Bring on the Vaccines
Days after announcing that he would not impose any mask mandates or implement any more lockdowns as a result of the spreading COVID pandemic, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis reiterated that the state was ready to distribute vaccines on they are ready to be shipped.
“As our state prepares for vaccine distribution, I encourage all Floridians who have recovered from COVID-19 to consider donating convalescent plasma,” tweeted DeSantis. “Along with new therapeutics, this treatment offers life-saving benefits to those fighting the virus.”
Gov. DeSantis remarks come as media outlets and Florida Democrats were questioning his leadership, accusing him of hiding from the spiking infection rate, and not doing anything to deal with the virus.
Crickets can be heard his morning, as the same group of detractors aren’t saying much about what DeSantis is doing to combat the coronavirus.
Newsmax TV has had to reverse itself yesterday because it posted that Senator Marco Rubio had asked President Donald Trump to concede the 2020 presidential race.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Rubio told The Floridian that he supported the president’s efforts to root out voter fraud and to have is a day in court, adding that he has never suggested concession to the president. READ MORE
She’s out, but not down for the count.
Rep. Holly Raschein, who has been termed out of office in the Florida House of Representatives this year, has just landed a job over at AshBritt Environmental as its Director of Governmental Relations. Not a bad gig. More on this later today…
He adopted a reckless and fringe view of herd immunity & prohibited our local officials from acting to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities.
Our own governor has made us less safe.
Rep. Stephanie Murphy @RepStephMurphy-My family fled a communist dictatorship, so I’ve never taken America’s democracy for granted. The President’s claims of election fraud are discredited and dangerous, nothing more than a cynical attempt to subvert the will of the American people.
What do you think they’re going to do if they think he’s the outgoing president?
“Rubio did not ask President Trump to concede, supports legal challenges” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – Newsmax TV has issued a correction after it incorrectly posted on one of its shows a list of prominent congressional Republicans, that included Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who have asked President Donald Trump to concede the 2020 presidential election contest to former Vice President Joe Biden. Senator Rubio should not have been added to the list that aired on the ‘Diamond and Silk’ program last week, and Chris Salcedo, host of “The Chris Salcedo Show” on Newsmax TV, pointed out the error during a segment on his program “One of our shows inadvertently included Marco Rubio in a list of Republican politicians who have counseled President Trump to concede the election,” said Salcedo. “ That is an error. Marco Rubio remains a strong supporter of the president and is not called for him to concede.” Rubio has openly stated that he supports President Trump’s efforts to assure Americans that every legal vote is counted, and every illegal vote is thrown out. Over the past four years, Rubio and President Trump have complemented each other, as the two men have worked closely on key issues like expanding the child tax credit with Ivanka Trump. Rubio has worked and been credit for being instrumental in framing Trump’s message in Latin America.
OBAMA CRUSHES THE SQUAD >>> Obama: You Lose People Due To ‘Snappy’ Slogans Like ‘Defund The Police’ by The Floridian’s Mona Salama – Former President Barack Obama in an interview to air on Snapchat Wednesday said “snappy” slogans such as “defund the police” have become less effective of enacting meaningful police reform and have caused political candidates to “lost a big audience.” “If you believe, as I do, that we should be able to reform the criminal justice system so that it’s not biased and treats everybody fairly, I guess you can use a snappy slogan, like ‘Defund the Police,’ but, you know, you lost a big audience the minute you say it, which makes it a lot less likely that you’re actually going to get the changes you want done,” Obama told Peter Hamby on his Snapchat political show “Good Luck America,” according to partial transcribed interviewed on Vanity Fair. “The key is deciding, do you want to actually get something done, or do you want to feel good among the people you already agree with?” Obama added. Top Democrats have considered the derogatory phrase to be damaging, citing it as the top reason the Democratic Party have a slim House majority and lost heavily funded Senate races that were considered to be part of an apparent blue wave. The former president also touched on the reason he believes his successor, President Trump gained huge support among young Black men this election cycle, citing men in general are drawn to those of macho style appeal.
