Labor Secretary Scalia’s Wife Is Latest Rose Garden Guest With COVID-19

Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia’s wife has tested positive for COVID-19—becoming at least the 13th person who attended a largely mask-free White House Rose Garden event to contract the coronavirus.



Eugene Scalia et al. standing next to a person in a suit and tie: Chip Somodevilla/Getty


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Trish Scalia was seated next to Kellyanne Conway at the Sept. 26 ceremony to announce President Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court, and right behind Melania Trump.

Conway and the first lady also got infected with COVID-19, along with the president, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and two of her underlings, and Sens, Mike Lee and Thom Tillis, along with several others.

In addition, other members of Trump’s inner circle, like adviser Hope Hicks, who were not at the event also tested positive in the White House outbreak, which put the president in the hospital.

The Labor Department said Secretary Scalia—whose father, the late Justice Antonin Scalia, was a mentor to Barrett—tested negative but will work from home. His wife “is experiencing mild symptoms but is doing well,” the statement said.

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White House Embraces Herd Immunity in Latest Push to End COVID-19 Lockdowns

White House Trump
U.S. President Donald Trump addresses a rally in support of law and order on the South Lawn of the White House on October 10, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Trump invited over two thousand guests to hear him speak just a week after he was hospitalized for COVID-19.
Samuel Corum/Getty

The White House is doubling down on its push to reopen the economy, now openly embracing a herd immunity strategy at the urging of some health experts.

Two senior advisers told Newsweek and other media outlets on Monday that the Trump administration supports the Great Barrington Declaration, a controversial document that argues against lockdowns and calls for a reopening of schools, businesses and other entities, while protecting people deemed vulnerable to the virus because of age or other risk factors.

“I think Americans should be cautiously optimistic about what’s going on here,” one of the officials said.

The officials were not authorized to speak on-the-record about the matter, but both defended the decision to move toward a broad-scale reopening, even though at least 5,900 people in the United States died with COVID-19 last week.

The coronavirus has contributed to the deaths of more than 214,000 people in the U.S. since the pandemic began earlier this year.

Experts have argued that approaching “herd immunity”—essentially allowing more people to contract COVID-19 in the hopes that they would quickly recover and create a mass immunity—would likely result in many more deaths and illnesses.

World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters during a virtual press briefing on Monday that such an approach would be “unethical.”

“Herd immunity is achieved by protecting people from a virus, not by exposing them to it,” he said.

President Donald Trump has mentioned the idea in the past, mistakenly referring to it as “herd mentality,” and the idea has been pushed by some of the president’s favorite conservative personalities, including Fox News’ Laura Ingraham.

The Great Barrington Document, released last week, was authored by Sunetra Gupta of the University of Oxford, Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford University, and Martin Kulldorff of Harvard University. Thousands of additional scientists have signed onto the open petition, though media outlets have reported some fake names on the list.

“As infectious disease epidemiologists and public health scientists, we have grave concerns about the damaging physical and mental health impacts of the prevailing COVID-19 policies, and recommend an approach we call Focused Protection,” the open letter reads. “Current lockdown policies are producing devastating effects on short and long-term public health.”

Trump, who has said that he believes a COVID-19 vaccine will be developed by the end of the year, revealed in the early morning hours of October 2 that he had tested positive for COVID-19. He was briefly hospitalized but the White House physician has since cleared him for public activities. He is scheduled to hold a rally in Florida on Monday, followed by rallies in Pennsylvania on Tuesday and Iowa on Wednesday.

The White House official described the Great Barrington Declaration as focusing

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismisses latest White House coronavirus aid offer

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Saturday dismissed the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks as “one step forward, two steps back,” but said she is still hopeful that progress can be made toward a deal.

The White House had boosted its offer before Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi spoke on Friday afternoon. President Donald Trump is eager for an agreement before Election Day, even as his most powerful GOP ally in the Senate said Congress is unlikely to deliver relief by then.

“Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!” Trump said Friday on Twitter.

