The Rundown for March 4, 2021

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 28,786,045 and the nation’s death toll stands at 518,345, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… President Joe Biden and moderate Democrats have reportedly compromised on a bill that narrows the income eligibility for the next round of $1,400 stimulus checks. A Wharton analysis of the compromised bill found that 7 million fewer families will receive a partial payment than a House bill passed on Saturday would have allowed… Earlier yesterday, Biden said Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves are making a “big mistake” by fully reopening their states next week. The president characterized the move as “Neanderthal thinking” that defies recent warnings by public health officials.

HOUSE SHUTS DOWN AMID THREAT… Credible reports of a second possible attack on the Capitol prompted the House of Representatives to cancel today’s scheduled session. According to a Washington Post report yesterday, U.S. Capitol Police warned that they had “obtained intelligence that shows a possible plot to breach the Capitol by an identified militia group on Thursday, March 4.” Right-wing extremists have been making online claims that former President Donald Trump will be sworn in again. The Senate is scheduled to meet today and debate the Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.

NATIONAL GUARD COMMANDER TALKS ATTACK… Washington, D.C, National Guard commanding general William Walker told the Senate Rules and Administration Committee yesterday that he was “stunned” when senior military leaders refused his desperate requests to send in troops to defend the U.S. Capitol during the January 6 attack. Walker said senior Defense officials Charles Flynn and Walter Piatt held off on sending in reinforcements for three hours and 19 minutes while citing a concern about “optics.” The day before the attack, acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller put in place restrictions limiting Walker’s ability to prepare and move troops. Walker said he could have had 155 National Guard troops at the Capitol within 20 minutes of getting the order. Walker noted that during civil-rights protests that followed the death of George Floyd last year, the National Guard was given immediate approval to aid local law enforcement.

HOUSE PASSES VOTING, POLICE BILLS… The House voted 220 to 210 yesterday in passing voting and campaign finance reform legislation intended to expand access to the polls, fight partisan gerrymandering and set up new public funding for congressional races. Three Republicans joined with Democrats in approving the People Act of 2021, known as H.R. 1. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the legislation is needed to combat voter suppression efforts, crack down on corruption and lessen the influence of big donors in politics… The House also passed a bill banning controversial police tactics and exposing officers to lawsuits if they violate suspects’ constitutional rights. The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act passed by a vote of 220-212. Both bill passed in the House yesterday face an uncertain fate in the Senate.

CHAO MISUSED OFFICE, ACCORDING TO REPORT… A 44-page report sent to House lawmakers yesterday detailed numerous instances of “misuse of office” by former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao. The report by the Transportation Department’s inspector general revealed that Chao sparked ethics concerns among officials by using her staff to perform tasks for her family’s shipbuilding company, Foremost Group, even though the tasks had nothing to do with official business of the Transportation Department. The watchdog noted one instance in which Chao instructed staffers to organize events for a later-canceled trip to China in 2017 that included a series of promotional stops for her family’s business. Chao also allegedly asked staffers to perform tasks for her father, including working on his Wikipedia page, peddling his biography and soliciting a “well-known C.E.O. of a major U.S. corporation” to write the foreword.

ENTERTAINMENT
ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME TO HOST LIVE SHOW
… The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced plans to host a live induction of its 36th class on October 30 in Cleveland, with tickets available to the general public. Inductees will be announced in May. Nominees include Jay-Z, the Foo Fighters, Mary J. Blige, The Go-Go’s, Devo and Carole King.

‘THE GRAY MAN’ CAST GROWS… Billy Bob Thornton, Rege-Jean Page and Alfre Woodard have signed onto the ensemble cast of the upcoming Netflix film “The Gray Man.” They join a cast that already includes Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Jessica Henwick, Wagner Moura, Dhanush and Julia Butters. The film is based on Mark Greaney’s “Gray Man” novel series, which centers on freelance assassin and former CIA operative Court Gentry, who will be played by Gosling.

SPORTS
NBA SCOREBOARD

Indiana 114 – CLEVELAND 111… The Pacers overcame a 10-point halftime deficit to top the Cavaliers. T.J. McConnell set an NBA record with nine steals in the first half and finished with 16 points, 13 assists and 10 steals. Malcolm Brogdon’s 29 points led a balanced scoring attack.

PHILADEPHIA 131 – Utah 123 (OT)… Tobias Harris scored 11 of his 22 points in overtime as the 76ers spurted past the Jazz in a matchup of the NBA’s top two teams. Joel Embiid had game-highs with 40 points and 19 rebounds. His 3-pointer tied the game with 5.9 seconds left in regulation.

