Tribune News Service

News Budget for Saturday, August 1, 2020


Updated at 8 p.m. EDT (0000 UTC).



Additional news stories appear on the MCT-NEWSFEATURES-BJT.

This budget is now available at TribuneNewsService.com, with direct links to stories and art. See details at the end of the budget.


^Summertime sadness: Resurgent virus dims crisis recovery hopes<

^CORONAVIRUS-GLOBAL:BLO—<The virus is the summer house guest from hell.

Any remaining hope that the coronavirus that's pushed the U.S., Europe and much of Asia into historic economic downturns would take a holiday was all but crushed this week. The virus continues to rampage through parts of the U.S. and engulf nations across the developing world, particularly India, Brazil and South Africa. It's made a comeback in Japan as well as areas of Europe and China.

1100 by Brian Bremner. MOVED


^Isaias weakens to tropical storm but expected to be hurricane again as it approaches Florida<

WEA-ISAIAS-1ST-LEDE:OS — Isaias downgraded to tropical-storm strength Saturday afternoon but its wind strength is expected to rise again into a hurricane as it approaches southeast Florida, according to the National Hurricane Center's 5 p.m. EDT update.

"Don't be fooled," Gov. Ron DeSantis said in a press conference following the update. "We do think it will be upgraded to a hurricane later this evening."

New NHC models are showing a slight westerly wobble in Isaias' path with projections indicating it making landfall along the east-central Florida coast sometime Sunday.

1500 by Joe Mario Pedersen in Orlando, Fla. MOVED




^Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva tests positive for COVID-19<

^CORONAVIRUS-GRIJALVA:BLO—<Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva says he's been infected with the coronavirus, a few days after a Capitol Hill hearing where a Republican House member in attendance later tested positive for COVID-19.

Grijalva, who issued a statement saying he isn't exhibiting any symptoms, has been self-isolating at his home in Washington, D.C., since Wednesday upon learning that Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert tested positive.

200 by Tom Schoenberg and Erik Wasson. MOVED


^California smashes daily record for coronavirus deaths for the fifth time in a month<

^CORONAVIRUS-CALIF:LA—<California recorded 214 coronavirus-related deaths on Friday, a record-setting daily total that capped a month of rising fatalities amid a surge of new COVID-19 cases.

It marked the fifth time in July that California broke its single-day record for deaths, and the third time this week. The previous record of 176 was just set on Wednesday.

450 by Alex Wigglesworth, Sean Greene and Rong-Gong Lin II. MOVED


^Eviction ban to end in California. And a crisis looms if lawmakers don't act<

CORONAVIRUS-CALIF-EVICTIONS:SA — The first of the August arrived with a renewed sense of worry for renters in the capital region and California affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Until now, tenants have been protected by a series of overlapping rules on the county, state and federal levels which have put evictions on hold during the coronavirus pandemic. But as the suspensions begin to expire, tenants are staring over the edge of a cliff.

1550 by Malaika Kanaaneh Tapper in Sacramento, Calif. MOVED


^Fears grow that releasing thousands of California prisoners will spread COVID-19 into communities<

CORONAVIRUS-CALIF-INMATES-FEARS:LA — Missteps by corrections officials handling releases from state prisons are fueling fears in some California counties that thousands of inmates eligible for early release will spread the coronavirus in their communities.

Across the state, county probation officials and others on the front lines of the release of as many as 8,000 inmates by the end of August have complained that prisoners were recently freed with little notice to local authorities and without appropriate transportation or quarantine housing — and in some cases, no clear indication they were virus-free.

County officials also have expressed alarm about potentially infected inmates who were released and allowed to ride on public transportation and mingle with the public.

1700 (with trims) by Anita Chabria, Richard Winton and Kim Christensen in Los Angeles. MOVED


^Fauci: Henry Ford Health's hydroxychloroquine study 'flawed'<

CORONAVIRUS-HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE:DTN — Dr. Anthony Fauci told federal lawmakers Friday that a study by Henry Ford Health System that showed hydroxychloroquine was effective in lowering the death rate among COVID-19 patients was "flawed."

Health officials should instead rely on the "gold standard" of a randomized, placebo controlled study to determine whether the drug is effective, Fauci told the U.S. House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis.

