Friday - 09/11/20
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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. 🧐


Senate Republicans fail to pass “skinny” coronavirus relief package

  • Senate Republicans failed to pass a “skinny” $500 billion coronavirus relief package Thursday, as every Democrat and Republican Rand Paul voting against the measure
  • The bill would have provided funds to help schools reopen, create a $300-per-week jobless benefit, and write off Postal Service debt, among other provisions
  • Chuck Schumer said the bill, which fell far short of the $3 trillion relief package proposed by Democrats in May, was “designed to fail”


Fire erupts in Beirut port

  • A large fire ignited in Beirut’s port Thursday, sending black plumes of smoke into the sky and causing panic among the city’s residents
  • The fire appeared to have begun in a private company’s warehouse that imported cooking oil, then spread to a stock of rubber tires. Its cause is currently unknown
  • In a city still scarred by the blast that killed dozens last month, the panicked residents fled their offices and homes to find safety


57 people arrested for stealing $175 million in pandemic aid

  • Federal law enforcement officials said they have arrested 57 people on Thursday for stealing $175 million in pandemic aid meant for small businesses 
  • Officials said they have identified 500 people who may have defrauded the Paycheck Protection Program, including organized criminal rings that worked together to steal funds
  • Last week, a congressional panel said it had identified tens of thousands of loans that may have been defrauded or misused, amounting to billions of potential taxpayer funds


Twitter to crack down on misinformation ahead of election

  • Twitter announced on Thursday that it will begin labeling or removing posts involving election rigging or premature election results on Sep. 17, a month and a half before the election
  • In May, Twitter butted heads with Trump when it added fact-checking labels to his Tweets regarding mail-in voting, prompting him to issue an executive order attempting to revoke protections for social media firms
  • Twitter banned political ads on its platform late last year, and Facebook plans to roll out a range of similar measures one week before election day

US 🦅

Wildfires rage across West Coast, leave seven dead

  • Wildfires proliferated in California, Oregon, and Washington, as well as nine other states Thursday, killing at least seven people, displacing thousands, and burning entire towns
  • 96 large fires in the western U.S. have kindled more than 3.4 million acres so far, with tens of thousands of acres burned in the last day across the pacific northwest 
  • Washington Governor Jay Inslee said on Tuesday that more than double the acreage had been torched in the previous 24 hours than had been burned during all of last year in his state


AstraZeneca halts vaccine trial after woman shows neurological symptoms

  • Drugmaker AstraZeneca said it paused a coronavirus vaccine trial Thursday after a patient in the study showed symptoms consistent with transverse myelitis, a rare inflammation of the spinal cord
  • An independent committee will review the safety data to determine if and when the study could continue
  • AstraZeneca recruited 30,000 patients in the U.S. for a vaccine trial last month and is testing the vaccine on thousands of people in Britain, Brazil, and South Africa


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