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Video: House Democrats say stimulus bill ‘meets the moment’

new video loaded: House Democrats say stimulus bill ‘meets the moment’

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House Democrats say stimulus bill ‘meets the moment’

House Democrats set to approve President Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus package despite Senate parliamentarian’s decision that including a phased increase in the federal minimum wage would violate the rules budgetary.

“This week alone, according to a poll, 76 percent of Americans support the bill, 60 percent of Republicans. You see everyone from the chairman of the Fed to large corporate groups, 150 CEOs, to education groups, to labor groups. You can’t really name one aspect of society that has not come along with this bill. So we believe it’s something that’s – it meets the moment. This bill responds instantly, rises to the challenge, and we believe this is a great victory for the American people and one that will finally get us out of this terrible crisis we are facing. “We will not rest until we adopt the minimum wage of $ 15. We have been involved in the fight for 15 years for a long time. It is legislation that affects an overwhelming majority – a majority of women. Over 60 percent of those earning the minimum wage are women. Many are mothers. And it is so essential for us to do so. And let it happen when we send it out there, we send it – as a symbol of a difference it will make in the lives of the American people. But not just as a symbol, but as a solid proposition. “

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Amanda Gorman captures the moment, in verse

About two weeks ago, poet Amanda Gorman was struggling to finish a new piece called “The Hill We Climb”. She felt exhausted and feared she might not be up to the monumental task she faced: composing a poem about national unity to be recited at the inauguration of President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.

“I had this huge thing, probably one of the most important things I will ever do in my career,” she said in an interview. “It felt like I was trying to climb this mountain all at once, I’m just going to pass out.”

Gorman managed to write a few lines a day and was roughly halfway through the poem on January 6, when pro-Trump rioters burst into the halls of Congress, some carrying Confederate arms and flags. She stayed up late at night and finished the poem, adding verses about the doomsday scene that unfolded at the Capitol that day:

We saw a force that would break our nation rather than share it,

Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.

And this effort almost succeeded.

But if democracy can be periodically delayed,

He can never be defeated definitively.

At 22, Gorman will be the youngest inaugural poet in the United States. She joins a small group of poets who have been recruited to help mark a presidential inauguration, including Robert Frost, Maya Angelou, Miller Williams, Elizabeth Alexander and Richard Blanco.

But none of his predecessors took up the challenge that Gorman poses. She set out to write a poem that would inspire hope and foster a sense of collective purpose, at a time when Americans are reeling from a deadly pandemic, political violence and partisan divide.

“In my poem, I am in no way going to gloss over what we have seen over the past few weeks and, dare I say, the past few years. But what I really aspire to do in the poem is to be able to use my words to imagine a way that our country can still come together and can still heal, ”she said. “It’s doing this in a way that doesn’t erase or overlook the hard truths that I think America needs to come to terms with.”

Gorman fell in love with poetry at a young age and quickly distinguished herself as a nascent talent. Raised in Los Angeles, where her mother teaches in college, she wrote in newspapers on the playground. At 16, she was named the Los Angeles Youth Poet Laureate. A few years later, while studying sociology at Harvard, she became the National Youth Poet Laureate, the first person to hold that position.

In a year that begins with a milestone, with his inaugural appearance, Gorman is poised to reach a much wider audience with his work. In September, Viking Books for Young Readers will publish its first collection of poetry, also titled “The Hill We Climb”, which is aimed at teenage and adult readers and will include the inaugural poem. His first picture book, “Change Sings”, with illustrations by Loren Long, was released the same day.

Yet despite having been in the limelight before, she has never performed her work for TV audiences that will likely number in the tens of millions, as part of a lineup that includes Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lopez.

“No pressure,” Gorman laughs.

Biden’s inaugural committee contacted Gorman late last month. During a video call, she learned that Jill Biden had seen a reading she gave at the Library of Congress and suggested that Gorman read something at the inauguration. She was not given any explicit direction on what to write, she said.

