Workers have installed nearly 200 glittering Waterford crystal triangles on Times Square's New Year's Eve ball in preparation for a pandemic-limited celebration. (Dec. 28)
Workers have installed nearly 200 glittering Waterford crystal triangles on Times Square's New Year's Eve ball in preparation for a pandemic-limited celebration. (Dec. 28)
The debate about the U.S. Electoral College pits those who think the president should be chosen via popular vote versus those who believe the interests of small and large states must be balanced.
Deemed consent organ donation means that everyone is assumed to be an organ donor unless they opt out, but assuming consent raises some ethical issues.
MAMUJU, Indonesia — Indonesian rescuers on Sunday retrieved more bodies from the rubble of homes and buildings toppled by a strong earthquake, raising the death toll to 78, while military engineers managed to reopen ruptured roads to clear access for relief goods. More heavy equipment reached the hardest-hit city of Mamuju and the neighbouring district of Majene on Sulawesi island, where the magnitude 6.2 quake struck early Friday, said Raditya Jati, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency’s spokesperson. A total of 67 people died in Mamuju and 11 in Majene, said the director of preparedness for the National Search and Rescue Agency, Didi Hamzar. Power supplies and phone communications have begun to improve in the quake areas. Thousands of people were left homeless and more than 800 were injured, with more than half of them still receiving treatment for serious injuries, Jati said. The disaster agency’s data showed that nearly 27,850 survivors were moved to shelters. Most of them went to makeshift shelters that have been lashed by heavy monsoon downpours. Only a few were lucky to be protected by tarpaulin-covered tents. They said they were running low on food, blankets and other aid, as emergency supplies were rushed to the hard-hit region. “We are unable to return to our destroyed homes,” said a father of three who identified himself only as Robert. He said he fled from his bed while being treated at Mamuju’s Mitra Manakarra hospital, which was flattened by the quake. He and his family are among thousands of displaced people who took shelter in a hilly area. He said his bed was shaking when he awoke and realized that it was an earthquake. He then removed a drip from his hand and ran out. He had seen several nurses helping patients who were unable to move before the building collapsed. “I cried when I saw the hospital where I was being treated collapse with people still inside. I could have died if I got out late,” he said. Rescuers managed to retrieve four survivors and four bodies from the rubble of the flattened hospital, according to the Search and Rescue Agency. Jati said that at least 1,150 houses in Majene were damaged and that the agency was still collecting data on damaged houses and buildings in Mamuju. Mamuju, the provincial capital of nearly 300,000 people, was strewn with debris from collapsed buildings. The governor's office building was almost flattened by the quake and a shopping mall was reduced to a crumpled hulk. The disaster agency said the army corps of engineers cleared the road connecting Mamuju and Majene that had been blocked by landslides. They also rebuilt a damaged bridge. The disaster agency’s chief, Doni Monardo, said authorities were trying to separate high- and lower-risk groups and provided tens of thousands of masks for refugees to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the crowded camps. He said authorities would also set up health posts at the camps to test people for the virus. People being housed in temporary shelters were seen standing close together, many of them without masks. “In this emergency situation ... it is difficult for us to observe health protocols," said Fatimah Zahra, a Mamuju resident who moved to a makeshift shelter. West Sulawesi province has recorded more than 2,500 cases of the coronavirus, including 58 deaths. Indonesia has confirmed nearly 908,000 cases and almost 26,000 fatalities. Many on Sulawesi island are still haunted by a magnitude 7.5 earthquake that devastated Palu city in 2018 and set off a tsunami that caused soil to collapse in a phenomenon called liquefaction. More than 4,000 people were killed, including many who were buried when whole neighbourhoods were swallowed in the falling ground. Indonesia, home to more than 260 million people, is frequently hit by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis because of its location on the “Ring of Fire,” an arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin. A massive magnitude 9.1 earthquake off Sumatra island in western Indonesia in December 2004 triggered a tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries. ___ This story has been corrected to show that the earthquake struck early Friday morning, not Friday night. _____ Associated Press writer Niniek Karmini in Jakarta, Indonesia, contributed to this report. Muhammad Rifki And Yusuf Wahil, The Associated Press
KENOVA, W.Va. — Griffith & Feil Drug has been in business since 1892, a family-owned, small-town pharmacy. This isn't their first pandemic. More than a century after helping West Virginians confront the Spanish flu in 1918, the drugstore in Kenova, a community of about 3,000 people, is helping the state lead the nation in COVID-19 vaccine distribution. West Virginia has emerged as an unlikely success in the nation's otherwise chaotic vaccine rollout, largely because of the state's decision to reject a federal partnership with CVS and Walgreens and instead enlist mom-and-pop pharmacies to vaccinate residents against the virus that has killed over 395,000 Americans. More shots have gone into people’s arms per capita across West Virginia than in any other state, with at least 7.5% of the population receiving the first of two shots, according to federal data. West Virginia was the first in the nation to finish offering first doses to all long-term care centres before the end of December, and the state expects to give second doses at those facilities by the end of January. “Boy, have we noticed that. I think the West Virginia model is really one that we would love for a lot more states to adopt,” said John Beckner, a pharmacist who works at the Alexandria, Virginia-based National Community Pharmacists Association, which advocates for pharmacies across the country. It's early in the process, but that has not stopped Republican Gov. Jim