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Thursday's Mini-Report, 6.3.21

Today's edition of quick hits.


Today's edition of quick hits:

* No time to waste: "The White House said it will be sending out its first wave of 25 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines in the coming weeks as the administration looks to speed up efforts to assist countries struggling with a shortage of vaccines."

* In related news: "Confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States have fallen to levels not seen since March 2020, according to an NBC News analysis — and experts say they expect case counts to stay low through the summer."

* Israel: "A secular liberal, a right-wing nationalist and an Islamist walked into a Tel Aviv conference center. For Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu it was not just the start of a bad joke but perhaps the beginning of the end of his 12-year grip on power."

* Good move: "The U.S. Department of Justice is elevating investigations of ransomware attacks to a similar priority as terrorism in the wake of the Colonial Pipeline hack and mounting damage caused by cyber criminals, a senior department official told Reuters."

* Jan. 6 fallout: "U.S. prosecutors this week put a price tag for the first time on damage to the U.S. Capitol from the Jan. 6 breach — $1.5 million so far — and are asking defendants to cover some of that in plea offers, prosecutors and defense lawyers said."

* On a related note: "As alleged Capitol rioter Richard 'Bigo' Barnett prepares for his next court hearing, the Arkansas man who was captured on Jan. 6 with his feet on a desk in the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is asking for some help with his legal fees. In exchange for a contribution of $100 or more, Barnett will give back 'a token of his appreciation,' according to a fundraising website: A signed photo of him inside the speaker's office during the failed insurrection."

* This is part of an alarming pattern: "The Trump Justice Department secretly obtained the phone records of four New York Times reporters as part of a leak investigation, the newspaper reported Wednesday."

* Flynn's coup talk: "The US Army said Wednesday that it will not investigate former Gen. Michael Flynn for statements he recently made in which he appeared to endorse a Myanmar-style coup occurring in the US."

* Evidence of an unhealthy political climate: "Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) has spent more than $58,000 on security in the months following her vote to impeach former President Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, according to a Casper Star-Tribune review of Federal Election Commission data."

* Mo Brooks: "Attorneys for Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) said Wednesday they've hired a private investigator to find Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) in order to serve a lawsuit that alleges he and other pro-Trump allies bear responsibility for the Capitol riot."

* In some faith communities, this story is a big deal: "For years before his resignation last month as president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, the Rev. Russell Moore was considered the denomination's most outspoken 'Never Trumper,' and when he departed for a job at Christianity Today magazine, it was considered a victory for pro-Trump SBC forces. But in a letter written more than a year before his resignation, Moore explained his troubles with the SBC's leadership in bitterly frank terms, and Donald Trump hardly made an appearance."

* Impressive courage: "A Dallas high school valedictorian scrapped a speech approved by her school administrators and delivered an abortion rights call in its place."

See you tomorrow.