Convention planners quickly dispatched with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.). He had three minutes right after the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of the convention’s final night. The only other lawmakers given speaking slots during Thursday’s three-plus hour program were Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-N.J.), who switched parties last year when Democrats impeached Trump, and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), who was assigned to attack Joe Biden’s foreign policy record.
Staffers do not normally speak during political conventions. But six White House aides got as much camera time this week as the six senators who were invited to speak. It would be significantly more if you counted members of the Cabinet or White House senior adviser Ivanka Trump, who spent 18 minutes introducing her father before a crowd of 1,500 on the South Lawn. Her remarks, and the president’s 70-minute acceptance speech that followed, illuminated why members of Congress and the GOP’s old guard got such short shrift during the convention.
“I’ve seen that, in Washington, it’s easy for politicians to survive if they silence their convictions and skip the hard fights,” she said. “But Donald Trump did not come to Washington to win praise from the Beltway elites. For the first time in a long time, we have a president who has called out Washington’s hypocrisy, and they hate him for it. Washington has not changed Donald Trump. Donald Trump has changed Washington.”
Yes, this week was the Trump show. But, more than that, the president wants to reclaim the outsider mantle that worked so well for him in 2016. Advisers say he plans to focus the next two months on portraying his Democratic challenger, who currently resides in Delaware, as not just the consummate insider but the ultimate swamp creature.
“We have spent the last four years reversing the damage Joe Biden inflicted over the last 47 years,” Trump said in his speech. “Biden’s record is a shameful roll call of the most catastrophic betrayals and blunders in our lifetime. He has spent his entire career on the wrong side of history.”
Biden, elected to the Senate in 1972, served 36 years there before eight years as vice president.
Reincarnating his I-alone-can-fix-it rhetoric from his acceptance speech in Cleveland four years ago, Trump criticized Biden by name 41 times. Biden avoided saying Trump’s name during his much shorter acceptance speech last week in Wilmington, Del.
The sitting president said the country should “turn the page” away from “the failed political class.” He said the “establishment” is out to get him because he broke “the cardinal rule of politics” by trying to keep his “promises.”
Trump nodded only a little bit to the irony of making this case as an incumbent while speaking against the backdrop of the White House’s grand portico. Motioning toward the house where every president since John Adams has lived, Trump told his supporters: “We’re here, and they’re not.” When the president finished, a fireworks show over the Mall spelled out the letters of his name: T-R-U-M-P.
The reality is that Washington remains deeply unpopular with most Americans. Significant majorities see the country as on the wrong track. Even McConnell tried to paint himself as an outsider during his short video greeting, which he recorded on a grassy field in Louisville. The senator, elected in 1984, has been the leader of the GOP conference longer than anyone ever before.
“As the only leader in Washington not from either New York or California, I consider it my responsibility to look out for middle America,” McConnell said during the convention. “Today’s Democrat Party doesn’t want to improve life for middle America. They prefer that all of us in flyover country keep quiet and let them decide how we should live our lives.”
The White House staffers who spoke this week each tried to soften Trump’s image in their own way. Ja’Ron Smith, who is Black, recounted his journey from a 1.9 grade point average at Howard University to landing a job in his 30s as a deputy assistant to the president. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said the president checked in on her following a preventive double mastectomy and breast reconstruction surgery. Counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway talked about the opioid crisis. National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow spoke in the past tense about the pandemic. Vice President Pence’s national security adviser Keith Kellogg tried to rebut recent criticisms of Trump by former national security adviser John Bolton. “I have been in the room where it happened,” Kellogg said, an allusion to the title of Bolton’s memoir.
Several other dynamics were also at play in minimizing the legislative branch’s role. It reflected the degree to which Trump has often sidelined Congress throughout his tenure in office. Trump likes to claim that Article II of the Constitution lets him do whatever he wants. It does not, of course, but the president has been emboldened by leaders of his own party, including McConnell and McCarthy, looking the other way as he ignored congressional subpoenas and diverted money appropriated for the military toward a wall project that appropriators would not fund.