Justice from proclaiming that the vaccine effort runs counter to preconceived notions about the Mountaineer State. “Little old West Virginia, that was thought of for hundreds of years, you know, as a place where maybe we were backward or dark or dingy,” Justice said last week. Rather than relying on national chains, 250 local pharmacists set up clinics in rural communities. The fact that residents who may be wary of the vaccine seem to trust them makes a difference. “As my uncle always told me, these people aren’t your customers, they’re your friends and neighbours,” said Ric Griffith, the upbeat pharmacist at Griffith & Feil in Kenova, a town just west of Huntington near the Kentucky state line. A chatty raconteur and former mayor of Kenova, he can recall generations of patrons frequenting the shop, which is almost unchanged since the 1950s, with a soda fountain and jukebox in the front and prescriptions in the back. Griffith, 71, began taking over the pharmacy from his father in the early 1990s and was elected to the House of Delegates as a Democrat last year. His daughter, Heidi Griffith Romero, 45, followed into the family business and is also administering shots. Holding a vaccination clinic at the town high school, he recalled his uncle telling him he lost four classmates to the 1918 flu pandemic, which killed more than 50 million people worldwide. “And it was a tragedy that I thought I would never be involved with,” he said, taking a break from giving vaccines to teachers aged 50 and over. When Mark Hayes, a middle school guidance counsellor in Kenova, walked up to receive his first dose, he spotted Griffith, who holds local celebrity status for hosting an extravagant annual Halloween pumpkin-carving party that attracts thousands. “I recognized him right away,” Hayes said. “‘The Pumpkin King? Are you giving me the shot?’” Kevin Roberts, a 59-year-old school bus driver in Kenova, said “it makes a difference” for a pharmacist he knows to administer the shots. “I hope that a lot of these skeptics change their mind,” he said. Officials also credit a 50-person command centre at the state’s National Guard headquarters in the capital of Charleston. Inside a cavernous hall, leaders of the vaccine operation and state health officials sit between plexiglass dividers to oversee shipments of the precious doses to five hubs. From there, deliveries go to drugstores and local health departments. CVS has so far declined to work with state officials on vaccinating people at its stores, but Walgreens is participating and has joined in to hold clinics at some nursing homes, officials said. The federal partnership involving both companies would have allowed Washington officials to dictate the terms of nursing home vaccinations, said Marty Wright, the head of the West Virginia Health Care Association, which represents health care companies. “If the state would've activated the federal plan, the state would've had zero control over the situation,” Wright said. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar praised West Virginia's efforts to vaccinate the elderly. “Expanding eligibility to all of the vulnerable is the fastest way to protect the vulnerable,” Azar said Tuesday at an Operation Warp Speed meeting. He also highlighted Connecticut as a bright spot in the vaccine rollout. Given West Virginia's success so far, leaders are now seeking more doses so they can open vaccinations for more groups. The Griffith & Feil store has had to decline shots for out-of-state customers who caught word of West Virginia's success. The governor recently lowered the age of eligibility for members of the general public to 70. The efforts have not been without errors. The Boone County Health Department was barred from distributing the vaccine last month after it mistakenly gave 44 people an antibody treatment instead of vaccines. The state began vaccinating school workers aged 50 or older less than two weeks ago. The governor wants in-person learning to resume at as many schools as possible by Tuesday, long before teachers will have received their second vaccine doses. As of Saturday, over nearly 128,000 first doses have been administered, and 22,966 people have received both shots. Over 54,000 of the first doses have gone to residents aged 65 and older. Mitchel Rothholz, who leads immunization policy at the American Pharmacists Association, said other governors would be wise to enlist local pharmacies. “Especially at a time when you have vaccine hesitancy and concerns in vaccine confidence, having access to a health care provider like a community pharmacist provides a comfort level to the patients and communities,” Rothholz added. ___ Associated Press Writer John Raby contributed to this report. Cuneyt Dil, The Associated Press
The past week has been challenging for the Cowichan Tribes on Vancouver Island. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases within the community started off at 73 on Monday and continued to climb all week. Then, after a barrage of racist comments were posted online in reaction to the reported cases, the First Nation decided to stop publicly sharing its COVID-19 data. "It was a lot all at once," said Councillor Stephanie Atleo. "It left us tired and a bit overwhelmed." Cowichan leaders say new cases continue to emerge. But there was a glimmer of hope, in the form of 600 vaccine doses that were delivered to the community. Atleo was one of the people tasked with coordinating the response and said while getting vaccines was clearly positive, it led to its own challenges. "We were informed Monday and we had the clinic up Wednesday," said Atleo. Using the model the community developed for administering the flu shot last fall, the nation set up tents and checkpoints in parking lots. Atleo said they had originally planned to offer vaccinations over three days with the addition of a possible fourth day. But demand from community members forced them to change their plans yet again. "I was shocked that we ended up doing it in just two days. But I was so happy for all the people who got vaccinated," said Atleo. Being able to administer the vaccines so quickly was a result of hard work and dedication on the part of health-care staff and band workers, many of whom had to work overtime or in staggered shifts, Atleo said. It's not clear when the next round of vaccines will arrive, but Atleo is happy that a tough week had at least a little silver lining. "I feel pretty confident that everybody we wanted to vaccinate first came out," she said.
