I was so sorry to hear of the tragic death of Hannah Ford, who worked in Alabama politics these last four or five years and was a friendly face around the State House. My prayers are with her family & fiancé.
Here’s your Daily News for Tuesday, January 19.
1. Jittery district: Inauguration rehearsal evacuated after fire
- The U.S. Capitol complex temporarily locked down Monday during a rehearsal for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration after a fire in a homeless encampment roughly a mile away sent a plume of smoke into the air and caused security concerns in an already jittery city.
- The false alarm briefly interrupted the rehearsal for Wednesday’s inauguration ceremony, a quadrennial exercise in which stand-ins take the roles of Biden and other VIPs and the U.S. Marine Corps Band goes through its paces, including practicing “The Star-Spangled Banner” for Wednesday’s performance by Lady Gaga. Rehearsal resumed not long afterward, accompanied by frequent passes by a helicopter patrolling the skies over the Capitol.
- Read more HERE.
2. It’s Election Day in HD33
- Alabamians in House District 33 will elect a new representative today. That’s Clay, Coosa and Talladega counties.
- Republican Ben Robbins and Democrat Fred Crum are vying to replace Rep. Ron Johnson, R-Sylacauga, who died last year. Johnson, first elected in 1978, was the longest-serving House member.
- Robbins, an attorney from Sylacauga, ran against Johnson in 2018 and lost by about 200 votes.
- Crum, also of Sylacauga, entered the race and was certified by the Alabama Secretary of State in November after the previous Democrat candidate, Terra Foster, withdrew her name to become the director of the Alabama NAACP, The Anniston Star reported.
- Story link.
3. Don’t look now, but Alabama’s COVID-19 numbers are looking better
- The number of Alabamians hospitalized with COVID-19-related symptoms is decreasing slightly this week — 2,798 on Monday — after reaching a high of more than 3,084 last week, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health’s dashboard.
- More than 1,400 new cases were reported Monday, a state holiday, but seven-day averages are trending down, according to BamaTracker.
- Read more and see the latest charts HERE.
4. Biden to propose 8-year citizen path for immigrants
- President-elect Joe Biden plans to unveil a sweeping immigration bill on day one of his administration, hoping to provide an eight-year path to citizenship for an estimated 11 million people living in the U.S. without legal status, a massive reversal from the Trump administration’s hard line immigration policies.
- The legislation puts Biden on track to deliver on a major campaign promise important to Latino voters and other immigrant communities after four years of President Donald Trump’s restrictive policies and mass deportations. It provides one of the fastest pathways to citizenship for those living without legal status of any measure in recent years, but it fails to include the traditional trade-off of enhanced border security favored by many Republicans, making passage in a narrowly divided Congress in doubt.
- Expected to run hundreds of pages, the bill is set to be introduced after Biden takes the oath of office Wednesday, according to a person familiar with the legislation and granted anonymity to discuss it.
- Full story from Lisa Mascaro and Bill Barrow HERE.
5. Bama hoops enters Top 25
- The last two years have seen Auburn basketball climb the rankings and compete with the best in the country. This year it seems to be Alabama’s turn.
- The University of Alabama men’s basketball team shot from unranked to No. 18 in the Associated Press Top 25 after improving to 6-0 in the SEC with its seventh consecutive win.
- The streak, which includes a victory over Tennessee, has coincided with a recharged John Petty Jr. The senior guard returned from a one-game suspension to average 15.7 points over the past six games, including 23 points in a 20-point blowout of Kentucky.
- “You like for guys who decide to come back for their senior year to do great things,” Crimson Tide coach Nate Oats said. “Us being 6-0 and being in first place and (Petty) breaking the school record for 3s made — hopefully, he can play his way into first-round draft pick status and have a great senior year and get this program to where they envisioned it.”
- Gonzaga and Baylor maintained their grip on the top two spots in the poll and Tennessee improved from 10th to 6th.
- Meanwhile, Duke dropped out of the Top 25 after a consecutive 91 weeks.
- Duke dropped to 5-3 overall and 3-1 in the ACC after losing to Virginia Tech last week.
- Full poll and story HERE.
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ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Jittery district: Inauguration rehearsal evacuated after fire
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – House District 33 election today
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – State’s COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations begin trending down
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Biden to propose 8-year citizenship path for immigrants
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Bama into AP Top 25; Duke falls out
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Heavily fortified statehouses around US see small protests
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Photos: Alabama Capitol complex barricaded in anticipation of protests
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – What will a 50-50 Senate mean for Biden agenda?
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Latest Tuberville ‘gaffe’ wasn’t one at all
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Virus, homicides, drugs put strains on funeral homes
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Daily News Digest – January 18, 2021
AL.COM – 1,430 new COVID-19 cases in Alabama; hospitalizations dip
AL.COM – Selma senator: Let locals decide on Edmund Pettus Bridge renaming
AL.COM – Pennsylvania woman suspected of stealing Nancy Pelosi’s laptop, planning to send it to Russia
AL.COM – NASA ‘hidden figure’ Shelby Jacobs answered MLK’s call to Alabama
AL.COM – Columnist Kyle Whitmire: Alabama’s Three Stooges. And Shemp.
AL.COM – Biden may stop Keystone XL pipeline with executive order on first day in office
Montgomery Advertiser – Police investigating 2 shootings, each with one injury
Montgomery Advertiser – Volunteers bring MLK’s legacy of community action to King Hill on day of service
Montgomery Advertiser – Volunteers clean up around childhood home of Claudette Colvin in the King Hill community
Tuscaloosa News – BETTY SLOWE’S BLOG: Jan. 18, 2021 |100 years ago this week
Tuscaloosa News – LOOKING BACK | This week in West Alabama History: Jan. 18, 2021
Tuscaloosa News – Ribbon-cutting ceremony held for Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary
Decatur Daily – People enjoy day off celebrating King’s birthday
Decatur Daily – Denying bond, judge says Falkville man had ‘cache of firepower’ at Capitol riot
Decatur Daily – Decatur family: The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. began the slow march to racial justice
Times Daily – Musical benefit for George Lair scheduled for Saturday in Sheffield
Times Daily – COVID-19 alters MLK events in the Tri-County area
Times Daily – Florence man dies after boat capsizes on Pickwick Lake
Anniston Star – Volunteers gather for MLK weekend cleanup in Anniston
Anniston Star – ‘The dream he left us:’ MLK Day celebration goes on despite COVID (with video program)
Anniston Star – Volunteers gather for MLK weekend cleanup in Anniston
YellowHammer News – Alabama’s coronavirus numbers have started to go down
YellowHammer News – State Sen. Sanders-Fortier to introduce bill that would allow Selma residents to decide on renaming Edmund Pettus Bridge
YellowHammer News – State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris disputes report Alabama ‘last in the country’ on vaccine distribution — ‘We are not even close to last in the country’
Gadsden Times – Martin Luther King Jr. inspired Stevie Wonder’s ‘Happy Birthday.’ The hit helped create a national holiday
Gadsden Times – Turkey Leg Shack in Gadsden offers unique, intriguing new food experience
Gadsden Times – Questions asked, request made, at Gadsden Airport Authority meeting
Dothan Eagle – COVID-19 testing at Houston, Coffee health departments halted due to limited staffing
Dothan Eagle – Wiregrass COVID-19 related deaths mounting as seniors begin recieving vaccine
Dothan Eagle – Dothan School Board to announce new Superintendent Student Advisory Council
Opelika-Auburn News – Opelika man turns brewing hobby into ‘pandemic-proof’ downtown business
Opelika-Auburn News – Profit at Chinese state industry rises with virus recovery
Opelika-Auburn News – Movies in a Minute: “Promising Young Woman”
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – What’s causing slow rollout of COVID-19 vaccine in Jefferson County?
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – ICU bed availability still a concern in Alabama
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Some are wearing two masks for more protection from COVID-19, health leaders weigh on if it works
WSFA Montgomery – Lawmaker planning bill to let Selma residents rename Edmund Pettus Bridge
WSFA Montgomery – WSFA officially donates old Delano Avenue facility to Mercy House
WSFA Montgomery – Montgomery joins nationwide initiative to mourn those lost to COVID-19
WAFF Huntsville – 500 people vaccinated, 300 had appointments at Madison Co. Health Dept.
WAFF Huntsville – Decatur boy back home; beats COVID related illness
WAFF Huntsville – Tanner resident arrested for illegal gambling operation
WKRG Mobile – Four people injured after multiple shootings in Monroe County
WKRG Mobile – Virtual forums scheduled in Pensacola to give input on next police chief
WKRG Mobile – New COVID variant in California tied to multiple outbreaks
WTVY Dothan – Enterprise councilwoman giving back on MLK Day
WTVY Dothan – Congressman Barry Moore connects with Wiregrass farmers
WTVY Dothan – MLK Day parade held in Dothan to keep King’s dream alive
WASHINGTON POST – House security chief said lawmaker wariness of military at Capitol drove his resistance to early request for National Guard
WASHINGTON POST – FBI probes possible connections between extremist groups at heart of Capitol violence
WASHINGTON POST – Melania Trump spends her last days in the White House focused on her future, while her husband rages about the past
NEW YORK TIMES – Trump Prepares Pardon Wave for Final Hours
NEW YORK TIMES – Pentagon Accelerates Efforts to Root Out Far-Right Extremism in the Ranks
NEW YORK TIMES – ‘I Let You Down’: Klete Keller’s Path From Olympics to Capitol Riot
WALL STREET JOURNAL – Trump Weighs Many Pardons on Final Day of Presidency
WALL STREET JOURNAL – Biden Rejects Trump’s Push to Lift Covid-19 Travel Restrictions
WALL STREET JOURNAL – Stock Futures Rise Ahead of Yellen’s Testimony
Front Pages (images link to newspaper websites, which you should visit and patronize)