"The Henry Ford Hospital study that was published was a non-controlled retrospective cohort study that was confounded by a number of issues, including the fact that many people who were receiving hydroxychloroquine were also using corticosteroids, which we know from another study gives a clear benefit in reducing deaths with advanced disease," said Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease expert advising the White House on the coronavirus response.

450 by Beth LeBlanc in Detroit. MOVED


^Florida surpasses 7,000 COVID-19 deaths<

^CORONAVIRUS-FLA:FL—<Florida's coronavirus report on Saturday included 179 more resident deaths and 9,642 new COVID-19 cases, as the state kept away from the record-setting numbers of the past few days.

Health officials the previous day reported 257 deaths from disease complications, the most during the pandemic. These are fatalities that happened in recent weeks, but took time to confirm for the COVID-19 tally.

1000 by Marc Freeman. MOVED


^How Texas tracks the virus' toll<

CORONAVIRUS-TEXAS:AU — The death toll from the coronavirus in Texas came into sharper focus this past week, as health officials added several hundred more fatalities to a tally that now exceeds 6,000.

The jump came as the Texas Department of State Health Services shifted to death certificates listing COVID-19 as the cause of death, as a data source, instead of local health reports. State officials said the move provides a more accurate picture of the human toll of the disease.

But the lag time in receiving death certificates — up to 10 days after a person dies — offers a delayed account of the number of fatalities on a given day.

1250 by Nicole Cobler in Austin, Texas. MOVED


^Many of South Florida's private schools — and some charters — will return to buildings in the fall<

CORONAVIRUS-FLA-PRIVATESCHOOLS:FL — Parents hoping to send their children to an actual school campus this fall may have to shell out money for a private school.

Despite pressure from the state and federal governments to open their campuses for the new year, most South Florida public schools plan to start off online only due to the continued surge of COVID-19 cases and deaths in South Florida. A few charter schools plan to offer in-person instruction, but most say they will begin online until conditions improve.

For private schools, it's a different story.

1050 by Scott Travis in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. MOVED


^Georgia camp outbreak shows rapid virus spread among children<

CORONAVIRUS-GA-CAMP:AT — COVID-19 spread quickly among unmasked youth at YMCA camp, CDC finds.

Some 260 cases of the coronavirus have been tied to attendees and staff at a North Georgia YMCA children's camp in June, according to a report released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one of the largest known superspreading events in the state.

1500 by J. Scott Trubey in Atlanta. MOVED



^US-Canadian couples ask Canada to consider their plan to open border so they can reunite<

CORONAVIRUS-USCANADA-BORDER:DE — Lauren Hughes, 23, lives in Windsor, Ontario, and her fiance Addie Rivett, 24, lives in Farmington Hills. Despite being in different countries, door-to-door their homes are a mere 20-minute drive across the Detroit River.

But they might as well be oceans apart. Like so many unmarried, but committed couples where one person resides in Canada and the other in the states, they can't visit each other because of Canada's international border restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

1250 by Jamie L. LaReau in Detroit. MOVED


^Berlin police break up rally as 20,000 protest virus restrictions<

CORONAVIRUS-GERMANY-PROTEST:DPA — Police officers in Berlin broke up a large rally against restrictions imposed to contain the novel coronavirus on Saturday, held despite Germany's rising infection numbers.

The organizers of the rally were unable to ensure safety regulations were being followed, a police spokesman told dpa.

The police broke up the event, attended by some 20,000 people. When some attendees failed to move on, police told them they were committing misdemeanors, which led to further yelling and booing.

600 by Dpa correspondents in Berlin. MOVED



^Several COVID-19 vaccines limit viral growth in monkeys, reports show<

^CORONAVIRUS-VACCINE-MONKEYS:SD—<There's been a lot of monkey business in the world of COVID-19 vaccine research this week — literally.

Scientists from San Diego to Boston to Oxford, England, have released results from studies in which monkeys given experimental COVID-19 vaccines were then deliberately infected with the novel coronavirus. And while the specific vaccine formulations differed, all induced immune responses that stalled the growth of the virus.