WASHINGTON — The Latest on President Donald Trump's impeachment, President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration and the fallout from the Jan. 6 attack of the Capitol by pro-Trump loyalists (all times local): 9:05 a.m. Actor-playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda and rockers Jon Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen are among the stars who will highlight a prime-time virtual celebration televised Wednesday night after Joe Biden is inaugurated as the 46th president. Biden’s inaugural committee announced the lineup Sunday for “Celebrating America,” a multinetwork broadcast that the committee bills as a mix of stars and everyday citizens. Miranda, who wrote and starred in Broadway’s “Hamilton,” will appear for a classical recitation. Musicians John Legend, Demi Lovato and Justin Timberlake, among others, will join Springsteen and Bon Jovi. Actresses Kerry Washington and Eva Longoria will act as hostesses, with former NBA star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar also scheduled to appear. The segments will include tributes to a UPS driver, a kindergarten teacher and Sandra Lindsey, the first American to receive the COVID-19 vaccine outside a clinical trial. The broadcast is in lieu of traditional inaugural balls. Biden plans still to be sworn in on the Capitol's West Front, but with a scaled-down ceremony because of the coronavirus and tight security after the Jan. 6 violent insurrection on the Capitol as Congress convened to certify his victory. ___ HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IMPEACHMENT, THE INAUGURATION AND THE FALLOUT FROM THE JAN. 6 RIOTING AT THE CAPITOL: Across the country, some statehouses are closed, fences are up and extra police are in place as authorities brace for potentially violent demonstrations over the coming days. The safeguards will remain in place leading up to President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday. Biden plans to roll back some of President Donald Trump’s most controversial policies and take steps to address the coronavirus pandemic hours after taking office. Read more: — Deceptions in the time of the ‘alternative facts’ president — Biden outlines ‘Day One’ agenda of executive actions — Gen. Milley key to military continuity as Biden takes office — Guard troops pour into Washington as states answer the call — Harris to be sworn in by Justice Sotomayor at inauguration — Biden to prioritize legal status for millions of immigrants — Will Trump’s mishandling of records leave a hole in history? — Biden says his advisers will lead with ‘science and truth’ — More backlash for GOP’s Hawley as Loews Hotel cancels event ___ HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON: 8 a.m. Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris will resign her Senate seat on Monday, two days before she and President-elect Joe Biden are inaugurated. Aides to the California Democrat confirm the timing and say Gov. Gavin Newsom is aware of her decision. That clears the way for Newsom to appoint fellow Democrat Alex Padilla, now California’s secretary of state, to serve the final two years of Harris’ term. Padilla will be the first Latino senator from California, where about 40% of residents are Hispanic. Harris will give no farewell Senate floor speech. The Senate isn’t scheduled to reconvene until Tuesday, the eve of Inauguration Day. ___ 3 a.m. The threat of extremist groups descending on state capitals in a series of demonstrations Sunday prompted governors to roll out a massive show of force and implement tight security measures at statehouses across the country. Fencing, boarded-up windows and lines of police and National Guard troops have transformed statehouse grounds ahead of expected demonstrations leading up to President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday. The stepped-up security measures were intended to safeguard seats of government from the type of violence that occurred at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, when a mob supporting President Donald Trump overran the building while Congress was certifying the Electoral College vote. The FBI has warned of the potential for armed protests in the nation’s capital and all 50 state capitals. Some social media messages had targeted Sunday for demonstrations, though it remained unclear how many people might show up. The Associated Press
A bundle of nerves atop an imposing giant slalom course ahead of Sunday's second run, 19-year-old Cassidy Gray went to work and earned points for a 26th-place performance at the women's World Cup event in Slovenia. Her combined time of two minutes 24.25 seconds is considered one of the best starts to a World Cup career for a Canadian in recent memory. "It's been a goal of mine for a long time to start a World Cup and to get to do it here, with this team was amazing," Cassidy, who hails from Panorama, B.C., tolf Alpine Canada after her second run in Kranjska Gora. "Today was a crazy first run and I was so nervous for the second run. "I'm overall really happy with how it went. Now that I see what I can do I have a lot more confidence going into the next races." Gray, who also skis with the University of Colorado Buffaloes, qualified for a second run in Saturday's race but didn't finish. Canadian teammate Val Grenier of St. Isidore, Ont., moved up one spot from Saturday to finish 15th in 2:22.05 in her fifth race back from injury. Marta Bassino won her second World Cup giant slalom in two days after first-run leader Mikaela Shiffrin dropped to sixth. The Italian skier has won four of the five races in the discipline this season, with Shiffrin winning the only other event, in Courchevel in December. WATCH | Bassino posts fastest final run time on way to victory: "It's so amazing, I am so emotional. It's like a dream, I can't believe it," Bassino said from Kranjska Gora, Slovenia while fighting back tears in a TV interview. The result saw Bassino closing in on a 13-year-old record: No Italian skier won more than four giant slaloms in a single season since Denise Karbon won a record five events in the 2007-08 campaign. Shiffrin loses speed, rhythm on 2nd run Bassino trailed Shiffrin by three-tenths of a second after the American's near-perfect opening run, but the Italian posted the fastest time in the final in one minute 7.34 seconds for a two-run time of 2:18.06. The last racer on course, Shiffrin was still in the lead at the first split time. However, the Olympic GS champion was late on a turn after the first steep part, lost speed and never regained her rhythm. Shiffrin finished 1.27 back in sixth in 2:19.33, matching her result in Saturday's race. Bassino won the race 0.66 ahead of Michelle Gisin (2:18.72), a day after the Swiss skier earned her first career podium in GS. Local favourite Meta Hrovat, daughter of the village's mayor, Janez Hrovat, finished third, 0.73 off the lead. Vlhova's overall lead shrinks The rest of the field trailed Bassino by more than a second. This weekend's races were moved from Maribor because of a lack of snow. Petra Vlhova was 2.41 seconds behind in 10th and the overall World Cup leader from Slovakia saw her advantage over runner-up Gisin reduced to just 60 points. Federica Brignone, the defending overall champion who led the GS standings coming into the weekend, was 12th after the opening leg before sliding off the track in her final run. The women's World Cup continues with two downhills and a super-G in Crans Montana, Switzerland, from Friday through Sunday.
