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Vice President Kamala Harris is going for what a White House official told Fox News is a “routine doctor’s appointment” at Walter Reed Medical Center on Sunday.The visit to the Bethesda, Maryland, hospital comes after she met with Texas Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday. Three of the Democrats had tested positive for coronavirus, with one testing positive Friday night and two others Saturday morning.THREE TEXAS DEMOCRATS WHO FLED TO WASHINGTON, D.C. TEST POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUSFox News asked Harris’ office if the vice president is showing any symptoms of COVID-19 but they did not immediately respond. On Saturday, Harris spokesperson Symone Sanders said that Harris had not been in close contact with the infected lawmakers.”Based on the timeline of these positive tests, it was determined the Vice President and her staff present at the meeting were not at risk of exposure because they were not in close contact with those who tested positive and therefore do not need to be tested or quarantined,” Sanders said in a statement, adding that Harris and her staff have been fully vaccinated.Harris’ visit to Walter Reed came as she tweeted a warning about the Delta variant of the virus: “The Delta variant is no joke. Get vaccinated.”REP. RONNY JACKSON HITS TEXAS DEMOCRATS ON MASK HYPOCRISY, SAYS THEY SHOULDN’T BE TAKE SERIOUSLYThe Texas House Democratic Caucus confirmed the positive tests on Saturday, stating that the other caucus members and their staffs all tested negative.
Vice President Kamala Harris speaks during a meeting with women leaders on voting rights in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Friday, July 16, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)”The House Democratic Caucus is following all CDC guidance and protocols. This is a sober reminder that COVID is still with us, and though vaccinations offer tremendous protection, we still must take necessary precautions,” Caucus Chairman Chris Turner said in a statement. CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPThe Texas Democrats went to D.C. on a private flight as they abandoned a special session of the state legislature in order to prevent a vote on a new voting reforms. Tuesday morning, the Texas House members who are still in the state passed a Call of the House motion that requires all members to appear – those who fail to do so can be arrested and brought to the state capitol.When the Democrats, who were already in D.C. at the time, did not show up, they became subject to arrest to be taken to the capitol. Gov. Greg Abbott said that because they left the current special session, he would “continue calling special session after special session because overtime is going to continue until they step up to vote.”
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, provided an update on negotiations for a bipartisan infrastructure bill, revealing that one item meant to help pay for the bill that some Republicans opposed will not be included.Portman told CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that at this stage of the negotiations, reform of IRS enforcement that will not be a part of the bill.AOC SAYS PROGRESSIVES WILL ‘TANK’ INFRASTRUCTURE BILL WITHOUT BOLD CLIMATE CHANGE PROVISIONS”One reason it’s not part of the proposal is that we did have pushback. Another reason is that we found out that the Democrats were going to put a proposal into the reconciliation package which was not just similar to the one we had, but with a lot more IRS enforcement. So that created quite a problem because the general agreement is that this is the bipartisan negotiated infrastructure package, and that we will stick with that. And President Biden, to his credit, said that we would not be renegotiating these items in the reconciliation package.”Republicans such as Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, were strongly opposed to the IRS reform, which included providing $40 billion in new funding for the IRS, with the goal that it would generate up to $100 billion more in revenue by increased enforcement of existing laws. SCHUMER ANNOUNCES $3.5 TRILLION SPENDING PLAN TO PAIR WITH INFRASTRUCTURE PACKAGE”Rather than giving tens of billions of dollars to the IRS to harass and persecute American taxpayers, I think we should abolish the IRS and instead adopt a simple flat tax,” Cruz said, according to The Hill.Asked how he plans to pay for the $1.2 trillion package without this, Portman said there are “a number of pay-fors,” including legislation know as the Medicare Rebate Rule.”There are other ways to do this,” he said.Portman emphasized the need to draft the bill properly, rejecting the Wednesday deadline set by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP”Chuck Schumer, with all due respect, is not writing the bill, nor is Mitch McConnell, by the way. So that’s why we shouldn’t have an arbitrary deadline of Wednesday,” Portman said. “We should bring the legislation forward when it’s ready. And it’s incredibly important legislation,” he continued, later adding that “[w]e don’t want to rush this process and make mistakes.”