600 by Jonathan Wosen. MOVED



^As Isaias crosses Bahamas, hurricane shelters could become COVID 'tinder box'<

^WEA-ISAIAS-SHELTERS:MI—<With Isaias making its way through the Bahamas chain, residents who may not feel safe in their flood-prone homes are being advised to first seek shelter with host families and only go to a shelter if they need to.

"If you find there is nobody to host you then you need to report to one of the shelters so that you and your family can be safe," Lillian Quant-Forbes, the director of social services, said Friday.

The advice comes as the country is experiencing a surge in coronavirus infections.

900 by Jacqueline Charles and Alex Harris. MOVED


^Isaias appears to have spared the Bahamas, but Bimini remained a concern<

^WEA-ISAIAS-BAHAMAS:MI—<Front yards were buried under flood waters and snapped trees and downed power lines littered roadways throughout the Bahamas Saturday, as a weak Hurricane Isaias churned its way up the archipelago, knocking out power with its heavy winds and rainfall.

But while most of the country's 700 islands appeared to have been spared the worst, concerns mounted late Saturday as the storm's westward shift spared the island of New Providence but placed the system on path for a direct hit on the island of Bimini.

700 by Jacqueline Charles. MOVED


^No worries: People aren't panicking about Isaias in South Florida<

WEA-ISAIAS-SOUTHFLORIDA:FL — A hurricane was coming, but it didn't look or sound like it in South Florida.

Few people, it seemed, pulled out their electric drills and dusted off their hurricane shutters in preparation for Isaias, the ninth tropical storm and second hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season.

850 by Eileen Kelley in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. MOVED


^Isaias: Here's the meaning behind name of the storm that's menacing South Florida<

^WEA-ISAIAS-MEANING:FL—<A famous line from Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" poses the question "What's in a name?" And, Isaias, the name of the second hurricane of the 2020 storm season, has left many wondering just that.

Isaias seems an interesting choice for the name of a hurricane considering that, according to popular name origin websites, it means "God is my salvation."

200 by Karina Elwood. MOVED


^It may take longer to get power back after Isaias, FPL says. Blame COVID-19<

WEA-ISAIAS-FLA-OUTAGES:MI — Power outages caused by the Isaias storm may begin as early as Saturday in South Florida, according to Florida Power and Light. But restoration efforts may be delayed by COVID-19 protocols at the utility company.

450 by Martin Vassolo in Miami. MOVED



^Could Obama's call to end Senate filibuster shift the tide?<

CONGRESS-FILIBUSTER:CON — Former President Barack Obama's endorsement this week of ending the legislative filibuster energized progressive senators and groups who have championed the issue and converted one previous skeptic, Sen. Bernie Sanders. But will it provide enough momentum to topple a longtime Senate rule that many view as a pivotal check against partisan politics?

The answer to that question wasn't immediately clear in the hours after Obama's remarks at Rep. John Lewis's funeral in Atlanta, where he said doing away with the 60-vote threshold for legislation may be necessary if Congress is ever going to finish Lewis' work on voting rights.

1450 by Lindsey McPherson and Clyde McGrady in Washington. MOVED


^House Democrats urge Pentagon to reverse policy banning LGBTQ Pride, Native Nations flags<

^CONGRESS-PENTAGON-FLAGS:NY—<More than two dozen House Democrats are demanding the reinstatement of LGBTQ Pride and Sovereign Native Nations flags on military installations — and an explicit ban on the Confederate Flag.

In a letter sent Friday to Department of Defense Secretary Mark Esper, 34 lawmakers argued that a new policy he issued last month — which was intended to target the Confederate battle flag, but ultimately also banned Pride and Native Nations flags — undermines efforts of inclusion in the military.

350 by Muri Assuncao. MOVED


^President Trump's son Barron won't attend in-person classes at private school due to county-wide mandate<

^BARRONTRUMP-SCHOOL:NY—<Barron Trump will not return to in-person classes at his Maryland private school until October — even as his president father threatens to cut much-needed funding to school districts that go remote this fall.

250 by Chelsia Rose Marcius. MOVED



^Democrats ply Biden with alternatives to Harris for running mate<

^CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-RUNNINGMATE:BLO—<Democrats around Joe Biden are angling to provide alternatives to Kamala Harris as his running mate, long seen as the front-runner for the post, as his vice presidential selection process enters its final stage.