A Prince George man with a history of trying to evade police while behind the wheel of a stolen vehicle was sentenced to just shy of seven more months in jail for committing the crime for a third time. Paul Daniel Shaw, 36, was also prohibited from driving for three years and must pay $7,920 restitution for the Dec. 7, 2018 incident that began when he found a set of keys in the parking lot of a local grocery store. Instead of turning them in, Shaw "decided badly," the court heard, and took advantage of the situation to steal a pickup truck. The theft was reported to the RCMP andthe truck was seen in College Heights a short time later. But Shaw chose to speed away when spotted by police and headed north on Ospika Boulevard then east on 15th before he was apprehended at Ewert Street. Along the way, he drove over a meridian and into oncoming traffic and blew through an intersection at 120 km/h. When RCMP tried to box the vehicle in, Shaw collided head on with an unmarked police truck and struck a civilian vehicle, pushing it up onto the shoulder of the road and leaving the two occupants with injuries to a shoulder and a neck. Defence counsel Mitch Hogue made a case for a two-year conditional sentence order, essentially a jail sentence served at home, saying his client has made significant progress to mend his ways since the arrest and that the crime was not planned and premeditated. But particularly because Shaw has been convicted of similar offences twice before, provincial court judge Peter McDermick found Shaw's latest action merited a sentence of more than two years, thus negating a conditional sentence order. However, the work Shaw has put into dealing with his substance abuse issues and efforts to distance himself from the criminal element helped shave significant time off the sentence he was facing. While Crown counsel had argued for three years in jail, McDermick settled on two years and four months. Less credit of 644 days for time in custody prior to sentencing, Shaw had 206 days left to serve. Shaw's track record while awaiting sentencing was not perfect, as he walked away from a treatment centre while out of custody, knowing he was about to be expelled because he had consumed some marijuana. Shaw remained "on the lam" for the next five months before he was finally spotted by police in Prince George and arrested. His wife, meanwhile, refused to let him into their house until he dealt with his legal issues, the court was told, and since his return to custody, Shaw has participated in counselling and earned several certificates. Given a chance to speak to the court prior to sentencing, Shaw said he "allowed my addiction" to govern his decision making. He further said he takes full responsibility for his actions and apologized for the damage he caused. Shaw was also sentenced to a series of concurrent terms for breaching a release order by leaving the treatment centre, possessing a small weapon when he was arrested, and for driving while his licence was suspended from a separate incident that had no influence on his primary sentence. Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince George Citizen
First Nations, ranchers, municipal officials and environmentalists hope to persuade a judge this week to force Alberta to revisit its decision to open one of the province's most important and best-loved landscapes to open-pit coal mining. At least nine interveners will seek to join a southern Alberta rancher's request for a judicial review of the province's decision to rescind a coal-mining policy that had protected the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains — and the headwaters that flow from them — for almost 45 years. "You talk about the Alberta identity," said Ian Urquhart of the Alberta Wilderness Association, one of the parties looking for standing. "The eastern slopes, the Rocky Mountains and the foothills, are at the heart of what the Alberta identity is. This policy change threatens that." The eastern slopes are the source of three major rivers — the Red Deer, the Oldman and the South Saskatchewan. Everyone in southern Alberta and many in Saskatchewan depend on those rivers for drinking water, irrigation and industry. The water is heavily allocated. Endangered species, including cutthroat trout and grizzly bears, live there. The region's beauty is universally acknowledged. A 1976 policy brought in by Peter Lougheed's government laid out how and where coal development could go ahead, forbade open-pit mines over a large area and banned any mining at all in the most sensitive spots. It came after years of work and dozens of public consultations, said David Luff, a retired civil servant and consultant who worked on the policy. "Albertans overwhelmingly said the eastern slopes should be devoted to watershed protection, recreation and tourism. Lougheed had a very compelling vision based on input he received from extensive public consultation." Over the years, the policy informed the Alberta Land Stewardship Act and was written into legally binding land-use plans. Last spring, the policy was quietly revoked by Energy Minister Sonya Savage with no consultation. It was done on the Friday of the May long weekend, during the height of COVID-19's first wave, through an information letter on the department's website. "It's morally and ethically wrong," said Luff. But legally wrong? The province doesn't think so. The hearing in Calgary Court of Queen's Bench is to begin Tuesday with Alberta arguing that there was no duty to consult because the coal policy was just that — a policy. "The 1976 coal policy was not enacted using a legislative tool, so it can be rescinded unilaterally by Alberta Energy at any time," says a provincial briefing note entered in the court record. The province plans to ask the court to rule that the change is a political decision, not a legal matter, and the review request should be dismissed. Nigel Bankes, chair of natural resources law at the University of Calgary, notes land-use plans and the land stewardship act both promise consultation before major change. "This is effectively an amendment to the plan and therefore triggers the consultation obligations," he said. "There's certainly case law to suggest that high-level policy changes may trigger the duty to consult." As well, Bankes said, First Nations are owed a duty to consult. Three of them — the Bearspaw, Ermineskin and Whitefish — are asking to intervene. He suggests there's a good chance the court will turn down the provincial request for dismissal. Other hopeful interveners include the Municipal District of Ranchland, which is concerned about the impact that coal development could have on municipal services and infrastructure. Environmental groups seeking to intervene want to ensure water quality and ecological degradation are taken into account. One coal company — Cabin Ridge Coal — has asked for standing as well. It says it's already invested substantial money in exploration leases. "Restoration of the coal policy will create uncertainty in circumstances where the (Alberta Energy Regulator) presently has clear standards and processes for considering proposed exploration and development activities in Alberta," it says in a court filing. Alberta officials have said mining will create hundreds of jobs and generate millions of tax dollars at a time when the province really needs them. They say any proposed mines would still be reviewed by the provincial regulator. Prominent and popular Alberta country musicians Corb Lund and Paul Brandt have publicly opposed the mines. A petition to the federal government opposing one development already in the review stage had more than 25,000 signatures as of Friday morning. The government has sold leases on about 1.4 million hectares of land for coal exploration since the policy was revoked. At least one provincial recreation area is partly covered by a coal lease and four others are surrounded by them. The province has also reopened water allocation agreements. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 17, 2021. — Follow @row1960 on Twitter Bob Weber, The Canadian Press
TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week: Virtual Roundup The Association for Mineral Exploration opens its annual Roundup conference on Monday in an all-virtual format. The theme of this year's conference is "leading through change" and includes a virtual exhibit hall. Norbord vote Norbord shareholders will vote on a resolution approving the sale of the company to West Fraser Timber on Tuesday. Norbord CEO Peter Wijnbergen said in November that the $4-billion all-stock deal will create a “one-stop shop” for construction customers and offer greater access to capital for corporate growth. Rate decision The Bank of Canada is scheduled to release its latest interest rate decision and monetary policy report on Wednesday. Governor Tiff Macklem has said repeatedly the bank's key policy rate will remain at 0.25 per cent, which is as low as the bank has said it is willing to go, until an economic recovery is well underway. Inflation Statistics Canada will also release its consumer price index for December on Wednesday. Last month, it reported the annual inflation rate in November rose to its fastest pace since the start of the pandemic, driven by a rise in prices for homes, rent and goods around the house. Retail sales Statistics Canada will release retail sales figures for November on Friday. The agency reported last month that retailers made $54.6 billion in sales in October, marking the sixth monthly gain since a record decline in April last year at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 17, 2021. Companies in this story: (TSX:OSB, TSX:WFT) The Canadian Press
WASHINGTON — The lead prosecutor for President Donald Trump's historic second impeachment began building his case for conviction at trial, asserting on Sunday that Trump's incitement of the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol was “the most dangerous crime" ever committed by a president against the United States. A Senate trial could begin as soon as this week, just as Democrat Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president. Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., did not say when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., will send the single article of impeachment against Trump — for “incitement of insurrection” — to the Senate, which will trigger the beginning of the trial. But Raskin said “it should be coming up soon” as Pelosi organizes the formal transfer. The House voted to impeach Trump last Wednesday, one week after the violent insurrection that interrupted the official count of electoral votes, ransacked the Capitol and left Congress deeply shaken. Before the mob overpowered police and entered the building, Trump told them to “fight like hell” against the certification of Biden's election win. “We're going to be able to tell the story of this attack on America and all of the events that led up to it,” Raskin said. “This president set out to dismantle and overturn the election results from the 2020 presidential election. He was perfectly clear about that.” Democrats and the incoming administration are facing the challenge of reckoning with the Capitol attack at the same time that Biden takes office and tries to move the country forward. They say the Congress can do both, balancing a trial with confirmations of the new president's Cabinet and consideration of his legislative priorities. Raskin said Congress cannot establish a precedent where “we just want to let bygones be bygones” just because Trump has left office. Yet it's clear that Democrats do not want the Senate trial to dominate Biden's opening days. Pelosi on Friday said that Democrats intend to move quickly on Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID aid and economic recovery package to speed up vaccinations and send Americans relief, calling it “matter of complete urgency.” Ron Klain, Biden's incoming White House chief of staff, said he hopes Senate leaders, on a bipartisan basis, “find a way to move forward on all of their responsibilities. This impeachment trial is one of them, but getting people into the government and getting action on coronavirus is another one of those responsibilities.” It is unclear how many Senate Republicans — if any — would vote to convict Trump. Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is telling his caucus that their decision on whether to convict the outgoing president will be a “vote of conscience.” His stance, first reported by Business Insider, means the GOP leadership team will not work to hold senators in line one way or the other. McConnell is open to considering impeachment, but said he is undecided on how he would vote. He continues to hold great sway in his party, even though convening the trial this week could be among his last acts as majority leader as Democrats prepare to take control of the Senate with the seating of two new Democratic senators from Georgia. For Republican senators, the trial will be perhaps a final test of their loyalty to the defeated president and his legions of supporters in their states back home. It will force a further reevaluation of their relationship with Trump, who lost not only the White House but majority control of the Senate, and a broader discussion about the future of the Republican Party as he leaves office. Some GOP senators are already standing by Trump, despite their criticism of his behaviour. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, one of the president's most loyal allies, said impeachment was a "bad, rushed, emotional move” that puts the presidency at risk and will cause further division. He said he hopes every Senate Republican rejects impeachment. “Please do not justify and legitimize what the House did,” Graham said. A handful of Republican senators have suggested they will consider conviction. Two of them, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey, have said he should resign. Murkowski said the House responded “appropriately” with impeachment and she will consider the trial arguments. No president has ever been convicted in the Senate, and it would take a two-thirds vote against Trump, a high hurdle. But conviction is not out of the realm of possibility, especially as corporations and wealthy political donors distance themselves from Trump's brand of politics and the Republicans who stood by his attempts to overturn the election. Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney, was spotted at the White House Saturday and told ABC he was likely going to join Trump’s impeachment defence team. He suggested he would continue to spread baseless claims of election fraud on the Senate floor. Trump campaign spokesman Hogan Gidley moved to distance Trump from Giuliani’s comments, tweeting: “President Trump has not yet made a determination as to which lawyer or law firm will represent him for the disgraceful attack on our Constitution and democracy, known as the 'impeachment hoax.' We will keep you informed.” There was not widespread fraud in the election, as has been confirmed by a range of election officials and by William Barr, who stepped down as attorney general last month. Nearly all of the legal challenges put forth by Trump and his allies have been dismissed by judges. Trump is the only president to be twice impeached, and the first to be prosecuted as he leaves the White House, an ever-more-extraordinary end to his tenure. A precedent set by the Senate in the 1800s established that a trial can proceed even after a federal official leaves office. Trump was first impeached by the House in 2019 over his dealings with Ukraine, but the Senate voted last year to acquit. Ten Republicans joined all Democrats in the 232-197 impeachment vote on Wednesday, the most bipartisan modern presidential impeachment. When his second trial does begin, House impeachment managers say they will be making the case that Trump’s incendiary rhetoric hours before the attack on the Capitol was not isolated, but directly intended to interrupt the electoral count as part of his escalating campaign to overturn the November election. A Capitol Police officer died from injuries suffered in the attack, and police shot and killed a woman. Three other people died in what authorities said were medical emergencies. Raskin and Klain were on CNN's “State of the Union,” and Graham appeared on Fox News Channel's “Sunday Morning Futures.” ___ Associated Press writer Zeke Miller contributed to this report. Lisa Mascaro And Mary Clare Jalonick, The Associated Press
Canada's Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne spoke to Alimentation Couche-Tard founder Alain Bouchard and assured him of support for Canadian businesses, after the company dropped plans to buy European retailer Carrefour SA, the minister said in a tweet on Sunday. Quebec-based convenience store operator Couche-Tard abandoned talks to buy Carrefour for $20 billion after French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire raised concerns about food and job security. Champagne said in his tweet that the government will support Canadian businesses "here and abroad," adding the two-way trade benefits businesses both sides of the Atlantic.