Trump has also taken over the GOP, and he clearly did not want any of his intraparty critics to speak. Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), the 2012 presidential nominee, was not invited to appear because he voted to convict the president for abuse of power after his Senate impeachment trial earlier this year. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), who declined to offer a full-throated endorsement of Trump during the 2016 convention, was also snubbed.
Moreover, politicians tend to be boring. Trump is the first president in American history to get this job with no prior governing or military experience. He became a household name as a reality television star. As a showman, he knows what makes for compelling television – and that it is usually not senators.
Several vulnerable GOP senators facing tough reelection fights in purple states, such as Cory Gardner in Colorado and Susan Collins in Maine, have strong incentives to stay away.
Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), who spoke on Wednesday, is facing a tough reelection fight in a state where Trump is probably more popular than she. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), one of Trump’s rivals in 2016 for the GOP nomination, has become a golfing partner and retains a following among libertarians. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), one of the most outspoken Trump loyalists in the Senate, was thrilled to decry what the right calls “cancel culture” during Wednesday’s program. Sen. Tim Scott (S.C.), the lone Black Republican in the Senate, shared his inspiring personal story on Monday night. “Our family went from cotton to Congress in one lifetime, and that’s why I believe the next American century can be better than the last,” he said.
In his speech, Cotton said Biden has “aided and abetted China’s rise for 50 years.” Trump went even farther. “For 47 years, Joe Biden took the donations of blue-collar workers, gave them hugs and even kisses,” the president said, emphasizing “kisses” and pausing for several seconds. “Told them he felt their pain and then he flew back to Washington and voted to ship their jobs to China and many other distant lands.”
The “kisses” line appeared to be a reference to Biden’s reputation for touching and hugging people. The former vice president has apologized for making some women uncomfortable, and he denied an accusation of sexual misconduct by a former junior staffer. Trump has been accused by more than two dozen women of sexual assault or sexual harassment. He always denies wrongdoing.
Trump was asked during an interview with the New York Times this week how he’s changed since taking office. “I think I’ve just become more guarded than I was four years ago,” the president told Peter Baker. “I think I really am a little bit more circumspect.” Asked how he would be different if he secures a second term, Trump answered: “I think I’d be similar.”
Programming note: The Daily 202 will be on hiatus next week and return after Labor Day.
More convention highlights
Hundreds of protesters chanted, marched and played music outside the White House.
“The protest continued long after the speech ended and later turned physical at times. A group of demonstrators shouted at supporters of the president as they left the White House, including Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who had to be escorted to a nearby hotel by police. Officers sprayed a chemical irritant at the protesters,” Antonio Olivo, Fenit Nirappil, Justin Moyer and Joe Heim report. “Paul was confronted at the corner of 14th and F streets NW, with protesters shouting ‘Say her name — Breonna Taylor!’ and ‘You are a degenerate!’ At one point, Paul almost fell as a police officer collided into him after a protester appeared to collide with the officer. Police whisked Paul into the hotel, and the group of protesters who had been following him dispersed. … Minor scuffles also broke out as a white man wearing blackface walked through Black Lives Matter Plaza and was slapped by a black protester who was then apprehended by police. The unruly conclusion to the protest followed what had been a mostly peaceful, if passionate, night of demonstrations.”
The daughters of David Dorn, who was killed after interrupting the looting of a pawn shop during protests following the death of George Floyd, said their father did not support Trump and would not have wanted his name or image to be used to further Trump’s political agenda. They’re angry that their father’s widow, St. Louis Police Sgt. Ann Dorn, spoke on the final night of the GOP convention. The women said they know his father’s widow is a Trump supporter, but they said “he would not want his legacy to be for his death to be used to further Trump’s law-and-order agenda.” (St. Louis American)
Additional team coverage:
- Glenn Kessler, Sal Rizzo and Meg Kelly fact-check 25 of Trump’s claims in a speech they describe as “a tidal wave of tall tales, false claims and revisionist history.”