Although Biden said Tuesday that he would announce his pick the week of Aug. 3, people familiar with the process said they are planning for a rollout the week of Aug. 10, giving the new Democratic ticket only a few days to campaign together before the party's convention, which begins Aug. 17. Biden allies have let it be known that California Rep. Karen Bass, chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, is being seriously considered, and Bass is doing her own campaigning.

1100 by Jennifer Epstein and Tyler Pager. MOVED


^Kamala Harris settled with a top aide who lost her job, and both sides agreed to keep quiet<

CAMPAIGN-HARRIS-AIDE:SA. — Under then-Attorney General Kamala Harris' direction, the California Department of Justice paid a nearly $35,000 settlement to Harris' former chief deputy attorney general after a dispute related to her termination in 2011, documents show.

A copy of the settlement agreement provided to The Sacramento Bee by the California Department of Justice says the department paid former Harris aide Terri Carbaugh $34,900.

The agreement came less than a year after Harris, now a U.S. senator and widely considered to be a favorite for the vice presidential nomination, assumed office as California's attorney general.

600 by Sophia Bollag in Sacramento, Calif. MOVED


^Republicans hammer Karen Bass, possible Biden running mate, over Cuba<

^CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-BASS:BLO—< Rep. Karen Bass is on Joe Biden's short-list as a possible running mate, and two Trump surrogates for Florida hammered her on Saturday over her past support for Cuba, saying it would offend the state's Latino voters.

A report on Friday said Bass had traveled to communist Cuba as part of a group as a high school student in the 1970s. Decades later, as a lawmaker representing California, she was part of former Secretary of State John Kerry's 2015 trip to raise the American flag in Havana, and President Barack Obama's visit to the island in 2016.

On a call Saturday facilitated by Trump's campaign, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nunez said those trips amount to Bass being a sympathizer to the Castro regime.

400 by Mario Parker in Washington. MOVED



^China's ByteDance prepared to divest 100% of TikTok in US<

^TIKTOK-TRUMP:BLO—<China's ByteDance Ltd. is prepared to sell 100% of TikTok's U.S. operations as a way to head off a proposed ban on the music-video site by President Donald Trump, said two people with knowledge of the situation.

Details of the proposed transaction weren't immediately known after the parties worked through the night to find an acceptable resolution. The White House had no immediate comment.

350 by Shelly Banjo and Saleha Mohsin. (Moved as a business story.) MOVED


^Bail in Twitter hack: $725K. Tampa teen's assets: $3M in Bitcoin<

TWITTER-BITCOIN-HACK-1ST-LEDE:PT — The teen accused of masterminding the Twitter hack of the accounts of celebrities and major companies to in an illicit attempt to obtain Bitcoin had his bail set on Saturday:

It is $725,000.

But the defense attorney for 17-year-old Graham Ivan Clark said his client has more than $3 million worth of Bitcoin.

800 by Josh Solomon in Tampa, Fla. MOVED


^Trump suggests he might want to take on income inequality<

^TRUMP-INCOME-INEQUALITY:BLO—<President Donald Trump suggested he might be interested in pushing for policy that addresses the widening income gap in the U.S., but didn't suggest a plan.

Trump commented in a retweet about how much some prominent billionaires have increased their net worth during the coronavirus pandemic, while tens of millions of Americans have lost their jobs.

Trump tweeted a Business Insider graphic and video that compared the 40 million Americans filing for unemployment during the pandemic to billionaires whose net worth, according to the video, increased by half a trillion dollars.

200 by Tom Schoenberg. MOVED


^ 'Herstory' is out as California revamps K-12 ethnic studies course guide<

^CALIF-EDUCATION-ETHNICSTUDIES:LA—<California officials unveiled their latest try at an ethnic studies curriculum for K-12 students Friday, and it's clear their hope is that this time fewer people will be offended.

To appease critics of academic jargon, the new draft ditches terms such as "herstory" for the more traditional "history." To better honor diversity, teachers are encouraged to let the ethnic composition of the class influence study topics.

