POLITICS: Say hello to Dr. Rick Bright. He’s the ex-director of the federal office charged with developing a coronavirus vaccine - plus the guy who testified before Congress yesterday. Hint: he blamed the Trump team for ignoring warnings of a mask shortage and politicizing efforts to find a treatment. Then added that the US is in for its “darkest winter in modern history” if the gov doesn’t get its act together. In other news, Sen Richard Burr (R-NC) is stepping down from his position as the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. The why: Burr’s currently under investigation for his stock trading ahead of the stock market crash a couple months ago. This comes after the FBI served him a search warrant and seized his cell phone.
USA: Today, the House of Reps is expected to vote on Dems’ new $3 trillion coronavirus relief package. What’s also expected: some controversy. As in Republicans already shook their heads to the plan - while some progressive Dems aren’t exactly on board, either. The Trump team has even threatened a veto if it ends up passing. Because, partisanship. Meanwhile, a new Federal Reserve report shows the growing inequalities when it comes to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Case in point: 40 percent of households earning less than $40,000 a year faced at least one job loss in March - versus 19 percent for households earning between $40,000 and $100,000 and 13 percent for those earning more than $100,000.
WORLD: All eyes are on Hong Kong. We’ll remind you: last summer, the territory’s gov intro’d a bill that’d make it easier to hand over people accused of crimes in Hong Kong...to mainland China. Raising concerns that the bill would also make it easier for China to punish journalists and activists. Cue massive protests that lasted for weeks and eventually morphed into a cry for more democracy. Some of these protests led to clashes with police - leading to accusations of police brutality. So yesterday, Hong Kong’s police watchdog weighed in...and largely exonerated police officers - but called for a review of the use of tear gas. In other news, today, severe storms - and potentially tornadoes - are expected across the Northeast and Southern Plains.