- Robin Givhan: “Trump’s convention speech was selling a fantasy version of himself.”
- Toluse Olorunnipa: “GOP convention spins alternate reality with torrent of falsehoods aimed at rebooting Trump’s flagging campaign.”
- David Nakamura and Josh Dawsey: “Few masks, little distancing: Trump celebrates at crowded White House party largely devoid of coronavirus precautions.”
- Michael Scherer and Dawsey: “Republicans try to change President Trump’s image for skeptical voters.”
- Matt Viser: “Biden blames Trump for unrest and violence.”
- Philip Bump: “The White House makes it clear that it sees chaos in the streets as politically useful.”
- Samantha Schmidt: “Trump is wooing suburban women with ‘law and order.’ A Minneapolis mom is tuning him out.”
Commentary from the opinion page:
- The Post’s Editorial Board: “Global freedom would suffer grievous harm in a second Trump term.”
- Dana Milbank: “Trump presented the mother of all fabrications on the White House lawn.”
- Jen Rubin: “Trump will endanger American lives if it helps him get reelected.”
- Catherine Rampell: “The ‘missing’ immigrant voters whose absence might swing the election.”
- Gary Abernathy: “To everyone who thinks Trump is a goner: He’s just getting started.”
Biden said he wants to hit the campaign trail again after Labor Day.
During a Thursday fundraiser, he specifically mentioned four states: Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Arizona. But he said he will continue to be more cautious than Trump about traveling: “We’re going to do it in a way that is totally consistent with being responsible, unlike what this guy’s doing,” Biden told donors on Zoom. “I’m a tactile politician. I really miss being able to, you know, grab hands, shake hands.”
Quote of the day
“We are focusing on the science, the facts and the data,” Trump told a crowd not practicing social distancing and, mostly, not wearing masks.
The father of a Navy SEAL who died during a raid ordered by Trump says the president cannot be trusted.
“William Owens’ son, Chief Petty Officer William ‘Ryan’ Owens, was the first person to die in combat during the Trump presidency following a Jan. 29, 2017, raid in Yemen,” Missy Ryan reports. “The younger Owens, 36, was shot in a counterattack by al-Qaeda militants as he and other members of an elite military team entered a remote village in Yemen’s Bayda governate. ‘Just five days into his presidency, Trump ordered Ryan’s SEAL team into Yemen, not in the situation room with all the intelligence assembled, but sitting across a dinner table from Steve Bannon,’ Owens said, referring to the former White House adviser and campaign strategist, in the 84-second online ad, which was paid for by a PAC linked to the progressive veterans’ group VoteVets. ‘There was no vital interest at play, just Donald Trump playing big man going to war,’ Owens said.
“The ill-fated raid came under scrutiny not just because of the SEAL’s death but also because of the way it came together. Officials said that Trump and the White House short-circuited the typical process for approving such high-risk operations … A number of Yemeni civilians were also killed in the operation. … The ad also [includes] a clip of late Sen. John McCain saying the operation, contrary to Trump’s depiction, had not been a success.”
- The chief of staff to then-U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May says that Trump exploded with anger at his then-national security advisor Michael Flynn after missing a phone call from Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump’s rant about missing Putin’s call (“he really shouted”) happened “right in front” of May during a dinner in Washington, according to Nick Timothy. (Independent)
The USPS keeps telling people their mail is being held “at the request of the customer.” That’s not true.
“Customers who are receiving these notifications never requested that their mail be held,” Julie Zauzmer reports. “The packages are delayed because of broad changes Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has implemented to the nation’s mail delivery operations, including policies that slow down package delivery. When a mail carrier cannot deliver a package on the day it was scheduled because their shift is ending, postal workers say, the system sometimes generates a misleading ‘held at the request of the customer’ message. Although the reality is that the mail carrier will deliver the package, sometimes the next day, customers say the message has prompted them to visit the post office to claim their items … and has undermined their faith in mail delivery leading up to the 2020 election.”
