Thursday, July 23, 2020
► From The Stranger — The Stranger endorses Liz Berry for State Representative (editorial) — Liz Berry was the only candidate who said she wouldn’t respond to the massive statewide budget crisis by voting to impose austerity measures next session. Her opponent, Sarah Reyneveld, told the Seattle Times that “essential services… must be preserved even if that means some nonessential state employees are let go,” as the Times put it. She characterized her position on cuts a little differently in our meeting. “We can’t make the mistakes of austerity,” she said. Cutting public sector jobs is making the mistakes of austerity. Vote Berry.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Liz Berry also earned the endorsement of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO. See the full list of WSLC endorsements.
TODAY at The Stand — Got your primary ballot? Vote and mail it in!
► From Crosscut — Poll: Inslee ‘way ahead’ of Culp, Eyman for governor
EDITOR’S NOTE — It’s worth noting that Inslee’s leading Republican challenger, Loren Culp, is facing a lawsuit accusing him and other police officers of failing to properly investigate a pattern of child rape. Of the sex-education bill passed into law by the Legislature this year, Culp says, “I think (they) got a bunch of pedophiles in a room and came up with that.”
► LIVE from the Seattle Times — Coronavirus daily news update, July 23 — The latest count of COVID-19 cases in Washington totals 49,247 infections (7-day average of new infections per day: 808) and 1,468 deaths (7-day average of deaths per day: 5)
► From the Tri-City Herald — COVID-19 rates keep increasing, state ‘may continue to extend’ pause in phases — State Secretary of Health John Wiesman said the rate of new COVID-19 cases continues to increase, and that it is nearly double the peak in March. He said no decision has been made, but that the state “may continue to extend,” a pause in counties advancing phases under the state’s Safe Start plan.
► From the (Everett) Herald — Rule-breaking partiers are causing large rise in virus cases — Long wait times for test results are hampering efforts to contain the virus.
► From the News Tribune — 2 grocers report positive COVID cases at local stores — Safeway reported Wednesday that one worker at its store at 1112 S. M St. in Tacoma has a confirmed case of COVID-19. The Fred Meyer store at 1201 Valley Ave. E. in Sumner also has at least one employee with a positive case.
► From the CBS News — 164 pairs of shoes placed on the lawn of the Capitol, representing nurses who died from coronavirus — Nurses came together in the nation’s capital Tuesday to hold a vigil for colleagues who have died from the coronavirus. 164 pairs of nurses’ shoes were placed on the lawn of the Capitol – one for every nurse who has died while working in the fight against COVID-19. National Nurses United President Jean Ross said many people have called nurses “heroes” during the pandemic, and said, “Your heroes should not be dispensable. We’re not expendable.”
► From Reuters — Texas stores bodies in refrigerated trucks while setting COVID-19 death record — Texas set a one-day record for increases in COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations in the state, reporting 197 deaths and 10,893 hospitalizations.
► From HuffPost — White House cafeterias closed after employee tests positive
► MUST-READ from the NY Times — How to actually talk to anti-maskers (by Charlie Warzel) — You cannot force public trust; you have to earn it by being humble and transparent, and by listening. And you can’t fake that care and maintenance — it’s the grueling and deeply human work of democracy, which is never finished.
TODAY at The Stand (July 21) — AFL-CIO condemns McConnell, GOP for failure to act
► From the Washington Post — Republicans scrap Trump’s demand for payroll tax cut as they cobble together draft coronavirus bill — In recent days, Trump had insisted that he might not sign an eventual bill if it did not include the tax cut, but the plan was unpopular… Republicans had hoped to present their plan on Wednesday but they couldn’t reach agreement, and the situation remained extremely fluid on Thursday morning as well. Trump said on Wednesday that the economy was making a remarkable recovery, but economic data has not supported this.
The Stand (July 21) — GOP now backs payroll tax cut to raid, undermine Social Security
► From The Hill — Tea Party rises up against McConnell’s $1 trillion relief plan — The debate over the size of the next coronavirus relief bill is reopening the same divisions within the Republican Party that spawned the Tea Party movement more than a decade ago, putting Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in a delicate spot.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Trending: #MitchBetterHaveMyMoney
► From the Washington Post — Trump keeps boasting about passing a cognitive test — but it doesn’t mean what he thinks it does — Medical and public health experts stress that the cognitive exam is not what Trump seems to think it is — an indicator of IQ or a cudgel to be wielded against a political opponent like a debate challenge. The president’s fixation on the test is particularly puzzling because the test is normally administered only if someone is concerned that they or their loved ones may be experiencing dementia or other cognitive decline. Getting a perfect score — as Trump has repeatedly claimed he did — merely signifies that the test-taker probably does not have a cognitive impairment as measured by the exam.
