Above Average Temps
President Trump on Monday criticized attempts by Democrats in Congress to expand voting access for the presidential election in the fall, saying increased voter turnout would keep Republicans from getting elected. Trump said that Democrat-proposed voting reforms to the $2.2 trillion rescue package passed last week by Congress — which were largely cut from the deal — would have led to “levels of voting, that if you ever agreed to it you'd never have a Republican elected in this country again.” Democrats have pushed to mandate that states make plans to expand early voting and mail-in balloting for the fall election, in the event that the coronavirus pandemic makes in-person voting unsafe.
REUTERS/Mike Segar New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday afternoon he was extending the state's PAUSE order for another two weeks. The policy, now in place until at least April 15, will be re-evaluated in another two weeks, Cuomo said on Twitter. The state of New York has been hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic in the US.
In a post on Instagram on Friday, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the country had 18 million masks in reserve, with 80,000 more being made a day. It's not clear how many of these are surgical masks compared to N95 respirators. The US, which has just under 330 million people, has a national stockpile has about 12 million N95 masks and 30 million surgical masks.
Federal judges on Monday blocked officials in Texas, Ohio and Alabama from banning most abortions in those states as part of their orders to postpone surgeries and other procedures deemed not medically necessary during the coronavirus crisis. The rulings came in a series of legal actions aimed at blocking steps by various Republican-led states cracking down on abortion during the pandemic. The first of the decisions involved Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's announcement last week that abortion providers were covered by a state order that required postponement of non-urgent medical procedures to preserve hospital beds and equipment during the pandemic.
Broward County officials will meet Tuesday to decide whether to let the ship dock at its Port Everglades cruise ship terminal, where workers who greet passengers were among Florida's first confirmed coronavirus cases. DeSantis said it would be “a mistake” to bring the cruise ship passengers into South Florida for treatment because the state already has a high number of coronavirus infections and that number is growing. He said the area's hospital beds need to be saved for residents and not “foreign nationals.
Wuhan residents are increasingly skeptical of the Chinese Communist Party's reported coronavirus death count of approximately 2,500 deaths in the city to date, with most people believing the actual number is at least 40,000. “Maybe the authorities are gradually releasing the real figures, intentionally or unintentionally, so that people will gradually come to accept the reality,” a Wuhan resident, who gave only his surname Mao, told Radio Free Asia. A city source added that, based on the aggregation of funeral and cremation numbers, authorities likely know the real number and are keeping it under wraps.
In late November 2018, just over a year before the first coronavirus case was identified in Wuhan, China, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at Detroit Metro Airport stopped a Chinese biologist with three vials labeled “Antibodies” in his luggage.
China's leaders normally spend a lot of time and money on keeping the country's 1.4 billion people in line -- and that was before a global pandemic ravaging the world economy threatened to put millions out of work. A rare street clash over the weekend on the border of virus-stricken Hubei province shows the challenges President Xi Jinping faces as China looks to get its economy moving again after appearing to gets its Covid-19 outbreak under control. Hubei is only now emerging from a two-month lockdown that helped limit the virus's spread to other parts of China.
Authorities say a 22-year-old man fatally shot a Phoenix police commander and wounded two other officers as they tried to remove him from a home after his roommates complained he was acting erratically. Cmdr. Greg Carnicle, a 31-year-old police veteran who was set to retire in the fall, and the two other officers were shot Sunday night as they walked up stairs in the house after Jacob Emry Mcilveen refused to leave, said Phoenix police spokeswoman Sgt. Mercedes Fortune. Mcilveen remained in the home several hours after the injured officers were removed.
The White House coronavirus task force unanimously shunned President Donald Trump's suggestion of a quarantine in the New York City area, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday. The president “did very seriously consider” the idea of locking down the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, Mnuchin said on “Fox News Sunday. But Trump was dissuaded after a meeting with the task force led by Vice President Mike Pence.
A bid to overturn a law that criminalises gay sex in Singapore has been dismissed by a court, dealing a blow to the city state's LGBT movement. The presiding judge said the law was "important in reflecting public sentiment and beliefs" in Singapore. Under Section 377A, men found guilty of homosexual acts in public or private can be jailed for up to two years.
Ezra Acayan/Getty The Philippines' main island Luzon, which has a population of more than 57 million, is on lockdown. Along with people's movements being restricted, soldiers are covering residents and the streets in disinfectant, and open coffins have been left on the roads as a warning to people to stay inside. On Sunday, the Philippines reported 343 new coronavirus cases in a day — its highest one day increase yet.
