Beltway Insider: Biden’s Budget, GOP Fights, COVID Totals/Pets, Cuomo, Navalny, David Newhouse, Vernon Jordan

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President Joe Biden's 1.9T Budget, America's Rescue Plan, passed the Senate yesterday after Republicans attempted to hijack the proceedings calling for a verbal, page by page, reading of the 628-page document forcing a 27-hour senate session.

 

The President's job approval rating, according to the website fivethirtyeight.com, for the period ending March 7, 2021, decreased by 0.8% to 53.6% of those polled who approve of his effectiveness as President and those who disapprove of his effectiveness increased by 0.6% percentage points to 38.6%. A slight 3% of the population polled have no opinion. Ratings are calculated weekly.


Beltway Insider: Biden’s Budget, Trump CPAC, COVID, Vaccine, Cuomo, Saudi, Yemen, MARS, Tiger Woods


Biden's Budget Passes Senate

President Biden's nearly $2Trillion dollar package had been challenged repeatedly since it's unveiling, with Senate Republicans initially pitching a $618billion proposal, in late February. Keeping with a united front the republican minority moved to delay the initial vote, which with a democrat majority would have passed with little to no opposition.

"This nation has suffered too much for much too long.  And everything in this package is designed to relieve the suffering and to meet the most urgent needs of the nation and put us in a better position to prevail, starting with beating this virus and vaccinating the country.  The resources in this plan will be used to expand and speed up manufacturing and distribution of vaccines so we can get every single American vaccinated sooner than later," President Biden said in a released statement.

Essentially an effort at a filibuster, Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) demanded the senate clerk read the 628page document in an attempt at political wrangling.

"The maneuver by Mr. Johnson, Republican of Wisconsin, was unlikely to change any minds about the sweeping pandemic aid plan, which would deliver hundreds of billions of dollars for vaccine distribution, schools, jobless aid, direct payments to Americans and small business relief, and has broad bipartisan support among voters. Republicans signaled that they would be unified against it, and Democrats were ready to push it through on their own, using a special fast-track process to blow past the opposition," reported The New York Times.

Budget Breakdown

Initially the budget contained a increase in the federal minimum wage, from it's current $7.25 to $15.00, unable to secure the votes to pass the budget in total the House Democrats dropped this amendment from the bill.

Senator Bernie Sanders, (D-VT), moved the present the same as the senate prepared to vote. His effort failed, a sacrifice for the greater good to secure passage of the bill.

"The bill that will deliver another round of $1,400 stimulus checks, extend $300-per-week unemployment benefits and offer more food, child care and rental assistance to struggling Americans," Foxnews.com reported.

With Republicans and Democrats wrangling over the unemployment benefits, the final amendment extends the benefit period through September instead of the August cut off date in the original bill and lowers the weekly unemployment boost from $400 to $300 per week.

The agreement includes tax forgiveness on up to $10,200 in unemployment benefits for households earning under $150,000.

The modification on the budget at the senate level force the bill back to the house for a revote on the modified changes after which it will be sent to the President's desk where he will sign the bill into law.

Biden said in a released statement, "Over 85 percent of American households will get direct payments of $1,400 per person.  For a typical middle-class family of four — husband and wife working, making $100,000 a year total, with three kids — they'll get $5,600 — I mean, with two kids — will get $5,600, and it'll be on the way soon."


 

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House Caves at Hint of Domestic Terror

After the January 6 Capitol Siege, the Capitol Police and federal law enforcement agencies were quick to inform the House of Representative of the potential of a possible domestic terror incident to coincide with the March 4 representative date of the real inauguration date.

"The FBI and Department of Homeland Security put out a separate bulletin about an "unidentified group of [militia violent extremists]" who "discussed plans to take control of the US Capitol and remove Democratic lawmakers" on Thursday, according to Politico and the NBC News," Forbes.com reported.