Laura devastated a narrow path north of the Gulf Coast, sparing some population centers.
The hurricane killed at least four and left hundreds of thousands of people without power while dumping massive amounts of rain on the region. “Trump said during a visit to the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Thursday that he plans to tour areas hit by Laura this weekend,” Ashley Cusick, Maria Sacchetti, Marisa Iati and Brady Dennis report. “In the town of Sulphur, La., gas station canopies lay toppled or shredded. Tractor-trailers sat overturned both on the highway and in parking lots. Restaurants were missing their windows. … A 14-year-old girl was killed when a tree fell on her family’s home during the storm.”
The hurricane destroyed everything for some at the Jesse James Mobile Home Park in Lake Charles, La. “Laura’s lashing winds and heavy rains turned homes filled with fish tanks, photo albums, bookshelves and televisions into a heap of mangled metal and debris Thursday, in one of the fiercest storms to barrel through this city of 78,000 people in decades,” Sacchetti reports. “‘Everything I own is in that house. And I lost half of it,’ said Carl Webb, 62, vice president of the Cajun Navy in Lake Charles, his eyes wet as he leaned on a pole and surveyed his yellow trailer, for which he said he did not have insurance because he is on a fixed income. … Thousands remained without electricity, and many were left homeless at a time that already has been so terrifying because of the coronavirus.”
“Fire raged Thursday at a Louisiana chemical plant damaged by Hurricane Laura, pumping dark smoke carrying chlorine gas into the sky, raising public health alarms and prompting the governor to warn residents to turn off their air conditioners, seal their homes and stay indoors,” Steven Mufson and Darryl Fears report. “Chlorine gas can be toxic and cause blistering of the skin, burning sensations in the nose and throat and respiratory distress.”
Leonard Harrison, 49, hit the road toward Cameron Parish, the coastal region that bore the brunt of the hurricane’s damage. He’s a member of the “Cajun Navy,” arriving from Mebane, N.C., in his high-water truck — nicknamed “Goliath” — to help anyone he could find. “The road south was littered with debris, and he encountered several people who needed his help,” Cusick reports. “Harrison, a veteran of three hurricanes who lends his services to those in need, spent Wednesday night in his 10,000-pound truck, awaiting the chance to get out and help first thing. Laura stood out to him as ‘absolutely’ the worst storm he’s experienced. ‘I’ve never had my truck lifted or moved before,’ he said. ‘Last night, it moved six inches, twice. That was the fastest-moving storm I’ve seen, and it had to be the most destructive.’”
Scientists warned that the storm’s rapid intensification is a sign of a warming climate. Laura, which went from a Category 1 to Category 4 in 24 hours, had one of the fastest transformations ever in the Gulf of Mexico. This is happening more frequently, thanks in part to rising ocean temperatures. “The speed with which these storms morph can complicate both weather forecasting and emergency responses,” Chris Mooney and Andrew Freedman report.
Local officials had refused to remove a 105-year-old Confederate statue outside the Lake Charles courthouse. The hurricane did what they would not. “‘It is a blessing, a small blessing, in a very devastating situation,’ said Davante Lewis, who grew up in Lake Charles and supported the monument’s removal,” the Times reports. “The debate over what to do about the South’s Defenders Memorial Monument, which depicted a Confederate soldier on a marble pedestal, had been the ‘hottest thing in the city’ in recent months, Mr. Lewis said on Thursday, until residents turned their attention to preparing for one of the strongest hurricanes ever to hit the region.”
The suspect in the Kenosha, Wis., shooting idolized police.
