CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… The number of coronavirus cases nationwide rose to 366,614 yesterday while the death toll reached 10,783, according to figures provided last night by Johns Hopkins University. President Trump spoke with political rival and former Vice President Joe Biden by phone yesterday, with discussion centered on the federal response to the coronavirus crisis. Meanwhile, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster ordered all residents to remain at home except for visits with family members or essential outings to get groceries, medicine or exercise. Eight states have yet to impose formal “stay at home” orders during the outbreak.
WISCONSIN PUSHES ON WITH PRIMARY… Wisconsin is pushing ahead with its primary today despite a massive shortage of poll workers and voters’ fears of congregating. The Wisconsin Supreme Court voted 4-2 to side with Republicans in keeping turnout limited. Wisconsin Republicans picked up another win last night when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a federal district judge’s ruling that required Wisconsin to count mail-in ballots if they arrived by April 13 even if they were mailed after election day.
JUDGE REINSTATES OKLAHOMA ABORTIONS… A federal judge yesterday reinstituted abortions in Oklahoma after Governor Kevin Stitt implemented a ban on all elective surgical procedures amid the COVD-19 outbreak. The judge issued a temporary restraining order for Oklahoma abortion providers after ruling that the governor’s ban would cause “irreparable harm” to women who are unable to get abortions. An executive order Stitt issued last month suspended all “elective surgeries and minor medical procedures” until today.
PELOSI TO BE HONORED… House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be honored as the recipient of this year’s Profile in Courage Award by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. The award is given for an act, or a lifetime, of political courage. Pelosi, who has served in the House of Representatives since 1987, is the first female to be elected Speaker and the first person elected Speaker in non-consecutive terms in more than 60 years,. The Democrat from California worked with a Republican president to pass an economic bailout package in 200, and with a Democratic president to pass landmark healthcare reform in 2010.
STOCKS GAIN… Wall Street’s week got off to a good start yesterday with stocks posting substantial gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1,628.15 points, or 7.73 percent, while the S&P 500 fell 6.97 percent and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.33 percent. Boeing stock rose 19.76 percent to lead the Dow’s rise.
LATE-NIGHT HOSTS JOIN VIRTUAL EVENT… Late-night talk-show hosts Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert have agreed to help host Global Citizen and World Health Organization virtual event next Monday to support health-care workers treating coronavirus patients. “One World: Together At Home” will feature musical guests including Billie Eilish, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, Elton John, John Legend and Keith Urban. Funds will be directed to the World Health Organization for the purchase of additional personal protective gear for health-care workers who are treating COVID-19 patients and to provide basic assistance for those impacted by the pandemic.
ACTRESS HONOR BLACKMAN DIES… Actress Honor Blackman, who was best known for playing Pussy Galore in the 1964 James Bond film “Goldfinger,” has died of natural causes unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic, her family announced yesterday. She was 94. Blackman also had a memorable role as Cathy Gale in the 1960s TV series “The Avengers.”
MLB HALL-OF-FAMER AL KALINE DIES… Al Kaline, who played all 22 years of his career for the Detroit Tigers and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1980, died yesterday. He was 85 and reportedly had suffered a stroke recently. Kaline was a 15-time All-Star and a 10-time Gold Glove winner in right field, retired shortly after recording his 3,000th hit in 1974, his final season.