As Omicron drives Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations
to new highs, some states’ health care systems are struggling to handle the surge. Four states have less than 10% remaining capacity in their ICUs, according to data released Wednesday by the US Department of Health and Human Services, and five other states are close to just 10% of ICU capacity remaining. Nationally, Covid-19 hospitalizations have reached record highs with at least 151,261 Americans needing care as of yesterday. Separately, President Joe Biden is expected to deliver remarks later today announcing the deployment of a new wave of military medical teams
to help hospitals in six states, a White House official told CNN.
2. Capital riot
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he will not cooperate with a request
from the House select committee investigating the January 6 riot. The California Republican was asked to voluntarily provide information to the committee, including details about former President Trump’s state of mind during the deadly insurrection and the weeks that followed. McCarthy refused, charging the committee “is not conducting a legitimate investigation,” citing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s rejection of some of his picks to serve on the panel. Republican Rep. Liz Cheney, the vice chairwoman of the committee, did not rule out the possibility of subpoenaing McCarthy
for the information they want, suggesting McCarthy’s defiance is an attempt to “cover up” what occurred that day.
A new round of diplomatic talks between the US, NATO allies and Russia ended with little progress yesterday
, as Russia withheld from making any commitments to deescalate its presence of troops along the Ukraine border. In statements following the talks, Russian officials suggested Moscow could resort to military action if political efforts fail. That warning came a day after the Russian military conducted live-fire exercises along the border. The US has finalized sanctions options in the event that Russia invades Ukraine, senior administration officials said yesterday. A third set of talks with Russia is happening today in Vienna.
4. Prince Andrew
Prince Andrew is facing the possibility of a very public trial in New York after losing his attempt
to have Virginia Giuffre’s sexual assault case against him thrown out. Guiffre alleges she was trafficked by convicted sex offender and disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein and forced to perform sex acts with the British royal — the third child of Queen Elizabeth II. Prince Andrew denies the claims. Giuffre is seeking an undisclosed amount in damages that will be determined at trial. Prince Andrew has until July 14 to potentially answer questions about the case under oath.
5. Australian Open
Tennis star Novak Djokovic is waiting to see whether Australia’s immigration minister will revoke his reinstated visa
ahead of next week’s Australian Open. The tournament’s No. 1 men’s singles seed was caught up in controversy earlier this week when the Australian government canceled his visa and detained him because they claimed he didn’t have a valid exemption to the country’s strict vaccination requirement despite testing positive for the virus in December. A judge ordered Djokovic’s visa to be reinstated, but recent days have revealed inconsistencies in his documentation and his movements in the days after he tested positive. For example, Djokovic apparently attended public events while positive, and admitted he did not immediately isolate. The whole saga has been a PR challenge for Australia, whose leaders have stood firm on the need to adhere to the rules as parts of the country see record numbers of Covid-19 cases.
Nominees announced for SAG Awards
The Screen Actors Guild Awards, honoring the year’s best TV and film performances, announced their nominees yesterday. Check out the surprises and snubs
Jason Momoa and Lisa Bonet announce split
Is Aquaman looking for other fish in the sea
Megan Fox and Machine Gun Kelly are engaged
Miss Dracula… I mean Megan Fox… claims they “drank each other’s blood
” to seal the union.
San Francisco’s ‘leaning’ skyscraper tilted up to 3 inches last year
It’s the Leaning Tower of California! The cost to stabilize the sinking building
is an estimated $100 million.
Prince Charles exhibits dozens of his watercolors, saying painting ‘refreshes the soul’
I agree, Your Royal Highness. A therapeutic painting session
is quite refreshing.
Ronnie Spector, the lead singer of 1960s pop group The Ronettes and the powerful central voice of hits like “Be My Baby” and “Baby I love You,” has died at age 78
. Spector was battling cancer. Her family said they will remember the “twinkle in her eye, spunky attitude, wicked sense of humor, and smile on her face.”
That’s how many unprocessed tax returns
the Internal Revenue Service has left over from the “most challenging year” taxpayers ever experienced. The backlog has been compounded by the coronavirus pandemic and longtime underfunding of the agency, forcing the IRS to head into the new filing season already behind. The Treasury Department is already warning that taxpayers might experience processing delays filing their returns this year.
“Hannah relied upon and trusted that Defendants would only supply dummy prop ammunition, or blanks, and no live rounds were ever to be on set.”
— a line from a lawsuit filed by “Rust” armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed
, who has accused the movie’s supplier of selling her dummy ammunition mixed with live rounds
before the deadly on-set shooting that took the life of cinematographer Halyna Hutchens last October. PDQ Arm and Prop, LLC has not responded to a request for comment.
Robotic spy puppy meets wild dogs
Watch these wild dogs accept a robot puppy into their pack. Enjoy your new family, robo-pup! (Click here to view