1100 by Nina Agrawal and Howard Blume. MOVED


^Evacuation zones expanded as Apple fire grows to 4,125 acres in Riverside County, destroying one home<

^CALIF-WILDFIRE:LA—<Firefighters on Saturday continued to battle the Apple fire in Riverside County that has burned 4,125 acres in the Cherry Valley area, destroyed one home and prompted evacuations in some neighborhoods.

The vegetation fire was reported at 4:55 p.m. Friday, according to the Riverside County Fire Department. As of 3 p.m. Saturday, there was zero containment.

More than 300 firefighters, several helicopters and air tankers responded to the fire. Firefighters were battling the blaze in triple-digit temperatures that prompted the National Weather Service to issue an extreme heat warning.

300 by Leila Miller and Alex Wigglesworth. MOVED

^They walk to make reparations to Black and Indigenous people, one step at a time<

CALIF-REPARATIONS-MARCH:SJ. — Three white women dressed in all-black skirts, pants and sheer veils solemnly walked single-file down San Pablo Avenue one recent Thursday morning, drawing quizzical stares as they maintained their steadfast silence.

Bicyclists turned their heads, a mother pushing a baby stroller snapped a cellphone picture and motorists did double-takes as the women continued their measured pace, heads bowed, hands clasped together as if in prayer, followed by a male "ambassador" wearing a shirt that read "40 Days of Mourning and Returning."

Their journey to Oakland that July 23 day would cover nine miles, taking about six hours.

1000 (with trims) by Angela Ruggiero in Berkeley, Calif. MOVED


^Camden's Roman Catholic diocese suspends payments to clergy abuse victims, citing COVID-19 financial stress<

^RELIG-SEXABUSE-PAYMENTS:PH—<Citing financial losses resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden in New Jersey said Friday that it would halt payments from a clergy sex-abuse victim fund that has paid out nearly $7.6 million.

In a statement, the diocese said it had suffered a "precipitous decline in revenue" and was rapidly approaching a point where it would not be able to continue to borrow money to pay authorized awards.

700 by Jeremy Roebuck. MOVED


^6 dead including 9-year-old boy, 13 wounded in Chicago shootings as weekend starts<

CHICAGO-VIOLENCE:TB — Five people were fatally wounded, including a 9-year-old boy, and at least 13 others were wounded overnight in shootings as the weekend started in city, Chicago police said.

800 by Deanese Williams-Harris in Chicago. MOVED


^Gunned down while playing outside, Janari Ricks, 9, was 'an honor roll child'<

CHICAGO-VIOLENCE-BOY:TB — Janari Ricks loved math, and showed an aptitude for it, learning his multiplication tables early and reciting them easily, his parents said.

"He was an excellent student," his mother, Jalisa Ford, said. "He was an honor roll child."

450 by Madeline Buckley in Chicago. MOVED


^Salmonella outbreak linked to red onions, health officials warn<

^SALMONELLA-ONIONS:DE—<Check your refrigerator and kitchen for raw onions and products that contain them. Get ready to toss them out.

Federal health official have linked red onions as the source of the current nationwide salmonella newport outbreak being investigated.

600 by Susan Selasky. MOVED



^Parents buy shovels and beg Mexican officials to help find their missing children<

MEXICO-MISSINGCHILDREN:SD — Six months after Barbara Martinez's son disappeared, the nightmares began.

"I would close my eyes, but then I would see him buried under the ground, but with his eyes open, and stuck there; looking up at me like this," Martinez said Thursday, making a face to show how she imagined her dead son shot desperate looks at her from beneath the blackness of his undiscovered grave.

She couldn't sleep or eat. She could only think about finding her son.

Cesar Ezequiel Rico de la Cerda, her 17-year-old child, disappeared from Tijuana's southeast Urbi Villa Del Prado II neighborhood in October 2018.

1900 (with trims) by Wendy Fry in San Diego. MOVED


^Putin challenged by rising in the East that Kremlin won't quell<

^RUSSIA-PROTESTS:BLO—<Just a month after sealing a referendum victory that allows him to remain as Russia's president until 2036, Vladimir Putin is suddenly facing the biggest protests against the government in years. So far, the Kremlin's allowing them to happen.

Residents of the Far East city of Khabarovsk have taken to the streets in daily rallies sparked by the arrest of their popular local governor, Sergey Furgal, with numbers swelling into tens of thousands at weekends. They plan to march again on Saturday amid signs their anger is evolving into broader demands for Putin to step down.