“They didn’t want to put railings for me at all,” she said. “The theme for the entire opening is ‘America United’, so when I heard that was their vision, it made it very easy for me to say, this is also what I wanted to write in my poem, on America united, on a new chapter in our country.

At the same time, Gorman felt that the poem should recognize the dark chapter in American history that we are living through.

“We have to face these realities if we are to move forward, so this is also an important touchstone of the poem,” she said. “There is room for sorrow and horror, hope and unity, and I also hope there is a breath of joy in the poem, because I think we have a lot to celebrate. during this inauguration.

Gorman started the process, as she always does, with research. She was inspired by speeches by American leaders who attempted to bring citizens together during times of intense division, including Abraham Lincoln and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She also spoke to two of the previous groundbreaking poets , Blanco and Alexander.

When she asked Alexander for advice, “she just said, ‘The poem is already written, it’s already done. Now it’s up to you to bring it to life as best you can, ”Gorman said.

To prepare for Wednesday’s event, she practiced reading the poem over and over again, to the point where she feels confident that she won’t stumble over the words. “For me, it takes a lot of energy and work,” she says. “Writing The process is its own excruciating form, but as a person with a speech impairment speaking in front of millions presents its own kind of terror.

Gorman is comforted by something Blanco told him when they spoke, when he said that “this is just not one of us up there, it is a representation of American poetry”.

“Today more than ever, the United States needs an inaugural poem,” said Gorman. “Poetry is usually the touchstone we return to when we need to remember the history we stand on and the future we stand for.”

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‘Our New York moment’: Southern California bounces back as virus rises

By almost all major metrics, the spread of the virus is profoundly more severe in Southern California. The San Francisco Bay Area has 4 percent of its intensive care beds still available and the far north of California 25 percent. Southern California hit zero percent weeks ago.

Los Angeles County has reported more cases this week than San Francisco has reported throughout the pandemic.

“It’s day and night,” said Dr. Bob Wachter, professor and head of the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.

The reasons for the split, according to experts, are complex and numerous.

The Bay Area has one of the highest average incomes in California, possibly giving residents more ways to protect themselves. Many in the North are employed in the tech industry, which at the onset of the pandemic led to working from home. Compared to Southern California, the Bay Area also has a higher percentage of White and Asian households, groups that had the lowest infection rates in the state.

In the Los Angeles area, in the parking lot outside the Huntington Park Community Hospital, Mr Estrada saw more than a dozen bodies brought into an unmarked white refrigerated container, the makeshift mortuary.

“You basically wait until you see your family member come out in a bag,” he says.

Her 72-year-old grandmother was recently placed on a ventilator.

“She’s fighting right now,” he said. “So if she’s fighting, we have to stay here fighting for her.

Manny Fernandez reported from Los Angeles, Thomas fuller from Moraga, California, and Mitch smith from Chicago. Reporting was contributed by Louis keene of Huntington Park, California, Ana Facio-Krajcer from Los Angeles and Joe Purtell from San Francisco.

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How Obama sees this moment

Even amid a raging pandemic, President Trump remains focused on spreading conspiracy theories about the election he lost, encouraged by conservative news media and social media disinformation campaigns . Most Republicans seem resigned to ceding their party to the president, refusing to demand that he accept reality and resign. (Note: not a single Republican lawmaker agreed to appear on any of the Sunday talk shows this weekend.)

Complaints of a partisan standoff are nothing new: For more than a decade, experts have complained about the inability of lawmakers to compromise and accomplish great things. But now those intractable divisions have spread across the country, leaving us unable to form consensus on even the most basic facts, like Mr. Biden’s victory or the need to wear masks to fight a deadly virus.

This is the argument advanced by Mr. Obama in the interviews surrounding the publication on Tuesday of the first volume of his new memoir, “The Promised Land”.

With the elections over, the former president is sounding the alarm bells on our democracy. His comments to The Atlantic, NPR, and CBS News are striking considering they come from a president who was known – and often criticized – for his “Obama without drama” style in office. Consider what he said to Jeffrey Goldberg from The Atlantic:

“America is the first real experience of building a great multiethnic and multicultural democracy. And we don’t yet know if that can hold up. There hasn’t been enough of it in long enough to say for sure it’s going to work.