“AG Barr: DOJ Hasn’t Uncovered Evidence Of Widespread Voting Fraud” by The Floridian’s Mona Salama – Attorney General William Barr in an interview with AP Tuesday said the DOJ has not uncovered evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. “To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election,” Barr said. Barr in the interview said U.S. attorneys and FBI agents have been working to “follow up specific complaints and information” they have received, but so far none have uncovered any evidence that would overturn the results of the election. “There’s been one assertion that would be systemic fraud and that would be the claim that machines were programmed essentially to skew the election results. And the DHS and DOJ have looked into that, and so far, we haven’t seen anything to substantiate that,” Barr added, referring to Attorney Sidney Powell’s claims that Dominion Voting Systems were flipping Trump votes to Biden. The top prosecutor added that people have been confusing the use of the federal criminal justice system with allegations that should be made in civil lawsuits, stating that such a remedy for those complaints would be a top-down audit conducted by state or local officials, not the U.S. Justice Department. “There’s a growing tendency to use the criminal justice system as sort of a default fix-all, and people don’t like something they want the Department of Justice to come in and ‘investigate,’” Barr said, adding that there must be a basis to believe there is a crime to investigate.
“Rubio Praises Trump Admin. for Venezuelan Sanctions” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – Florida Republicans have praised the Trump administration regarding the pressure it has added, via sanctions, to communist regimes, specifically the criminal regime of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela. One of those Republicans is Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R), who once again praised the administration for its efforts to combat the communist regime in Venezuela. The United States’ relationship with communist regimes in Cuba and Venezuela has been an important talking point with Florida Republicans, and lawmakers like Senator Rubio have signaled that a potential Biden administration would be catastrophic in terms of trying to create a more Democratic society in those countries. In late November, the sunshine state lawmaker criticized a number of Biden’s cabinet picks that have been announced, commenting that “Biden’s cabinet picks went to Ivy League schools, have strong resumes, attend all the right conferences & will be polite & orderly caretakers of America’s decline.” On social media, Senator Rubio thanked President Trump “for continuing to bring pressure on the #MaduroRegime, this time by putting sanctions on a company that helps the regime in #Venezuela & is controlled by the Communist Party of #China.” Rubio has been a long-time critic of Venezuela, and he has also pointed out the human rights violations that China has committed. Moreover, the Florida Senator has been banned by China, which he humorously notes on his Twitter biography.
“Advocacy Group Continues Push to Make Recreational Marijuana Legal in Florida” by Bay News 9’s Troy Kinsey – Stymied in their efforts to put a recreational marijuana legalization amendment on Florida’s 2020 ballot, advocates are now redoubling their efforts with an eye to the 2022 election. The group behind the amendment, Make It Legal Florida, failed to collect the 766,000 registered voter signatures required to make this year’s ballot. Verified signatures are valid for two years from the date they were collected, however, meaning organizers only need to gather slightly more than 200,000 additional signatures in order to qualify for the 2022 ballot. The deadline isn’t for another 14 months. The measure would allow Floridians over 21 years old to “possess, use, purchase, display, and transport up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and marijuana accessories for personal use for any reason,” significantly expanding the universe of legal cannabis users in Florida. In 2016, voters approved legalizing medical marijuana. Four years on, more than 400,000 patients with qualifying conditions have registered as medical marijuana patients. Well over a million ounces of medical cannabis has been purchased by Florida patients since the start of this year. That experience, advocates argue, is moving public opinion decisively toward recreational marijuana legalization. “People understand that this is a sophisticated business,” said Taylor Biehl, the policy director of the Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida. “It’s a medical business, and people who don’t have underlying qualifying conditions and are seeking relief for other common, more common ailments are finding extreme benefits. It’s really a miracle drug.”
“Florida officers who opened fire at suspect in Dollar General cleared of wrongdoing” by Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran – Two Florida officers who fired 42 rounds at a suspect accused of robbing a Dollar General, fatally shooting him in the head, were cleared of wrongdoing by the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office on Tuesday. Store employees called police on the morning of Oct. 20 to report a Black male wearing an orange shirt and carrying a revolver and attempting an armed robbery. When officers arrived, 26-year-old Dominique Mulkey was holding a black garbage bag full of items. “For at least 11 seconds, the officers repeatedly shouted commands, including ‘Tampa Police—get on the ground!’ and ‘Get on the ground—show me your hands!’ Mulkey ignored these commands and continued to walk down 50th Street, away from the officers,” State Attorney Andrew Warren’s office said in a press release. Mulkey then dropped the bag and pulled a handgun from his waist, according to body camera footage taken from the officers at the scene. “Officers shouted more commands, yelling ‘Drop the gun!’ several times. Instead of dropping the gun, Mulkey—who had been walking away—turned around completely to face the officers and raised his left hand from his waist up to chest height, pointing the gun in the direction of the officers,” the statement said. “Florida law is clear that anyone — police officer or civilian — can legally use deadly force when put in fear of imminent death or great bodily harm.”
