Weekend Digest – January 10, 2021

Weekend Digest – January 10, 2021

Good afternoon and happy Sunday! Congratulations on making it through last week.
Here’s your Daily News for Sunday, January 10.

1. Ivey: Brooks ‘does not speak’ for all Republicans, Alabamians

  • Gov. Kay Ivey says Americans need to “press pause” on divisive rhetoric two days after the U.S. Capitol was ransacked by a mob of President Donald Trump supporters, and she had particularly pointed words for Congressman Mo Brooks saying “he does not speak for all Republicans, much less all Alabamians.”
  • Brooks has not backed away from his remarks at the pro-Trump rally that proceeded the riot, in which he told the crowd “Today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass.” 
  • Later, attendees from the rally swarmed Capitol Hill, breaching security and accosting police officers. Six people died in the melee, including two Capitol Hill police officer and an Alabama man in town for the rally. 
  • While many Democrats and some Republicans have criticized Brooks for his rhetoric in light of the violence that ensued, the Huntsville congressman told Alabama Daily News on Friday “I make no apology” and stood behind the speech.
  • “I make no apology for doing my absolute best to inspire patriotic Americans to not give up on our country and to fight back against Socialists in the 2022 and 2024 elections,” Brooks said in a statement to Alabama Daily News. He encouraged citizens to watch the entire speech and said “ass” referred to the Democratic Party’s symbol of a donkey.
  • Todd broke the story with Ivey’s comment which you can read in full HERE.

 

2. Alabama AG asks review of his GOP group’s rally involvement

  • Alabama’s attorney general is calling for an investigation into who may have authorized a branch of the Republican Attorneys General Association to promote the pro-Trump rally in Washington, D.C., that preceded a deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol.
  • The investigation comes on the heels of a report in Documented, a liberal watchdog group, that said the RAGA’s policy arm authorized and paid for a robocall that called on “patriots” to march on the Capitol as Congress was voting to certify the Electoral College results that declared Joe Biden the winner of the 2020 presidential race.
  • “We are hoping patriots like you will join us to continue to fight to protect the integrity of our elections,” said the recording of the robocall obtained by The Associated Press. It closed by saying that the RAGA’s Rule of Law Defense Fund had paid for and authorized the call.
  • Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, who heads the fund, on Friday said he was asking for an internal review.
  • “I was unaware of unauthorized decisions made by RLDF staff with regard to this week’s rally. Despite currently transitioning into my role as the newly elected chairman of RLDF, it is unacceptable that I was neither consulted about nor informed of those decisions,” Marshall said.
  • “As I’ve previously stated, I condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the actions of those who attempted to storm the U.S. Capitol, a place where passionate but peaceful protestors had gathered and lawmakers debated inside,” Marshal said.
  • Read more from Kim Chandler HERE.

 

3. Alabamians 75 and older, first responders to receive COVID-19 vaccine

  • Alabamians 75 years or older and first responders including law enforcement and firefighters will be able to receive COVID-19 vaccines by appointment starting Jan. 18.
  • The Alabama Department of Public Health and Gov. Kay Ivey made the announcement on Friday but said the addition of these groups is not a full expansion into the next phase of vaccine rollout. 
  • “I appreciate the swift work of ADPH to establish a system to efficiently provide our limited resources of vaccine to as many Alabamians as possible,” Ivey said in a written statement. “We have previously worked to provide vaccines to our health care workers who are on the front lines of the pandemic, and now, are diligently working to expand access to our seniors, law enforcement officers and various members of our first responders.”
  • The ADPH said on Friday that their scheduling hotline had already received a massive amount of calls with receiving over 1.1 million calls on the first day of the hotline being open. 
  • The department also said hospital switchboards continue to be overwhelmed which can prevent or delay care for those needing a hospital’s services. ADPH is urging only those who qualify to receive a vaccine to call into the department’s hotline and not local hospitals. 
  • Read more from me HERE.

 

4. Technology, safety upgrades to State House in time for legislative session

  • Alabama State House leaders on Friday announced a series of technology upgrades meant to help maintain the safety of lawmakers, staff members and the public during the upcoming legislative session amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The State House, originally completed in 1963, has enhanced its Wi-fi network and upgrades to the legislature’s external website to provide enhanced live video streaming of the House and Senate chambers as well as committee hearing proceedings.
  • “The State House’s age and the uneven nature of expansions and renovations over the years made it difficult for its infrastructure to maintain 21st Century technological advances,” said Pat Harris, Secretary of the Alabama Senate in a press release. “The building’s outdated wiring and architecture present challenges as the legislature works to adhere to social distancing policies during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • “To resolve these technological deficiencies, legislative staff has made numerous upgrades to open up the continuity of legislative business and resolve some of the State House’s physical restrictions.”
  • Lawmakers and staff have now been converted to the Microsoft 365 suite of programs to streamline the legislative process by permitting off-site access to documents and e-mails, the press release said.
  • Read about the other changes from me HERE.

