7 Things: 50% of Americans vaccinated, unemployment drops as hiring gets tougher, Maxine Waters wants confrontations in the street if Chauvin is acquitted and more …
7. Ledbetter wants to make building schools easier
- Legislation sponsored by State Representative Nathaniel Ledbetter (R-Rainsville) would change how schools and community college construction projects are regulated, allowing the schools to have control over the project as long as the cost is at or below $500,000.
- Public schools and community colleges all have their construction projects overseen by the State Department of Finance’s Division of Constriction Management currently, but some like Dekalb County Schools Superintendent Dr. Jason Barnett have said that when they had local projects, there was a significant drop in cost when state oversight was removed.
6. Still no cruises allowed; Ivey and Stimpson advocating for reopening
- As summer approaches, Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson and Governor Kay Ivey are encouraging the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to remove the ban on cruise ships sailing. Stimpson is concerned with the ban “is the impact it has on citizens and the businesses of Mobile.”
- Stimpson also noted the “hundreds of employees that are directly impacted and hundreds of businesses that are indirectly impacted” by this decision. Governor Kay Ivey has also made statements to encourage the CDC to allow cruise ships to sail again, adding that she’s “totally confident that the Mobile Alabama cruise ship terminal can meet any demands necessary to get this terminal back up and positioned for success.”
5. Tuberville’s vote against “hate crime” bill vindicated
- After U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) voted against the COVID-19 Hate Crimes bill, the Asian American and Pacific Islander caucus within the Alabama Democratic Party called on him to apologize for his vote. He claimed it would lead to the “creation of a database where anyone could report a citizen for hate ‘incidents’ with no fear of punishment if they do so out of spite.”
- AAPI, mostly ignoring his reasoning and proving that he was correct, said that Tuberville’s vote “proves he would rather stoke the flames of insurrection than do his job.” Tuberville previously explained that he voted against considering the legislation over concerns it “bypasses the committee process and emphasizes creating a political narrative rather than careful consideration of real issues facing our country.”
4. Waters wants rioters to be MORE confrontational
- As the Derek Chauvin trial over George Floyd’s death in Minnesota will soon be coming to a close, U.S. Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) has said that if Chauvin is not convicted, “We’ve got to stay on the street and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational. We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”
- Waters made this statement to protesters in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, where protests and riots have been taking place recently over the shooting and death of Daunte Wright. Republicans have criticized Waters’ comments, with U.S. Representative Ken Buck (R-CO) asking, “Why is a sitting member of Congress encouraging protestors to get ‘confrontational?’” U.S. Representative Andy Biggs (R-AZ) said, “The Radical Left don’t care if your towns are burning, if there’s violence in your streets, or if the police are too defunded to defend their communities. As long as the Left appeases their anti-America base, their job is done.”
3. Unemployment below 4%
- In March, unemployment in Alabama fell below 4.0% for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, with the unemployment rate falling to 3.8%, Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington announced.
- Before the coronavirus pandemic started, the state’s unemployment rate was 2.6%, but in March 2021 there were 84,670 people unemployed, as opposed to 91,041 in February.
2. Johnson & Johnson vaccines likely to resume this week
- Dr. Anthony Fauci recently said that he believes the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccines will be available after the Friday meeting between advisers for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where they’ll discuss the vaccine.
- Fauci said he doesn’t “really anticipate that they’re going to want it stretch out a bit longer.” The initial pause of the vaccine came after there were six cases of serious blood clots out of the seven million who had taken the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Fauci also said there are changes are coming to the advice given to vaccinated people.
1. Alabama vaccine numbers are still low
- In Alabama, about 37% of adults have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, as was announced Sunday; 50% of adults across the country have received at least the first dose. Hale County has the most adults vaccinated in the state with almost 45%.
- The number of adults vaccinated in Alabama is at about 1.4 million, with almost 915,000 of those being fully vaccinated. Currently, Madison County is reporting that 40% of adults have received at least one shot; Jefferson County is at 42%, and Mobile County is at 35%.