold of advocacy of hatred, and this is at odds with Amnesty's definition of a prisoner of conscience."Amnesty did not say what comments it was specifically referring to.But in the past he’s Navalny has been criticized for nationalist statements against illegal immigration and for attending an annual nationalist march several years ago.In a 2007 video, he called for the deportation of migrants to prevent the rise of far-right violence saying "We have a right to be (ethnic) Russians in Russia. And we'll defend that right." However, the Amnesty did go on record to say Navalny still should be released from jail and that he has committed no crime.It says he is being persecuted for his campaigning and outspoken criticism of President Vladimir Putin.He was arrested on his return to Russia last month following his near-fatal poisoning last year. Navalny is set to spend just over two-and-a-half years in jail for parole violations he called trumped up.His allies protested the move by Amnesty on Twitter.They included ally Ivan Zhdanov, who said: "the procedure for assigning and revoking Amnesty International status has proven extremely shameful."
- Reuters Videos
As Australia entered the third day of its vaccination drive its health minister told local media on Wednesday that two people had received incorrect coronavirus vaccine doses.The two patients, aged 88 and 94, were given four times the recommended dose of the Pfizer vaccine.Health Minister Greg Hunt said the human error was a reminder of safeguards during the rollout:"I think it's very important that we are upfront. The safeguards that were put in place immediately kicked into action, a nurse on the scene identified the fact that a higher than prescribed amount of the dose was given to two patients.""Both patients are being monitored and both patients are showing no signs, at all, of an adverse reaction."Meanwhile, after several weeks of zero COVID-19 cases, two Australian states will loosen their restrictions this week.In New South Wales, up to 30 people can kick up their heels on dance floors at indoor venues, and households can host 50 guests, up from 30.Australia has recorded around 29,000 COVID-19 cases and just over 900 deaths since the pandemic began.