Rotational workers in Newfoundland and Labrador are grappling with yet another burden, after Air Canada announced Tuesday it's closing major transit corridors in and out of the province later this month. "It's another huge blow," said Michael Dean, who works in Alberta but resides in Newfoundland. As of Jan. 23, Air Canada will no longer fly out of Gander and Goose Bay, with both those airports losing runs to and from Halifax. The carrier has also cut its Toronto to St. John's route. Dean said the loss of those flights means most people living outside the metro area must drive to the capital and likely stay in a hotel overnight. "It's just money, money, money adding up, and extra days away from your family," he said. Quarantine rules for inbound travelers have meant thousands of rotational workers across the province must hole up on their return for at least seven days, taking precious time away from their families. For some, the restrictions have meant not coming home at all. Dean regularly travels through Toronto on connecting flights, and doesn't yet know what the latest changes will mean for his own rotations. But he doesn't doubt the news has flabbergasted workers like him, already worn down and fed up with tight quarantine restrictions. "It's closing in on one year now, and it doesn't seem like much light at the end of the tunnel for workers," he said. "[It's] very hard, very hard. Mentally draining." Travel woes could lead to 'mass exodus': PC MHA Grand Falls-Windsor–Buchans MHA Chris Tibbs, the PC Party's tourism critic, sympathizes with the workers' plight. He also worries the added hardship could mean workers, and their tax dollars, leave Newfoundland and Labrador soil for good. "The revenue they take into the province is very important," Tibbs said Wednesday. "If they see that they can't afford to make these flights, or it's too much of a hassle for them, they're basically going to pick up their family when the time comes and move out west. "If they don't see the government working for them to keep them here ... we're going to have a mass exodus like we had before." Tibbs echoed Dean's concerns: long drives to St. John's, multiple transfers, added costs. "You're going to be taking an extra two or three extra flights ... maybe even through different airlines. It becomes extremely cumbersome for them," he said. "It's going to deter them from staying here." Tibbs doesn't lay blame with Air Canada itself. "Air Canada is a business," he said. "Unless they get the support they need from the federal government, in partnership with our provincial government ... they're going do what they have to do, what's best for them." Premier Andrew Furey addressed the dropped service earlier this week, saying he'd been reassured by federal ministers that Newfoundland and Labrador would not lose the routes permanently. When asked whether his government would play a role in negotiating with the airline, Furey refrained from making promises. "Air travel does often fall under federal jurisdiction," Furey said Wednesday, noting his confidence in Ottawa to "protect those routes as we emerge from the pandemic." Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador
New Brunswick officials announced 36 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, a single-day high since the start of the pandemic. The cases include 24 in the Edmundston and Grand Falls region, or Zone 4, which will roll back to the more restrictive red phase effective at midnight. There are now 292 active cases in the province and one person is in the hospital. Dr. Jennifer Russell, the province's chief medical officer, said the Moncton, Saint John and Fredericton regions could move to red within days if the situation doesn't improve. "We're at the maximum of what we can deal with in the short term," she said at a media briefing on Sunday. Russell said 11 cases in the Edmundston region are linked to an outbreak at Nadeau Poultry in Saint-François de Madawaska, where mass testing was conducted. The community is near the Maine border, about 42 kilometres west of Edmundston. Some businesses must close under red restrictions, including movie theatres, barbershops and hair salons. Restaurants can only operate with takeout and delivery. The new cases include: Moncton region, five cases: two individuals 19 and under. an individual 20-29. an individual 40-49. an individual 70-79. Saint John region, four cases: an individual 19 and under. an individual 20-29. two people 40-49. Fredericton region, two cases: two people 20-29. Edmundston region, 24 cases: three people 19 and under. three people 30-39. four people 40-49. 10 people 50-59. four people 60-69. Bathurst region, one case: an individual 20-29. Russell said 2,101 people are self-isolating across the province. Schools to remain open Education Minister Dominic Cardy said evidence has shown the safest place for students to be is school. "We're working to keep students in school as much as possible to help support our public health goals," he said. "When students are at school, they are in a supervised environment with strict health and safety protocols in place." Changes are being made to the red-phase rules to allow for schools to remain open. Students and staff will be actively screened each day and those with one symptom will be asked to stay home. Extracurricular activities will also be reduced. If a case is confirmed at a red-level school, it will close for three days. This will allow time for contact tracing and turning the building into a testing site. It has been almost two weeks since all regions of the province were moved back to the orange recovery phase. Premier Blaine Higgs said the Moncton, Saint John, and Fredericton regions are "on the cusp" of a return to red. "We need to take this seriously because the next step, after the red phase, is a total lockdown," he said. Russell urged New Brunswickers to stay home as much as possible. "If you have to go out to obtain food and other essentials, keep your outings brief and return home as soon as you can," she said. 4 schools report cases of COVID-19 Four more New Brunswick schools have confirmed cases of COVID-19. Belleisle Elementary School in Springfield and Millidgeville North School in Saint John each have one case, according to Anglophone South superintendent Zoë Watson. The schools will be open and operational Monday except for students and staff reached by contact tracers. Both communities were notified in an email on Saturday. In the Moncton region, Riverview East School also confirmed one case. Families will be contacted about any impacts to learning this week. Caledonia Regional High School in Hillsborough has notified the community about one case. All students and staff have been asked to staff home on Sunday while contact tracing is underway. New Brunswick has confirmed 947 total cases and 642 recoveries. The province has recorded 12 deaths. The death of a 13th person with COVID-19 was not related to the disease. Public Health has conducted a total of 172,708 tests since the start of the pandemic, including 1,723 since Saturday's update. What to do if you have a symptom People concerned they might have COVID-19 symptoms can take a self-assessment test online. Public Health says symptoms shown by people with COVID-19 have included: A fever above 38 C. A new cough or worsening chronic cough. Sore throat. Runny nose. Headache. New onset of fatigue, muscle pain, diarrhea, loss of sense of taste or smell. Difficulty breathing. In children, symptoms have also included purple markings on the fingers and toes. People with one of those symptoms should: Stay at home. Call Tele-Care 811 or their doctor. Describe symptoms and travel history. Follow instructions.
Ahuntsic-Cartierville - Aux prises avec trois éclosions à l’hôpital Fleury, le Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux (CIUSSS) du Nord-de-l’Île-de-Montréal demande à la population d’éviter cet établissement « pour quelques jours ». Emboitant le pas à certains hôpitaux de l’Est de l’île, le CIUSSS restreint par ailleurs les visites. Les seuls motifs qui permettent à une personne non hospitalisée d’accéder à l’établissement sont pour accompagner une personne en fin de vie, à raison d’une personne à la fois, des visites pour motifs humanitaires ou l’accompagnement du père, de la mère ou du tuteur légal d’une personne mineure. Le CIUSSS du Nord invite les personnes qui ont des problèmes de santé mineurs « à choisir une alternative pour obtenir une consultation médicale » et à privilégier une visite dans une clinique médicale ou à consulter son médecin de famille. Plus tôt cette semaine, le CIUSSS avait confirmé au Journaldesvoisins.com qu’une éclosion était en cours à l’unité de chirurgie de l’hôpital Fleury, mais avait assuré qu’aucune éclosion ne touchait l’urgence de cet hôpital. Le JDV suivra de près la situation.Simon Van Vliet, Initiative de journalisme local, Journal des voisins
Small groups of right-wing protesters — some of them carrying rifles — gathered outside heavily fortified statehouses around the country Sunday, outnumbered by National Guard troops and police brought in to prevent a repeat of the violence that erupted at the U.S. Capitol. As darkness fell, there were no reports of any clashes. Security was stepped up in recent days after the FBI warned of the potential for armed protests in Washington and at all 50 state capitol buildings ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday. Crowds of only a dozen or two demonstrated at some boarded-up, cordoned-off statehouses, while the streets in many other capital cities remained empty. Some protesters said they were there to back President Donald Trump. Others said they had instead come to voice their support for gun rights or decry government overreach. “I don’t trust the results of the election,” said Michigan protester Martin Szelag, a 67-year-old semi-retired window salesman from Dearborn Heights. He wore a sign around his neck that read, in part, “We will support Joe Biden as our President if you can convince us he won legally. Show us the proof! Then the healing can begin.” As the day wore on with no bloodshed around the U.S., a sense of relief spread among officials, though they were not ready to let their guard down. The heavy law enforcement presence may have kept turnout down. In the past few days, some extremists had warned others against falling into what they called a law enforcement trap. Washington State Patrol spokesman Chris Loftis said he hoped the apparently peaceful day reflected some soul-searching among Americans. “I would love to say that it’s because we’ve all taken a sober look in the mirror and have decided that we are a more unified people than certain moments in time would indicate,” he said. The security measures were intended to safeguard seats of government from the type of violence that broke out at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, when far-right Trump supporters galvanized by his false claims that the election had been stolen from him overran the police and bashed their way into the building while Congress was certifying the Electoral College vote. The attack left a Capitol police officer and four others dead. More than 125 people have been arrested over the insurrection. Dozens of courts, election officials and Trump’s own attorney general have all said there was no evidence of widespread fraud in the presidential race. On Sunday, some statehouses were surrounded by new security fences, their windows were boarded up, and extra officers were on patrol. Legislatures generally were not in session over the weekend. Tall fences also surrounded the U.S. Capitol. The National Mall was closed to the public, and the mayor of Washington asked people not to visit. Some 25,000 National Guard troops from around the country are expected to arrive in the city in the coming days. U.S. defence officials told The Associated Press those troops would be vetted by the FBI to ward off any threat of an insider attack on the inauguration. The roughly 20 protesters who showed up at Michigan’s Capitol, including some who were armed, were significantly outnumbered by law enforcement officers and members of the media. Tensions have been running high in the state since authorities foiled a plot to kidnap Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer last year. At the Ohio Statehouse, about two dozen people, including several carrying long guns, protested outside under the watchful eyes of state troopers before dispersing as it began to snow. Kathy Sherman, who was wearing a visor with “Trump” printed on it, said she supports the president but distanced herself from the mob that breached the U.S. Capitol. "I’m here to support the right to voice a political view or opinion without fear of censorship, harassment or the threat of losing my job or being physically assaulted,” she said. Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, a Republican, said he was pleased with the outcome but stressed that authorities "continue to have concerns for potential violence in the coming days, which is why I intend to maintain security levels at the Statehouse as we approach the presidential inauguration.” Utah's new governor, Republican Spencer Cox, shared photos on his Twitter account showing him with what appeared to be hundreds of National Guard troops and law enforcement officers standing behind him, all wearing masks. Cox called the quiet protests a best-case scenario and said many ”agitating groups" had cancelled their plans for the day. At Oregon's Capitol, fewer than a dozen men wearing military-style outfits, black ski masks and helmets stood nearby with semiautomatic weapons slung across their bodies. Some had upside-down American flags and signs reading such things as “Disarm the government.” At the Texas Capitol, Ben Hawk walked with about a dozen demonstrators up to the locked gates carrying a bullhorn and an AR-15 rifle hanging at the side of his camouflage pants. He condemned the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol and said he did not support Trump. “All we came down here to do today was to discuss, gather, network and hang out. And it got blown and twisted completely out of proportion,” Hawk said. At Nevada's Capitol, where demonstrators supporting Trump have flocked most weekends in recent months, all was quiet except for a lone protester with a sign. “Trump Lost. Be Adults. Go Home,” it read. More than a third of governors had called out the National Guard to help protect their capitols and assist local law enforcement. Several governors declared states of emergency, and others closed their capitols to the public until after Biden's inauguration. Some legislatures also cancelled sessions or pared back their work for the coming week. Even before the violence at the Capitol, some statehouses had been the target of vandals and angry protesters during the past year. Last spring, armed protesters entered the Michigan Capitol to object to coronavirus lockdowns. People angry over the death of George Floyd under a Minneapolis police officer's knee vandalized capitols in several states, including Colorado, Ohio, Texas and Wisconsin. Last last month, crowds in Oregon forced their way into the Capitol in Salem to protest its closure to the public during a special legislative session on coronavirus measures. Amid the potential for violence in the coming days, the building's first-floor windows were boarded up and the National Guard was brought in. "The state capitol has become a fortress,” said Oregon Senate President Peter Courtney, a Democrat. “I never thought I’d see that. It breaks my heart.” ___ Associated Press writers Farnoush Amiri in Columbus, Ohio; Gillian Flaccus in Salem, Oregon; Mike Householder and David Eggert in Lansing, Michigan; Meg Kinnard in Columbia, South Carolina; Rachel La Corte in Olympia, Washington; Sam Metz in Carson City, Nevada; Marc Scolforo in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; and Paul Weber in Austin, Texas, contributed to this report. David A. Lieb And Adam Geller, The Associated Press
In one of his final interviews as Chief of the Defence Staff, General Jonathan Vance tells Mercedes Stephenson on ‘The West Block’ the mission to root out sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces is a forever mission that will evolve over time. When asked if there are things he would have done differently in his career, Gen. Vance says, “I would have certainly paid more attention. I didn’t really see this. And the Deschamps report was a shock to me.”
Rock producer Phil Spector, who changed the sound of pop music in the 1960s with his "Wall of Sound" recordings and was convicted of murder for the 2003 murder of a Hollywood actress, has died at age 81 of COVID-19, according to authorities and media reports. Spector produced 20 top 40 hits between 1961 and 1965 and went on to work with the Beatles on "Let It Be," as well as Leonard Cohen, the Righteous Brothers and Ike and Tina Turner. He was diagnosed with COVID-19 four weeks ago and transferred to a hospital from his prison cell, where he had been serving a 19 years-to-life sentence for the murder of actress Lana Clarkson, the Daily Mail newspaper said.
COVID-19. Les plus récentes données sur l'évolution de la COVID-19, au Québec, font état de 2 225 nouveaux cas pour la journée d'hier, pour un nombre total de 240 970 personnes infectées. Parmi celles-ci, 210 364 sont rétablies. Elles font également état de 67 nouveaux décès, pour un total de 9 005. Le nombre total d'hospitalisations a diminué de 22 par rapport à la veille, avec un cumul de 1 474. Parmi celles-ci, le nombre de personnes se trouvant aux soins intensifs a diminué de 4, pour un total actuel de 227. Les prélèvements réalisés le 14 janvier s'élèvent à 33 778, pour un total de 5 387 908. Au total, 127 073 vaccins sont maintenant administrés.Stéphane Lévesque, Initiative de journalisme local, L'Hebdo Journal
NL Alliance Leader Graydon Pelley has suspended his campaign after suffering a medical emergency, the party's executive says. In a release on its Twitter account Sunday morning, the party said Pelley was taken to hospital Saturday, where it was confirmed that he would need emergency surgery. In a media release the party said Pelley will be suspending his campaign pending the outcome of the procedure and required recovery time. "The work of [the] NL Alliance is so important to Graydon and I know missing out on that while facing this challenge is adding to his discomfort. However, his health is what's most important now and no one disagrees with that," the party's president, Rudy Norman, said in the release. Pelley is running in the district of Humber-Gros Morne. The NL Alliance said all other candidates will continue their campaigns and nominations in districts without candidates are still open until the deadline. Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador