The COVID Diaries – 199 25th October
There is a growing rebellion among Conservative MPs after a vote
in Parliament last week rejected the extension of free school meals so that the
provision would cover school holidays.
Senior Tory Sir Bernard Jenkin says the government doesn’t
understand the strength of public feeling on the issue and the Labour
opposition has threatened to force another vote on the issue if there is no
change before Christmas.
The COVID Diaries – 198 23rd October
Less than two weeks before election day in the United States,
Donald Trump and his challenger met for the final presidential debate. The
consensus is that Biden won, although Trump was much more restrained than his disastrous
and boorish performance in the first debate.
Trump found it difficult to respond to Biden’s strong case that
over 222,000 Americans have died from coronavirus, in large part, because of
the Trump administration’s response to the deadly disease.
Despite the revelation that Trump has a secret bank account in
China and has paid far more tax there than in the United States, Trump
continued to peddle unsubstantiated conspiracy theories. Perhaps the night’s most
powerful moment came when Biden objected to Trump’s repeated claims that he and
his son Hunter Biden improperly benefited from Biden’s previous tenure as Vice President.
“It’s not about his family or my family. It’s about your family,” Mr
Biden said, pointing directly at the camera. “They’re (families) in
trouble. We should be talking about your families. But that’s the last thing he
wants to talk about.”
The COVID Diaries – 197 21st October
The BBC has reported:
“US President Donald Trump has a Chinese bank account and spent years pursuing business projects in the country, the New York Times has reported.
“The account is controlled by Trump International Hotels Management and paid local taxes between 2013 and 2015.
“It was set up “to explore the potential for hotel deals in Asia”, according to a Trump spokesman.
“Mr Trump has been critical of US firms doing business in China and sparked a trade war between the two countries.”
The COVID Diaries – 196 20th October
For the first time ever, USA Today has endorsed a
is a worthy antidote to Trump’s
unbounded narcissism and chronic chaos,” the newspaper’s editorial board said
in the endorsement.
The COVID Diaries – 195 19th October
Wales will be subject to a two week nationwide lockdown with the
Welsh government announcing “sharp and deep” measures despite having the lowest
rate of Covid-19 cases of the four UK nations.
minister, Mark Drakeford, insisted the “firebreak” was needed to prevent
thousands more deaths and the NHS being overwhelmed. Schools, shops, pubs and
hotels will close and people will be told to stay at home
Last week it was revealed that the UK Government’s Sage advisory
committee had advised of a need for a country-wide circuit breaker to avoid
“catastrophic consequences”, but this had been ignored by UK ministers.
The COVID Diaries – 194 18th October
All the national polls show Joe Biden continuing to maintain a strong lead over Donald Trump in the US presidential election.
Many of the critical statewide polls in also show Biden in the lead, but some by tight margins
Predictions range from a Biden landslide through to Trump managing to sneak a narrow win through the electoral college. Early voting appears to be decisively in Biden’s favour.
But Democrats are concerned that something could still go wrong. No place for compacency. Is it too soon to hope that the Trump nightmare might be over?
The COVID Diaries – 193 17th October
Global coronavirus cases rose by more
than 400,000 for the first time yesterday, a record one-day increase as much of
Europe enacts new restrictions to curb the outbreak.
Europe, which successfully damped
down the first surge of infections, has now emerged as the new coronavirus
epicentre and is reporting on average 140,000 cases a day.
Of every 100 infections reported
around the world, 34 were from European countries, according to a Reuters
Major European countries – the United Kingdom, France, Russia, the Netherlands and Spain – accounted for about half of Europe’s new cases this
The COVID Diaries – 192 16th October
Ratings obsessed Donald Trump is having to nurse his wounds after more
people watched Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s town hall on
Thursday night than watched the President’s, which took place at the same time.
Following Trump’s refusal to debate with Biden after getting the
coronavirus, Biden scheduled a town hall for that evening, Oct. 15, on ABC.
Later, NBC News announced a town hall at the same time with Trump.
Early data from ratings
group Nielsen shows that Biden’s town hall, which aired on one network,
captured about 13.9 million viewers. Meanwhile, Trump’s, which aired on three
channels at once — NBC, CNBC and MSNBC —
achieved about 13.1 million.
The COVID Diaries – 191 15th October
Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham says he will not accept his
city being used “as canaries in the coalmine for an experimental regional
lockdown strategy”. He went on to claim that the government’s own medical
advisers did not think the policy would work.
Boris Johnson’s approach to tackling the coronavirus has
descended into chaos after mayors and MPs from the north-west of the country
emphatically rejected being moved into the highest lockdown level and accused
ministers of treating the region with contempt.
designed to broker an agreement ended with bitter and angry exchanges,
deepening a north-south rift that has left the government’s strategy of tiered
restrictions in turmoil.
The COVID Diaries – 190 14th October
American voters are turning out in record numbers to take
advantage of early voting in the 2020 presidential election.
record 14 million have already voted in the general election and in key swing
states such as Florida more than 2 million voters have already cast their
numbers are pretty staggering for us and the return rates and the polling look
good,” Steve Schale, a Democratic strategist in Florida was quoted as saying.
“But there’s just a lot we don’t know.”
residents waited for as long as eight hours to exercise their democratic right.
Many took to social media to share their experiences with early voting, noting
lines of voters spanning several city blocks or school parking lots.