“Florida Sen. Rick Scott promises uphill battle for Biden’s Cabinet picks” by KSN’s Kellie Meyer – President-elect Joe Biden’s picks to fill his economic team are making waves on Capitol Hill, with one Florida Republican already saying he’s likely a no vote on the Cabinet appointments. Biden introduced his economic team nominees on Tuesday, calling them a “first-rate team” that will get the country “through this ongoing economic crisis.” His picks include Janet Yellen for treasury secretary and Neera Tanden for director of the Office of Management and Budget. “I can’t imagine supporting them,” Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) said. “He’s picking people that, you know, are big-spending liberals.” The road to confirming Biden’s nominees runs right through the Senate. Scott promises an uphill battle for them come January. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) says those hearings should happen immediately after the Senate returns in January so “key Cabinet officials” can be confirmed on Jan. 20. The Democratic leader says that’s how it worked for both President Barack Obama and President Donald Trump. “That’s what the Senate should do for President-elect Biden as well,” he said. How much resistance Biden and his nominees encounter depends on two runoff elections in Georgia. Those races will determine whether Republicans or Democrats get control of the Senate.
“South Florida Veterans Facility for Those With PTSD in Limbo” by NBC Miami’s Willard Shepard – The City of Margate said it’s because of a zoning problem, but Miryam Jimenez said the real trouble is with residents who don’t like the idea. “I spent years in addiction and in the end I wanted to die and it was tough. I felt like nobody wanted me,” said Randy Clark. Clark said that he did a tour in the first Gulf War as a Marine helicopter mechanic, but when he left the Marines his life fell apart. “One person took a shot at me. Miryam wants to take a shot that everybody has forgotten,” Clark said. Jimenez wants to open a 34-bed facility in Margate. She said she has invested $3.5 million in renovations to the building. “A veteran’s care facility to treat veterans and first responders. We will provide treatment for PTSD and any other related issues with the PTSD,” she said. The building is in an area with homes and apartments nearby. Jimenez thinks she’s met the zoning requirements, but last month she said she was rejected for the 3rd time. “This city is extraordinarily supportive of our veterans. We are extremely supportive of a facility that wants to help with PTSD and our veterans,” Margate Mayor Arlene Schwartz said. Schwartz also touted a list of programs Margate has to aid those who have served America, and at Margate City Hall there’s a parking spot up front that’s solely for them. However, the mayor said Jimenez’s plan doesn’t follow the city’s zoning codes. “She built the facility in a residential area that was originally supposed to be an ALF, a senior facility. Since then its changed multiple times. The zoning does not allow for the facility she wants to run,” Schwartz said. Jimenez said the facility is completely surrounded by gates and is fenced in and no one can just come and go. She said the treatment programs run 30 to 120 days.
“Florida awarded $28 million grant for COVID-19 disaster relief employment” by Click Orlando’s Adrienne Cutway – Florida has been awarded a $28 million federal grant to help those negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic find work, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Tuesday in a news release. The money from the U.S. Department of Labor Disaster Recovery Dislocated Worker Grant will be administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to provide temporary jobs, employment and training services and supportive services. Floridians who have been dislocated, laid off or have lost work due to the ongoing pandemic as well as those have been unemployed long-term will be eligible for assistance. Disaster-relief employment includes providing food, medicine and other supplies to those in need; setting up quarantine areas and helping quarantined individuals; working at food distribution centers; and cleaning and sanitizing schools and quarantine areas. “As our state and local communities continue to recover from the pandemic, I am proud to announce $28 million in additional funding for disaster-relief employment,” DeSantis said in a news release. “I look forward to putting these dollars to use right away to give Floridians in need an opportunity to work.” The DEO already received $12 million for the Disaster Recovery Dislocated Worker Grant earlier this year. “The Disaster Recovery Dislocated Worker Grant will help Floridians who have lost jobs by providing employment and training services. With our partners at DEO, the CareerSource Florida network is here to help our neighbors as they rebound and, ultimately, reimagine and rebuild Florida’s economy,” CareerSource Florida President and CEO Michelle Dennard said.