Continued deconstruction of the active members in the January 6 Capitol Siege has given way to the revelation of inside assistance.

Federico Guillermo Klein "A political appointee of President Donald Trump has been arrested on charges that he stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and assaulted an officer with a weapon, marking the first arrest of a Trump administration official in connection with the insurrection," The Washington Post reported.

Caving to terrorism, domestic or foreign, is not a policy American government should adopt. The threat of an insurgence, with all that has been exposed since January 6, should be handled militarily. Proving to any terror cell that they are feared will only fan the flames of insurrection.

Unfortunately, the Capitol police were not persuaded that the January 6 domestic terror groups were in fact a real threat or they would have acted accordingly and stopped the first wave through any means necessary including lethal.

GOP Governors Bulk at Mask Mandate

Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbot announced this week his state would be rolling back all federal mandates which directly address the spread of the Coronavirus including no longer requiring Texans to wear masks and has ended all capacity requirements.

Following on the Governor's announcements, Republican Governors Tate Reeves of Mississippi and Governor Kay Ivey of Alabama also ended any mandates. This action led to Louisiana state representatives to send a bill to Republican Governor Jon Bel Edwards, demanding the state reopen at full capacity.

Along with Florida, under the leadership of Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, who announced during his state of the union address that his state, "with the nations most vulnerable population" has managed the coronavirus outbreak without adhering to the CDC capacity restrictions.

However, The Sunshine States Governor did extend a state of emergency for the entire state of Florida because of COviD-19 in an executive order dated March 9, 2020.

Even as governors have rolled back all COVID state mandates, major retailors operating in these states still require all patrons to adhere to the federally mandated mask requirements.

Coronavirus Totals

The infection rates of the coronavirus have continued to decline around the world. The weekly account confirms that a while infection rates have slowed early accounts of deaths may have resulted in additional coronavirus deaths which were never attributed.

A new strain, a mutation, has created global concern for leaders around the world are determining the best direction for the protection of the population. The importance of maintaining personal protective practices is imperative to controlling the spread.

For the week ending March 7, 2021, coronavirus cases globally increased by 2,723,100 confirmed cases, bringing the total of confirmed cases worldwide to 116,500,500 people with a total worldwide death toll of 2,586,700 deaths, an increase of 61,900 over the past week.

COVID US Totals

Infections rates in the United States are also on the rise. For the week ending March 7, 2021, the total confirmed cases rose to 28,993,800 people with new confirmed cases increasing by 421,800 this week alone with an average of 60,257 cases daily. The coronavirus has claimed 523,900 total deaths, a weekly increase of 12, 100 deaths. (Data from The New York Times).

Coronavirus Control and Pets

Recent testing has show that even animals are susceptible to the coronavirus. While heralding the news from President Biden, over the possibility of achieving herd immunity by the end of summer, the potential for exposure may be as close as the beloved pet which has aided so many through these dark days.

"Sixty-seven percent of U.S. households, or about 85 million families, own a pet, according to the 2019-2020 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA). This is up from 56 percent of U.S. households in 1988, the first year the survey was conducted," reported the Insurance Information Institute.

Sneezing, which is a common method that spreads the deadly virus, also occurs in the nations 183.9million dogs and cats. The possibility of reinfection or variant strains affecting the population, the possibility is also very real that pets can be the cause of family unit super spreading events.

The Biden Administration nor the Center for Disease Control has issued any guidelines regarding coronavirus and the possibility of pet vaccination.


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NY Governor Attempts to Apologize to Accusers 

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo attempted to get in front of his burgeoning sexual harassment scandal this week with a tearful apology explaining he was "the better" for these allegations and his greetings were "customary."

"Andrew Cuomo knew exactly what he was doing. But he was crafty about it. He was operating in a world of plausible deniability and limited liability. He was saying things that were uncomfortable, but not criminal," reported The Washington Post.

Andrew Cuomo is not the first high profile New York politician to sexually harass employees.

