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US News Roundup: U.S. pandemic death toll mounts as danger season approaches; Biden says he'll publicly get a COVID-19 vaccine, keep Fauci and more

Trump unveils $207 million fundraising haul after election in effort to overturn result President Donald Trump's campaign and the Republican National Committee have raised $207.5 million since Election Day, according to a statement on Thursday, gathering donations to pay for challenges to Democrat Joe Biden's win in the Nov. 3 poll.

Devdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 04-12-2020 18:38 IST | Created: 04-12-2020 18:30 IST
US News Roundup: U.S. pandemic death toll mounts as danger season approaches; Biden says he'll publicly get a COVID-19 vaccine, keep Fauci and more
US President-elect Joe Biden Image Credit: ANI

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

Trump loyalist Loeffler's attacks on pastor Warnock risk suburban votes in Georgia's U.S. Senate race

Beau Davis, a 33-year-old security specialist from the Atlanta suburbs, is the kind of voter Republican Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue may need to win runoff elections next month that will determine the balance of power in Washington. But Davis, an independent who has voted twice for President Donald Trump, isn't sure he will vote on Jan. 5. He dislikes Trump loyalist Loeffler's campaign attacks on her Democratic opponent, the Reverend Raphael Warnock, a Black pastor at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. once preached.

U.S. pandemic death toll mounts as danger season approaches

U.S. deaths from the coronavirus pandemic have surged past 2,000 for two days in a row as the most dangerous season of the year approached, taxing an overwhelmed healthcare system with U.S. political leadership in disarray. The toll from COVID-19 reached its second-highest level ever on Wednesday with 2,811 lives lost, according to a Reuters tally of official data, one short of the record from April 15.

Biden says he'll publicly get a COVID-19 vaccine, keep Fauci

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden said on Thursday he would publicly take a coronavirus vaccine to demonstrate its safety to the public and pledged to retain the nation's top adviser on the pandemic, Anthony Fauci, when he takes office next month. "People have lost faith in the ability of the vaccine to work," Biden told CNN in an interview that aired on Thursday.

Trump unveils $207 million fundraising haul after election in effort to overturn result

President Donald Trump's campaign and the Republican National Committee have raised $207.5 million since Election Day, according to a statement on Thursday, gathering donations to pay for challenges to Democrat Joe Biden's win in the Nov. 3 poll. The post-election fundraising haul brought the combined fundraising of Trump committees between Oct. 15 and Nov. 23 to $495 million, the Trump campaign said.

Roles of Trump fundraiser, Kushner's attorney were scrutinized in pardon bribe probe

A former Trump fundraiser and a prominent lawyer were among the people scrutinized by the Justice Department for their roles in what a judge described as a possible bribery scheme to win a presidential pardon for a convicted felon, lawyers for the men said Thursday. Lawyer Abbe Lowell's attorney and friend Reid Weingarten said his client was never a target or subject in the Justice Department's inquiry, while former fundraiser Elliot Broidy's attorney William Burck said his client was "not under investigation and has not been accused by anyone of any wrongdoing whatsoever."

California governor issues regional lockdown plans as ICUs near capacity

California's governor on Thursday announced plans to impose COVID-19 stay-at-home orders on a regional basis, with tougher social and economic restrictions to be triggered when intensive care units near maximum capacity at a region's hospitals. The latest constraints, unveiled as coronavirus infections and hospitalizations soared further, will take effect after 48 hours in any of five designated geographic regions where available ICU space falls to 15% of capacity or less, Governor Gavin Newsom said.

Biden says bipartisan coronavirus aid bill should be passed but will still need more

President-elect Joe Biden said on Thursday a bipartisan coronavirus aid bill should be passed but that he will have to ask for more once in office. During an interview with CNN alongside Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, Biden said the $908 billion bill proposed by moderates in the U.S. Senate should be seen as a "start" to providing relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fire crews battle to tame Southern California wildfire after thousands flee

Firefighters battled to tame a wildfire on hillsides southeast of Los Angeles late on Thursday, some 24 hours after it broke out in a wooded canyon, apparently triggered by a faulty domestic generator. The fire, which forced the evacuation of some 25,000 people, was 10% contained but still burning across 6,400 acres. Two of some 500 firefighters deployed to control it had been hospitalized with injuries, the Orange County Fire Authority said on Twitter.

U.S. Congress defense bill defies Trump on Germany withdrawal, base names

U.S. lawmakers unveiled the final version of a massive annual defense policy bill on Thursday that defies President Donald Trump's plans to withdraw troops from Germany and keep the names of Confederate generals on military bases, setting the stage for a veto fight in the last weeks before he leaves office. The $740 billion, 4500-page National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, is the result of months of negotiations between Republicans and Democrats in the Senate and House of Representatives. Passed every year since 1961, it addresses everything from pay increases for U.S. troops to how many ships or aircraft can be purchased to how to address China and Russia.

Analysis: First U.S. delivery of COVID-19 vaccine will leave out many high-risk workers

The U.S. government's first shipment of millions of coronavirus vaccine doses to be divided among states and federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, will fall far short of protecting high priority groups such as healthcare workers, a Reuters analysis has found. Across the country, state health departments are preparing local hospitals for the first shipments of Pfizer Inc's COVID-19 vaccine if the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorizes it, possibly as early as mid-December.

(With inputs from agencies.)


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