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Good evening. Here’s the latest.
1. Fresh relief for Americans hit hard by the coronavirus recession remained distant, and new presidential directives caused confusion and criticism.
Under the measures that President Trump announced Saturday, those eligible for unemployment aid would receive an extra $400 weekly, with the federal government covering only $300 of that amount and states making up the difference. Above, Mr. Trump with his executive orders.
A number of governors expressed alarm about having to make up the $100 difference, as many states have seen tax revenue plummet during the pandemic. And because Congress controls the federal budget, the president’s directives will almost certainly be challenged in court.
It was unclear when negotiations would resume over how to close the gap between a $3.4 trillion measure the House approved in May and a roughly $1 trillion package that Republicans unveiled last month. Lawmakers have largely left the capital to return to their home districts.
Federal agencies have been asked to submit feedback to the White House by Tuesday, though it was unclear when President Trump might approve or announce the rule. Above, the border between Mexicali, Mexico, and Calexico, Calif.
A draft memo, parts of which were obtained by The Times, said the prohibition would apply “only in the rarest of circumstances,” but if Mr. Trump approved the change, it would be an escalation of his government’s longstanding attempts to seal the border against what he considers to be threats.
3. The Clintons and the Obamas will be among the speakers at the mostly virtual Democratic National Convention next week.
Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont and former Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, a Republican who is a harsh critic of President Trump, will deliver addresses Monday night. Hillary Clinton, above, will deliver a prime-time speech next Wednesday, as will Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts if she is not selected as Joe Biden’s running mate, officials said.
Mr. Biden, the former vice president and presumptive presidential nominee, will speak from Delaware on Thursday, the final night of the convention. Former President Barack Obama’s time slot has not been announced, and neither has Michelle Obama’s.
Mr. Biden is expected to announce his running mate this week. His advisers say he has spoken in recent days with several of the leading candidates, as well as Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan.
And President Trump tweeted that he may make his acceptance speech for the Republican nomination in Gettysburg, Pa., or at the White House.
4. McDonald’s sued its former C.E.O., claiming that he lied about sexual relationships with three employees in the year before his ouster.
Steve Easterbrook, above, was fired and replaced eight months ago for sexting with a subordinate. For the most part, corporate executives under a similar cloud have departed quietly, and companies haven’t aired the ugly details.
But a new allegation from an anonymous tip about Mr. Easterbrook has ignited a public war, with McDonald’s seeking to recoup stock options and other compensation that it allowed Mr. Easterbrook to keep — a package worth more than $40 million, by one estimate.
Mr. Easterbrook’s lawyer didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
5. Lebanon’s prime minister and cabinet resigned.
In a televised address, Prime Minister Hassan Diab said he was acting after widespread anger over last week’s explosion, which killed more than 150 people, wounded 6,000 and left hundreds of thousands homeless.
The blast added to existing frustration with the country’s political elite for what many in Lebanon consider decades of corruption and mismanagement. Above, protesters near the Parliament today.
Mr. Diab, in office since January, said his government had sought to put in place changes called for by the Lebanese people but was blocked by political foes he declined to name. It is unclear who will now take charge of the recovery from the blast.
The campaign against the pro-democracy movement has drawn a global outcry. On Friday, the Trump administration placed sanctions on Carrie Lam, Hong Kong’s chief executive, and 10 other officials over their roles in suppressing dissent. China retaliated by sanctioning 11 American nonprofit leaders and lawmakers, including Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz.
7. Chicago police officers arrested more than 100 people on charges of looting, battery against the police and disorderly conduct. A curfew was imposed on downtown starting tonight.
The Coronavirus Outbreak ›
Frequently Asked Questions
Updated August 6, 2020
Why are bars linked to outbreaks?
- Think about a bar. Alcohol is flowing. It can be loud, but it’s definitely intimate, and you often need to lean in close to hear your friend. And strangers have way, way fewer reservations about coming up to people in a bar. That’s sort of the point of a bar. Feeling good and close to strangers. It’s no surprise, then, that bars have been linked to outbreaks in several states. Louisiana health officials have tied at least 100 coronavirus cases to bars in the Tigerland nightlife district in Baton Rouge. Minnesota has traced 328 recent cases to bars across the state. In Idaho, health officials shut down bars in Ada County after reporting clusters of infections among young adults who had visited several bars in downtown Boise. Governors in California, Texas and Arizona, where coronavirus cases are soaring, have ordered hundreds of newly reopened bars to shut down. Less than two weeks after Colorado’s bars reopened at limited capacity, Gov. Jared Polis ordered them to close.
I have antibodies. Am I now immune?
- As of right now, that seems likely, for at least several months. There have been frightening accounts of people suffering what seems to be a second bout of Covid-19. But experts say these patients may have a drawn-out course of infection, with the virus taking a slow toll weeks to months after initial exposure. People infected with the coronavirus typically produce immune molecules called antibodies, which are protective proteins made in response to an infection. These antibodies may last in the body only two to three months, which may seem worrisome, but that’s perfectly normal after an acute infection subsides, said Dr. Michael Mina, an immunologist at Harvard University. It may be possible to get the coronavirus again, but it’s highly unlikely that it would be possible in a short window of time from initial infection or make people sicker the second time.
I’m a small-business owner. Can I get relief?
- The stimulus bills enacted in March offer help for the millions of American small businesses. Those eligible for aid are businesses and nonprofit organizations with fewer than 500 workers, including sole proprietorships, independent contractors and freelancers. Some larger companies in some industries are also eligible. The help being offered, which is being managed by the Small Business Administration, includes the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. But lots of folks have not yet seen payouts. Even those who have received help are confused: The rules are draconian, and some are stuck sitting on money they don’t know how to use. Many small-business owners are getting less than they expected or not hearing anything at all.
What are my rights if I am worried about going back to work?
What is school going to look like in September?
- It is unlikely that many schools will return to a normal schedule this fall, requiring the grind of online learning, makeshift child care and stunted workdays to continue. California’s two largest public school districts — Los Angeles and San Diego — said on July 13, that instruction will be remote-only in the fall, citing concerns that surging coronavirus infections in their areas pose too dire a risk for students and teachers. Together, the two districts enroll some 825,000 students. They are the largest in the country so far to abandon plans for even a partial physical return to classrooms when they reopen in August. For other districts, the solution won’t be an all-or-nothing approach. Many systems, including the nation’s largest, New York City, are devising hybrid plans that involve spending some days in classrooms and other days online. There’s no national policy on this yet, so check with your municipal school system regularly to see what is happening in your community.
Hundreds of people converged early Monday on the city’s upscale shopping district, breaking windows and ransacking stores. The chaotic scene prompted officials to briefly raise bridges downtown and halt nearby public transit. Thirteen police officers, a civilian and a security guard were injured. Above, Yogi Dalal with his daughters Jigisha, right, and Kajal at the family food and liquor store after it was vandalized.
The police said the looting had apparently grown out of a shooting between the police and a man with a gun that took place on the South Side. Like many other cities across the country, Chicago has seen a spike in gun crimes this summer.
“What occurred downtown and in surrounding communities was abject criminal behavior, pure and simple,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said this morning.
8. This could be the largest public gathering in the U.S. since the first coronavirus cases emerged here in the spring.
Officials expected about 250,000 motorcycle enthusiasts, about half the attendance of last year, in Sturgis, S.D., for the town’s annual biker rally.
We spoke with a few of those attending about why they came. Many said they were not concerned about the virus, as they walked around without masks, took helicopter rides and attended outdoor concerts and motorcycle shows.
9. Amazon has plans to launch 3,236 satellites. SpaceX’s goal is 12,000. And OneWeb has already put hundreds into orbit.
They all aim to extend high-speed internet service around the world, including to remote or underserved communities. But astronomers are worried.
With only about 2,600 satellites aloft right now, skywatchers are increasingly alarmed because of the orbs’ propensity to photobomb astronomical images with bright streaks. Above, a long-exposure image of a satellite’s track in the sky near Salgotarjan, Hungary.
Scientists are also worried about the lack of regulation as more entrants join the action. “It feels like putting a bunch of planes up and then not having air traffic control,” a planetary astronomer in New Zealand said.
10. And finally, if you drink Fresca or Squirt, you’re now also swallowing the latest mosquito repellent.
Nootkatone, an oil found in cedar trees and grapefruits, won approval today from the Environmental Protection Agency as an insect repellent. It is so safe that it is used as a flavor and fragrance by the food and perfume industries.
The chemical is not oily, lasts for hours and has a grapefruit-like scent. And it repels mosquitoes, ticks (like the one above), bedbugs and fleas, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Bonus: It may also be effective against lice, sandflies, midges and other pests.
Have an all-natural evening. And don’t let the bedbugs bite.
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