7 Things: Alabama headed back to work, Shelby emptying his war chests, Biden flailing on the actual issues and more …
7. Frustrations felt by families searching for loved ones in Florida condo collapse
- Search and rescue crews have continued work at the site of Champlain Towers South where a beachfront condo complex collapsed last week. Six people have been pronounced dead, but 152 remain missing.
- Families have started to express their frustrations with the search, such as Soriya Cohen, who is still waiting for news about her husband and brother-in-law. She said that she feels like she’s “living in a Third World country and they just don’t care enough” when discussing how the search has been conducted.
6. State Rep. Will Dismukes has been indicted
- State Representative Will Dismukes (R-Prattville) has been indicted by a grand jury on charges related to theft from his former employer. Dismukes is accused of taking more than $2,500 worth of property from Weiss Flooring.
- Dismukes’ attorney Trey Norman has said this case belongs in civil court, not criminal. Dismukes has stated that he believes “when we tell our side I’ll be exonerated.”
5. Vaccines without parental consent, CRT and now this
- As the nation is in the middle of a series of arguments over the current and future state of education, one Washington school system is under fire for a provocative flyer about abortion, condoms, parental consent and all sorts of inappropriate things.
- Middle school students in Tacoma, Washington, were given a flyer originating with Planned Parenthood that suggested 11-year-olds could have sex and condoms, and Plan B and abortions are available for any age. As usual, assistant director of Secondary Education Eric Hogan said this should have never happened. He advised, “The flyer is not part of our curriculum and should not have been sent home with students.”
4. Derek Chauvin sentenced to 22.5 years
- Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was convicted of murdering George Floyd, has been sentenced to 22 and half years in prison. Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said that the sentence “reflects the seriousness” of the crime committed. The maximum sentence allowed under Minnesota law is 40 years.
- Ellison went on to advocate Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act and said that there’s still work to be done with police reform with “a lot of lifting to do.” Ellison added that we need to “have religious leaders, faith leaders, community leaders get out there working with law enforcement to try and stave off what could be a difficult summer if we don’t get ahead of it, and I think we need to.”
3. Biden is still not Trump
- Over the weekend as Trump rallied in Ohio, Fox News released new polling data that shows President Joe Biden’s approval rating overall is at 53% and his disapproval rating is at 43%, but he’s struggling to gain approval on key issues with immigration, China and Russia.
- Only 41% of people approve of how Biden is handling immigration, 39% approve of his stance on China and 42% approve of his handling of Russia. His approval does remain high with how he’s dealt with the coronavirus pandemic at 64%.
2. Shelby is emptying his war chests
- Now that U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) is in his last term in the U.S. Senate, with millions in his campaign and PAC accounts, he is filling up Republican organizations and candidates’ war chests. Shelby gave $160,000 in May alone with all the money going to the ALGOP, RNC, many U.S. Senate incumbents and one person embattled in a primary in Alabama.
- Shelby has made it clear he supports Katie Britt in the U.S. Senate primary against U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) and Lynda Blanchard, so it is not a surprise that he also maxed out on his campaign contributions while staying out of Republican primaries elsewhere.
1. Alabama is returning to work
- In a trend that is playing out in other red states, as the country has come out of the pandemic, the states that ended the increased federal unemployment benefit are putting people back to work faster than states that have not. As people go back, industries across Alabama are returning to work in person.
- While there are people getting back to work, it has still been a slow return to the office for many. Rev Birmingham conducted a survey that shows 29% of people in Birmingham are unsure of when they’ll return to in-person work, 42% will go back in September and only 19% have already started working back in the office. There’s also been growing support for a hybrid work system that allows some days in-office and others working from home.