Study: Unemployment Pays Better Than Work for 68 Percent of U.S. Workers

The federal unemployment insurance emergency payments of an additional $600 per week to those laid off because of COVID-19 restrictions discourages work and slows down economic recovery, several reports indicate. Several congressmen have introduced proposals to address the issue.

A report published by the Foundation for Government Ability (FGA) found that by nearly tripling average unemployment benefits through the CARES Act, “Congress has created a situation where unemployment now pays better than work” for roughly 68 percent of U.S. workers.

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Insurer Centene Plans 3,200 Jobs at New N.C. Regional Hub

Government health insurance provider Centene Corp. said on Wednesday it will build an East Coast campus in Charlotte, North Carolina, developing a $1 billion construction project that’s expected to create more than 3,200 new jobs by 2032.

Gov. Roy Cooper described the expansion as the state’s largest single jobs announcement by number in nearly two decades.

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Seattle Police Dismantle ‘Occupied’ Zone, Arrest More Than 30

Seattle police turned out in force early Wednesday at the city’s “occupied” protest zone, tore down demonstrators’ encampments and used bicycles to herd the protesters after the mayor ordered the area cleared following two fatal shootings in less than two weeks.

Television images showed police, many in riot gear, confronting dozens of protesters at the “Capitol Hill Occupied Protest” zone that was set up near downtown following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

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Stonewall Jackson Removed from Richmond’s Monument Avenue

Work crews wielding a giant crane, harnesses and power tools wrested an imposing statue of Gen. Stonewall Jackson from its concrete pedestal along Richmond, Virginia’s famed Monument Avenue on Wednesday, just hours after the mayor ordered the removal of all Confederate statues from city land.

Mayor Levar Stoney’s decree came weeks after Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam ordered the removal of the most prominent and imposing statue along the avenue: that of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, which sits on state land. The removal of the Lee statue has been stalled pending the resolution of several lawsuits.

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‘An Amazing Deal’: U.S. Secures Most of Global Remdesivir Supply

The United States has secured nearly the entire global supply of remdesivir, a drug that has been effective in fighting coronavirus.

Remdesivir, which is manufactured by American pharmaceutical giant Gilead, has proven to help patients with coronavirus recover faster, according to The Guardian. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) secured more than 500,000 doses of the drug, accounting for the vast majority of Gilead’s July, August and September supply, according to a Monday press release.

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Boston Arts Commission Votes to Remove Abraham Lincoln Statue

The Boston Arts Commission unanimously voted Tuesday to take down the city’s historic Emancipation Memorial after activists demanded the statue’s removal.

The memorial depicts Abraham Lincoln standing with one arm raised over a freed slave crouched on his knees. Broken chains are depicted around the black man’s wrists and the word “emancipation” is written at the statue’s base.

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Background Checks, a Metric for Gun Sales, Hit All-Time High

Historic numbers of background checks to purchase or possess a firearm were done in June, a trend in a year marked by uncertainty over the coronavirus pandemic, a subsequent economic recession, protests over racial injustice and calls to reduce police funding.

FBI numbers released Wednesday show that 3.9 million background checks were conducted last month, the most since the system was created in November 1998 to ensure felons and other prohibited people could not buy or possess a firearm. The previous monthly record came in March, when 3.7 million checks were done. Each week in June is now in the top 10 weeks for background checks.

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Gun-Toting Restaurateur Upsets 5-Term Colorado Congressman

A pistol-packing restaurant owner who has expressed support for a far-right conspiracy theory has upset five-term U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton in Colorado’s primary elections.

Tipton became the fourth House member to lose renomination bids this year. Republican Reps. Steve King of Iowa and Denver Riggleman of Virginia, and Democrat Daniel Lipinski of Illinois, have already been ousted by challengers.

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Citing Racial Bias, San Francisco Will End Mug Shots Release

San Francisco police will stop releasing the mug shots of people who have been arrested unless they pose a threat to the public, as part of an effort to stop perpetuating racial stereotypes, the city’s police chief announced Wednesday.

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said the policy, which goes into effect immediately, means the department will no longer release booking photos of suspects to the media or allow officers to post them online.