Remo Casilli/Reuters Italy is showing very early signs that it's turning a corner with the coronavirus outbreak as the numbers of new reported deaths and cases have slowed, according to multiple reports. The country's strict three-week lockdown is due to be lifted on Friday, but officials have said it's likely to be extended. It's a sign that those under lockdown "save lives" by staying home, Luca Richeldi, a government health adviser, said on Sunday.
Indian health workers caused outrage on Monday by spraying a group of migrants with disinfectant, amid fears that a large scale movement of people from cities to the countryside risked spreading the coronavirus. Footage showed a group of migrant workers sitting on a street in Bareilly, a district in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, as health officials in protective suits used hose pipes to douse them in disinfectant, prompting anger on social media. Nitish Kumar, the top government official in the district, said health workers had been ordered to disinfect buses being used by the local authorities but in their zeal had also turned their hoses on migrant workers.
Joe Biden said Monday he still opposes a "Medicare for All" system for health care coverage, arguing that the policy isn't the answer to the growing coronavirus emergency. "Single payer will not solve that at all," the Democratic presidential front-runner told MSNBC's Yasmin Vossoughian in a TV interview. The former vice president's remarks come as the issue remains a Democratic fault line in his battle with Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., the leader of the national movement for a single-payer system, who is pressing his presidential campaign even as his odds of winning the nomination shrink.
USNS Mercy, one of the U.S. Navy's two seaborne floating hospitals, has deployed all over the world in support of humanitarian operations and training exercises. Mercy is not the only help sought by the city. Mayor Eric Garcetti announced via Twitter that the LA Convention Center will be converted to a federal field hospital and that the California National Guard will also be mobilized to help local hospitals.
The city at the center of China's virus outbreak was reopening for business Monday after authorities lifted more of the controls that locked downs tens of millions of people for two months. “I want to revenge shop,” declared an excited customer at one of Wuhan's major shopping streets. A teacher from the eastern city of Nanjing was visiting her family in Wuhan when most access to the city of 11 million was suspended Jan. 23 to stem the coronavirus spread.
President Trump said a nationwide stay-at-home order, like the ones states have been implementing on their own, is "pretty unlikely" at this time. "Well we've talked about it, there are obviously there are some parts of the country that are in far deeper trouble than others," Mr. Trump said during Monday's Coronavirus Task Force briefing. Mr. Trump has been eager to get the economy back on track, but said he was persuaded to extend social distancing guidelines after public health experts presented him with models showing as many as 2 million Americans could die without mitigating action.
The Taliban have killed about two dozen Afghan police and pro-government fighters, officials said Monday, in two attacks that come as the foes are supposed to be preparing for peace talks. In one of the incidents Sunday, the insurgents killed at least six soldiers and 13 police and pro-government militiamen at several outposts near a police headquarters building in northeastern Takhar province, provincial police spokesman Khalil Assir told AFP. A wedding party was being held in the building at the time, but the attackers did not reach the headquarters.
Surprisingly, a number of global airlines are still running passenger flights, including British Airways (BA). Passenger flights are believed to have been cut by up to 95%, but that still means one in 20 are taking off. "We are working with European Union (EU) governments to try to keep some minimum flight links open for emergency reasons, even though the passenger loads on these flights will be very low," said Ryanair.
REUTERS/Carlo Allegri Crowds of people gathered in New York City to watch the USNS Comfort arrive, despite a state order requiring social distancing. The ship will be used as additional hospital space for non-coronavirus patients as New York hospitals become overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's communications team asked the NYPD to help disperse the crowd after a journalist tweeted about it.
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday defended his weekend handshake with the mother of drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, calling her a "respectable old lady" and seeking to cast his critics as the principal menace to the country. In a 30-second video posted on Twitter on Sunday, Lopez Obrador could be seen approaching Maria Consuelo Loera's car, parked on a dirt road on the outskirts of Badiraguato, a mountainous municipality in the northwestern state of Sinaloa. Surrounded by onlookers, Lopez Obrador told Loera she need not get out of the car, they shook hands and after a brief exchange he told her he had "received her letter."
The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi group in Yemen carried out several air strikes on Monday on the capital Sanaa, witnesses and media said, killing dozens of horses at a military school. A number of sensitive sites including the presidential palace compound, the school and an air base close to Sanaa airport were hit, and loud explosions were heard across the city, residents said. The coalition said the operation was aimed at destroying "legitimate military targets including Houthi ballistic batteries which threaten civilian lives".
As the Zaandam cruise ship travels toward Florida with four dead passengers and 179 others with flu-like symptoms, Gov. Ron DeSantis insisted Monday that the passengers cannot be "dumped" in his state. "We cannot afford to have people who are not even Floridians dumped into South Florida using up those valuable resources," DeSantis said on Fox News. "We view this as a big, big problem, and we do not want to see people dumped in Southern Florida right now."