 

5. 2nd GOP senator now urges Trump to resign over Capitol riot

  • Two Republican senators now say President Donald Trump should resign as support for the drive to impeach him a second time is gaining momentum in his final days in office after the deadly riot at the Capitol by a violent mob of Trump supporters.
  • Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania on Sunday joined Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski in calling for Trump to “resign and go away as soon as possible.” Murkowski, who has long voiced her exasperation with Trump’s conduct in office, told the Anchorage Daily News on Friday that Trump simply “needs to get out.”
  • Toomey said that even though he believes Trump committed impeachable offenses in encouraging loyalists in the Capitol siege on Wednesday, he did not think there was enough time for the impeachment process to play out. Toomey said that resignation was the “best path forward, the best way to get this person in the rear view mirror for us.” He was not optimistic that Trump would step down before his term ends on Jan. 20.
  • The White House had no immediate comment Sunday.
  • The House appears determined to act despite the short timeline.
  • Late Saturday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., sent a letter to her colleagues reiterating that Trump must be held accountable. She told her caucus, now scattered across the country on a two-week recess, to “be prepared to return to Washington this week.”
  • Read more HERE.

 

Headlines

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama AG asks review of his GOP group’s rally involvement
 
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Technology, safety upgrades to State House in time for legislative session
 
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ivey: Brooks ‘does not speak’ for all Republicans, Alabamians
 
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabamians 75 and older, first responders to receive COVID-19 vaccine
 
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – 2nd GOP senator now urges Trump to resign over Capitol riot
 
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Daily News Digest – January 8, 2021
 
AL.COM – 4,863 new COVID-19 cases in Alabama.
 
AL.COM – Alabama begins 2021 with the worst week ever for new coronavirus cases.
 
AL.COM – Ted Lumpkin, original Tuskegee Airman, dies from COVID-19 at 100.
 
AL.COM – SPLC calls for investigation into Alabama AG’s role in Capitol protest.
 
AL.COM – Contributor Anthony Daniels: The hypocrisy of the GOP is beyond astounding.
 
AL.COM – Earth is spinning its fastest in decades; here’s how scientists are addressing the issue.
 
AL.COM – Alabama police using facial recognition to ID Capitol riot suspects.
 
AL.COM – Alabama hospitals ‘overwhelmed’ with calls about COVID vaccine.
 
AL.COM – ‘Completely different reality’: Alabama racial justice protesters react to police response in Capitol.
 
AL.COM – For some Alabamians, $600 stimulus checks are delayed due to IRS glitch.
 
AL.COM – Columnist Kyle Whitmire: Hey, Big Mules! Quit financing crackpots like Mo Brooks.
 
AL.COM – These 4 people will examine how to rename Confederate-named military bases.
 
AL.COM – JSU’s new business building should be completed by fall.
 
AL.COM – Contributor Amanda Walker: Are we really better than this?
 
AL.COM – Columnist Frances Coleman: Time to examine who we really are.
 
AL.COM – Columnist Cameron Smith: Reclaiming a republic in doubt.
 
AL.COM – Columnist Dana Hall McCain: Alabama’s sins of omission.
 
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Alabama collected record $12.2B revenues in 2020.
 
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Fayette glove manufacturer SHOWA hiring constantly to meet pandemic demand.
 
THE HILL – Republicans wrestle over removing Trump.
 
THE HILL – Capitol riots spark fear of Trump’s military powers in final days.
 
THE HILL – Trump in new legal jeopardy after Capitol riots.
 
POLITICO – Election gambit blows up on Hawley and Cruz.
 
POLITICO – The war between Silicon Valley and Washington takes a new turn.
 
FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – Resolve of heath care workers tested as COVID-19 cases rise.
 
TUSCALOOSA NEWS – Alabama to open COVID-19 vaccine phone appointment system for older adults.
 
ANNISTON STAR – The Anniston Star: Congressman Rogers’ tone-deaf vote after riot at Capitol raises questions about his judgment.
 
OPELIKA AUBURN NEWS – Three proposed bills challenge how Alabama citizens are allowed to vote.