Oh my god. pic.twitter.com/hP3h20Oxuc
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) July 23, 2020
► From the Spokesman-Review — Triumph of Spokane permanently lays off 22 employees — Triumph Composite Systems reported that it has permanently laid off 10 employees as of Monday. The move follows another 12 layoffs reported to the state on June 15. Triumph is among a half-dozen Spokane-area companies that provide parts for the troubled 737 MAX airplanes.
► From the Seattle Times — Invest in a diverse teacher workforce (by Mia Tuan, Tammy Campbell and Denise Juneau) — We know that investing in the recruitment and retention of outstanding teachers of color is a successful strategy for combating racism, but our state and society must do far more before our teaching workforce will reflect the students they serve. The sooner we do so, the closer we will be to a world where outcomes for our students of color will match their undeniable talent and potential.
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) July 23, 2020
► MUST-READ from Fox News — In Portland, actions of federal agents are unlawful, unconstitutional and harmful (by Judge Andrew Napolitano) — The First Amendment to the Constitution requires the government to protect speech, not assault those who exercise it. If these indiscriminate beatings and kidnappings are intended to deter folks from publicly dissenting, it is profoundly unconstitutional, counterproductive and will be costly to the federal government… Public dissent against the government is a core personal freedom. It is as American as apple pie. It was integral to the creation of our republic. Government repression of dissent is totalitarian. It is as un-American as the governments against which we fought world wars to preserve our core freedoms.
► From the Oregonian — At Portland protests, federal officers gas demonstrators, mayor — Mayor Ted Wheeler stood Wednesday among the front lines of protests outside the federal courthouse, where he and hundreds of others were tear gassed repeatedly by federal officers. The incident came on the same day the Portland City Council issued an immediate ban for all Portland police employees to stop cooperating with federal law enforcement.
► From the Seattle Times — Rein in the federal force run amok on Portland’s streets (editorial)
EDITOR’S NOTE — Meanwhile, the Seattle Police Officers Guild weighs in…
► From The Stranger — SPOG president repeatedly says it ‘might’ be time for Trump to send feds to Seattle — Seattle Police Officers Guild president Mike Solan appeared on right-wing radio to praise the Trump administration’s violent crackdown on police brutality protesters in Portland. Solan twice characterized federal arrests in Portland as a “success,” and three times said some version of “perhaps it’s the time we bring in the federal government” to reinforce police here in Seattle.
The Stand (June 18) — MLK Labor delegates vote to expel Seattle police union
► From the Washington Post — The Lincoln Project understands that Trump’s enablers must pay a price (by Max Boot) — One of the Republican political consultants affiliated with the Lincoln Project, Stuart Stevens, now calls the GOP “a white grievance party,” adding that “there is an ugly history of code words and dog whistles in the party.” The rest of the Republican platform he dismisses as a convenient fiction: “How do you abandon deeply held beliefs about character, personal responsibility, foreign policy, and the national debt in a matter of months? You don’t. The obvious answer is those beliefs weren’t deeply held.… [I]t had always been about power. The rest? The principles? The values? It was all a lie.” Stevens is particularly scathing about all the Republican politicians — many of them his clients — who have made common cause with Trump. “The most distinguishing characteristic of the current national Republican Party is cowardice,” he writes. “The base price of admission is a willingness to accept that an unstable, pathological liar leads it and pretend otherwise.”
EDITOR’S NOTE — Here in Washington state, all three Republican members of Congress — Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Jaime Herrera Beutler and Dan Newhouse — have consistently backed Trump and his agenda, obediently parroting his talking points from one scandal to the next, including voting against his impeachment for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Herrera Beutler (R-WA, 3rd) so stridently defended Trump that The Columbian wrote: “The Battle Ground Republican has chosen party over country and obfuscation over transparency.” Remember in November.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.