“Florida Faces Lawsuit Over Medicaid Records” by CBS Miami – Two advocacy groups on Tuesday filed a lawsuit in Leon County circuit court asking that a judge require the state to make available records that show how final decisions are made in Florida’s multibillion-dollar Medicaid program. Filed by the Florida Health Justice Project and the National Health Law Program on behalf of plaintiff Nancy Wright, a Gainesville attorney, the lawsuit also asks the court to declare that the Agency for Health Care Administration is precluded from charging special fees associated with redacting information from final orders issued by the agency’s Office of Fair Hearings. Florida Health Justice Project attorney Katy DeBriere said details in the Office of Fair Hearings final orders can provide the public with insights into standards that hearing officers consider when settling disputes between Medicaid beneficiaries and managed-care plans and health providers. Having access to the final orders not only helps attorneys prepare clients for Medicaid appeals, but it makes transparent decisions the state has rendered and helps ensure that rules and laws are being uniformly applied, DeBriere told The News Service of Florida on Tuesday. “To make those fair hearings decisions publicly available is important for the most basic sense of equity,” she said, adding that accessing the orders allows people to “get down to the nitty gritty of due process.”
“Justice Department investigating ‘bribery conspiracy scheme’ involving presidential pardon, documents show” by Fox News’ Thomas Barrabi – The U.S. Justice Department has an active criminal investigation into an alleged “secret lobbying scheme” in which individuals purportedly offered money in the form of political contributions to figures tied to the White House in exchange for a presidential pardon, according to unsealed court documents released Tuesday. The investigation was made public for the first time through the release of heavily redacted documents in U.S. District Court in Washington. The individuals under investigation in connection to the alleged scheme, as well as the time frame in which the scheme purportedly took place, are not currently known. The documents revealed an investigation of a scheme in which two unnamed individuals “acted as lobbyists to senior White House officials, without complying with the registration requirement of the Lobbying Disclosure Act” in order to secure “a pardon or reprieve of sentence.” The filing also referenced a “related bribery conspiracy scheme” in which one of the people under investigation “would offer a substantial political contribution in exchange for a presidential pardon or reprieve of sentence” for an unnamed individual. The documents go on to describe their actions as a “bribery for pardon scheme.” “No government official was or is currently a subject or target of the investigation disclosed in this filing,” a DOJ official with knowledge of the matter told Fox News. “No government official was or is currently a subject or target of the investigation disclosed in this filing,” a DOJ official with knowledge of the matter told Fox News.
“Brad Parscale accuses ‘D-level’ ‘talking heads’ around Trump for forcing him out of 2020 campaign” by Fox News’ Charles Creitz – Former Trump 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale has accused “D-level” “talking heads” in the president’s orbit of starting a whisper campaign that forced him out earlier this year. Speaking with Fox News’ Martha MacCallum in an exclusive interview on “The Story” Tuesday night, Parscale alleged that “when the polling numbers were going down, they were in his ear and I was out working.” Discussing a reported incident in which Trump berated Parscale for passing along a bad polling report, the former campaign manager said: “I didn’t like lying to him — I like telling the truth. Sometimes that comes with a lot of painful days, knowing that I might let him down or make him upset, but a lot of the D-level people that hung around him told him what he wanted to hear: They were ‘yes’ men. I wasn’t going to be ‘yes’ man, but a ‘get it done’ man.” Parscale did not name anyone as being specifically responsible for his ouster in mid-July, when he was replaced by Bill Stepien. Parscale did praise Trump son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, describing him as “the real campaign manager” when Trump won the White House in 2016. “In ’16, you know, people don’t like to admit it, but, you know, I was a semi-, quasi-campaign manager,” Parscale claimed. “I never got to say that publicly before because I couldn’t. Jared was the real campaign manager. I was the one doing the day-to-day.”
“Whistleblowers claiming USPS threw out, backdated ballots before election” by Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran – A conservative law firm says that several whistleblowers from the United States Postal Service have come forward, alleging that thousands of ballots in some states were backdated, tampered with, or tossed out ahead of the 2020 election, to the disservice of President Trump, despite the Justice Department announcing Tuesday it has found no proof of widespread voter fraud. The Amistad Project of the Thomas More Society, which has forged ahead with an independent investigation of alleged voter fraud in several key battleground states that Trump lost, has claimed that the FBI asked them to turn over their findings to their Los Angeles Field Office. The FBI told Fox News that it’s their “standard practice to neither confirm nor deny the existence of investigations. As such, we will decline further comment.” On Tuesday, the Amistad Project said that multiple “whistleblowers” lobbed serious accusations of “multi-state illegal efforts by USPS workers to influence the election in at least three of six swing states.” “Details include potentially hundreds of thousands of completed absentee ballots being transported across three state lines, and a trailer filled with ballots disappearing in Pennsylvania,” the group said.