New York Supreme Court Chief Justice Sol Wachtler's career which many had expect to run for Governor ended abruptly, after "he was charged with, and then convicted of, acts stemming from threats he made against a former lover, Joy Silverman, and her daughter," reported Wikipedia.org.

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, who won his governor's election by 67% of the vote, was toppled by a sex scandal that began while he was the state Attorney General. Federal authorities found during an investigation into money laundering the former governor had moved more than $80,000. Wikipedia reported, "on March 10, 2008, The New York Times reported that Spitzer had patronized a high-priced escort service." 

In 2018, former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman was exposed for his sexual predilections, drug and alcohol abuse.

At the time New York Governor Andrew Cuomo addressed the Schneiderman allegations saying, "The New Yorker has published an article on Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, which reports multiple women making serious allegations of assault. No one is above the law including New York's top legal officer. I will be asking an appropriate New York District Attorney to commence an immediate investigation. And proceed as the facts merit. My personal opinion is that, given the damning pattern of facts and corroboration laid out in the article, I do not believe it is possible for Eric Schneiderman to continue to serve as Attorney General, and for the good of the office he should resign."

Sanctions on Russia Over Navalny Poisoning

The Biden Administration has responded to the imprisonment of Putin critic and opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who returned to Russia, in January after spending five months in Germany recovering from an attempted assassination.

"The sanctions were expected to be the first of several steps by the Biden administration to confront President Vladimir Putin for alleged attacks on Russian opposition figures and hacking abroad, including of U.S. government agencies and U.S. businesses. The announcement comes as the European Union also imposed sanctions against a small number of Russian officials and is expected to announce more," FoxNews.com reported.

Navalny was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok, which was also used in the Salisbury, England poisoning of a former double agent, Sergi Skripal. Novichok, developed by the Russian for use during the World War II, is extremely deadly and in virtually undetectable.

Novichok is a highly toxic nerve agent that slows the heart, paralyses the muscles used for breathing and, if the dose is big enough, can lead to death by asphyxiation. A smaller dose may result in seizures, neuromuscular weakness, liver failure and other damage.

Upon Navalny's return to Mosco he was rearrested, which resulted in widespread protests throughout Russia.

"He has been transferred to a penal colony in the Vladimir region, the Moscow Public Monitoring Commission that defends the rights of prisoners and has access to people in custody, said on its website," Reuters.com reported.


World News: Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Provokes Russia’s Future


Michael Newhouse, Vernon Jordan

Vernon Jordan, the longtime civil rights leader, who became a close friend and adviser to both Bill and Hillary Clinton died this week. He was 85.

Jordon, a longtime Washington fixture and lawyer, worked with the NAACP, and civil rights issues from the 1960s forward. He was a strong supporter of democratic agenda championing a class of rights that protect individual's freedoms from infringement by government.

The Clintons, in a statement, highlighted that "Jordan brought his big brain and strong heart to everything and everybody he touched.  And he made them better.  He was never too busy to give good advice and encouragement to young people.  And he never gave up on his friends or his country," Foxnews.com reported.

David Newhouse, of the Conde Nast Publishing Family, Dies

David Newhouse, the former publisher of the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Patriot-News, who broke the Penn State Sexual Abuse story, died this week due to complication from Leukemia. He was 65.

Newhouse, of the Newhouse Publishing family, helmed a small daily outside of the glitz of the other family holdings. Location did not stop him from recognizing the larger ramifications when a staff writer explained Penn State Assistant Football coach Jerry Sandusky was under investigation.

The Sandusky story capitulated Newhouse and his team into the national spotlight and eventually landed the newspaper a Pulitzer Prize.

"That first article and nine others were cited by the Pulitzer board in 2012 for "courageously revealing and adeptly covering the explosive Penn State sex scandal," The New York Times reported.

 

For more information on President Joe Biden www.whitehouse.gov.

Sources: Various © Articles covered by Copyright protection

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