850 by Evgenia Pismennaya and Henry Meyer. MOVED



^First astronaut splashdown in 45 years is set for Sunday, in the Gulf of Mexico to avoid Isaias<

SPACEX:OS — Two very special mementos will splash down on Earth with astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley who, if schedules hold, will return home Sunday after two months in space.

NASA set splashdown for 2:41 p.m. ET off the coast of Pensacola in the Gulf of Mexico, far from the projected path of Hurricane Isaias that's forecast to travel up Florida's east coast. The coast near Panama City is the alternate site.

750 by Caroline Glenn in Orlando, Fla. MOVED


^The seaweed monster is back devouring South Florida beaches. It's not a pretty sight<

^ENV-FLA-BEACHES-SEAWEED:MI—< Like most tourists coming to a South Florida beach for a quarantine break, the Mlynek family had a picture-perfect scene in mind when they arrived from Oklahoma this week: turquoise waters glistening in the sun, gently swaying palm trees and shining stretches of white sand.

What they found in Hollywood instead were smelly, messy mounds of seaweed coating the coastline.

1000 (with trims) by Adriana Brasileiro in Miami. MOVED


^'Murder hornet' captured in trap for first time in Washington state<

^WASH-MURDERHORNETS:NY—<Nearly two months after the "murder hornet" invaded Washington, state officials have managed to capture one of the massive insects in a trap for the very first time.

Scientists have been working to capture the invasive Asian giant hornets, which measure more than 2 inches long, in a bid to prevent a full-on infestation.

300 by Jessica Schladebeck. MOVED




These stories moved earlier in the week and remain suitable for publication.

^After missing DACA, she resented her US-born siblings. Trump ruined her second chance<

IMMIGRATION-DACA-MISSED:LA — Beatriz Basurto's father is quick to point out that she — the 19-year-old middle child — is the most responsible of his six children.

She's the one with a well-paying job as a Mixtec interpreter for farmworkers in Oxnard while attending college full time. She's the one who picks up the tab when they go out for lunch and shoves $20 into his pocket because she figures he could use it more than she can.

But she's also the one with perhaps the most uncertain future and greatest disadvantage of all the siblings.

Three years ago, Basurto missed her chance to apply for immigration relief under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, better known as DACA. The Obama-era program allows immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children and are currently without legal status the opportunity to live and work legally in the U.S.

Basurto's youngest brother and sister are U.S.-born citizens. Her older brother and sister, born in Mexico, like her, managed to obtain DACA before Trump began to unwind the program in 2017. Basurto, then 16, was about to apply — and suddenly, DACA was done.

1900 by Cindy Carcamo and Molly O'Toole in Los Angeles. MOVED


^Beset by pandemic, Trump plots new way to reach voters — through landline telephones<

CAMPAIGN-TRUMP-TELERALLIES:WA — Unable to hold the in-person rallies that were expected to be a signature of his campaign, President Donald Trump is working the phones and holding "tele-rallies" with swing state supporters as his new campaign manager Bill Stepien experiments with pandemic programming.

The campaign has targeted households with landline telephones in southern Wisconsin, Arizona, Michigan, central North Carolina and Iowa so far. Those contacted typically receive a phone call at home, telling them the president is about to have a tele-rally and inviting them to stay on the line to hear from him.

Trump's campaign says the calls, which are not publicized beforehand, have reached "tens of thousands" of homes in battleground communities and more than a million people have streamed sessions of Trump delivering remarks on Facebook's video platform.

2000 by Francesca Chambers in Washington. MOVED


^Republicans and Democrats battle over who has better voter-data effort<

CAMPAIGN-VOTERS-DATA:CON — By the time this November's presidential race is over, President Donald Trump and his rival — former Vice President Joe Biden — could raise as much as $2 billion as they plug away online and through limited physical rallies to reach citizens and get them to vote either in person or by mail.

Behind each candidate's advertising, social media messaging, and turn-out-the-vote effort is a data operation that meticulously tracks not only past patterns of voters, but a vast array of demographic, consumer and behavioral data about them. Plus, the data operation figures out the best of multiple ways to reach the voters and predicts who's likely to vote or be swayed on specific topics and policies.