“Meadows to meet with FDA chief as Trump asks about status of vaccine emergency approval” by CNN’s Kaitlan Collins – White House chief of staff Mark Meadows is scheduled to meet with Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn in the West Wing Tuesday, as President Donald Trump has privately demanded to know why the agency hasn’t granted emergency use for Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine yet, according to two sources. Meadows summed Hahn for a progress update over the weekend. Hahn requested their meeting happen over the phone, one source said, but was told by the White House that the chief of staff preferred to meet in person. That appears to have led to concern within the FDA that the meeting could become tense, leading Hahn to issue a statement to Axios Monday night defending the FDA’s timeline. “Let me be clear — our career scientists have to make the decision and they will take the time that’s needed to make the right call on this important decision,” Hahn said in the statement. A person familiar with the meeting tells CNN that Hahn is prepared to explain to the President’s team that the decision about granting the emergency use authorization is not up to him. The review is conducted by career scientists and not a decision he makes on his own. Pfizer applied for the emergency use authorization November 20. Emergency use authorization from the FDA is not the same as full approval but allows products to be used under particular circumstances before all the evidence is available for approval, according to previous CNN reporting. The FDA has previously said it has scheduled a meeting of its outside advisory panel to discuss Pfizer and BioNTech’s application for emergency use authorization for a coronavirus vaccine for December 10.
“Republican Mark Walker jump-starts 2022 Senate battle in announcing North Carolina bid” by CNN’s Alex Rogers – North Carolina Republican Rep. Mark Walker announced his 2022 Senate bid on Tuesday, jump-starting a long primary for a rare open seat that will be crucial to the future control of the chamber. In a video, Walker pitched himself as both “a conservative warrior and a bridge builder,” who has taken on “the radicals as well as the establishment.” He says, “Washington has lost its mind,” ticking off his opposition to “job-killing regulations,” the Green New Deal, the so-called defund the police movement and the Senate Democratic leader.
“I’m running for the United States Senate because serving others is my life, and I have the experience to fight and to win in Washington,” says Walker, who announced last year that he would not seek reelection for his US House seat. “In North Carolina, Chuck Schumer doesn’t get to pick the next senator, the people do.” The North Carolina Republican Senate primary for the seat left open by the coming retirement of GOP Sen. Richard Burr is expected to be crowded. The Republican primary for an open lieutenant governor spot this year attracted nine candidates. Lara Trump, a North Carolina native and the President’s daughter in law, is reportedly considering a Senate campaign. “It would be an incredible thing,” she said last week on Fox News. “I think we need some strong Republicans in Washington, DC.” “We had a great run with the Senate and the House this go-round, but you know, let’s see what happens,” she added.
“Biden unlikely to tap Democrats from Congress for administration posts” by CNN’s MJ Lee and Jeff Zeleny – As President-elect Joe Biden prepares to announce more key nominations and appointments to his administration, the door is closing on the prospect of tapping Democrats from one of his most cherished places in Washington: the halls of Congress. Inside his transition team, there is a real recognition of how difficult it would be to choose a Senate Democrat for any role, given how closely divided the upper chamber will be next year. And the narrowing Democratic majority in the House has made it far less likely that he would be able to easily turn to any House members for posts in the administration. Multiple sources familiar with the transition say that regardless of what happens in the two Senate runoff races in Georgia next month — where even in the best case for Democrats, the Senate would be split evenly with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris serving as the tie-breaking vote — the bar would be extremely high for Biden to appoint a Senate Democrat to an administration role and take them out of Congress. What Biden has indicated to allies is that “it would be really, really hard to take someone out of the Senate because the margin is so slim, no matter what happens in Georgia,” one source said. He echoed that sentiment in his interview with NBC News last month. It certainly doesn’t mean there is no chance that Biden would turn to a Democratic lawmaker in Congress — but it would need to be for the right person and for the right job, and if the person hails from a state where their Senate replacement would be appointed by a governor who guaranteed naming another Democrat. And in the House, even in a safe Democratic district, a vacancy could complicate close votes before a special election could be held. Louisiana Rep. Cedric Richmond is already resigning his safe Democratic seat to join Biden’s White House as senior adviser to the President and director of the White House Office of Public Engagement.
