Biden may be able to exit isolation, if he tests negative for COVID-19
President Joe Biden said Monday that he’s “feeling better every day” after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, and the White House planned a summit on Tuesday to discuss developing new vaccines that could more effectively guard against contagious variants. Biden noted “everything’s on the button” with the medical tests he’s been receiving each evening. Dr. Kevin O’Connor, physician to the president, said in a letter Monday that Biden’s symptoms have “almost completely resolved.” At this point, Biden is only reporting some residual nasal congestion and minimal hoarseness, O’Connor said. Tuesday — Biden’s fifth day of isolation in the White House — will be an important moment on his road to continued recovery. Dr. Ashish Jha, coordinator of the White House response to COVID-19, said Biden will be able to come out of isolation if he tests negative for the virus Tuesday using a rapid antigen test, while continuing to wear a well-fitting mask for the next several days.
Trump returns to Washington to give policy speech, with more expected
Former President Donald Trump will return to Washington Tuesday for the first time since leaving office on Jan. 20, 2021, to deliver a “policy speech” to the America First Policy Institute, which is developing a “policy agenda” for the next Republican president. Trump will address the organization’s two-day America First Agenda Summit as some advisers urge him to spend more time talking about his vision for the future as he prepares to announce an expected 2024 White House campaign. Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich said the former president’s remarks “will highlight the policy failures of Democrats, while laying out an America First vision for public safety.” Whether Trump sticks to policy remains to be seen. In rallies across the country, Trump has tended to spend most of his time attacking President Joe Biden, promoting his administration’s record, and continuing to make unfounded claims of voter fraud in his 2020 loss to Biden.
Alex Jones trial begins after judge ruled he defamed Sandy Hook parents
Opening statements and the first witnesses are expected Tuesday for a trial that will determine how much money conspiracy theorist and Infowars host Alex Jones must pay to the family of a child killed in the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. In multiple Infowars segments beginning shortly after the shooting and continuing after the first lawsuits were filed by Sandy Hook parents, Jones called the school shooting a hoax and a false flag operation staged by the government as part of a wider “gun grabbing” strategy. Jones also accused the victims’ parents of complicity in the staged attack, calling them liars or actors taking part in a fraud on the nation.
Heat wave to persist in south-central U.S. and build in Northwest
Daily record highs are expected to be broken Tuesday from Northern California to the metro areas of Seattle and Portland, Oregon. The temperatures in Portland could top 100 degrees, making it likely the hottest day of a week-long heat wave for the Pacific Northwest region that rarely sees such scorching weather. Forecasters issued an excessive heat warning for parts of Oregon and Washington state. Temperatures could hit the 90s in Seattle and 110 in eastern parts of Oregon and Washington. But the severity of the heat this week will not come close to the historic, deadly heat wave of June 2021, according to AccuWeather. As the Northwest heats up, the Northeast appears ready to cool down. From Maine to Washington, D.C., on Monday, severe storms were lined up up over the busy urban corridor in the Northeast. As the front pushes southeastward into Tuesday, the Northeast will finally be able to enjoy calm, seasonable weather, AccuWeather said.
$810 million jackpot is third largest in Mega Millions lottery history
Tuesday’s Mega Millions drawing has climbed to a seriously lofty level, even in these inflationary times: $810 million, with a cash option of $470.1 million. That’s the third-highest Mega Millions jackpot ever, according to the Mega Millions website. However, the Associated Press also notes that federal taxes will slice 37% off that cash prize as well. So, that would leave less than $300 million, assuming there is just one winner. Mega Millions is played in 45 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The game is overseen by state lottery officials. The top lottery jackpot of $1.586 billion came in a Powerball drawing on Jan. 13, 2016. That’s followed by Mega Millions jackpots of $1.537 billion won Oct. 23, 2018, in South Carolina, and $1.050 billion won Jan. 22, 2021, in Michigan.
Contributing: The Associated Press