The Biden administration continued its public feud with Facebook over whether the social media giant is appropriately addressing misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, with Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy claiming Facebook’s measures have been inadequate.In a conversation with “Fox News Sunday,” Murthy said that “misinformation is still spreading” and that social media platforms must do more to stop it. Facebook, meanwhile, has said that they have already taken action on all of Murthy’s eight recommendations for what social media companies can do.WHITE HOUSE DOUBLES DOWN ON ITS HARSH CRITICISM OF FACEBOOK FOLLOWING BIDEN’S KILLING REMARKS”It’s not enough,” Murthy said. “We are still, despite some of the actions that they have taken, seeing significant spread of misinformation.”Murthy went on to say that “this health misinformation is hurting people’s health, it’s costing them their lives.”Fox News reached out to Facebook for a response, but they did not immediately respond.On Saturday, Facebook pushed back against claims that they are not doing enough, with Vice President of Integrity Guy Rosen penning a statement asserting that the facts “tell a very different story to the one promoted by the administration in recent days.”FACEBOOK ISSUES HARSH RESPONSE TO BIDEN ACCUSATION THAT PLATFORM IS ‘KILLING PEOPLE’Rosen noted that according to Facebook’s data, 85% of its users either have been or want to be vaccinated against COVID-19, while the Biden administration was short of reaching its goal of having 70% of adults vaccinated by July 4.”Facebook is not the reason this goal was missed,” Rosen said.Rosen’s statement came after President Biden himself on Friday accused Facebook of “killing people” with misinformation about vaccinations. CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPWhile Facebook has made positive public statements on how they’ve partnered with the government and taken aggressive action to curb vaccine misinformation, the White House believes that the Big Tech company and its social media peers have fallen short.”I’m asking these companies to step up and take responsibility for what’s happening on their sides,” Murthy said.
Republicans are pointing to unrest in Cuba as evidence that socialist policies ultimately fail, despite a trend among far-left Democrats to embrace them.Thousands of Cubans took to the streets in Havana over the weekend to lash out at the worsening conditions in the country under the communist regime, as Cuba faces its worst economic crisis in decades.CUBAN ANTI-GOVERNMENT PROTESTERS WAVE AMERICAN FLAGS DURING MARCH”Socialism leads to pain and suffering and Cuba is the perfect example,” Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., said in a statement. “Biden must pressure Cuba to provide assurances that they will not fire on their own people. This is a major test for Biden. He must exert leadership and American influence.”Cuban-American Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Ted Cruz, R-Texas, had particularly strong words against Cuba’s system of government.”Protests in #Cuba aren’t simply about ‘shortages’ Socialism promises guaranteed food, medicine & income if you give up your freedom,” Rubio tweeted. “When, as always, it fails to deliver you don’t get your freedom back.”Cruz spoke out against the “tyranny” of the Cuban government, noting that his family fled from the country.DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS IGNORE CUBAN PROTESTERS RAILING AGAINST COMMUNIST DICTATORSHIP”The Cuban people have fought against the tyranny of the Communist regime for decades, and have taken to the streets demanding liberty,” Cruz said in a statement. “This regime has brutalized and denied freedom to generations of Cubans, forcing many including my family to flee or be murdered, and over the coming days will widen its violence to try to suppress the brave protesters in the streets.”Meanwhile, self-professed Democratic socialists like Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., appear to be in lockstep by not acknowledging what is happening in Cuba.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPPresident Biden, however, issued a statement supporting the Cuban people for “bravely asserting fundamental and universal rights.””We stand with the Cuban people and their clarion call for freedom and relief from the tragic grip of the pandemic and from the decades of repression and economic suffering to which they have been subjected by Cuba’s authoritarian regime,” Biden said.Fox News’ Edmund DeMarche contributed to this report.