“Growing up in Chicago’s far northern suburbs, the 17-year-old shadowed local law enforcement, filling his social media feeds with posts declaring that ‘Blue Lives Matter’ and photos of himself posing with guns,” Teo Armus, Mark Berman and Griff Witte report. “Now the teen is in custody, suspected of shooting three people, two of whom died. Instead of helping to keep the peace, authorities say, [Kyle] Rittenhouse turned an already chaotic situation into a murder scene. Tuesday night’s killings were the most violent fallout to date from the Sunday wounding of 29-year-old Jacob Blake … Rittenhouse was charged Thursday with six counts — including two homicide charges — in a criminal complaint accusing him of killing Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26 …
“He had attempted to join the Marine Corps in January, but was disqualified from serving after discussing his options with recruiters, said service spokeswoman Yvonne Carlock. She declined to specify why he was disqualified, citing the service’s privacy guidelines. … Accounts from neighbors and local institutions paint the picture of a high school dropout who viewed law enforcement officers as his personal heroes.”
Blake’s father said his son is handcuffed to his hospital bed, despite being paralyzed from the waist down.
“‘I hate it that he was laying in that bed with the handcuff onto the bed,’ his father, also named Jacob Blake, said Thursday. ‘He can’t go anywhere. Why do you have him cuffed to the bed?’ Asked why his son was handcuffed, Blake’s father replied ‘he’s under arrest.’ The father also said it was unclear what charge or charges his son might be facing, explaining ‘right now, we don’t know. We’re playing it by ear,’” the Chicago Sun-Times reports. “In the hospital, the younger Blake told his father he thought he could feel pain in his legs, but his father isn’t sure if the pain is actually coming from his legs. … Jacob Blake’s father said he hasn’t heard from the police department or Mayor John Antaramian, though Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers has reached out, he said.” At a news conference, the Democrat said he’s concerned that Blake is handcuffed.
Activists in Kenosha were arrested by officers who jumped out of an unmarked vehicle.
“A Seattle-based nonprofit group that serves food to protesters said Thursday that several of its members were still in police custody in Kenosha, Wis., after law enforcement officers sprang from unmarked cars and arrested them ahead of Wednesday night’s demonstrations in the city,” Derek Hawkins reports. “The arrests were recorded by a bystander and shared widely on social media, renewing concerns that unidentified officers could be shielded in crackdowns on demonstrators. The organization, known as Riot Kitchen, was a fixture at protests in Seattle this summer. … Off-camera, officers arrested a half-dozen other members, Riot Kitchen board member Jennifer Scheurle told The Post. … The Kenosha Police Department later acknowledged that its officers led the operation, [saying] that they started tracking the group after receiving a tip about ‘suspicious vehicles’ meeting on the edge of town. Assisted by U.S. marshals, they followed the group to a gas station in the northern part of Kenosha. … Police said they recovered helmets, gas masks, protective vests, illegal fireworks and suspected controlled substances from the vehicles. … Scheurle, the Riot Kitchen board member, said the group was putting gas in the organization’s bus and food truck when officers stormed them.”
The Kenosha sheriff once called for Black shoplifters to be “warehoused” and kept from having children.
“After five young, Black people allegedly stole about $5,000 of clothing, sped away from police and then crashed into a teenage driver in 2018, Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth had a harsh message. Although no one was seriously injured, the maximum sentences the suspects could face were not long enough for the sheriff,” Katie Shepherd reports. “‘These people have to be warehoused,’ Beth, who is White, said … The three men involved in the crime should be removed from society so that they could not father children, he suggested, adding that all five suspects, whose ages ranged from 16 to 23, should go to prison for life. … Although Beth swiftly apologized, his inflammatory comments resurfaced on Thursday as the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin called for his resignation.”
Vice President Pence was uninvited from delivering a commencement speech at Wisconsin Lutheran College.
“Pence had been slated to give the address Saturday to the Christian college in Milwaukee, less than an hour northeast of Kenosha, which his office announced in a press release Monday. The college cited ‘escalating events’ as the reason a different speaker would be presented,” CNN reports. “The decision comes amid some vocal opposition from alumni and current students who penned a letter earlier this week, updated Wednesday night, renouncing Pence’s participation and claims from the college that the event was not political.”