“Barr Says No Evidence of Widespread Voter Fraud in Election” by WSJ’s Sadie Gurman and Jacob Gershman – The Justice Department hasn’t found evidence of widespread voter fraud that could reverse President-elect Joe Biden’s election victory, Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday, dealing a blow to President Trump as he launched fresh legal claims to contest the results. Mr. Barr told the Associated Press that federal prosecutors and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents have probed complaints of voter fraud, including allegations around voting machines skewing the results. “To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election,” Mr. Barr told the AP. With his comments, Mr. Barr, a strong ally of the president, directly contradicted Mr. Trump, who has said the election was stolen from him and refused to concede the race to Mr. Biden. Before the election, Mr. Barr had echoed the president’s frequent criticism of mail-in voting, arguing it was ripe for fraud. Mr. Trump’s legal advisers, including his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, have aired conspiracy theories to explain Mr. Biden’s win, saying that voting machines were tampered with and that collusion among judges, election officials and elected leaders in large cities swung the race. Mr. Trump’s legal advisers rejected Mr. Barr’s conclusion. “With all due respect to the Attorney General, there hasn’t been any semblance of a Department of Justice investigation,” Mr. Giuliani said in a joint statement with another Trump legal adviser, Jenna Ellis. They said the Justice Department hadn’t, to their knowledge, examined the evidence they said they uncovered, including sworn witness testimony.
“Trump Threatens to Veto Defense Bill if Tech Liability Shield Stands” by WSJ’s Andrew Restuccia and Lindsay Wise – President Trump threatened to veto an annual defense-policy bill if it doesn’t include language overturning a provision that gives social-media companies broad immunity for the content they publish from users on their sites. Mr. Trump demanded on Tuesday night that Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act be repealed. “[I]f the very dangerous & unfair Section 230 is not completely terminated as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), I will be forced to unequivocally VETO the Bill when sent to the very beautiful Resolute desk,” he wrote on Twitter. The president had previously threatened to veto the same defense bill, which includes a 3% pay raise for U.S. troops, over his opposition to language that would rename military bases honoring Confederate commanders. The legislation would authorize a total of $740 billion in fiscal year 2021 for the Defense Department’s and Energy Department’s national-security programs. The Senate version passed 86-14, and the House version passed 295-125, more than the two-thirds supermajority needed to override a potential veto. Negotiators are currently working to hammer out a compromise bill that would then need to be passed by each chamber. Congress has passed annual defense policy bills every year for 59 years in a row, with bipartisan support. Presidents from both parties have always signed them, even after issuing veto threats. A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) declined to comment. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
“SBA Releases Detailed Information on More Small Business Borrowers Under Pandemic Relief Effort” by WSJ’s Amara Omeokwe – The Small Business Administration on Tuesday released detailed loan information for millions of borrowers under the Paycheck Protection Program, amid signs of fraud in the federal government’s signature coronavirus relief effort for small businesses. The disclosure provides the names, addresses and precise loan amounts for each PPP borrower. The SBA had previously issued some detailed information for PPP loans above $150,000, although the bulk of the program’s loans were smaller than that. U.S. District Judge James Boasberg ordered the release of more information on PPP borrowers, in response to a lawsuit filed by news organizations under the Freedom of Information Act. Plaintiffs included Dow Jones & Co., publisher of The Wall Street Journal. The SBA’s inspector general said in October that there were “strong indicators of widespread potential abuse and fraud in the PPP.” The watchdog counted tens of thousands of companies that received PPP loans for which they appear to have been ineligible, such as corporations created after the pandemic began. The Paycheck Protection Program was a centerpiece of the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill known as the Cares Act, which was approved by Congress in March. Launched the following month, PPP offered forgivable loans to small businesses and nonprofits, independent contractors and self-employed workers and had distributed $525 billion when it closed in August. Several congressional proposals have called for reopening the program to offer further assistance to ailing businesses amid signs that the economic recovery is cooling as winter approaches. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in Senate testimony Tuesday, also called for additional aid for small businesses.
Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump–A judge in Nevada has ordered Clark County officials to allow an inspection of the elections equipment and sealed containers used in the 2020 election by 1:00 P.M. tomorrow. @RichardGrenell
Joe Biden -Zzzzzz