The Republican National Committee will air an ad during Tuesday night’s Major League Baseball All-Star Game that claims political figures and corporations “lied” about Georgia’s new voting law, which led to MLB moving the game from Atlanta to Denver.The game was originally set to take place at Truist Park, home of the Atlanta Braves, but MLB moved it to the Colorado Rockies’ Coors Field after Democrats, including President Biden, likened the law to Jim Crow. The RNC said it is putting seven figures into the ad buy.GEORGIA SECRETARY OF STATE DEFENDS ELECTION REFORM LAWS”Democrats stole our All-Star Game to push their divisive political agenda. Politicians and corporations lied, while Black communities got hurt the most,” Georgia’s Rev. Melvin Everson says in the ad in a voiceover, which was released Monday. “Even though a majority of Black voters support laws like voter ID. To Democrats it’s just a game. But we’re the ones who got played.”The Washington Post awarded Biden a maximum four Pinocchios for his claims about Georgia’s law, particularly his statement that the law “ends voting hours early so working people can’t cast their vote after their shift is over,” when in reality the law keeps Election Day voting hours at 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Any changes to early voting hours would expand hours, not reduce them, the Post said.GEORGIA LT. GOVERNOR HOPES STATE CAN BEGIN TO ‘MOVE PAST’ ELECTION REFORM CONTROVERSY AMID DOJ LAWSUITMLB made the decision to move the All-Star Game after Biden told ESPN he supported the idea, and called the law “Jim Crow on steroids.””The lies told by Democrat politicians and corporations about election integrity have real-life consequences, hurting Georgia families,” Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement. “Democrats don’t care about the costs of their lies because their sole agenda is more power. The American people will hold Democrats accountable for their lies about election integrity because they know the security of our elections is too important.”The Justice Department filed a lawsuit looking to block the Georgia law. A federal judge last week ruled against a request to block portions of the law related to observing votes before upcoming runoff elections.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPGeorgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger called the case “just another in a line of frivolous lawsuits” against the state’s election law, adding, “We will continue to meet them and beat them in court.”The DOJ’s lawsuit is one of eight federal lawsuits challenging the new law.Fox News’ Brooke Singman and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki addressed concerns over the Biden administration’s announcement of a plan to go door-to-door to get people vaccinated against coronavirus, providing assurance that the government was not keeping tabs on who is or is not immunized.Soon after President Biden announced the initiative, critics slammed the idea of the government going to people’s homes and asking about their private medical information. Psaki insisted that this is not what is happening, and that they will be relying on volunteers to do outreach in their communities.BIDEN ADMIN LAUNCHING DOOR-TO-DOOR EFFORT TO VACCINATE AMERICANS, CAUSING BACKLASH”These are grassroots voices across the country. They are not members of the government, they are not federal government employees,” Psaki said during a Thursday press briefing. “They are volunteers, they are clergy, they are trusted voices in communities that are playing this role and door-knocking.”Psaki stated that community members have been doing this since April and it has been effective, with vaccination rates among adults going up 3% in Alabama and 4.4% in Florida.After Biden first mentioned the idea of going door-to-door, Republicans in Congress were quick to push back against it.”How about don’t knock on my door. You’re not my parents. You’re the government,” Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, tweeted. “Make the vaccine available, and let people be free to choose.””The government now wants to go door-to-door to convince you to get an ‘optional’ vaccine,” Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., said.Psaki said the criticism has been “frustrating” for the administration.”When people are critical of these tactics it’s really a disservice to the country, and to the doctors, faith leaders, community leaders and others who are working to get people vaccinated,” she said. “This is about saving lives and ending this pandemic.”Psaki also insisted that the government is not keeping records of who is or is not vaccinated, although they