It’s Tuesday, September 14th, and this is your Morning Wire. Listen to the full podcast here.
1) Elder Confident On Eve Of Recall Election
The Topline: The California recall election takes place today with conservative radio host and author Larry Elder leading the way among candidates seeking to oust Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom.
Since 1913, the state of California has seen a total of 179 recall attempts. Of those attempts, only 11 collected enough signatures to even qualify for the ballot, and just 6 of those resulted in the actual recall of an elected official. Only 2 statewide recall attempts, including Newsom, have been governors.
FiveThirtyEight’s aggregate of several polls put the “keep” Newsom vote at around 57% heading into the vote and support for the recall in the low 40s. In early August, it was 50/50.
Multiple polls in the final days before the election showed Elder with a lead as large as 25 to 30 points among the contenders. If Californians vote to remove Newsom, Elder will almost certainly be the new governor.
Remember: Only a simple majority is needed to remove Newsom.
Elder told Morning Wire he feels good about the final polling data going into the election because he believes Democrats vote early and Republicans tend to be less trusting of mail-in voting and more likely to vote in person.
The Topline: More than 20 Republican governors have promised to legally resist President Joe Biden’s mandate forcing private businesses with at least 100 employees to vaccinate their workforce or be subjected to weekly testing.
“At the end of the day, we don’t live with a one-person rule in this country. We live in a constitutional system.”
– Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL)
To this point, vaccine mandates have been issued at the state level. Several governors believe the Constitution doesn’t endow President Biden with the power to mandate vaccines on private employers.
The federal government traditionally only issues vaccination requirements for legal immigrants and federal workers.
Republicans also say the president’s call to levy a fine of $13,600 for each separate violation will harm businesses and individuals.
This mandate, they argue, is also counterproductive. Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts said if Americans are dubious about the government’s statements about the vaccines, they’ll only be more suspicious when the government forces it on people.
Biden administration officials have appeared publicly confident regarding the mandates. The president responded to the impending lawsuits over the weekend saying, “Have at it.”
3) NYC Schools Reopen With Restrictions
The Topline: Public schools in New York City opened for in-person learning Monday for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, but classrooms have numerous restrictions in place.
With the city refusing to offer remote learning, kids are returning to school wearing masks. Some schools won’t let kids use lockers and others have disabled water fountains. New York’s Education Department suggested sports and clubs, particularly band and choir, are too risky because of the amount of breathing involved.
Field trips, group projects, and parties are also banned. Students will have to eat lunch outside and aren’t allowed to talk with friends. They will also need to fill out a daily symptoms report each morning before school.
Why The Rules For Kids?
Experts say teachers unions are the key factor in the new restrictions. Although kids present the lowest risk for severe complications from COVID-19, teachers unions insist the risk to adults is high. Part of their argument stems from the fact that children under twelve years old can’t get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Teachers can get the vaccine, however, which has been shown to be highly effective at protecting against severe illness, so the impositions on children are controversial.
Other States: In Bedford, Massachusetts, students will also have to eat outside without tables while sitting in chairs spread apart and facing in one direction.
Other Stories We’re Tracking
Varsity Blues Trial
The trial began Monday in Boston for two parents accused of fraud and bribery in the “Varsity Blues” college admissions scandal. John B. Wilson of Lynnfield, Massachusetts, and Gamal Abdelaziz of Las Vegas, are being tried jointly in a US District Court in Boston. Both have pleaded not guilty.
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