Could the supply chain nightmare be coming to an end? Yes and no. Port congestion is easing, deliveries are speeding up and shipping prices are coming back down, but other issues like driver and supply shortages could keep things unpredictable for a while. Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.
(You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)
Doctors, nurses and health care workers are once again reaching the point of exhaustion as Covid-19 infection rates climb back up. Nationwide, Covid-19 hospitalizations have increased 40% compared to a month ago. In some places it’s even worse, like Michigan, where hospitalizations jumped 88% in the past month. Health care workers there are noticing a disturbing trend: younger and younger people are dying. This is the first winter in the US with the deadly Delta variant, so experts are concerned about what’s to come. Meanwhile, the FDA has authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for use as a booster in people ages 16 and 17, and the CDC has also given its recommendation. So far, about 50 million people — 26.9% of fully vaccinated adults — have received an additional vaccine dose.
2. Capitol riot
A federal appeals court has denied former President Donald Trump’s effort to block his White House records from being released to the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection. However, Trump will likely now take the issue to the Supreme Court. Trump’s lawsuit alleged the committee had not given a clear reason to obtain the more than 700 pages of records, but the court generally backed the committee’s purpose, and found examples of former presidents complying with their successors’ requests. Despite what some legislators are considering a decisive decision that puts to rest months of efforts by Trump to block the documents, the court has paused its decision for two weeks so that Trump can seek a Supreme Court intervention.
At least 650 people died attempting to cross the US-Mexico border this year, according to data from the International Organization for Migration. That’s the highest number since the agency began recording such data in 2014. Though the agency didn’t specify causes of death, border crossings are notoriously difficult, and there can be countless complications. US Customs and Border Protection has previously said a majority of migrant border deaths are related to heat exposure. As the Biden administration continues to try to reunite hundreds of families separated at the border under the Trump-era “zero tolerance” policy, the Department of Homeland Security has issued an open request to the public for recommendations to ensure the federal government never uses family separation as a tactic against undocumented migrants again.
A group of 20 retail leaders — including the CEOs of Target, Best Buy, Nordstrom, Home Depot and CVS — have sent a letter to Congress urging lawmakers to take action in response to a recent wave of brazen store robberies in major US cities. The group said criminals can easily resell the stolen items online, and recommended Congress pass a bill to make it easier for consumers to identify exactly who they are buying from and where the merchandise originated — and harder for criminals to hide behind fake identities. There have been several incidents in the past few weeks of swarms of people overwhelming stores and stealing merchandise, and a few stores were looted during Black Friday. Some retailers, like Best Buy, say they’re also increasing security to deal with the problem.
5. Jussie Smollett
Actor Jussie Smollett has been found guilty on five counts of felony disorderly conduct for making false reports to police that he was the victim of a hate crime in January 2019. Smollett denied the attack was a hoax. However, two brothers who knew Smollett personally through the TV show “Empire” testified that the actor, who is Black and gay, directed and paid them to carry out a sham anti-gay and racist attack in order to garner sympathetic media coverage. At the time, many celebrities, politicians and advocacy groups rallied behind the actor. Chicago police initially investigated the incident as a hate crime, but as the story fell apart, they soon said the actor orchestrated the incident himself. Smollett’s convictions carry the possibility of jail time.
These meat-eating dinosaurs could sprint as fast as Usain Bolt
You know, there’s a lot that’s wrong with the world, but at least we don’t have ultra-fast meat-eating dinosaurs running around anymore.
Someone just paid $7,753 for school papers graded by Elon Musk
‘And Just Like That…’ shifts ‘Sex and the City’ into a new phase
Three of the original SatC ladies — and their shoes — are back for a new chapter.
Whoa! There’s a cream cheese shortage!
Camels ejected from beauty contest over Botox use and other ‘tampering’
Sorry, still trying to wrap my head around the phrase “camel beauty contest.”
Dictionary.com has announced its Word of the Year that they say encompasses the defining events of 2021. What is it?
Take CNN’s weekly news quiz to see if you’re correct!
That’s how many galleries at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art were named for the Sackler family, a major longtime donor. Yesterday, the institution announced it will remove the Sackler name from those galleries. The Sackler family’s company Purdue Pharma, which makes OxyContin, is now notorious for its role in the nation’s opioid epidemic. The Met’s decision this week is the latest attempt by the museum to distance itself from the controversy.
A losing battle
This very cute puppy is learning a hard lesson at the beach: No matter much you dig, there will always be a wave to wash it away. (Click here to view)
™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.