are aware of the rates of vaccination in different parts of the country.HHS SECRETARY BECERRA: ‘ABSOLUTELY THE GOVERNMENT’S BUSINESS’ TO KNOW WHICH AMERICANS HAVEN’T BEEN VACCINATED”The federal government does not have a database of who is vaccinated. That is not our role, we don’t maintain a database along those lines and we don’t have plans to,” she said.While the government may not be keeping track of who is vaccinated, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said Thursday morning on CNN’s “New Day” that it is “absolutely” the government’s concern because of the money they have spent.”The federal government has spent trillions of dollars to try to keep Americans alive during this pandemic. So it is absolutely the government’s business,” Becerra said. “It is taxpayers’ business if we have to continue to spend money to try to keep people from contracting COVID and helping reopen the economy. And so it is our business to try to make sure Americans can prosper, Americans can freely associate.”CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP As for any concerns of the government invading Americans’ privacy, Becerra noted that they would not be forcing anyone to do anything.”Knocking on a door has never been against the law,” he said. “You don’t have to answer, but we hope you do because if you haven’t been vaccinated we can help dispel some of those rumors that you’ve heard and hopefully get you vaccinated.”
Texas lawmakers are expected to discuss voting reforms meant to provide greater election security after the Supreme Court upheld Arizona rules that Democrats had claimed were illegal and discriminatory.The Texas legislature will open a special session on Thursday at the behest of Gov. Greg Abbott.TEXAS DEMOCRATS MULL ANOTHER WALKOUT OVER ELECTION REFORM: ‘EVERYTHING IS ON THE TABLE’”Today, I’m announcing the formation of the House Select Committee on Constitutional Rights and Remedies, a select committee with expanded membership and expertise is the ideal forum for ensuring the thoughtful consideration of items that may be on a special session call,” Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan tweeted Tuesday.Officially, the subjects to be discussed remain unknown, other than that they will be submitted by Abbott, but Democratic Rep. John Bucy III, who is on the committee, told local KVUE that he “can only imagine that the select committee will deal with elections issues.” Abbott had also reportedly said in May that state lawmakers would discuss bills related to elections and bail reform during a special session some time this year.CLYBURN STATES HE IS ‘ALWAYS FOR VOTER ID’ AFTER PREVIOUSLY CALLING IT ‘SUPPRESSION’Once Abbott formally states which topics will be discussed, the session will be limited to bills related to those issues.
Texas Speaker of the House Dade Phelan, R-Beaumont, overseas the House Chamber during a vote, Wednesday, May 5, 2021, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
(AP)The Texas House and Senate each had voting reform bills, and Democrats staged a walkout in May that derailed Republican efforts. Democratic Rep. Jessica González of Dallas told the Texas Tribune that it could happen again at the special session.”From a caucus perspective, since we’re going into the unknown, we have to keep every option open, which includes denying quorum,” González said.The previous walkout drew the attention of the White House, with Vice President Kamala Harris meeting with several of the Texas state lawmakers in Washington in June.The eyes of the nation were on the Supreme Court last week when they issued their decision in a case that called into question the legality of Arizona’s rules that restricted third parties from collecting or submitting a person’s absentee ballot (commonly known as ballot harvesting) and called for provisional ballots to be thrown out if cast at the wrong precinct.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPThe Democratic National Committee claimed that those measures were discriminatory and violated the Voting Rights Act. The court, in a 6-3 decision, held that they were properly enacted rules meant to protect election integrity, and that Democrats had not presented convincing evidence to show discriminatory intent or impact that would warrant a change.The court’s acceptance of Arizona’s election security measures could embolden Texas and other states to pass new rules of their own, at a time when Democrats in Washington are looking to pass sweeping legislation that would force states to comply with standards that would strip away restrictions on ballot harvesting and voter ID requirements.Fox News’ Brie Stimson contributed to this report.