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Video Appears to Show Mob Attacking Catholics Praying at St. Louis Statue

Multiple videos recorded after a Saturday prayer vigil in St. Louis appear to show Black Lives Matter agitators assaulting Catholics who participated in the event.

“Yesterday, while praying for peace and unity in our city and the protection of the St. Louis statue, Black Lives Matter protesters started to harass, berate, and assault the Catholics that were peacefully praying. We did nothing in retaliation,” Conor Martin, a candidate for Bedford Township Republican committeeman, claimed on Twitter.

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Conservatives Praise Supreme Court for Ruling States Can’t Discriminate Against Religious Schools

The U.S. Supreme Court said Tuesday that states can’t cut religious schools out of programs that send public money to private education in a 5-4 ruling. 

Hailed as a victory for religious freedom, the justices upheld a Montana scholarship program that allows state tax credits for private schooling in which almost all the recipients attend religious schools.

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McGrath Wins Kentucky Dem Primary; McConnell Showdown Awaits

Former Marine pilot Amy McGrath overcame a bumpier-than-expected Kentucky primary to win the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination Tuesday, fending off progressive Charles Booker to set up a bruising, big-spending showdown with Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Voting ended June 23, but it took a week until McGrath could be declared the winner due to the race’s tight margins and a deluge of mail-in ballots. The outcome seemed a certainty early in the campaign but became tenuous as Booker’s profile surged as the Black state lawmaker highlighted protests against the deaths of African Americans in encounters with police.

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Carl Reiner, Beloved Creator of ‘Dick Van Dyke Show,’ Dies

Carl Reiner, the ingenious and versatile writer, actor and director who broke through as a “second banana” to Sid Caesar and rose to comedy’s front ranks as creator of “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and straight man to Mel Brooks’ “2000 Year Old Man,” has died. He was 98.

Reiner’s assistant Judy Nagy said he died Monday night of natural causes at his home in Beverly Hills, California.

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Music Spotlight: Tyler Rich

Tyler Rich grew up in Northern California in the small town of Yuba City. He grew up listening to country music with his mom and rock n roll with his dad.

“My Uncle [Tim] always had his guitar at every family function. He was always playing. He didn’t know genres, he just knew good music,” he said. “He would play, Tom Petty, Credence Clearwater, George Strait, Brooks, and Dunn or Garth Brooks. He even played Michael Jackson and the Beatles as long as it was good music.”

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Hong Kong Security Law Takes Aim at Protester Actions

China on Tuesday approved a contentious national security law for Hong Kong that takes direct aim at some of the actions of anti-government protesters last year, in a move many see as Beijing’s boldest yet to erase the legal firewall between the semi-autonomous territory and the mainland’s authoritarian Communist Party system.

Details of the law remained under wraps until 11 p.m. (1500 GMT, 11:00 a.m. EDT), when it was published and took effect immediately.

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‘Enough Is Enough’: Seattle Police Chief Rips CHAZ, Gets Heckled at Press Conference

Seattle’s police chief was heckled while she ripped the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ) following fourth shooting in the area at a press conference Monday.

Chief Carmen Best demanded that people still in the area, also known as the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest (CHOP), leave immediately for the sake of everyone’s safety. A 16-year-old died and a 14-year-old is still being treated following a drive-by shooting that took place early Monday morning in the zone, Seattle police said in a press release Monday.

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SCOTUS Strikes Down Ban on Taxpayers Funding Religious Schools

The Supreme Court ruled against a ban on taxpayer funding of religious schools Tuesday in a monumental win for school choice.

Chief Justice John Roberts joined conservative justices in a 5-4 ruling backing a Montana tax-credit scholarship program that gives residents credit if they donated to private scholarship organizations, according to Fox News, which would help the students pay for the private school of their choice.

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Conservatives Call Out Chief Justice John Roberts on Abortion Ruling: ‘He’s a Disgrace’

by Mary Margaret Olohan   Conservatives are turning against Chief Justice John Roberts after the Supreme Court justice sided with liberal judges in a monumental abortion ruling. Chief Justice John Roberts sided with liberal members of the court in the close 5-4 ruling, writing that “the Louisiana law imposes a burden…

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House Speaker Pelosi Calls on Intel Chiefs to Brief Congress on Russian Bounties Targeting US Soldiers

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Monday called on two top intelligence officials to provide a briefing to all members of Congress regarding reports that Russian intelligence has paid bounties to Taliban fighters to attack U.S. service members in Afghanistan.

