There were a few shockers in last night's elections, and the best one is that Missouri voters became the 38th state to expand Medicaid, approving a constitutional amendment by 52-48%. Via Politico:
The ballot initiative's organizers focused on similar messages from other successful Medicaid expansion campaigns. They highlighted the federal support it would bring to cash-strapped rural hospitals, after 10 have closed since 2014 and others face financial peril. The federal government provides 90 percent of funding for Medicaid expansion, more generous than the 65 percent rate Missouri receives for its existing program.
"Quite frankly, Missourians are sick and tired of not getting their fair share. They pay their taxes, they've seen now 37 other states use that money to expand access to health care. Meanwhile, our economy's clearly ailing here," Jack Cardetti, the campaign's spokesperson, said last week.
The ballot measure adds the Medicaid expansion into the state's constitution, effectively barring Republican lawmakers from adding conservative elements to the program — like work requirements and premiums — as other states sought to do following similar initiatives.
Juanita Jean's: It would probably be illegal to call a male "Karen" anything other than "Tucker."
Pharyngula: "@Sciencing_Bi" is dead, but not from Coronavirus.
Calculated Risk: House prices jumped by almost five percent compared to June 2019. How long can that last?
Mock, Paper, Scissors: And now for the latest episode of "What's the Matter with Kansas?"
Speaking of which, your quote of the day:
"My focus is to create a red-state model that allows the Republican ticket to say, 'See, we've got a different way, and it works.'" (Kansas GOP Governor Sam Brownback, February 4, 2013.)
Guest blogging Mike's Blog Round Up this week is Jon Perr from Perrspectives. Send your tips, recommendations, comments and angst to mbru AT crooksandliars DOT com.
This is amazing news. The old guard of the Democratic party are falling by the wayside and a new, hopefully modern party is emerging. Cori Bush lost to Rep. William Lacy Clay in 2018.
Lacy Clay, and his father, Bill Clay, have represented Missouri's first district since 1969.
Source: Associated Press
Cori Bush, a onetime homeless woman who led protests following a white police officer's fatal shooting of a Black 18-year-old in Ferguson, ousted longtime Rep. William Lacy Clay Tuesday in Missouri's Democratic primary, ending a political dynasty that has spanned more than a half-century.
Bush's victory came in a rematch of 2018, when she failed to capitalize on a national Democratic wave that favored political newcomers such as Bush's friend, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
But this time around, Bush's supporters said protests over the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis and outrage over racial injustice finally pushed her over the edge.
An emotional Bush, speaking to supporters while wearing a mask, said few people expected her to win.
"They counted us out," she said. "They called me — I'm just the protester, I'm just the activist with no name, no title and no real money. That's all they said that I was. But St. Louis showed up today."
Apparently, Maryem Toumi did not sustain any serious injuries and even kept working, showing the devastation to her BBC office in Beirut.
Source: BBC Arabic
A dramatic illustration of the power of the explosion that rocked Beirut on August 4 came during a video interview on BBC Arabic, during which the journalist Maryem Taoumi was speaking to Faisal Al-Asil, of the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy.
As Taoumi begins the interview via video call, a rattling is heard, followed by a loud explosion which topples the camera. Al-Asil and a woman next to him are left looking on in shock as alarms begin to go off in the BBC office.
Taoumi later followed up with a video saying she was fine, and showing the damage to the office.
The death toll is rising after a huge explosion rocked the Lebanese capital of Beirut, John Berman reports.
CNN's senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman reported live from Beirut this morning.
"Well, I'm just going to step aside and let you see, there are volunteer teams going around this neighborhood, which is severely damaged by the blast, and we are in front of a building where I think almost every window was blown out," Wedeman said.
"So ordinary people are doing what they can to put their country, their city back together. In the meantime, of course, there's rising controversy about what happened just a few minutes after 6:00 p.m. local time. We understand there were 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate in that warehouse that blew up. A chemical compound that is highly explosive and was kept in that warehouse apparently for 6 or 7 years after being seized from a ship that entered Beirut's port.
"Now, whether it was incompetence, corruption, or something else that explains why this very dangerous chemical compound was kept in a port that's very near to the center of town and in very populated areas is not at all clear, but certainly, there is a lot of anger among ordinary Beirut residents who want to know why that massive explosion went off, basically in the middle of their city last night."
I thought Tucker Carlson fired his racist scriptwriter.
On Tuesday's Tucker Carlson Tonight, the Fox host introduced us to a new low in racist propaganda: Deatherism.
It's like birtherism, but casts doubt on the cause of death of George Floyd, rather than the birth of Barack Obama. What's the connection? Oh yeah Black men. Transcript via Media Matters:
If only there were some medical record like an autopsy. Or TWO.
Trump proved once again that he's dangerously untethered to reality during a phone-in interview with is favorite morning show on his propaganda network.
Trump was asked about how we can safely reopen schools from cohost Pete Hegseth, and once again pretended that the coronavirus is going to just magically go away, and then lied about children being "virtually immune" to the virus.
If you look at children, children are almost, and I would almost say definitely, but almost immune from this disease. So few... and they've gotten stronger. Hard to believe. I don't know how you feel about it, but they have much stronger immune systems than we do, somehow, for this.
And they do it... they don't have a problem. They just don't have a problem.
Here's more on that from CNN:
The President also brought up that only one minor had died from coronavirus in the state of New Jersey and that he suspected the child was diabetic. He also suggested that children under the diabetic child's age were also even more immune.
During his Tuesday monologue, CNN's Anderson Cooper took Stable Genius to task for saying the 160,000 US coronavirus deaths "is what it is" and that Covid-19 is under control.
That last claim flabbergasted the CNN host: "Mr. President, no, it is not. It is not under control and certainly not as much as you can control it."
Cooper chided Trump for his self-centeredness. "For a man who seems to have strength and power, have you heard someone as allegedly powerful and strong as he claims to be — have you ever heard someone whine as much as this man?"
And Trump's so-called leadership, particularly to those Republicans who believe and follow his every word? Cooper called his lies to those particular people, criminal.
COOPER: An entire block of your voters think that mask mandates are an affront to personal freedom. And this president has encouraged that thinking. If it was anybody other than the president of the United States doing that, you would think, 'that's criminal.'
Definition of surreal
1: marked by the intense irrational reality of a dream
It was an ideal shot for a wedding video: the bride smiling in a quiet Beirut square. Mahmoud Nakib captured it, and was panning past the bride to take in her bouquet when the scene was shattered by a violent explosion ripping across the city.
Nakib's video shows the bouquet and the bride sent flying by the blast. Glass shatters and dust fills the air. The bewildered couple stand and look as alarms sound.
Thankfully, the bride and groom are unharmed and able to walk away. Nakib said they took refuge at a house before dining at a small restaurant later that evening.
The next day, Lebanon was still reeling, as the death toll from the massive explosion, at a portside warehouse, reached at least 100, with thousands wounded. Prime Minister Hassan Diab declared Wednesday, August 5, a national day of mourning, and appealed for international assistance.
Credit: Mahmoud Nakib via Storyful