Biden says of candidate Fetterman: 'John IS Pennsylvania'
An energized President Joe Biden returned Friday to the Keystone State, his 15th visit since he took office, this time to attend a fundraiser with Vice President Kamala Harris and other leaders to boost Democratic Senate nominee John Fetterman.
Lawmakers: Require nursing homes to disclose vaccine data
Nursing homes have to publicly disclose their vaccination rates for flu and pneumonia, but theres no similar mandate for COVID-19 shots. Nursing homes have been required since last May to regularly report cases and deaths among residents and staff to the government. Nursing homes are again allowing loved ones to visit, and hugs are included. The main nursing home industry trade group, the American Health Care Association, says it supports disclosure of vaccination data. Wyden and Crapo said current government policy that encourages nursing homes to voluntarily report vaccination data to the government has only led to “limited participation by the industry.”The government should require nursing homes to break down vaccination data by race and ethnicity, given disparities in vaccine acceptance.
Catholic parishes in Forest Park, River Forest to consolidate this summer
Last week, Bishop Robert Casey, the archdiocese’s vicar general, said the pandemic has fueled an urgency to expedite the reorganization phase of the archdiocese’s Renew My Church initiative launched in 2015, which is now expected to wrap up in 2022, a year earlier than had been anticipated.chicagotribune.com
Democrats' 2018 Trump Country hero faces hard political path
Lamb’s dilemma is a window into the Democratic Party's debate over how to win elections in Pennsylvania and across battlegrounds. “It’s kind of amazing that we even have to ask what the Democratic Party has to do to appeal to working-class people,” Lamb said. Pennsylvania's Democratic Party, in fact, has only twice nominated a woman for one of those offices and never a non-white candidate. Another candidate could be Sharif Street, the vice chair of the state Democratic Party and a Black state senator from Philadelphia. Fetterman has since joined the Democratic Party mainstream in defending the gas industry — popular with blue-collar unions — as a transition to a clean energy future.
Fury at the shaken Capitol over the attack, security, virus
Scott Applewhite)WASHINGTON – This time the fury enveloping the U.S. Capitol comes not from an insurgent mob but from within. The anger on display is searing — Democrat against Republican; Republican against Republican; legislators of both parties against the catastrophic security failure that left top leaders of the government vulnerable to last week's violence as well as to the coronavirus in their ranks. Shaken members, long accustomed to protective bubbles, inquired whether they can expense their own bulletproof vests to taxpayers (yes they can). McCarthy had joined most House Republicans in December in supporting a lawsuit to block Biden’s election, and again last week in two votes against certifying Biden’s win. In their oath of office, lawmakers vow to defend the Constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
Fury at the shaken Capitol over the attack, security, virus
Scott Applewhite)WASHINGTON – This time the fury enveloping the Capitol comes not from an insurgent mob but from within. The anger on display is searing — Democrat against Republican; Republican against Republican; legislators of both parties against the catastrophic security failure that left top leaders of the government vulnerable to last week's violence as well as to the coronavirus in their ranks. Shaken members, long accustomed to protective bubbles, inquired whether they can expense their own bulletproof vests to taxpayers (yes they can). McCarthy had joined most House Republicans in December in supporting a lawsuit to block Biden’s election, and again last week in two votes against certifying Biden’s win. In their oath of office, lawmakers vow to defend the Constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
In battleground states, Catholics are a pivotal swing vote
For decades, Roman Catholic voters have been a pivotal swing vote in U.S. presidential elections, with a majority backing the winner whether Republican or Democrat nearly every time. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)For decades, Roman Catholic voters have been a pivotal swing vote in U.S. presidential elections, with a majority backing the winner — whether Republican or Democrat — nearly every time. “The swinging portion of the Catholic vote swings more than other voting segments — that’s the target-rich segment,” said Brian Burch, president of the conservative advocacy group CatholicVote.org. Among Wisconsin Catholics praising Altman was Kevin O’Brien, co-founder of a movement called Men of Christ. He said priests in his region around Harrisburg are openly suggesting that politicians who support abortion rights should be denied Communion.
