7 Things: Alabama’s COVID-19 mixed bag, CNN’s fake news about Alabama, Trump vs. social media and more …
7. Casinos reopening in June
- Wind Creek Hospitality has said that their three Alabama casinos will reopen to the public on June 8 with new measures in place to try and help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
- Everyone will be required to wear masks, guests and employees will have their temperature checked, capacity on the casino floor is limited to one third, tables and dining areas are all going to be more spread out, hotels will be at half capacity, and employees will be sent home if they show any symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath.
6. The census is moving along slowly
- In Alabama, just 58.2% of households have responded to the 2020 U.S. Census, while Governor Kay Ivey’s goal is to reach at least 80%.
- Alabama isn’t far behind the national response rate, which is currently at 60.1%. The counties in the state that are reporting at a faster rate are Shelby County with 72% of households responding and Madison County with 70.3%.
5. Byrne has joined the lawsuit against Pelosi
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and other Democrats in Congress have supported allowing “proxy” votes where members would be able to vote for their colleagues during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but a lawsuit brought against Pelosi argues that this practice is unconstitutional.
- U.S. Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) said that this “is a blatant violation of the Constitution.” He added that the proxy voting rules could allow “as few as 22 Democrats could claim a quorum and win a vote against all 197 Republicans.” U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) has shown some support of the lawsuit, but Byrne is the only Alabama representative listed as a plaintiff.
4. Trump is prepared to veto FISA bill
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and other House Democrats have pushed forward on Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) provisions, despite Republican pushback, and now President Donald Trump has threatened to veto the whole thing until the investigation into the investigators is concluded and FISA abuses are exposed.
- On Twitter, Trump issued his warning and added that the United States “has just suffered through the greatest political crime in history.” He added, “The massive abuse of FISA was a big part of it!”
3. Trump is mad at social media and making it everyone’s issue
- Fact checks were placed on a few of President Donald Trump’s posts on Twitter recently, and now he’s threatening new regulations or shutting down social media websites, saying they “silence conservative voices.”
- Trump has also said “Big Action to follow,” suggesting that he would impose some kind of executive order to shut down these sites. Action like that would likely require the support of Congress, but others like U.S. Representative Josh Hawley (R-MO) said social media sites “get this special immunity, this special immunity from suits and from liability that’s worth billions of dollars to them every year.” He asked, “Why are they getting subsidized by federal taxpayers to censor conservatives, to censor people critical of China?”
2. CNN misrepresented Alabama beaches
- On Memorial Day, CNN released a report on how crowded the beaches in Alabama were over the holiday weekend, but now Gulf Shores Mayor Robert Craft is speaking out against how CNN misrepresented the circumstances.
- Craft said that while they “can’t control everybody,” he’s “pleased with what I’ve seen down here.” He went on to point out how people are practicing social distancing at the beach, but the camera angles CNN used can easily distort reality, with a horizontal shot making the beach look more packed than it was. Craft said he just doesn’t “think the story is very accurate.”
1. Alabama’s coronavirus cases spike but there is some good news
- Alabama has a surge in coronavirus cases, but one of the hotspots for coronavirus in Alabama, Marshall County, has seen 660 cases of the virus and a total of nine deaths. Now, it’s reported that there are no hospitalizations in the county that are positive for the virus.
- The hospitals in Marshall County are part of the Huntsville Hospital Healthcare System, and they’ve seen very few patients from the coronavirus overall. Huntsville Hospital CEO David Spillers said he “can’t explain” why they had very few hospitalizations while seeing so many cases.