Detroit 129 – TORONTO 105… The Pistons rolled past the short-handed Raptors to snap their three-game skid. Wayne Ellington pumped in 25 points. Saben Lee and fellow reserve Rodney McGruder added 20 points apiece.

Brooklyn 132 – HOUSTON 114… James Harden scored 29 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished off 14 assists in leading the Nets past the Rockets in his return to Houston. Kyrie Irving tossed in 24 points.

Atlanta 115 – ORLANDO 112… The Hawks came from 19 points down to upend the Magic. Trae Young knocked down the winning free throws with eight seconds remaining and finished with 32 points. Danilo Gallinari added 23 points.

Charlotte 135 – MINNESOTA 102… The Hornets broke the game open in the second half and dismantled the Timberwolves. They got 31 points from Terry Rozier and 23 from Gordon Hayward.

Chicago 128 – NEW ORLEANS 124… Zach LaVine scored six of his 36 points in the final minute to key a late rally that carried the Bulls past the Pelicans. Coby White added 25 points. Wendell Carter Jr. pulled down 15 rebounds to go with his seven points.

DALLAS 87 – Oklahoma City 78… The Mavericks handled the Thunder despite playing without Luka Doncic, who was nursing a bad back. Kristaps Porzingis had 19 points and 13 boards. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 19 points off the bench.

PORTLAND 108 – Golden State 106… Damian Lillard knocked down a go-ahead 3-pointer with 13.7 seconds to go and drew a charge to seal the Trail Blazers’ win over the Warriors. Lillard and Carmelo Anthony led Portland with 22 points apiece. Enes Kanter had 11 points and 14 rebounds.

SACRAMENTO 123 – L.A. Lakers 120… The Kings held on at the end to be a Lakers team that was without LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Buddy Hield led the way with 29 points. De’Aaron Fox tossed in 23 points and Harrison Barnes added 20.

TODAY’S NBA SCHEDULE
Toronto is at Boston…
Washington hosts the L.A. Clippers…
Detroit is at New York…
Indiana hosts Denver…
Milwaukee is at Memphis…
New Orleans hosts Miami…
Oklahoma City is at San Antonio…
Portland hosts Sacramento…
Golden State is at Phoenix

NHL SCOREBOARD
Washington 2 – BOSTON 1 (SO)… Jakub Vrana netted the lone goal in the shootout to send the Capitals past the Bruins. Lars Eller scored a tying goal early in the third period.

Toronto 6 – EDMONTON 1… Jimmy Vesey found the net twice as the Maple Leafs skated past the Oilers. Jason Spezza assisted on three goals.

St. Louis 3 – ANAHEIM 2… The Blues scored on all three of their power-plays and held off the Ducks. Zach Michael Sanford’s third-period goal proved to be the difference. Goalie Jordan Binnington made 27 saves.

VEGAS 5 – Minnesota 1… Alex Tuch and Chandler Stephenson both had a goal and an assist as the Golden Knights cruised past the Wild. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury made 36 stops.

Arizona 3 – LOS ANGELES 2… The Coyotes scored all three goals in the second period and hung on to edge the Kings. Clayton Keller and Nick Schmaltz netted power-play goals. Anti Raanta made 40 saves at goal.

Colorado 4 – SAN JOSE 0… Avalanche goalie Philipp Grubauer stopped all 26 shots in shutting out the Sharks. Mikko Rantanen scored two goals and assisted on two others.

TODAY’S NHL SCHEDULE
Detroit is at Carolina…
Pittsburgh hosts Philadelphia…
Winnipeg is at Montreal…
New Jersey hosts the N.Y. Rangers…
Buffalo is at the N.Y. Islanders…
Chicago hosts Tampa Bay…
Florida is at Nashville…
Dallas hosts Columbus…
Ottawa is at Calgary…
Vancouver hosts Toronto

TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL SCOREBOARD
No. 10 VILLANOVA 72, No. 14 Creighton 60…
No. 11 FLORIDA STATE 93, Boston College 64…
No. 29 San Diego State 71, UNLV 62

MLB SPRING TRAINING SCORES
Baltimore 8, ATLANTA 1…
Boston 14, MINNESOTA 6…
Miami 8, WASHINGTON 5…
ST. LOUIS 14, N.Y. Mets 9…
Philadelphia 4, DETROIT 2…
TAMPA BAY 3, Pittsburgh 1…
Arizona 9, CLEVELAND 4…
KANSAS CITY 6, Chi. White Sox 5…
Seattle 8, CHI. CUBS 8 (tie)…
Milwaukee 8, SAN DIEGO 5…
COLORADO 10, Oakland 7…
L.A. ANGELS 6, Texas 2…
N.Y. YANKEES 4, Toronto 1…
Cincinnati 4, L.A. DODGERS 4 (tie)

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