January 20, 2022 (San Diego’s East County) - East County Magazine's World Watch helps you be an informed citizen on important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to a variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Supreme Court blocks Biden’s workplace vaccine rules, allows requirement for health-care workers (Washington Post)
- The Supreme Court Just Denied Trump’s Request Regarding Jan. 6 Records (Mother Jones)
- Manchin, Sinema join with GOP in rejecting attempt to change filibuster rules, effectively killing Democratic voting bill (Washington Post)
- Oath Keepers leader and 10 others charged with 'seditious conspiracy' related to US Capitol attack
- New FEMA program would place homeless disaster survivors in apartments instead of trailer parks (Washington Post)
- Atlanta D.A. Requests Special Grand Jury in Trump Election Inquiry (New York Times)
- RNC moves to require presidential candidates to skip traditional commission debates (The Hill)
- Supreme Court’s Gorsuch refused to wear mask despite request over Sotomayor’s Covid concerns, report says (CNBC)
- Prince Andrew loses military titles and use of HRH (BBC)
- Analysis: Russian troop build-up sparks unintended NATO renewal (Reuters)
- Quebec will impose a tax on the unvaccinated (NPR)
- Canada: Unvaccinated father loses right to see his child (BBC)
For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.
The Supreme Court on Thursday stopped the Biden administration’s vaccination-or-testing requirement for the nation’s largest employers, a dramatic blow to the federal government’s most far-reaching initiative to combat the coronavirus and boost the country’s lagging vaccination rate. But the court allowed a different and smaller policy to go forward, requiring vaccinations for most health-care workers at the facilities that receive Medicaid and Medicare funds…The opinion said OSHA might have more limited authority. “Where the virus poses a special danger because of the particular features of an employee’s job or workplace, targeted regulations are plainly permissible,” it said, mentioning those who work in “particularly crowded or cramped environments.”
The House committee investigating January 6 may have just struck gold. In a near-unanimous decision, the Supreme Court on Wednesday evening rejected former President Trump’s request to block the release of White House records relating to the January 6 attack on the Capitol, meaning that the House committee investigating the day’s events can request the roughly 800 pages of his papers from the National Archives without legal obstacle.
The year-long Democratic push for federal voting rights legislation died in the Senate Wednesday night, after Republicans blocked an elections bill for the fifth time in six months and Democrats failed to unite their caucus behind a plan to rewrite the Senate’s rules and pass it anyway. The final clash, which has been brewing since Democrats won congressional majorities a year ago as Republican legislatures in 19 states embarked on a campaign to roll back election access, began with an evening vote to close debate on a sprawling voting rights bill. That vote, at the Senate’s traditional 60-vote margin for legislation, failed on party lines.
The Justice Department escalated its January 6 investigation by bringing seditious conspiracy charges against 11 defendants, including the leader of the Oath Keepers, Stewart Rhodes. The latest accusations -- with a charge that had not previously been brought in the department's US Capitol attack prosecutions -- remove any sense that prosecutors believe the riot emerged from just a group of overzealous protestors, with new details about the planning and logistics alleged to have predated the Capitol breach.
Amid criticism of its ability to act as landlord to the growing numbers of Americans losing their homes to wildfires, storms and other natural disasters, the Federal Emergency Management Agency is revising how it provides transitional housing for those most in need of government help.
Atlanta D.A. Requests Special Grand Jury in Trump Election Inquiry (New York Times)
The prosecutor, Fani T. Willis of Fulton County, Ga., is conducting a criminal investigation of election interference by the former president and his allies.
The Republican National Committee (RNC) alerted the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) on Thursday that it plans to require GOP presidential nominees not to attend debates run by the commission going forward.
Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch has refused to wear a mask during in-person proceedings, despite a request from Chief Justice John Roberts for all members of the high court to accommodate Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s concern about Covid-19, according to a new report Tuesday. Gorsuch’s continued defiance has led Sotomayor — who has diabetes and is therefore at a higher risk of serious illness from Covid — to attend oral arguments remotely…
The Duke of York's military titles and royal patronages have been returned to the Queen, Buckingham Palace has said. Prince Andrew, 61, will also stop using the style His Royal Highness in an official capacity, a royal source said. It comes as he faces a US civil action over sexual assault allegations - claims he has consistently denied.
Russia's troop buildup near Ukraine is galvanising NATO defences in Europe that President Vladimir Putin wants to dismantle, giving the alliance a sense of renewal after failures in Afghanistan.
Quebec's plan to put a "significant" health tax on unvaccinated people — who account for a large share of COVID-19 hospitalizations — quickly drove a rush of new appointments this week, health officials say.
A Canadian father who has not been vaccinated against Covid has temporarily lost the right to see his 12-year-old child. A judge ruled his visits would not be in the child's "best interest."