Attorney General Bill Barr threatened legal action against governors who repeatedly extend stay-home orders: Here are the comments, per Bloomberg, made during an interview Tuesday on “The Hugh Hewitt Show":
One way the Justice Department might act against state or local officials is by joining lawsuits brought by citizens or businesses over restrictions, Barr said. He acknowledged that state governments are at “a sensitive stage,” as they try to balance health and safety against pressure to reopen. But he said that “as lawsuits develop, as specific cases emerge in the states, we’ll take a look at them.”
“We’re looking carefully at a number of these rules that are being put into place,” Barr said. “And if we think one goes too far, we initially try to jawbone the governors into rolling them back or adjusting them. And if they’re not and people bring lawsuits, we file statement of interest and side with the plaintiffs.”
We mentioned this in Slog AM this morning, but this happened.
In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 21, 2020
Per usual, the arms of government were not ready for Trump to announce that he was going to stop all immigration. They're tinkering with their new extreme plans and will get back to us. Here's what we know so far.
We've got a presser announcement coming in hot: These 5 p.m. announcements are driving journalists crazy. Watch here.
We've also got a deal and it's worth nearly $500 billion dollars. A new coronavirus relief bill was agreed on by Congress and Trump on Tuesday. It is expected to allocate $320 billion to the Paycheck Protection Program for small biz and $100 billion for hospitals and testing. The bill is moving to the House, where it is expected to pass, and then Trump's desk.
Washington's most recent update from its Department of Health lists 652 deaths and 12,085 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Washington state.
An at-home coronavirus test has been OK'd by U.S. health regulators: "Allowing people to self-swab at home would help reduce infection risks for front-line health care workers and help conserve protective gear," notes AP.
A new order from Inslee bans utility companies from disconnecting services from homes until at least May 4.
Inslee also wrote a letter to Pence this afternoon on the importance of testing: "Our testing system is only as strong as its weakest link," reads the letter. "My state...is working to procure 2.5 million test collection kits to support optimal testing levels, but we are nowhere near that today. Just as a driver cannot travel their full distance on a quarter-tank of gas, we cannot unlock the full capacity of our labs without additional testing supplies and infrastructure from the federal government."
Maryland bought 500,000 testing kits from South Korea: Trump wasn't happy about it.
On Saturday, First Lady Yumi Hogan and I stood on the tarmac at @BWI_Airport to welcome the first ever Korean Air passenger plane, carrying a very important payload of LabGun #COVID19 test kits which will give MD the capability of performing half a million coronavirus tests. pic.twitter.com/Elf0ADIRnJ— Governor Larry Hogan (@GovLarryHogan) April 20, 2020
Milwaukee has started identifying coronavirus cases linked to in-person voting on April 7: “Right now we have identified six cases that were tied to in-person voting. And one election worker was also positive. There are a lot of missing data through the investigations and contact tracing, so we’re waiting for 70 percent of the fields to be populated.”
Trump's favorite coronavirus drug, hydroxychloroquine, isn't working: This nationwide study is "the largest look so far of hydroxychloroquine with or without the antibiotic azithromycin for COVID-19." The results:
A malaria drug widely touted by President Donald Trump for treating the new coronavirus showed no benefit in a large analysis of its use in U.S. veterans hospitals. There were more deaths among those given hydroxychloroquine versus standard care.