Tuesday - 04/13/21
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“I had the epiphany that laughter was light, and light was laughter, and that this was the secret of the universe.”
— Donna Tartt, The Goldfinch

Welcome to Bullet Points by News Bling where we give you a well-rounded dose of bias-free news in the fewest words possible so you can start your day smart. 🧐


Rep. Matt Gaetz investigated for connections to Florida shill candidate scheme

  • Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL), currently being investigated for sex trafficking, is now additionally being investigated for a shill candidate scheme that occurred during the Florida Senate election
  • The ghost candidate in Central Florida has ties to the same source of dark money that funded two South Florida shill candidates according to an investigation by Local 10 News
  • The two ghost candidates are Alex Rodriguez in Senate District 37 and Celso Alfonso in District 39
  • Resigned Florida Senator Frank Artiles is the suspected mastermind and financier of the ghost candidate schemes 


Ukraine looking into deploying U.S.-made weapons against the Russians

  • As Russia has built up the largest troop presence at Ukraine’s border since 2014, the Ukrainian government is questioning whether it is time it deploy the weapons it purchased from the United States
  • Ukraine bought 210 Javelin anti-tank missiles and 37 launchers from the US in 2018 for around $47 million followed by a second batch of 150 missiles and 10 launchers in 2019. The purchase came with several usage restrictions
  • Former President Trump approved the sale after Obama refused the request due to concerns that the sale might provoke Moscow


White House leading efforts to curb semiconductor shortage affecting auto industry

  • Intel has announced that they are working to alleviate the semiconductor chip shortage impacting the auto industry as President Biden held a virtual summit with several CEOs to discuss the semiconductor supply chain
  • The White House event included representatives from Alphabet, Dell, Ford, General Motors, Northrop Grumman, and AT&T
  • The semiconductor shortage is a national security issue according to National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and National Economic Council Director Brian Deese


Microsoft acquires speech recognition firm Nuance in $16 billion deal

  • Microsoft announced that it will buy speech recognition company Nuance Communications in a deal worth $16 billion
  • The acquisition indicates that Microsoft is looking towards growth via acquisitions as reports have indicated that Microsoft is in talks to purchase Discord for $10 billion
  • Nuance’s source of revenue comes from selling tools that recognize and transcribe speech during doctor office visits, customer-service calls, and voicemails

US 🦅

New Mexico Governor signs bill legalizing recreational marijuana

  • New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has signed legislation that will legalize recreational marijuana use and sales in the state, making it the seventh state since last November to do so
  • The Democrat governor has supported marijuana reform as a means to create jobs and boost state revenue
  • New Mexico voters ousted opponents of legalization from the state senate in the 2020 Democratic primary which opened up a path to legalization for recreational use


Five Million Hindu pilgrims gather for religious festival as India's daily coronavirus cases continue to surge

  • Hindu devotees in northern India have gathered for the largest religious pilgrimage on Earth while social distancing guidelines are nonexistent as the county is hit by a second wave of Covid-19 infections
  • Approximately 5 million visitors are expected for the Kumbh Mela religious festival 
  • India reported 168,912 new cases on Monday, its highest single-day figure for the sixth straight day, according to the Ministry of Health
  • The second wave, which started in March has accelerated in recent weeks and surpassed the first wave last year which peaked at 97,000 new cases per day


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