“It never, never happened": Said Joe Biden this morning on MSNBC where he addressed former staffer Tara Reade's sexual assault allegations against him. Reade claimed that in 1993, while she was working for then-Senator Biden, that he pushed her against a wall and penetrated her with his fingers. According to Biden, who has not addressed the matter until this morning, it did not happen. The issue seems far from over. Many would like Biden to release his senatorial records to see if Reade's complaint is among them.
Biden called on the National Archives: To release any complaints against him. However, Biden has a separate set of documents stored at the University of Delaware that have been sealed until he leaves public life. Reade has said that she suspects her complaint is there. MSNBC asked Biden about this during his interview. Here's that clip:
Joe Biden, asked about requesting a search for Tara Reade's name in the U of Delaware records: "She said she filed a report with the only office that would have a report — in the United States Senate at the time. If the report was ever filed, it was filed there. Period." pic.twitter.com/oV5Xr4Ljpi
— Axios (@axios) May 1, 2020
Largest ozone hole over the Arctic is closed: The "unprecedented" hole (ha) opened up earlier this spring. Now it's closed. Scientists say that the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on air quality had nothing to do with it. "It's been driven by an unusually strong and long-lived polar vortex," one scientist said.
Amazon sets the tone: Amazon alerted its workforce on Thursday that they would be able to work from home until "at least October 2" if they want. For people who want to work in person, Amazon will invest in "deep cleaning and temperature checks" to keep everyone safe. My bet is that this will send ripples across the tech community. While a responsible choice from the whole "public health crisis" perspective, that could spell bad news for those small businesses dependent on the downtown workforce.
Speaking of Amazon: The company shared its first-quarter results on Thursday. But, the more interesting tidbit was the announcement that Amazon would use all of its profit from the second quarter (which is estimated to be a mere $4 billion) on coronavirus response. That response includes the temperature checks mentioned above and getting tests for its employees as well as beefin' up delivery to get everything delivered on time still.
Some weather: There's some rain on the way. Enjoy those blue skies while we have them.
☀️SUNNY TODAY, STORMY TOMORROW ⚡️
A beautiful #MayDay will give way to a soggy Saturday morning—followed by a chance of ⚡️⚡️tomorrow afternoon & Sunday.
— Seattle Weather Blog (@KSeattleWeather) May 1, 2020
It's May Day: That means workers all over the world are striking. Don't be a scab and cross the picket lines. That means boycotting Amazon, Whole Foods, Instacart, and Target. More strike information here.
Two soldiers suspected of murder: A 20-year-old man was murdered in Kittitas County last weekend. The prime suspects? Two active-duty soldiers from Joint Base Lewis–McChord.
Washington's Employment Security Department is drowning: In unemployment claims. Millions a week. The department is doing its best but hundreds of thousands of claims are still in purgatory. Around 80,000 to 90,000 have an error that requires what is essentially fact-checking. It's a process that normally takes around 21 days but now will take weeks.
Mortgage delinquency rises highest in Seattle: All around the country, people can't pay their mortgage. The national rate of people behind on their mortgages rose to 3.3 percent. Seattle's rose to 11.4 percent.
Hepatitis A is spreading: Touching bodily fluids, fecal matter, or sharing needles will spread Hepatitis A. Unfortunately for the community hardest hit by a local Hepatitis A outbreak, the homeless, there aren't enough public bathrooms to meet the need. In just four months, there have been 122 confirmed cases. Around 67 percent are homeless.
You wanna feel sad? Today would have been Gianna Bryant's 14th birthday. She and her father, Kobe Bryant, died in a helicopter crash in January.
Germany is easing restrictions: Some small shops are already reopened but Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced that playgrounds, museums, and churches will be next. Further relaxations may come on May 10 if the infection rate stays low. Part of Germany's success—162,000 infections but only around 6,500 deaths—has been widespread testing, a not ass-backward healthcare system, and country-wide lockdown measures starting in March. Normalcy may return slowly, but big events will be banned until at least August 31, Merkel said.
Meanwhile, in Florida: Health officials are no longer publishing real-time COVID-19 death data from medical examiners since those numbers are higher (10 percent higher) than what the state has been reporting. The state's health department has been trying to stifle those death counts from being public record. It took news organizations suing for the state to release data about how many infections were in Florida nursing homes. Still, Gov. Ron DeSantis is reopening the state on Monday. But COVID-19 cases are still rising and deaths are climbing. DeSantis' announcement came on the same day 350 more new cases and 47 new deaths were reported.
Wow, who got this exclusive footage of how I feel every Monday?
Police in India are still making arrests despite social distancing: They're just keeping their distance by using—wait for it—giant tongs. It's a six-foot pole with a two-pronged claw at the end. Like a cartoonish depiction of a dog catcher. They are calling it the "social distancing clamp" or a "lockdown-breaker catcher."
VIP Security wing of Chandigarh Police has devised this unique way of tackling non-cooperating corona suspects and curfew breakers.
Great equipment, great drill !!!
Way to go @ssptfcchd and Insp Manjit, HCt Gurdeep, HCt Pawan and Ct Usha pic.twitter.com/oTLsGoe6yt
— DGP Chandigarh Police (@DgpChdPolice) April 25, 2020
New York man arrested for stolen stimulus checks: He was allegedly peeking into people's mailboxes and nabbing their stimulus dollars. Police say he had stolen nine checks worth around $12,000.
Dichotomy: This Texas man, on the other hand, used his stimulus check to feed his neighborhood.
I will do it. I will video chat an eel: Japanese aquarium urges public to video-chat eels who are forgetting humans exist
For this last part: Would you rather see Will Ferrell prank the Seahawks?
Or watch a tortoise celebrate his 100th birthday (warning: his animal party guests did not practice good social distancing)?