7 Things: Trump appears to have the votes for his SCOTUS pick, Jones is against packing the court, Tuberville willing to forgo his pay if elected and more …
7. CDC unsure about coronavirus aerosol transmission
- While the number of coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations are down nationally, the CDC has released and then revoked the findings that the virus may be more of an aerosol than was thought and that wider restrictions might be needed.
- The guidance, now removed, included increasing social distancing beyond six feet, increasing where masks are worn and new suggestions about ventilation and filtration, which would throw a slowly reopening society for a loop.
6. Anarchist jurisdictions declared
- New York, Seattle and Portland have been deemed “anarchist jurisdictions” by the Department of Justice, due to the riots and protests that caused damage and violence across the cities.
- U.S. Attorney General William Barr said, “We cannot allow federal tax dollars to be wasted when the safety of the citizenry hangs in the balance.” He also expressed that he hopes cities decide to regain order in their areas and “become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting their own citizens.”
5. Former State Sen. Burkette pleads guilty
- As was expected, former State Senator David Burkette (D-Montgomery) has pleaded guilty to violating a campaign finance law, in which he admitted to depositing $3,625 of campaign funds into a personal bank account.
- Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall said, “Personally profiting from campaign funds erodes confidence in the system and will not be tolerated.” Burkette has been sentenced to 12 months of probation and will pay a $3,000 fine.
4. Bus driver in Madison County tests positive
- In the Madison County School system, a bus driver has tested positive for the coronavirus, and parents have been notified of the situation.
- Students and drivers all wear masks on the school bus, and students have to keep a distance of six feet between each other.
3. Tuberville highlights support for veterans
- In a new campaign ad, former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville touted his father’s World War II military service and adds at the end that he’ll “donate my salary to the veterans of the great state of Alabama” if elected to the U.S. Senate.
- In the short ad, Tuberville also says that “anyone who burns this flag should go to prison,” aligning with President Donald Trump.
2. Jones doesn’t support packing the court
- During a Facebook live event hosted by U.S. Senator Doug Jones’ (D-AL) reelection campaign, Alabama’s junior senator discussed the idea of “packing the court” where Congress would pass legislation to add more U.S. Supreme Court Justices as a way to appoint more liberal judges. Theoretically, this is possible, but Jones made it clear that he doesn’t “agree” with this action.
- He explained that he doesn’t “believe in retaliatory measures. I just think that is crazy.” He also spoke about how this would work against the U.S. Constitution’s system of checks and balances, saying, “[W]e’ve had nine folks on the Supreme Court since 1869, I believe. And it’s worked out pretty well over the years…I just don’t think that people should start trying to threaten or do retaliation measures like that.”
1. Trump might have the votes for his SCOTUS pick
- While President Trump has not named his new pick for the Supreme Court, it appears he does have the votes to proceed with the confirmation process as U.S. Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Joni Ernst (R-IA) publicly state that they will consider the merits of the person nominated and not rule out a confirmation as U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have done.
- President Donald Trump has already said he’ll nominate a conservative woman for the U.S. Supreme Court to replace the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. With those two factors, the list of potential nominees has narrowed significantly.