A GOP aide familiar with the new offer said it was about $1.8 trillion, with a key state and local fiscal relief component moving from $250 billion to at least $300 billion. The White House says its most recent offer before that was about $1.6 trillion. The aide was not authorized to publicly discuss private negotiations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Pelosi’s most recent public offer was about $2.2 trillion, though that included a business tax increase that Republicans won’t go for.

“I would like to see a bigger stimulus package than either the Democrats or Republicans are offering,” Trump said on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show Friday. Earlier in the week, Trump lambasted Democrats for their demands on an aid bill.

In a letter Saturday to colleagues, Pelosi said, “This proposal amounted to one step forward, two steps back. When the president talks about wanting a bigger relief package, his proposal appears to mean that he wants more money at his discretion to grant or withhold.”

She said that while his administration attempted to address some of the Democratic concerns, disagreement remained on many priorities and Democrats are “awaiting language” on several provisions.

“Despite these unaddressed concerns, I remain hopeful that yesterday’s developments will move us closer to an agreement on a relief package that addresses the health and economic crisis facing America’s families,” Pelosi’s letter said.

But GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had told an audience in Kentucky that he didn’t see a deal coming together soon out of a “murky” situation in which the participants in the negotiations are elbowing for political advantage.

“I’d like to see us rise above that like we did in March and April, but I think it’s unlikely in the next three weeks,” McConnell said Friday. He said later that “the first item of priority of the Senate is the Supreme Court,” suggesting there isn’t time to process both a relief bill and the high court nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett before the Nov. 3 election.

He spoke after Trump apparently performed an about-face, empowering Mnuchin to resume negotiations with Pelosi, D-Calif., on a larger, comprehensive package despite calling off the talks just days before.

McConnell remains a skeptic that a deal can come together — and he has issued private warnings that many Senate Republicans will oppose a deal in the range that Pelosi is seeking.

“We do need

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Pelosi dismisses latest White House coronavirus aid offer

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Saturday dismissed the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks as “one step forward, two steps back,” but said she is still hopeful that progress can be made toward a deal.

The White House had boosted its offer before Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi spoke on Friday afternoon. President Donald Trump is eager for an agreement before Election Day, even as his most powerful GOP ally in the Senate said Congress is unlikely to deliver relief by then.

“Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!” Trump said Friday on Twitter.


A GOP aide familiar with the new offer said it was about $1.8 trillion, with a key state and local fiscal relief component moving from $250 billion to at least $300 billion. The White House says its most recent offer before that was about $1.6 trillion. The aide was not authorized to publicly discuss private negotiations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Pelosi’s most recent public offer was about $2.2 trillion, though that included a business tax increase that Republicans won’t go for.

“I would like to see a bigger stimulus package than either the Democrats or Republicans are offering,” Trump said on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show Friday. Earlier in the week, Trump lambasted Democrats for their demands on an aid bill.

In a letter Saturday to colleagues, Pelosi said, “This proposal amounted to one step forward, two steps back. When the president talks about wanting a bigger relief package, his proposal appears to mean that he wants more money at his discretion to grant or withhold.”

She said that while his administration attempted to address some of the Democratic concerns, disagreement remained on many priorities and Democrats are “awaiting language” on several provisions.

“Despite these unaddressed concerns, I remain hopeful that yesterday’s developments will move us closer to an agreement on a relief package that addresses the health and economic crisis facing America’s families,” Pelosi’s letter said.

But GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had told an audience in Kentucky that he didn’t see a deal coming together soon out of a “murky” situation in which the participants in the negotiations are elbowing for political advantage.

“I’d like to see us rise above that like we did in March and April, but I think it’s unlikely in the next three weeks,” McConnell said Friday. He said later that “the first item of priority of the Senate is the Supreme Court,” suggesting there isn’t time to process both a relief bill and the high court nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett before the Nov. 3 election.

He spoke after Trump apparently performed an about-face, empowering Mnuchin to resume negotiations with Pelosi, D-Calif., on a larger, comprehensive package despite calling off the talks just days before.

McConnell remains a skeptic that a deal can come together — and he has issued private warnings that many Senate Republicans will oppose a deal in the range that Pelosi is seeking.

“We do

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2021 Acura MDX new interior design teased in latest video

The 2021 Acura MDX will debut in prototype form next week October 14, but that’s not stopping Acura from releasing a teaser video of the next-gen MDX’s classy, new interior. Acura’s flagship SUV is a solid contender in the three-row, seven-seat luxury segment, but the outgoing third-gen MDX’s lackluster interior is unworthy of praise.

All of that changes in the fourth-gen 2021 Acura MDX. Destined to arrive in North America by early or mid-2021, Acura claims its newest MDX is the most premium (i.e. the most luxurious) and highest-performing seven-seat SUV in the carmaker’s history. According to Acura, the incoming MDX prototype is worthy of becoming a flagship model with a fine blend of innovative design, better premium materials, and a bevy of class-leading tech features.

Based on Acura’s latest teaser video, the new MDX’s cabin is a sight to behold. The vehicle has a new Acura Precision Cockpit featuring a fully digital instrument display. Meanwhile, the central tunnel is home to a new drive mode feature, while the dashboard is flanked by a new HD infotainment system. The wider and lower instrument panel is accentuated by hand-wrapped leather, French stitching, and open-pore wood accents.

It’s hard to miss those new perforated Acura sport seats which, according to Acura, features a more sculpted form and quilted stitching in all three rows. The seats are also wider than before, while the front massaging seats will melt the stress away as you drive. Driving music is courtesy of an ELS Studio 3D ‘Signature Edition’ audio system with 25 speakers. Also new in the MDX is LED interior ambient lighting.

It all looks mightily good from our perspective. With its new exterior design and a brand spanking new interior, the 2021 Acura MDX is upping the ante against its main competitors like the BMW X5, Audi Q7, Lexus RX 350, and Infiniti QX60.

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Kroger Is the Latest Entrant in the Rapidly Growing Ghost Kitchen Segment

Kroger, the largest supermarket chain in the U.S. and second largest food retailer, is expanding into the ghost kitchen category, going up against a field of startups and delivery service providers including DoorDash.

The company today announced the launch of two on-premises kitchens at locations in Indianapolis and Columbus, Ohio, in partnership with ClusterTruck, a tech startup that operates delivery and in-store pickup restaurants.

“Kroger remains focused on providing our customers with fresh food and experiences enabled by industry-leading insights and transformative technology,” said Dan De La Rosa, Kroger’s vp of fresh merchandising, in a statement.

Here’s how it works: Kroger is carving out about 1,000 square feet at each of the stores for ClusterTruck staff to prepare meals. The ghost kitchen, a term used to describe professional cooking facilities built for delivery-only meals, will provide a variety of on-demand menu items with no delivery or service fees. Customers can order from a menu offering more than 80 meals.

De la Rosa calls the kitchen “an innovation that streamlines ordering, preparation and delivery, supporting Kroger as we meet the sustained customer demand for quick, fresh restaurant-quality meals, especially as we navigate an unprecedented health crisis that has affected every aspect of our lives, including mealtime.”

This is in line with grocery chains’ ecommerce evolution, which has helped deliver 127% digital sales growth in the second quarter.

As for its partner, ClusterTruck is building a software system that creates custom algorithms to optimize kitchen and delivery operations while removing the “pain points” of third-party delivery to ensure all meals are delivered to customers within seven minutes of their preparation and, on average, less than 30 minutes of ordering.

“ClusterTruck combines leading software, high-quality ingredients, and delicious variety to elevate the prepared food delivery experience,” said Chris Baggott, ClusterTruck co-founder and CEO, in a statement. “As the prepared food delivery category continues to explode, we’re thrilled to play such a pivotal role in Kroger’s fresh and forward-thinking meal delivery strategy.”

The insights Kroger gains from the first two kitchens will inform its future expansion plans, according to a company spokesperson.

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You can now order Miso Robotics’ latest kitchen robot for $30,000

Miso Robotics today announced that its newest kitchen robot, Flippy Robot-on-a-Rail (ROAR), is now commercially available. The final design, which can cook up to 19 food items, mounts the robot on a recessed overhead rail to avoid interfering with human staff. On the backend, improvements to ChefUI, Miso’s software, aim to assist staff with workflows through a dashboard displayed on a 15.6-inch touchscreen mounted to the robot. An Intel depth sensor enables ChefUI to identify food and temperatures while learning to reclassify new foods introduced to ROAR.

ROAR costs around $30,000, but Miso plans to continue to price it down over the next year to $20,000 or less through a $1,000 monthly “robot-as-a-service” fee that includes regular updates and maintenance. ROAR can be purchased on a payment plan through TimePayments, and in the future, Miso says it will offer other financing options involving a lower upfront deployment fee and correspondingly higher software-as-a-service fee.

As declines in business resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic place strains on the hospitality segment, Miso believes that robots working alongside human workers can cut costs while improving efficiency — and overall safety. The company asserts its restaurant partners’ pilots to test ROAR create avenues for reducing human contact with food during the cooking process, ensuring consistency while freeing up human cooks to focus on less repetitive tasks.

Miso Robotics Flippy ROAR

Miso has long claimed that ROAR and its predecessor, Flippy, can boost productivity by working with humans as opposed to replacing them. ROAR can be installed under a standard kitchen hood or on the floor, allowing it to work two stations and interact with a cold storage hopper. It benefits from enhancements to ChefUI that expand the number of cookable food categories to chicken tenders, chicken wings, tater tots, french fries and waffle fries, cheese sticks, potato wedges, corn dogs, popcorn shrimp and chicken, onion rings, and more. Most recently, ROAR “learned” to cook Impossible Foods’ Impossible Burger, which Miso says requires special handling because of its texture and thickness.

“Additional new elements [in ROAR] … include an input zone that can receive manually loaded baskets and a safety shield that protects kitchen staff from hot fryers … Now we can really integrate not only with the POS system, but also all the delivery apps,” Miso president and chairman Buck Jordan told VentureBeat via email. “We have also added more cameras and sensors, to enhance our computer vision capabilities to drive more efficient operational workflows for operators. We can now track inventory, down to the chicken nugget, in the back of the house … And we have sped up the learning process for Flippy to scale menus — as quickly as 30 minutes in some cases.”

ROAR, which features a customizable LED panel that operators can use for branding, is able to prep hundreds of orders an hour thanks to a combination of cameras and safety scanners, procuring frozen food and cooking it without assistance from a human team member. It alerts nearby workers when orders are ready to

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Live Trump vs Biden Tracker: The Latest

Here’s what you need to know:

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Biden Says He’s ‘Reluctant’ to Comment on Trump’s Health

Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic presidential nominee, declined to weigh in on President Trump’s motorcade Sunday night to greet his supporters.

Reporter: “Vice President Biden, do you have a reaction to President Trump leaving Walter Reed last night to speak to his supporters?” “I’m reluctant to comment on anything — the president’s health, what he’s doing or not doing. I’ll leave that to the doctors to talk about. But I’m not going to comment on any of his conduct or his — I don’t know enough to know.” Reporter: “If he’s feeling better by the 15th, and you have a debate, what kinds of safety precautions would you like to see — would you like it to be a virtual debate?” “If the scientists say that it’s safe, and the distances are safe, then I think that’s fine. I’ll do whatever the experts say is the appropriate thing to do. I’m not an expert on it, but I think we should be very cautious, as I’ve thought all along, and I’m going to continue to listen to the scientists.”

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Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic presidential nominee, declined to weigh in on President Trump’s motorcade Sunday night to greet his supporters.CreditCredit…Hilary Swift for The New York Times

As President Trump prepared to return to the White House on Monday after a four-day stay at the hospital, his Democratic rival, Joseph R. Biden Jr., campaigned in Florida, where he expressed hope that the president was recovering but urged Americans not to minimize the threat posed by the coronavirus.

“I hope the president’s recovery is swift and successful, but the nation’s Covid crisis is far, far from over,” Mr. Biden said at a gym in Miami’s Little Havana, where people in a small, socially-distanced crowd were seated at least six feet apart from one another and wore masks.

