Tokyo Olympics Opening Ceremony Review: Naomi Osaka & Tonga Man’s Return Couldn’t Elevate Downbeat Affair Of NBC’s Live Morning Broadcast
Ever imagine what it would be like if they held an Olympics and almost nobody came?
Well, with Japanese-born tennis superstar Naomi Osaka holding the flame and lighting the cauldron, today’s opening ceremony of the coronavirus hobbled Games of the XXXII Olympiad live from Japan provided an answer to that query — and it was ultimately neither engaging nor enjoyable.
Leaning chillingly more Death Star than Panhellenic, the nearly four-hour long NBC broadcast event from a virtually locked down Tokyo was a made for TV event in almost all the worst ways. Put it this way, when your penultimate kicker is a Tonight Show-like skit turning on all the lights in the 13 million populated metropolis, you might want to reconsider your global audience’s expectations.
Tokyo Olympics begin with muted ceremony and empty stadium
For NBC, the covid Olympics will be a feat of strange movements and remote mystery
Tokyo Olympics: How Far Will NBC’s TV Ratings Fall?
Team USA doc: 83% of American athletes in Tokyo are vaccinated, but 100 still unvaccinated
Roughly 100 of more than 600 U.S. athletes competing in Tokyo for the Summer Games have not been vaccinated, the U.S. doctor said Friday.
Despite holdouts, NBC News reports that team doctor Jonathan Finoff is happy with the vaccination rate of 83% that he calculated from sorting through athletes’ health histories.
“Eighty-three percent is actually a substantial number, and we’re quite happy with it,” said Dr. Finnoff, medical chief for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee.
The rate is far higher than the general U.S. population’s vaccination rate of 49%.
Rep. Jordan Seeks More Info on Former FBI Official's 2016 Misconduct
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, wants more information regarding a former senior FBI official's misconduct surrounding the 2016 election, the Washington Examiner reported.
Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz this week released a summary that said his investigation into allegations of misconduct against the unnamed then-senior FBI employee uncovered evidence to substantiate them.
Jordan, the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, wrote a letter Wednesday to Horowitz seeking an unredacted case file for the summary, the Examiner reported.
The lawmaker requested all relevant documents, communications, and any other evidence that would help the panel ascertain "the extent of this serious misconduct" and "evaluate the FBI's handling of the matter."
Ala. Gov. Kay Ivey fumes over worst vaccination rate in U.S.: ‘Start blaming the unvaccinated folks’
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said people are “supposed to have common sense” as she unloaded on unvaccinated people for driving coronavirus outbreaks and hospitalizations in her state.
“It’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks. It’s the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down,” she said at a Birmingham event Thursday night that aired by the CBS WIAT affiliate.
Only about a third of Alabama’s population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, putting it worst in the nation alongside Mississippi.
De Blasio bucks mask mandate as COVID-19 cases rise
Banking on vaccine uptick as L.A., other places go back to masks
Los Angeles County and other coronavirus hot spots are reimposing mask mandates, but the Big Apple, the epicenter of last year’s nightmare, is a glaring exception as cases climb as a result of the fast-moving delta strain.
Mayor Bill de Blasio is bucking calls to require face coverings again. He said that would penalize people who have been vaccinated and sow doubt in the minds of those who might come forward.
“People need to get vaccinated, period. Nothing will do what vaccination will do,” Mr. de Blasio, a Democrat, told reporters Thursday. “Are we really going to let ourselves fall back to where we were? Do you really want to see the world shut down again? I mean, let’s get serious. People have to get vaccinated.”
Rep. Hice: Pelosi 'Comfortable' With Republicans Off Committee
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is "comfortable" with Republicans backing away from serving on the select committee investigating the Jan. 6 incidents at the Capitol because she doesn't want the truth to come out, Rep. Jody Hice told Newsmax Thursday.
"She knows at the end of the day, the buck stops with her," said the Georgia Republican on Newsmax's "John Bachman Now." "She wants to talk about wanting the truth. But she does not want the truth because she knows at the end of the day, the buck stops with her."
His comments come after House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy Wednesday pulled back all five of the Republicans he had picked for the committee after Pelosi vetoed Reps. Jim Jordan and Jim Banks.
House Freedom Caucus asks McCarthy to try to remove Pelosi as speaker
The request is a sign of increasing levels of GOP anger toward Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
The conservative House Freedom Caucus is urging Kevin McCarthy to try to boot Nancy Pelosi from her position as speaker, a sign of further escalating tensions after the California Democrat vetoed two of the House Minority Leader’s GOP picks from the Jan. 6 select committee.