Dem report: Postal Service changes delay prescription drugs
FILE - In this Aug. 24, 2020, file photo, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy testifies during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing on the Postal Service on Capitol Hill in Washington. Postal Service operations, according to a report released Wednesday by Senate Democrats. The Postal Service had no immediate comment. In a letter to the Postal Service Board of Governors, the senators urged quick action to reverse these lapses in services," which they said "represent an ongoing public health threat.'' We know Louis DeJoy is sabotaging the Postal Service, Warren said.
US detaining more migrant children in hotels despite outcry
The Trump administration has sharply increased its use of hotels to detain immigrant children before expelling them from the United States during the coronavirus pandemic. We were given them with only one instruction, to eat them to lower our temperature, Verty told the AP last week. Instead, the Trump administration is holding children in hotels or Border Patrol facilities for days, sometimes weeks, before expelling them. In court filings, the Trump administration says children in hotels are given medical care and temperature checks every four hours. As first reported by ProPublica, the government says it expels children detained in hotels only after they test negative for COVID-19.
Transgender official takes abuse while leading virus efforts
Many of the attacks against Pennsylvanias health secretary have little to do with the way she has handled the statewide response to the coronavirus pandemic. As a transgender woman, Dr. Rachel Levine has been subjected to a stream of mockery and abuse on social media and elsewhere. The dunk tank was part of a weekend carnival held on the fairgrounds to benefit the region's volunteer fire departments. The fair deleted the post from its Facebook page, but critics slammed the dunk tank impersonation and the fair associations comment as transphobic. A fellow dressed up in a dress to get people to throw balls at the dunk tank to raise money.
Dems: Nursing home virus effort 'chronicle of deadly delay'
The head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the lead federal agency on nursing homes, defended the administration's record. Statistics reported by nursing homes to the federal government as of June 14 show nearly 30,800 residents have died, according to an AP analysis. An AP count that includes nursing homes and other long-term care facilities finds nearly 52,500 deaths, combining residents and staff. Verma said CMS tried to help by changing its rules to allow labs to go into nursing homes and collect samples. CMS has impaneled a 25-member commission to analyze what happened in nursing homes and make recommendations to better protect elderly and frail residents.
Grim blame game over COVID deaths in besieged nursing homes
A grim blame game with partisan overtones is breaking out over COVID-19 deaths among nursing home residents, a tiny slice of the population that represents a shockingly high proportion of Americans who have perished in the pandemic. Advocates for the elderly say the federal government hasnt provided needed virus testing and sufficient protective gear to allow nursing homes to operate safely. With more coronavirus legislation possible this year, congressional Democrats are pressing for a national testing plan and additional resources for nursing homes. She says states have money from the federal government that they can use to support testing of nursing home staff. Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, the third-ranking House Democrat and chairman of a special panel on the pandemic, says the crisis in nursing homes should not be a partisan issue.
Democrats charge OSHA isn't protecting front-line workers
Instead of an emergency standard, the agency has relied on voluntary guidance that recommends companies erect physical barriers, enforce social distancing and install more hand-sanitizing stations, among other steps. More than 80,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported among health care workers, meatpacking employees and prison staff, including at least 372 deaths, Adams said. OSHA quickly pivoted to focus intensely on giving employers and workers the guidance they need to work safely in this rapidly changing situation. A group of Senate Democrats asked the Labor Departments inspector general to investigate OSHAs inspections and citations related to COVID-19. The lawmakers, led by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., also want the watchdog to investigate OSHAs decision not to put in place a temporary emergency standard to deal with the virus.
US senators seek probe of veterans homes after coronavirus deaths
A group of U.S. senators is seeking an investigation into the Department of Veterans Affairs' oversight of homes for aging veterans amid a spate of coronavirus deaths at the state-run centers. Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey of Massachusetts; Bob Casey of Pennsylvania; and Jon Tester of Montana, the ranking member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee. In New York, the Long Island State Veterans Home has reported 53 deaths, including 48 confirmed and five presumed COVID-19 deaths. The New York State Veterans Home at St. Albans in New York City has reported 33 deaths. Noel said the agency has since established a quarterly monitoring of the contractor that reviews state veterans homes.