In addition to negotiating the release of Covid-19 and the terms of former President Donald Trump’s impeachment proceedings (more on those talks in a minute), Biden’s team is moving toward new confirmation hearings for his cabinet – and a policy shift through executive action.
Biden will give a speech Tuesday and sign an executive order that will put him at the forefront of modernizing our immigration system, Psaki said. A draft document that CNN’s Betsy Klein saw earlier described management’s actions:
- Regional migration and border management
- U.S. refugee policy.
- Creation of a working group on family reunification
- Immediate revision of the rule on public offices
A confirmation hearing for Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack before the Senate Agriculture Committee is also scheduled for Tuesday.
Wednesday 3. February
Biden’s nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Michael Regan, will hold his own confirmation hearing before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
Thursday, 4 February
Biden’s candidate for Secretary of Labor, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, has his confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
Friday 5. February
Psaki said Biden will give a speech on the economy.
Ten Republican senators have announced that they will offer nearly $600 billion in aid under Covid-19, as a counterproposal to Biden’s $1.9 trillion plan.
- The senators said their framework includes $160 billion for vaccine development and distribution, testing and monitoring, and treatment and care, including the manufacture and use of personal protective equipment.
- It would also include a new round of direct payments to the neediest families, extend federal unemployment benefits at current levels and provide $4 billion to the federal government.
The Republican proposal is the most sensible response to the package proposed by the White House, although the Republicans’ proposal, which is more than $1 trillion less than the Democrats’ plan, is likely to face opposition from Democrats in Congress.
Biden is open to negotiating the aid package, a senior administration official said. The White House is willing to consider reducing subsidy programs for families with incomes over $150,000 a year, the official said. Read the article by Pamela Brown and Caroline Kenney of CNN.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer told the New York Daily News on Sunday that the Republican proposal was not enough and said Republicans should negotiate with us, not make a take-it-or-leave-it offer.
But Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont said he thinks there are enough Democratic votes to move Biden’s aid package through a process known as reconciliation.
We’re all going to have disagreements, it’s about $1.9 trillion, I have disagreements and concerns about this bill, but at the end of the day we’re going to support the president of the United States, the new chairman of the Senate Budget Committee said in an interview with ABC News.
Political reality: Any bipartisan plan is likely to lose votes from Democrats, meaning that any progressive senator who opposes the proposal will need another Republican to support it. Still, this idea of juxtaposing the two plans is one that assistants and members discussed for days to force the conversation to resume in a bipartisan setting.
Legal drama for the Trump
Five of Trump’s lawyers left just over a week before the trial began, according to people familiar with the case, because of a disagreement over his legal strategy.
CNN’s Gloria Borger, Caitlan Collins, Jeff Zeleny and Ashley Semler were the first to report: Butch Bowers and Deborah Barbier, who were to be the two lead attorneys, are no longer part of the team. A source familiar with the change stated that it was a mutual decision by both parties to leave the legal team. As lead attorney, Bowers assembled a team.
- Josh Howard, a North Carolina attorney who was recently added to the team, has also left, according to another source familiar with the change.
- Johnny Gasser and Greg Harris of South Carolina are also out of the game.
Last Sunday, Trump’s office announced the appointment of David Shawn and Bruce L. Castor Jr. to lead the legal team. Read the latest news here.
But as CNN’s Maeve Reston notes, although Trump is trying to rebuild the defense team, he still enjoys the unwavering loyalty of the GOP: After their defeat in the weeks following the siege of Capitol Hill on the 6th. After briefly flirting with intelligence and reason on January 1, the Republican Party has chosen to honor its deep and often blind loyalty to Trump by choosing to overlook his role in fomenting a deadly insurgency rather than pay the price of thwarting him and his base in next year’s election.
The death of American Covid-19 is as gruesome as ever. The rapid spread of this option could further increase our membership. And skepticism about vaccines remains a looming problem.
But for the first time in a long time, there was also real reason for hope.
Hospitals don’t work. According to the COVID tracking project, the number of hospitalizations in the United States fell below 100,000 for the first time in nearly two months.
Vaccination coverage is increasing significantly. According to the CDC, more than 31 million doses of vaccine have been administered across the country. That’s more than the roughly 1.5 million doses administered since Saturday.
And more help may be on the way soon. Johnson & Johnson is expected to file for an emergency waiver with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this week. According to the company, the vaccine is 72% effective against moderate to severe disease in the United States in a single dose.
If you’re traveling, we’d love to see more masks. An executive order from the CDC mandating the wearing of masks on public transportation in the United States goes into effect tomorrow night.
According to the agency, public transport operators should make every effort to enforce the mandate, including boarding only those wearing masks and removing passengers who refuse to comply.
Summary: The death rate would be lower if Americans just wore masks and stayed home more often. The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation predicts that by 1. If most people follow the guidelines on social exclusion and masking, perhaps 30,000 fewer people will die.
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