U.S. Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett
Three Historic Firsts For The 115th Justice
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Three Historic Firsts For The 115th Justice
The Senate Historical Office says this is the first time in 150 years no one from the minority party voted for the majority's choice. Speaking of firsts...One of the first cases that will be heard by the full (9-justice) U.S. Supreme Court is a constitutional challenge to the Affordable Care Act.
A vaccine (in limited supply) potentially by the end of the year & other headlines from the latest CDC media briefing.
The CDC provided an overview of COVID-19 in America:
CDC Deputy Dir. for Infectious Diseases Dr. Jay Butler says the following factors “translate” to higher risk:
“…as we get more data and understand the science of COVID, we are going to continue to incorporate that in our recommendations.”
“…(We are) concurrently manufacturing commercial scale production of all six of the vaccines that we have investments or contracts with.”
Health & Human Services Sec. Azar gave this potential timeline – once a safe, effective vaccine is approved:
"We get tired of wearing masks, but it continues to be as important as it’s ever been and I’d say it’s more important than ever as we move into the fall season.” Dr. Jay Butler. Alex Azar, Sec. of Health & Human Services, added the "3 W's": Wash your hands, watch your distance, and wear your face coverings.
What we know about the treatments President Trump has received for COVID-19.
“…uncertain clinical importance.”
“…there was no clear effect of dexamethasone among patients who were not receiving any respiratory support…”
“We’re just trying to imitate and help an individual, help their immune system win this battle, win this race against the virus.”
From preliminary information, the President received an antibody cocktail early in his infection, a steroid treatment, and was put on 5 doses of remdesivir. As of Monday night, Pres. Trump left Walter Reed and returned to the White House. We'll update as we get more information.
A fresh picture of the job market in America shows a better-than-expected unemployment rate but for the wrong reason.
What To Know
“The jobs number is positive, but it’s flashing warning signs. It’s decelerating fast, and that worries me. If jobs growth is slowing, it’s going to take us longer and longer to recover from this recession.”
“Women continue to bear the brunt of this recession.”
This is the final jobs report before election day. Economist Mark Zandi on September's job numbers: “It’s going to be a slog. The economy risks stalling out without any additional fiscal support.” Big topic to watch this week? If lawmakers come together for another round of economic stimulus.
8 months since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in America.
A quick review of highlights to know & points to consider on the global pandemic.
“Maybe there is more immunity out there.”
In 9 months, we went from never wearing a face mask to likely owning several. Two doctors write in the New England Journal of Medicine that masks may not necessarily stop infections, but lead to less severe/more asymptomatic cases, and THAT might be the benefit of masks for the general population. Read it now!
The White House negotiates historic peace deals between key Middle Eastern nations while the U.S. president puts one of the region’s major power brokers on notice for an alleged assassination plot.
“The UAE both betrayed the world of Islam, and [it] betrayed Arab nations and regional countries, and [it] also betrayed Palestine.”
“Any attack by Iran, in any form, against the United States will be met with an attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude!”
The pacts are called the "Abraham Accords" for Abraham, a key figure in 3 of the world's major religions: Judaism, Islam, & Christianity. One of the most obvious signs of change due to the deals: Plane flights between the nations, and the possibility for embassies in each other's nations. Who to watch for? Saudi Arabia.
One of the world’s largest vaccine trials aiming to combat COVID-19 halts after “an unexplained illness.”
What To Know
We don’t know exactly but one participant developed an “unexplained illness.”
AstraZeneca: “In large clinical trials, illnesses will happen by chance and must be independently reviewed.”
New York Times report: participant developed inflammation of the spinal cord, often brought on by viral infections.
We have no way of knowing *if* the participant is reacting to the vaccine or separately ill. While we wait for more info, this once again puts focus on safety/efficacy in the race to a vaccine. This vaccine was thought to be a front-runner. TBD as to what happens next.
August Unemployment: 8.4%
Out of double digits, but not out of the woods.
“We’re in a very deep hole, and we’re working our way out of it. We continue to see very good improvement in the labor market, but I think the improvement is going to be slower going forward.”
HISTORIC: Previous to the pandemic, America had never recorded more than 700,000 people filing for unemployment benefits in one week. The 4-week moving average hovers under 1M.
LAYOFFS: United Airlines, Bed Bath & Beyond, & MGM Resorts recently announced major layoffs, sparking concern this reflects a permanent, rather than temporary, adjustment.
The unemployment rate in January 2020 was 3.6% - the lowest in more than 50 years. The economy has shed more than 22M jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic - about half have been recovered. Story to watch? Lawmakers return to D.C. after Labor Day at odds over additional economic stimulus, incl. additional benefits for the unemployed.
How one investigation uncovers 39 missing children and what it teaches us about child trafficking in America.
“We will never stop looking for you. That’s [the] message. There is no more meaningful work that law enforcement does than rescuing children. Our children are not for sale and they are not ever forgotten.”
The U.S. Marshals arrest 361 people on average each day. Famous U.S. Marshals include Frederick Douglas, appointed in Washington D.C. in 1877 (first African-American U.S. Marshal) and Wyatt Earp, who along with his brothers participated in a famous western "showdown" at the O.K. Corral.
The CDC shared new data on COVID cases in childcare facilities in Rhode Island.
The Major Takeaways
Why It Matters
A sick 2-year-old attended childcare 3 days before COVID-19 symptoms emerged & 3 days immediately after the symptoms ended.
10 of the 11 child care contacts in the same class were tested for COVID-19.
No additional students tested positive for the virus.
“…what we’re asking the American public to do is to bring this virus to its knees…It’s in our grasp. But it is going to require all of us to embrace these mitigation steps. And we are going to need to do that for 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 weeks and then we will see this outbreak get under control.”
The study states the prevalence of cases in Rhode Island at the time was "low ... relative to other U.S. states." However, we don't know what "low" means in this case to understand how this example can apply elsewhere. We reached out to Rhode Island's Dept of Health and are awaiting a response.
As social media rumors swirl about her personal life,
Britney Spears officially asks a California court to restrict the role of her father in her affairs.
Why & What To Know
“We are now at a point where the conservatorship must be changed substantially in order to reflect the major changes in her current lifestyle and her stated wishes.”
There are many different types of conservatorships (aka guardianships) and specifics vary by state, but generally …
“All these conspiracy theorists don’t know anything. The world don’t have a clue… It’s up to the court of California to decide what’s best for my daughter. It’s no one else’s business.”
Britney Spears has sold over 100M records worldwide. Court filings reveal no public performances are imminent by the 38-year-old. Courts regularly review conservatorships to see if they are needed - but anyone, including Britney, can challenge them if they are able.
What’s the drama over the USPS and the 2020 Election?
United States Postal Service
Unofficial creed: “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”
“The Postal Service receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.” (USPS)
“Nice try, Postmaster General DeJoy, but the House will still be passing our bill to ensure the delivery of the mail through the election. We will deliver for America by voting on Saturday. #DontMessWithUSPS”
“…(Democrats) want to send in millions and millions of ballots…They’re being lost, they’re being discarded. They’re finding them in piles. It’s going to be a catastrophe. So — and this is beyond the Post Office.”
The head of one of the postal workers' unions calls the potential challenge of extra votes a "piece of cake" with proper planning. The fate of the bill remains TBD. A previous COVID-19 economic stimulus bill granted a $10B loan to the USPS. The USPS has repeatedly borrowed from the Treasury in recent years.