In a letter Friday, the far-right group asked McCarthy to file and bring up a privileged motion by July 31 “to vacate the chair and end Nancy Pelosi’s authoritarian reign as Speaker of the House.”
“Speaker Pelosi’s tenure is destroying the House of Representatives and our ability to faithfully represent the people we are here to serve,” they write. “Republicans, under your leadership, must show the American people that we will act to protect our ability to represent their interests.”
The motion is all but guaranteed to fail in the Democratic House, but it signals a stewing anger on the right towards the speaker. The Freedom Caucus’ letter indicates that McCarthy would need to initiate the motion, and if he were to do so, it would further escalate partisan acrimony in the House that has remained high, and occasionally gotten personal, since Jan. 6.
Democrats embrace ‘cook-the-books’ tactic they bashed under Republican reign
“Everybody plays games with it," said House Budget Chair John Yarmuth.
When Republicans have used dynamic scoring in the past, Bernie Sanders called it a "gimmick" and a way to "cook the books." Now Democrats are using the same strategy.
Democratic leaders are relying on that murky budget tactic to shrink the official cost of a $3.5 trillion plan to enact President Joe Biden’s most liberal commitments without Republican support, which is expected to add digits to the already $28 trillion national debt.
The hypocrisy is not lost on Republicans. They endured the ire of Sanders and other Democrats in 2017, when they used dynamic scoring — the controversial technique that involves assuming that a policy will ultimately result in increased government revenue — to justify their $2.3 trillion tax overhaul. Democrats dismiss the GOP backlash as a bit rich.
Texas begins jailing border crossers on trespassing charges
Texas is beginning to arrest migrants on trespassing charges along the U.S.-Mexico border as part of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott's actions that he says are needed to slow the number of border crossings, jailing at least 10 people so far with more on the way, authorities said Thursday.
The arrests put in motion plans that Abbott first announced in June, when he also said that Texas would continue building former President Donald Trump's border wall and called on other governors to deploy law enforcement and National Guard members to the southern border.
The detainees are being held at what had been an empty state prison in Dilley, Texas, about 100 miles (160.93 kilometers) north of the border city of Laredo, said Robert Hurst, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. He said the converted facility will be able to hold more than 950 people.
Biden's quiet court drive
President Biden and the Democratic-controlled Senate have installed more federal judges during the first six months of his presidency than any administration since Richard Nixon's.
Why it matters: While Democrats may spend more time talking publicly about vaccines and infrastructure, the rapid pace of both nominations and confirmations shows judges are one of the party's most urgent priorities. President Trump pushed through his own slate of judges to boost conservatives for decades.
By the numbers: Biden has had eight federal judges confirmed since taking office on Jan. 20.
Chief of Staff Ron Klain and White House counsel Dana Remus — in coordination with the Senate Judiciary Committee — are intensely focused on accelerating Biden's efforts to appoint as many judges as possible.
Not a ‘rubber stamp’: House Democrats threaten to wreck bipartisan infrastructure bill
Republicans say Peter DeFazio is putting his own pet projects above the good of the country
House Democrats are trying to muscle their way into the infrastructure negotiations between President Biden and bipartisan senators, even going as far as threatening to scuttle the entire package.
House Transportation Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio, Oregon Democrat, threw a wrench into the talks this week by pledging to be more than just a “rubber stamp” for the final deal.
“At the moment they just want to send over the bipartisan bill and say we have to take it,” Mr. DeFazio said. “Which I’m not willing to do. … I’m not taking it.”
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When life gives Biden a Lemon
President tells big lie about role in anti-police riots
You know we are in trouble when CNN’s Don Lemon is the smart one.
This is an actual exchange between Mr. Lemon and President Joe Biden during a staged “town hall” Wednesday night in Cincinnati.
LEMON: “You said that you need — we need — more police, right? Your words. So then, how do you respond to Republicans who try to paint you and your party as anti-police?”
BIDEN: “They’re lying.”
So, innocent American citizens saw their cities convulsed with violence, bloodshed, and fire-bombings during the past year — all in protest of police. Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and the entire Democrat Party leadership chose to draft off the violent political movement and whip up the mobs into a further frenzy — all for their own political benefit.
British spy, spooks for hire conspired to take down Trump and steal a U.S. election
The Christopher Steele dossier is the most important political document in America’s modern era.
Imported from London, the dossier contained a dozen or so bogus felony allegations against a U.S. president, Donald Trump, and aides for purported Russian election collusion. It was designed to bring his end.
Unleashing it like a piece of destructive malware, Democratic Party operatives sent the dossier coursing through Washington’s power machines to program them to get Mr. Trump.