News Headlines 3/9/21

CDC: FULLY VACCINATED PEOPLE CAN GATHER WITH OTHERS VACCINATED, LOW-RISK WITHOUT MASKS: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued guidance yesterday (March 8th) for the kind of things Americans can do once they’ve been vaccinated. They said that those who are fully vaccinated — meaning two weeks after getting two shots of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine — can get together with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing. They can also gather without masks or distancing with people considered at low-risk for severe disease, such as vaccinated grandparents visiting healthy children and grandchildren. The CDC is still recommending, however, that fully vaccinated people wear masks and distance in public, and also avoid large gatherings. The CDC is also still discouraging unnecessary travel even for those who are vaccinated.

BIDEN TO GIVE FIRST PRIME-TIME ADDRESS THURSDAY: President Biden will deliver his first prime-time address on Thursday (March 11th), which the White House said will mark the one-year anniversary of the nation’s Covid-19 shutdowns. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Biden will, quote, “discuss the many sacrifices the American people have made over the last year and the grave loss communities and families across the country have suffered,” and will also, “look forward, highlighting the role that Americans will play in beating the virus and moving the country toward getting back to normal.” The address will also come as the House is expected to this week pass Biden’s $1.9 trillion Covid relief package after the Senate approved it over the weekend.

JURY SELECTION IN TRIAL OF EX-OFFICER CHARGED IN GEORGE FLOYD’S DEATH PUSHED BACK ONE DAY: Jury selection in the second-degree murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd last May was supposed to begin yesterday (March 8th), but it was pushed back by one day to today due to legal wrangling over the state trying to add a third-degree murder count. Prosecutors are asking the Court of Appeals to put the trial on hold until the issue is resolved. Judge Peter Cahill postponed the start of jury selection yesterday while he decided the way forward, and later said he would keep the trial moving unless he’s told by the Court of Appeals to stop. Chauvin is also charged with manslaughter in Floyd’s death.

REPORTED STONE BODYGUARD AMONG TWO ARRESTED FOR CAPITOL ATTACK: Federal authorities said Monday (March 8th) that two men wanted in the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol were arrested over the weekend, including one who reportedly served as a bodyguard to Roger Stone, a longtime friend and political confident of former President Donald Trump. The FBI said in court papers that the man, Roberto Minuta, breached the Capitol grounds and, quote, “aggressively berated and taunted U.S. Capitol police officers,” and was wearing clothes with a crest related to the Oath Keepers, a far-right, anti-government militia. Minuta has been identified by the New York Times as one of six people who provided to security to Stone in the hours before the Capitol attack. Isaac Steve Sturgeon, who was also arrested, is  charged with shoving a metal police barricade into police officers during the assault on the Capitol. He traveled to Kenya in late January, and was arrested after being deported back