Mr. Biden once again urged Mr. Trump — who has sent lukewarm-to-mixed signals on the importance of wearing masks, and who had mocked the vice president at the debate just last week for wearing masks — to embrace universal masking, saying it would save lives.

“Since the president was in the hospital, since Friday, more than 100,000 more people have been diagnosed with Covid,” Mr. Biden said, according to a pool report. “Cases and deaths are climbing in many states.”

The president’s hospitalization after testing positive for the coronavirus — and the virus’s spread through his administration and orbit — brought the pandemic back to the center of the presidential campaign.

Earlier, as he prepared to leave Delaware on Monday morning, Mr. Biden had declined to weigh in on Mr. Trump’s decision to briefly leave Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Sunday evening to drive past his supporters, an excursion that may have endangered members of his security detail and that runs counter to health guidelines, which call for sick

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‘It was luck’: NWI couple recall truck plowing through cornfield into their kitchen | Latest Headlines

“It was luck,” Eugene said recently.

“Usually most afternoons I’d sit there on that side of the house (outside). Because I was talking to a friend on the phone, I ended up going inside. … I could have been outside.”

The Grothaus’ daughter, Pam Davenport, said before the COVID-19 pandemic swept through the Region, their family would gather on Wednesday or Thursday in the dining room for game night. 

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‘Thick-tongued, slurring words’

When officers arrived to the Grothaus’ home in West Creek Township, they saw a pickup truck with Illinois registration in the east wall of the home, according to a police report from the Lake County Sheriff’s Department. 

Police said only the rear tires and rear end of the truck were visible outside of the home. 

The truck traveled approximately 300 yards off the road and through a cornfield before crashing into the Grothaus’ light blue home.

The driver, whose identity was not revealed in the police report, was not able to stand on his own free will.

Officers said the man was thick-tongued, slurring words, confused, lethargic and swaying while sitting down. Police also smelled a strong odor of alcohol. 

The man stated he didn’t have a driver’s license and wasn’t carrying his wallet. Police later discovered the man’s Illinois driver’s license was revoked. 

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GOP women’s group releases latest round of House endorsements

Winning for Women Action Fund, a super PAC devoted to electing GOP women to office, released its latest round of House endorsements on Tuesday in a list obtained exclusively by The Hill. 

The endorsed challengers include Victoria Spartz in Indiana’s fifth district, Yvette Herrell in New Mexico’s second district, Stephanie Bice in Oklahoma’s fifth, and Nancy Mace in South Carolina’s first. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rates all of the races “toss-ups.” 

The group also formally threw its support behind Lauren Boebert in Colorado’s third district, which Cook rates as “lean Republican.” Kat Cammack in Florida’s third congressional district and Lisa McClain in Michigan’s tenth district also received endorsements from Winning for Women. 

Winning for Women also announced its support for a number of GOP House candidates it labeled as “Women on the Rise.” The list includes Anna Paulina Luna in Florida’s thirteenth district, Kim Klacik in Maryland’s seventh district, Lynne Blankenbeker in New Hampshire’s second district, and Esther Joy King in Illinois’s seventeenth district. 

Additionally, the group endorsed Republican incumbents America Samoa Del. Amata Coleman Radewagen and Puerto Rico Del. Jenniffer González Colón. 

“These women represent the best of the best. From veterans to nurses to small business owners, each of these candidates is uniquely qualified to serve her district in Congress,” the group’s political director Micah Yousefi said in a statement to The Hill. 

Not only will Winning For Women’s PAC provide critical hard-dollar support to their campaigns, but it will also activate on their behalf a grassroots army of more than 800,000 members nationwide. It’s been a historic year for conservative women, and W4W is proud to continue supporting those exceptional candidates who will go to Washington to fight back against an extreme, liberal agenda.”

The endorsements come as a record number of Republican women run for office in the 2020 election cycle. Data released in May by the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University shows an overall uptick in women seeking seats in the House this year, with 490 filing to run so far.

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