7 Things: Fauci says COVID-19 could have originated in Wuhan lab, Alabama’s unemployment lowest in Southeast, there was time for gambling and more …
7. If everyone else has been vaccinated, no one should care
- U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has attracted attention for stating that he won’t be getting the coronavirus vaccine, since he previously had the coronavirus in March 2020 and has “natural immunity.”
- Paul added that he won’t be getting vaccinated because it hasn’t been proven that the immunity you get from the vaccine is better than the immunity you get from naturally overcoming the virus. Paul made national headlines for his statements since it doesn’t go along with the current narrative pushed by President Joe Biden’s administration that everyone must be vaccinated.
6. Tuberville supports more school choice
- In an effort to provide more school choice, U.S. Senators Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) and Mike Lee (R-UT) have presented the Children Have Opportunities in Classrooms Everywhere (CHOICE) Act.
- The legislation would give low-income families access to better education options by using federal education funds. The funds could be used toward putting the K-12 grade child in their choice of public school or charter school, but the funds could also be put in an education savings account to go toward tutoring, homeschooling, virtual learning, private school and more options.
5. Anti-Israel protest held in Birmingham
- In Birmingham over the weekend, about 200 people gathered to protest Israel and stand in support of Palestine, saying that they were protesting the violence in Israel. One of the organizers said they wanted to bring more attention to the issues Palestinians in Gaza are facing. One protester, Nicole Haddad, whose mother is Palestinian, said it’s “been traumatizing to see countless innocent people forced out of their homes.” She added, “Birmingham needs to gain awareness of what is happening.”
- Showing how the state is divided on this, Governor Kay Ivey signed legislation that states support for Israel “in its defense against terrorism in the Gaza Strip.” In a statement after signing, Ivey mentioned the “long friendship” Alabama has had with Israel. Two Democratic state representatives had some pretty inflammatory things to say about this legislation, including, State Representative Thomas Jackson claiming that one of the only differences between blacks and Hamas is a lack of rockets.
4. The prison issue is far from resolved
- It is expected that the decade-plus-long saga involving the conditions of Alabama’s prisons could take a definitive turn in the next week. Currently, Governor Kay Ivey is working to secure funding for her prison building program without feedback from the Alabama Legislature, but Speaker Mac McCutcheon (R-Monrovia) says there is another option on the table.
- As Ivey’s plan faces a June 1 deadline, McCutcheon’s plan would involve a more traditional borrowing scheme with bonds for the state to build prisons that it would own. Last week, the Department of Justice declared Alabama is not making enough progress in clearing up the problems in its prison system, but they have said this multiple times over the years.
3. There was time to do gambling
- The widely-used excuse for why the Alabama Legislature didn’t fully deal with gaming and lottery legislation this session was due to not having enough time, but during an appearance on Alabama Public Television’s “Capitol Journal,” State Senator Del Marsh (R-Anniston) dismissed this excuse.
- Marsh said that lack of time is “a poor excuse,” adding, “There was just not the desire there to get it done, bottom line. And it’s not the first time, in my opinion, the House has failed.” He went on to mention the House’s inability to pass legislation on prisons as an example.
2. Alabama has the lowest unemployment rate in the Southeast
- In April, the unemployment rate in Alabama decreased to 3.6%, which is the continued trend since the state started reopening. The unemployment rate was 13.2% in April 2020. Alabama now has the lowest unemployment in the Southeast.
- The 3.6% unemployment rate translates to 79,332 people on unemployment, compared to 288,253 at the same time last year. The Alabama Department of Labor also noted that wages in the state have reached “a record high.”
1. Every day it looks more likely COVID-19 came from a lab in Wuhan
- Many argued that the coronavirus pandemic was created in a lab in Wuhan, China, and now we are learning that people in that lab fell ill before the pandemic started. It was dismissed as a conspiracy theory and treated as an impossibility because it was raised by President Donald Trump and, as usual, Trump was right, and those who dismissed him are scrambling to explain it all away.
- Even Dr. Anthony Fauci, the man treated like the greatest truth-teller and public servant to ever live, is now suggesting he believes it could have come from that lab. Even after saying it was not the source, and the media treating that like gospel, Fauci is now hedging his bets by saying, “No, I’m not convinced about that. I think that we should continue to investigate what went on in China until we find out to the best of our ability exactly what happened.” This was in response to being asked if he was “still confident that [COVID-19] developed naturally.”