CHINA SAYS CAN’T ACCEPT WHO’S PLAN FOR MORE STUDY INTO COVID-19 ORIGINS: A senior Chinese health official said today (July 22nd) that China can’t accept the World Health Organization’s (WHO) plan for the second phase of a study into the origins of Covid-19. The vice minister of China’s National Health Commission, Zeng Yixin, said he was, quote, “rathen taken aback” by the call for futher investigation of the virus’ origin, the lab leak theory in particular, a theory he dismissed as counter to common sense and science. He stated, “It is impossible for us to accept such an origin-tracing plan.” China has been accused of not being transparent about what happened in the early days of the pandemic, while Beijing charges that the issue is being politicized. Zeng noted that a team of international experts coordinated by WHO that visited the Wuhan lab earlier this year concluded that a lab leak was unlikely, and the virus most likely jumped from animals to humans.
PELOSI BLOCKS TWO OF FIVE GOP APPOINTEES TO JANUARY 6TH PANEL, REPUBLICANS SAY WON’T PARTICIPATE: Speaker Nancy Pelosi yesterday (July 21st) rejected two of the five House Republicans chosen by Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to sit on the House committee that will investigate the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol. The two were Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana and Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, two outspoken allies of former President Donald Trump. Pelosi cited the, quote, “integrity of the investigation” and “concern about statements made and actions taken by these members.” McCarthy accused Pelosi of, quote, “an egregious abuse of power” and said Republicans won’t participate in the probe if the five members aren’t appointed. Democrats have said the investigation will proceed, with Pelosi having appointed eight members, including Republican Rep. Liz Cheney, a Trump critic, which gives them the bipartisan representation needed according to committee rules. Cheney told reporters she agrees with Pelosi’s decision, and lashed out at McCarthy, charging he’s, quote, “attempted to prevent the American people from understanding what happened — to block this investigation.” McCarthy said the Republicans will conduct their own investigation, although it’s unclear how that could happen, since the minority doesn’t have the power to set up committees.
- The House voted in May to create an independent, bipartisan investigation that would have been evenly split between Democrats and Republicans, but Senate Republicans blocked it.
BIDEN URGES COVID VACCINATION IN TOWN HALL, CALLS IT ‘GIGANTICALLY IMPORTANT: President Biden again urged getting vaccinted against Covid-19 in a town hall televised on CNN last night (July 21st), calling it “gigantically important” and expressing frustration over how much the U.S. vaccination rate has slowed. Speaking at the event at Mount St. Joseph University in Cincinnati, Biden said that the pandemic in the U.S., now being driven by the delta variant, is now largely focused among the unvaccinated, saying, “We have a pandemic for those who haven’t gotten the vaccination — it’s that basic, that simple.” Biden also answered questions about topics including his infrastructure package, expressing confidence that it will get done in Congress, and inflation, saying there will be what he called “near-term inflation” as the economy rebounds from the pandemic, stating it’s, quote, “highly unlikely long-term inflation will get out of hand.”
OHIO ‘INCEL’ CHARGED WITH PLOTTING HATE CRIME TO KILL WOMEN IN MASS SHOOTING: A 21-year-old Ohio man described by authorities as an “incel” was arrested Wednesday (July 21st) and charged in federal court with attempting to commit a hate crime to kill women in a mass shooting at sororities at an unnamed Ohio university. Tres Genco was also indicted for unlawful possession of a machine gun. Officials said Genco wrote a manifesto about wanting to kill women, quote, “out of hatred, jealousy and revenge,” and hoped to have a “kill count” of 3,000 victims. Genco was part of an online community of incels, according to authorities, a group who have hostility towards women who they believe, quote, “unjustly deny them sexual or romantic attention to which they believe they are entitled.” Incel stands for “involuntary celibate.”