1100 by Gopal Ratnam in Washington. MOVED


^Will coronavirus dim the Friday Night Lights of Texas high school football?<

CORONAVIRUS-TEXAS-FOOTBALL:LA — In this town of 4,600, home to the Bearcats and a well of pride that has withered lesser teams, Tim Buchanan, aka Coach Buc, watched his players arrive at the stadium before first light. It is like this every year: cleats hitting turf, shouted drills and the promise of another state title in December.

Aledo has come to expect this. The Bearcats have won a record nine championships, most recently last year. They are the town's joy and occasional agony, the reason business slows Fridays as residents — even those without a child on the team — swagger into the 9,000-seat stadium. But as players took the field this week, they heard an unlikely command from Coach Buc:

"Cover that nose up!"

Those words didn't sound natural echoing out over the artificial turf, but this pandemic season of face masks, social distancing and temperature checks is changing — perhaps even endangering — the hallowed rhythms of Texas football.

1550 by Molly Hennessy-Fiske in Aledo, Texas. MOVED



^Silenced No More: She was a pioneering Coast Guard rescue swimmer. A tsunami of sexual harassment followed<

COASTGUARD-HARASSMENT:MI — Sara Faulkner had the "it" factor as the first woman to graduate from the Coast Guard's helicopter rescue swimmer school in North Carolina and join its elite group of swimmers. The South Florida woman's against-the-odds story met a bitter end, she says, after sexual harassment saddled her with PTSD and forced the 20-year service member into retirement.

Two women had trained at the Navy's rescue swimmer program, but Faulkner was the first to pass the testing program. Once sent to do the job she loved, rescuing people from helicopter drops, Faulkner said she endured groping, licking, butt smacking, leering and crude sexual innuendos meant to humiliate her in front of colleagues.

Amid the #MeToo movement, Faulkner's story, one she's just starting to fully tell, follows a survey published last July showing that almost half of female cadets at the Coast Guard Academy reported sexual harassment.

2800 by Kevin G. Hall in Jupiter, Fla. MOVED


^Silenced No More: Mechanic dreamed of joining the Coast Guard. Then his wife was groped by his superior<

COASTGUARD-MECHANIC:MI — Sean Persinger dreamed of being a crewman on the daring rescues performed by the H-60 Jayhawk helicopter units, lowering baskets in rough weather to haul up distressed mariners from raging seas.

His U.S. Coast Guard career as an Aviation Maintenance Technician at Air Station Kodiak, responsible for everything non-electrical on helicopters and aircraft, hit a series of setbacks after a barroom incident in 2007 involving inappropriate sexual behavior by an officer. The issue still haunts his family more than a decade later as he retired June 1, earlier than planned.

For reasons that are in dispute, the officer was not investigated for sexual impropriety, and the Persingers insist they weren't even the ones who reported the original incident. Yet they say they suffered sustained retaliation, their complaint present from the outset in government records they later obtained.

3050 (with trims) by Kevin G. Hall in Elizabeth City, N.C. MOVED


^Silenced No More: An elite swimmer's wife said she was fondled at a Coast Guard party. He paid the price<

COASTGUARD-SWIMMER:MI — As an elite Coast Guard rescue swimmer, Claude Morrissey racked up the honors, his exploits prominently on display in the Weather Channel's television series "Coast Guard Alaska."

The mountain-sized Morrissey was even named GEICO'S U.S. Military Person of the Year in 2013, honored in the nation's capital.

But after 18 years of service and 14 medals, Morrissey's career came crashing down after his wife, Elizabeth, reported that she was sexually assaulted in May 2016 by one of his superiors.

The Morrisseys maintain that retaliation followed, including being forcibly separated from his wife and kids for more than a month. A decorated rescue swimmer without a history of problems, Morrissey eventually went through a summary court-martial — a lower-level form of the military legal proceeding — for talking back to one of his superiors and kicking a desk.

Those who knew him say the seemingly minor infractions committed by a popular rescue swimmer were symptoms of the larger issue going on. He was furious over the inaction about inappropriate sexual advances on his wife and the threat of violence from a co-worker.

2800 by Kevin G. Hall in Elizabeth City, N.C. MOVED




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