Trump dismissed the athlete protests of Blake’s shooting.
“They’ve become like a political organization, and that’s not a good thing,” the president told reporters. “Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, called NBA players ‘very fortunate’ to be ‘able to take a night off from work,’” Cindy Boren reports. “Kushner also said he planned to try to contact LeBron James, one of the league’s foremost advocates for social justice reform as well as one of its harshest critics of Trump. … Without mentioning Kushner by name, James later tweeted by mentioning his More Than a Vote initiative. ‘Change doesn’t happen with just talk!!’”
- NBA players decided to resume playoff games, though the three games scheduled for Thursday were postponed. (Ben Golliver)
- The NHL postponed Thursday and Friday Stanley Cup playoff games, a day after it played on as other leagues protested. (Samantha Pell and Boren)
- Several NFL teams canceled practice as part of these protests. (Mark Maske)
- Bill Russell led an NBA boycott in 1961, pulling himself out of a game as a demonstration against racist behavior while he was a Boston Celtics player. He’s saluting today’s players for “standing up for what is right.” (Des Bieler)
The man shot by the Secret Service outside the White House apparently was holding a comb.
“Myron Berryman, 51, was charged with one count of assault on a police officer in the incident and has been hospitalized since the Aug. 10 shooting. Berryman’s first hearing on the misdemeanor charge was held Thursday afternoon in D.C. Superior Court. His lawyer said he has been moved to a psychiatric hospital,” Keith Alexander reports. “According to initial charging documents and Secret Service officials, Berryman walked up to the uniformed officer and said he was armed. Charging papers say Berryman reached along the right side of his body as if to retrieve an object, clasped his hands together and pointed his arms toward the officer. The officer then shot Berryman once in the torso. No weapon was found. … The officer who shot Berryman, according to the charging documents, realized ‘after the shooting that the item was not a gun, but rather a comb.’”
Six feet may not be enough.
“A team of infectious-disease experts argues in a new analysis, published this week in the BMJ, that six-feet protocols are too rigid and are based on outmoded science and observations of different viruses. Other researchers say six feet is a start — but only a start, warning that more space is almost always better, especially in poorly ventilated areas indoors,” Ben Guarino reports. “Factors such as air circulation, ventilation, exposure time, crowd density, whether people are wearing face masks and whether they are silent, speaking, shouting or singing should all be part of assessing whether six feet is sufficient, experts say.”
- The University of Arizona said it caught a dorm’s outbreak before it started thanks to studying poop. The university is regularly screening the sewage from every dorm, searching for traces of the virus. The technique worked, officials said, and possibly prevented an epidemic on campus. When a wastewater sample from a dorm came back positive, the school quickly tested all 311 people who lived there and found two asymptomatic students who tested positive. (Jaclyn Peiser)
- Maine revoked the health license of an inn that hosted a wedding linked to 87 cases and one death. (Antonia Farzan)
- Four days before the school year begins in most parts of Maryland, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) announced the state’s 24 school systems are “fully authorized to begin safely reopening” for in-person classes. Hogan doesn’t have the power to order schools to open, and every public school system in the state has already committed to an all-virtual reopening. (Donna St. George)
- A poultry plant in California’s Central Valley where 358 workers tested positive and eight have died has been ordered to close. (Farzan)
- Mothers who said they have lost sons to police brutality were among the first to get their temperatures checked this morning before entering the “Get Your Knees Off Our Necks” demonstration in Washington. Volunteers through the National Action Network passed out gloves, hand sanitizer, masks and neon green wristbands to participants as they entered the rally. (Lola Fadulu)
Congress left town as jobless benefits lapsed. Unemployed Americans say they won’t forget it.