Mr. Obama centers much of his concern on the “degradation of truth” – the decline of agreement on central facts and the blurring of the lines between fact and opinion in civic life. The term comes from a report released by the RAND Corporation in 2018 that was included on Mr. Obama’s summer reading list that same year. He told The Atlantic:

“If we don’t have the ability to distinguish what is true from what is false, then by definition the ideas market is not working. And by definition, our democracy does not work. We are entering an epistemological crisis. “

Mr. Obama does not see his successor as the cause of the rise of populism, a movement he traces to the 2008 election when Sarah Palin, the Republican running mate, energized his party base. While he couldn’t help but cast a shadow over Mr. Trump:

“I’m not surprised that someone like Trump can get involved in our politics. It is a symptom as much as an accelerator. But if we had had a right-wing populist in this country, I would have expected someone to be a little more attractive.

Rather, he blames the media environment, the decline of local news and the refusal of social media companies to take responsibility for conspiracy theories posted on their platforms. There is no longer a “common base of facts and common history”, he declared.

Mr. Obama even seemed to be wondering if he could win the presidency if he ran today.

“Even as late as 2008, usually when I’ve been to a small town, there is a small town newspaper, and the owner or editor is a conservative guy with a team cut, can -be, and a bow tie, and he’s been a Republican for years. He doesn’t have much patience for liberals to tax and spend, but he’ll take a meeting with me, and he’ll write an op-ed that says, ‘He’s a liberal attorney from Chicago, but he seems to be decent enough guys. , had good ideas ”; and the local TV channel will cover me directly. But you go to these communities today and the newspapers are gone. If Fox News isn’t on every TV in every barbershop and VFW room, then it could be a Sinclair-owned station, and the presuppositions that exist there, about who I am and what I believe, are so fundamentally different, have changed so much. a lot, that it is difficult to break through.

Mr Biden won the White House by promising a return to political norms, a wish that may be impossible to fulfill given the types of changes being denounced by Mr Obama. Whether Mr. Biden, a longtime creature of old Washington, can navigate our new political and media reality will likely be a central test of his presidency.

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A moment to reflect and look to the future

For Joe Massaua, a high school student from Villanova, Pa., The election got him excited about what the future could bring …

We have urgent issues to resolve now: Covid-19, a recession, racial justice, and climate change. America is on the way to being more unified than ever before; we must carry it out, with the actions of our local leaders and those on the national scene. We are a diverse American community. I sincerely hope that both sides put politics aside to work for the good of the American people.

… But Drew Currie, writing from Colorado, says there may be no way to correct the country’s differences.

It’s time to find a way to officially split into two nations. Let’s avoid civil war. Let’s use words to find our way through a peaceful division.

Kate Landry of Hickory, North Carolina, worries about the lasting impact of President Trump …

It appears Trump has ripped the bandage from a festering wound of racism, ignorance, and rampant anger and hatred. I am sad and discouraged.

… While Martin Sherlock of Naples, Florida blames the news media.

I listened to bad words in the media and called the president all kinds of names for over four years. I wait to see how you denigrate the next president! The media does not have a journalist or conservative staff, which I see as a big divisive issue. Mr. Trump is absolutely right when he says this is all fake news.

Lee Cross from Fort Smith, Ark., Just wants to go back to not thinking about politics …

I can’t wait to get off this political roller coaster we’ve been on for the past week and return to the ever-growing pile of must-see journals and books to read. And since the Christmas holidays will be very calm this year, I fervently hope that for once we can observe the Advent season as it should be. We all need time for peaceful reflection and – whatever our beliefs – hopes and prayers for the Biden-Harris administration.

… But Tom Levy of Oakland, Calif., Says the fight is far from over…

For those of us who wrote postcards and letters, and banked by phone and SMS to voters in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and Georgia to get out the vote – the election is definitely NOT over. That’s because two Senate seats in Georgia are still up for grabs in the second round of elections scheduled for Jan. 5. Sleep. And rest. Because those of us determined to do our best to help elect Democrats to the Senate in Georgia are about to launch out across the country.

… And Richie Feathers of Boston is already worried about the race after the second round.

Instead of basking in victory for more than a day, I’m already worried about 2022, which, if history is any indication, will now turn red. This early reprimand from Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be particularly frustrating as voters will argue that it is not done enough, but return their votes for Republican senators who make sure not enough is done.

Sam Fisher, of Katy, Texas, sees hope for political dialogue near his home …

Hope the knot clears my tummy and my hair stops falling out! I have high hopes because my dear friend and dear cousin have opposing views to mine, politically speaking, and through it all we are working hard to listen to each other, learn from each other, respect each other, love each other and find common ground. And dadgum, if we can do it, the whole nation should be able to do it!

… And Darrell Sabin, of Moraga, Calif., Sees a two-party system working.

I watch this election and I am more convinced than ever that our form of government will stand the test of time. This election has shown that we have two healthy parties. Republicans and Democrats set voter turnout records. Fortunately, our country has Republicans and Democrats. Neither party has all the answers. Both parties are wrong and both parties are “sometimes” right. One part corrects the other part. Messy – but healthy.

But Jo Baxter of Palm City, Florida sees desperate divisions …

I don’t see much hope in this divided and petty environment, where the two sides can’t even agree on the facts of a given situation. I am delighted with the election of Biden, but frightened by the massive amount of support for Trump. Trump could possibly leave the White House, but he has sullied the Oval Office forever.

… And Jeanne-Marie Lane of Everett, Washington, sees an uphill battle ahead.

I’m not really looking for extraordinary and remarkable moments for the next four years. I hope for a return to communication and actions resulting from the willingness to compromise on both sides of the issues, as Trump will not be in the middle, causing continued conflict and mistrust.

It may take four years for all of us to recover, even slightly. Return to respect for each other. We have been in a war zone and it may take more than several years to feel better about yourself and yourself and recover.

Ginny Swart of Cape Town is just wondering if the nearly $ 14 billion spent on the election could have been better spent …

The spirit is breathtaking. They could have fixed climate change for it. Iran fixed. Correction of the health service. All that wasted money.

… And Lynn Alvey from Milwaukee speaks for all of us – especially those of us at On Politics.

Has it really been a week since the election? Why does it seem like years?

Reader responses have been edited and condensed. Thank you, as always, to my colleague Isabella Grullón Paz for her help.


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Barrett sits at a pivotal moment

Amy Coney Barrett joins court as Conservative majority limits recount in Wisconsin. It’s Tuesday and here is your political advice sheet. register here to get On Politics delivered to your inbox every day of the week.

A screen showed video of the final candidates’ debate as President Trump spoke at a rally in Allentown, Pa. Yesterday.


Keep up with Election 2020

ST. PAUL, Minnesota – David Schultz, a professor at Hamline University here, recently gave students in his introduction to the American politics class a lecture on the history of the franchise.

In an interview outside of the classroom, he noted how many Minnesotans were already exercising those rights – by Friday more than 1.1 million early votes had been accepted, far exceeding 2016 totals.

“The Democrats have been very mobilized to come out and vote this time,” Schultz said. “Republicans show up more on Election Day, but a high turnout should bode well for Joe Biden.”

The divide in Minnesota between Democrats who vote early and Republicans who plan to vote on Nov. 3 is consistent with what has been seen in other states. Returned vote rates were particularly high in Hennepin and Ramsey counties, which are home to the Democratic-leaning Twin Cities.

Jennifer Carnahan, the president of the Minnesota Republican Party, agreed in an interview that a large number of Republican voters would turn up on election day.

“For a lot of people, it’s about tradition,” she says. “I did not ask for a postal vote. I have always voted in person. There are a lot of people like me there.

Both sides are hopeful that a large turnout can help them in the state, which Hillary Clinton won by a surprisingly slim margin in 2016. “Nobody takes anything for granted,” said Ken Martin, Chairman of the Democratic Party. Labor peasant from Minnesota. version of the Democratic Party. “We are not resting on our laurels.”

Many voters here, where snow has already blanketed parts of the state, decided to vote early or by mail to avoid crowds during the coronavirus pandemic. Election officials said turnout would be further facilitated by Minnesota’s voting rules, including early voting that began Sept. 18, increased number of ballot drop-off sites and daytime registration. even the ballot which requires little more than the word of a neighbor for approval.

Colleen Moriarty, president of the Minneapolis chapter of the League of Women Voters, said she hopes young voters will turn out in large numbers, which would be a good indication that the advocacy to get out the vote is having an impact. “I’m in my 60s and can’t remember an election where there were so many messages to vote on from so many different sources,” she said.

The organization made a special point to encourage voting in the city’s eighth and ninth wards, which converge at the intersection where George Floyd was trapped below the knee of a Minneapolis police officer before his death. In the three polling stations immediately surrounding the site, which many now call the George Floyd Memorial, 42% of the roughly 6,000 registered voters had already voted by Friday – 20 percentage points higher than the total anticipated turnout in 2016.

“We are the community that led to the murder of George Floyd, and we want to make sure that everyone has a voice and that those voices are protected,” Moriarty said. “Right away at George Floyd’s site, we had voter registration tables and we focused on areas where there was a lot of civil unrest.”

In Schultz’s classroom, a student urged his classmates to vote.

“I can’t vote, but I would say immigration is one of the main issues in this election,” said Bryan Rodriguez Andino, 21, a Nicaraguan immigrant who sat in the front row. He is trying to become a naturalized citizen so that he can vote in the next election.

“I’m counting on you guys to make a good decision,” he told the class.


The New York Times Magazine

Republican voters are essentially the same people who voted Republican before Trump; party politicians are still mostly the same people, mostly hiring the same strategists.

But their relations with the party now pass through one man, who never offered a clear vision of his political program beyond its immediate expansion.

Whether Trump wins or loses in November, no one else in the official party ranks seems to have one either.

On Politics is also available as a newsletter. register here to have it delivered to your inbox.

Do you think we are missing something? Do you want to see more? We would love to hear from you. Write to us at onpolitics@nytimes.com.

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Missed moment for Trump? The second debate suggests what could have been

Mr. Trump returned to this point while campaigning at The Villages retirement home in Florida. “I said whoa, do you want to get rid of the oil and gas?” said the president. “Do – yes, we want to phase it out.” I said thanks, Texas, are you looking? Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, Ohio, you look? ”

Keep up with Election 2020

And Mr Biden gave a speech in Delaware in which he attacked Mr Trump for his handling of the pandemic, which polls have found has turned many Americans against the president.

“President Trump said he found a cure,” Biden said, drawing on the president’s remarks the night before. “But let me tell you, 1,000 people die every day.”

Republicans, seeking encouragement in the face of disheartening polls, said they hoped the loud and crowded rallies the president embarked on on the battlefields from Wisconsin to North Carolina this weekend , against pressure from health officials, would offer a powerful contrast to Mr. Biden and result in end-of-campaign enthusiasm and voter turnout.

“Biden’s strategy against the clock is running out of steam, and the contrast to Trump’s rallies and energy is remarkable,” said Scott Reed, who was Bob Dole’s campaign manager when he ran for office. the presidency in 1996. “Enthusiasm counts. the homestretch, and this race is far from over.

Even before their final debate, Mr Biden had rebuffed accusations that he supported a ban on fracking, a potentially damning line of attack in states like Pennsylvania. He said during the debate that he only supported a ban on fracking on federally owned land, a distinction that could have been lost in the tumult of the last moments.

Mr Biden is planning two stopovers in Pennsylvania on Saturday, appearances that were scheduled before the debate but now give him the opportunity to remedy any damage he may have caused with his comments on fossil fuels.