“Congress needs to know what the intelligence community knows about this significant threat to American troops and our allies and what options are available to hold Russia accountable,” Pelosi wrote to John Ratcliffe, the director of national intelligence and Gina Haspel, the director of the CIA.

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Britain’s Boris Johnson says COVID-19 Has Been a Disaster

Prime Minister Boris Johnson acknowledged Monday that the coronavirus pandemic has been a “disaster” for Britain, as he announced a spending splurge designed to get the country — and his faltering Conservative government — back on track.

As the U.K. emerges from a three-month lockdown, Johnson has lined up big-money pledges on schools, housing and infrastructure, in an attempt to move on from an outbreak that has left more than 43,000 Britons dead — the worst confirmed death toll in Europe.

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Carol Swain Tells Fox and Friends Weekend: The Destruction of Monuments is About the Destruction of Our Culture, It Has Nothing to do With Race

Dr. Carol M. Swain appeared on Fox News Channel’s Fox and Friends Weekend Edition with hosts, Jedediah Bila and Pete Hegseth this past Saturday to discuss the tearing down of national monuments.

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Jim Jordan Calls on Nadler to Help Obtain Trump-Russia Documents Before Barr Hearing

Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, is calling on Rep. Jerry Nadler to help obtain documents and testimony related to the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign prior to a hearing in July for Attorney General William Barr.

“The Attorney General’s appearance is also an opportunity for the Committee to conduct oversight of the Obama-Biden Administration’s weaponization of the Justice Department and intelligence community against the Trump campaign,” Jordan wrote in a letter to Nadler obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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California’s Alleged Golden State Killer Set to Plead Guilty

Forty years after a sadistic suburban rapist terrorized California in what investigators later realized were a series of linked assaults and slayings, a 74-year-old former police officer is expected to plead guilty Monday to being the elusive Golden State Killer.

The deal will spare Joseph James DeAngelo Jr. any chance of the death penalty for 13 murders and 13 kidnapping-related charges spanning six counties. In partial return, survivors of the assaults that spanned the 1970s and 1980s expect him to admit to up to 62 rapes that he could not be criminally charged with because too much time has passed.

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Catholic Charities Leader: ‘My Catholic Church and Catholic Charities Organization Is Racist’

In a video expressing solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement last week, the CEO of Catholic Charities of Eastern Washington denounced his own church and charitable organization as “racist.”

“In America, racism is no longer a question. But rather, it’s the toxic water in which we all swim,” said Rob McCann, president and CEO of the Spokane-based nonprofit. “My Catholic Church and my Catholic Charities organization is racist.”

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Judge: US Must Free Migrant Children from Family Detention

A federal judge on Friday ordered the release of children held with their parents in U.S. immigration jails and denounced the Trump administration’s prolonged detention of families during the coronavirus pandemic.

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee – who was appointed by President Obama in 2009 – penned the order that applies to children held for more than 20 days at three family detention centers in Texas and Pennsylvania operated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Some have been detained since last year.

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Census Report Shows Widespread Demographic Changes in the United States

Minority populations are increasing and the white majority is on the decline, according to U.S. Census Bureau figures released Thursday.

Over the past decade, the white population grew by 10.5 million individuals, a 4.3% increase, while the Hispanic population grew by 10.1 million individuals, a 20% increase, the Census figures show. Among white people, there were 1.34 births for every death, whereas the Hispanic population had 5.81 births for every death, according to the report.

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DC Mayor Tells Residents to Stay Home for 4th of July, Promotes Black Lives Matter Gatherings

Democratic Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser told residents to spend the 4th of July at home, despite encouraging Black Lives Matter (BLM) gatherings happening en masse amid the coronavirus outbreak.

“Just because there are going to be fireworks downtown — doesn’t mean I have to go,” Bowser said at a press conference Thursday. She said she hopes to see a significant reduction in crowd sizes related to July 4th events, according to Fox 5.

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A Convicted Terrorist Sits on Board of Charity Handling Black Lives Matter Fundraising

Thousand Currents, the California-based charity that manages fundraising operations for the national arm of Black Lives Matter, includes on its board a convicted terrorist whose sentence was commuted by former President Bill Clinton on his last day in office.

Susan Rosenberg was identified as the vice chair of the Thousand Currents board of directors on the charity’s website until Wednesday when the page was taken down after the conservative think tank Capital Research Center detailed her involvement with a communist terrorist group that had carried out bombings in New York and Washington, D.C., in the early 1980s.

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Joe Biden Keeps Inflating the Coronavirus Death Toll

Former Vice President Joe Biden has repeatedly inflated America’s coronavirus death toll by hundreds of thousands and millions of deaths when talking about the virus.

Biden gaffed on Thursday, saying that “over 120 million” people were “dead from COVID” before correcting himself. Biden has struggled to get right the number of coronavirus deaths, which is at roughly 121,000, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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Seattle Mayor Meets with Protesters Over Dismantling Zone

SEATTLE, Washington (AP) — Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan met with demonstrators Friday after some lay in the street or sat on barricades to thwart the city’s effort to dismantle an “occupied” protest zone that has drawn scorn from President Donald Trump and a lawsuit from nearby businesses.

Crews arrived with heavy equipment early Friday morning at the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest, an occupied protest zone in Seattle, ready to dismantle barriers set up after protesters seized the area June 8 following clashes with police. But by mid-morning, they appeared to have backed off rather than risk conflict.

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Biden Floats Issuing an Executive Order Requiring Every American to Wear Masks

Former Vice President Joe Biden floated the idea Thursday of issuing an executive order requiring all Americans to wear masks to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Wearing a mask can make the difference between life and death in some circumstances, Biden told a CBS affiliate in Pittsburgh. The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee suggested that making masks a requirement could help reduce cases and deaths.

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FBI Refuses to Disclose Records on Source Who Undermined Steele Dossier

The FBI is refusing to release documents related to the primary source for dossier author Christopher Steele, saying in response to a public records request that the information is classified and risks identifying a confidential FBI source.

The source, whose identity remains a mystery, holds key information that could shed light on apparent inaccuracies in Steele’s dossier, which the FBI cited extensively in applications for surveillance orders against Trump campaign aide Carter Page.

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US Consumer Spending Up 8.2 Percent, Partly Erasing Record Plunge

American consumers increased their spending by a record 8.2% in May, partly erasing huge plunges the previous two months, against the backdrop of an economy that’s likely shrinking by its steepest pace on record this quarter.

Last month’s rebound in consumer spending followed record spending drops of 6.6% in March and 12.6% in April, when the viral pandemic shuttered businesses, forced millions of layoffs and sent the economy into a recession. Since then, many businesses have reopened, drawing consumers back into shops and restaurants and restoring some lost jobs.

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House Passes Bill to Make DC a State

The House of Representatives passed a bill Friday that would make Washington, D.C., a state amid increasing congressional support for the nation’s capital to be granted statehood.

The “Washington, D.C. Admission Act,” which had 227 Democratic cosponsors, was originally introduced by Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D.C.’s nonvoting at-large representative in Congress, in October of last year. It passed Friday 232-180 without any Republican support.

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Gov. Abbott Orders Texas Bars to Close Again Amid Coronavirus Surge

Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered that bars be shut down across the state for a second time on Friday amid a growing surge in coronavirus cases in his state.

Abbott also ordered restaurants to scale back their operating capacity from 75% to 50% starting Monday. In addition, Abbott ordered that outdoor gatherings of 100 people or more must also receive approval by local governments before taking place. Rafting and tubing businesses in the state have been ordered to close as well.

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AG Barr: There Are Roughly 500 Active Investigations into Arson, Destruction of Property Stemming from Riots

Attorney General William Barr said Thursday that the Department of Justice is conducting about 500 investigations into acts of arson and destruction associated with the protests and riots over the past several weeks.

The DOJ is ramping up investigations into the activists who participated in destruction of private and public property over the last several weeks, Barr said during an episode of the Verdict podcast with Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

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As Trump Prepares for Independence Day Visit to Mount Rushmore, Tribal Leaders Say They Want It ‘Removed’

President Donald Trump will kick off Independence Day weekend with an event at Mount Rushmore, which has prompted some local leaders to call for the removal of one of the nation’s most iconic monuments.

Several groups led by Native American activists are planning protests for Trump’s July 3 visit. The event is slated to include fighter jets thundering over the 79-year-old stone monument in South Dakota’s Black Hills and the first fireworks display at the site since 2009.

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Democrats Run America’s Top 20 Crime-Ridden Cities

Annoyed that Senate Democrats are blocking a police reform bill, President Donald Trump said Wednesday that the 20 U.S. cities with the highest crime rates are all run by Democrats. 

“The Senate Republicans want very much to pass a bill on police reform,” Trump said during a Rose Garden press conference with Polish President Andrzej Duda. “I would like to see it happen. We won’t sacrifice. We won’t do that. We won’t do anything that is going to hurt our police.”

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‘Lawlessness’: Businesses, Residents From Within Seattle’s CHOP Sue City

Businesses, workers and residents sued the city of Seattle on Wednesday, saying local leadership enabled and endorsed the occupied zone at the detriment of “basic public safety.”

At least a dozen businesses filed the class-action lawsuit, which came as a result of Seattle’s Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP)’s continued proliferation in the city.

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Justices Boost Trump Administration’s Power in Asylum Cases

The Supreme Court on Thursday strengthened the Trump administration’s ability to deport people seeking asylum without allowing them to make their case to a federal judge.

Immigration experts suggested the administration would use sweeping language in the majority opinion to bolster broader efforts to restrict asylum.

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US Health Officials Estimate 20M Americans Have Had Coronavirus

U.S. officials estimate that 20 million Americans have been infected with the coronavirus since it first arrived in the United States, meaning that the vast majority of the population remains susceptible.

Thursday’s estimate is roughly 10 times as many infections as the 2.3 million cases that have been confirmed. Officials have long known that millions of people were infected without knowing it and that many cases are being missed because of gaps in testing.

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US Breaks Single-Day Record of New Coronavirus Cases

The United States recorded nearly 37,000 new cases of the novel coronavirus Wednesday as the virus continued to spread across southern and western states, according COVID-19 trackers.

The 36,880 new cases is up from 34,700 recorded Tuesday, and broke previous single-day record for new cases set April 24 when 36,739 were confirmed, according to a New York Times database.

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Audit: US Sent $1.4B in Virus Relief Payments to Dead People

Nearly 1.1 million coronavirus relief payments totaling some $1.4 billion went to dead people, a government watchdog reported Thursday.

More than 130 million so-called economic impact payments were sent to taxpayers as part of the $2.4 trillion coronavirus relief package enacted in March. The Government Accountability Office, Congress’ auditing arm, cited the number of erroneous payments to deceased taxpayers in its report on the government programs.

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White House Wins Ruling on Health Care Price Disclosure

The Trump administration won a court ruling Tuesday upholding its plan to require hospitals and insurers to disclose the actual prices for common tests and procedures in a bid to promote competition and push down costs.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar called the decision in federal court in Washington, D.C., “a resounding victory” for President Donald Trump’s efforts to open up the convoluted world of health care pricing so patients and families can make better-informed decisions about their care.

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New York City Has 39,200 Criminal Cases Backlogged Amid COVID Outbreak

The New York City legal system has more than 39,000 pending criminal cases after trials were postponed in February, the city confirmed to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Trials by jury were postponed, prosecutions decreased as officials aimed to decrease the incarcerated population and various hearings were held virtually, The New York Times reported.

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Indictments Likely Coming Down in Durham Probe and Antifa Financing Probe, Former Fed Says

A former federal prosecutor said Tuesday that he believes that the reason congressional Democrats are working so hard to smear Attorney General William Barr is to “preempt” what will soon be coming down in two Department of Justice investigations.

Jim Trusty, formerly the Chief of the Organized Crime Section at the DOJ, now a partner at Ifrah Law, said Dems are doing “damage control” because U.S. Attorney John Durham’s investigation into the origins of the FBI’s Russia probe, and a DOJ investigation into antifa’s financing are about to result in some “bombshell” indictments.

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