“Shawn Gabriel, a single father of two in Parma, Ohio, has learned what it means to struggle since he lost his construction job in March. His landlord sent him an eviction notice after he was a few days late on August rent. Gabriel keeps looking for work, but for now his family is living off of $189 a week that he gets in unemployment benefits, which is not enough to cover his $950 rent, let alone food, electric, Internet and other expenses. But the bulk of his frustration has been reserved for one place: Congress, whose members left town in August after letting the $600-a-week unemployment bonus that millions of people like Gabriel have been relying on expire,” Eli Rosenberg and Heather Long report. “‘Most of them are rich. They don’t struggle. They get paid,’ Gabriel said. ‘I think they should have come to an agreement.’ … Similar stories are playing out nationwide. Millions of desperate Americans, many of whom have never relied on emergency government assistance before, are flabbergasted and furious, believing they have been cut loose by a Washington political structure that doesn’t care about their predicament during the pandemic.”
The White House announced a deal with Abbott Laboratories to produce 150 million rapid tests.
The $760 million deal for the tests, which allow users to obtain results in 15 minutes from a small card, “is the federal government’s biggest step into testing for the virus that has killed more than 177,000 Americans and infected more than 5.8 million,” Lenny Bernstein and Seung Min Kim report. “‘We want as much rapid testing as we can get,’ said Carl Bergstrom, a biologist at the University of Washington and an infectious-disease expert. … Bergstrom said a key question will be how the administration distributes the tests and ensures they reach the places where they are needed most. … Though antigen tests like this one are largely used to screen large numbers of people to find those who may be infected, the FDA said the Abbott test ‘has been authorized for use in patients suspected of COVID-19 by their healthcare provider within seven days of symptom onset.’”
Large U.S. vaccine trials are halfway enrolled, but there’s a lag on participant diversity.
“Moderna and Pfizer, the companies leading the U.S. race for a coronavirus vaccine, disclosed this week they have enrolled more than half the people needed for the 30,000-person trials that represent the final phase of testing. But only about a fifth of participants are from Black and Hispanic communities, which have been hit hardest by the virus — lagging what several experts said should be the bare minimum of diversity,” Carolyn Johnson reports. “An online registry that people can use to express interest in the vaccine trials — a list of about 350,000 volunteers — had only about 10 to 11 percent Black and Hispanic people as of late last week, according to James Kublin, executive director of the federal HIV Vaccine Trials Network … Leaders from both companies have said they are committed to trials that reflect the people at highest risk. Scientists say diversity matters critically for understanding how a vaccine is likely to perform in the real world.”
Senators called for a federal investigation into the use of hydroxychloroquine in nursing homes.
“In a letter sent Thursday to the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services, Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass), Robert P. Casey Jr. (D-Pa.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) pointed to state inspection reports that cited nursing homes for treating residents with the antimalarial drug without the consent of patients or their family members,” Debbie Cenziper reports. “Among other things, they want the inspector general to investigate the level of oversight from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.”
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe resigned for health reasons.
“Abe told reporters that he had been ‘struggling’ with his health, which had begun to deteriorate in mid-July, and he was ready to call time on his leadership of the world’s third-largest economy,” Simon Denyer and David Crawshaw report. “‘My poor health should not lead to wrong political decisions,’ he said. … Abe is known to have battled chronic ulcerative colitis, and public broadcaster NHK reported that medical tests conducted Aug. 17 showed that his condition had worsened. … Abe had hoped to signal Japan’s revitalization by hosting and presiding over the Olympics in Tokyo this summer, before the coronavirus pandemic forced officials to defer the Games until 2021. The prime minister has faced criticism for his handling of the health crisis, and his support slipped to near record lows in recent months.”
Social media speed read
From the former chief of the Office of Government Ethics:
The husband of Joe Biden’s campaign manager joked about the fireworks show:
While introducing her father, Ivanka Trump shared an anecdote about her child that was very similar to one she used to tell about herself, which was made up:
Videos of the day
In about three minutes, CNN’s fact-checker tried to run through a list of false claims Trump made during his speech:
MLB players took a moment of silence in support of the Black Lives Matter movement before leaving the field without playing:
And Stephen Colbert was uncomfortable with Trump’s unmasked, undistanced crowd: