It’s Wednesday, November 11th, and this is your Morning Wire. Listen to the full podcast:
1) Inflation Hits 30-Year High
The Topline: New data from the Labor Department shows inflation was even worse than expected last month, with prices on common consumer products rising at the fastest rate in over three decades.
Quote Of The Day: “The concern about the rising inflation is paramount for the president…and I don’t see it getting better before it gets worse.”
– Sam Stovall, CFRA Chief Investment Strategist
According to the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index, inflation rates are worse than at any point since December of 1990. Over the past year, the average price of common products like gasoline, groceries, healthcare, and rent, have gone up 6.2%. Over the summer, there were similar isolated price increases, but the problem now applies to all products.
Economists say this means that even if you received a 5% raise in 2021, you’re still essentially making less money than you were in 2020.
Biden Administration Messaging
The Biden administration has often said rising inflation rates would only impact the wealthy. In October, White House Chief Of Staff Ron Klain tweeted that inflation was a “high class problem” and White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said inflation was rising because the unemployment rate had gone down, and the economy is turning back on.
Most economists agree a certain level of inflation is normal after an economic recession like the one Americans recently experienced. As millions of people quickly return to the workforce, supply and demand can be affected, which impacts inflation rates.
However, economists also point to the role of government spending. Over the last two years, more than $6 trillion were poured into the economy as part of COVID relief, which is about a third of the country’s entire GDP. The more money there is in circulation, the less a dollar is worth.
The Federal Reserve is also being blamed for not doing enough to address the issue since one of their main responsibilities is to keep inflation around 2%.
Looking Ahead: Officials from the Federal Reserve have repeatedly said not to panic, but there seems to be evidence showing the issue is going to worsen as winter approaches and energy costs begin to increase.
2) Kyle Rittenhouse Takes The Stand
The Topline: Kyle Rittenhouse’s defense team continued making its self-defense case on Wednesday when the trial took an emotional turn as Rittenhouse himself took the stand, breaking down in tears.
Quote Of The Day: “Don’t get brazen with me! I don’t want to have another issue as long as this case continues, is that clear?”
– Judge Bruce Schroeder to the prosecutor
Yesterday, Rittenhouse testified for the first time. As he described the moment he felt surrounded by protesters before he fired his first shot, he began sobbing while trying to describe the situation, at which point the judge called a break.
The judge and the prosecutor have also repeatedly clashed.
The prosecutor, Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger, began quizzing Rittenhouse about his decision to remain silent after the shootings but before the trial. Rittenhouse’s lead defense attorney Mark Richards objected, and Judge Bruce Schroeder sent the jury out of the room. He raised his voice at Binger as he reprimanded him, telling him Rittenhouse’s silence is “basic law.”
The judge also admonished Binger for bringing up a piece of video evidence the judge had banned from the trial.
Rittenhouse’s lawyer is asking for a mistrial, claiming the prosecution crossed the line in questioning. The judge is taking it under advisement, but it seems unlikely he’d take that step.
The judge warned jurors on the trial’s first day that some media coverage may be “irresponsible” or “deliberately biased.”
Much of the media’s coverage of the trial has ignored certain video footage which appears to confirm many of Rittenhouse’s self-defense claims.
For Example: The prosecution originally argued that Rittenhouse chased the first man he shot, Rosenbaum, before the man chased Rittenhouse. Several mainstream outlets highlighted this claim from the prosecution, but video evidence casts doubt on the claim that Rittenhouse chased Rosenbaum at any point.
3) Aaron Rodgers Defends Vaccination Status
The Topline: After testing positive for COVID last week, All-Pro quarterback Aaron Rodgers spoke about his decision to remain unvaccinated.
“I realize I’m in the crosshairs of the woke mob right now, so before my final nail gets put in my cancel-culture casket, I think I’d like to set the record straight on so many of the blatant lies that are out there about myself right now.”
– Aaron Rodgers
Last Wednesday, Aaron Rodgers tested positive for COVID, and it was revealed shortly after that he was unvaccinated. Prior to the announcement, most people believed Rodgers was vaccinated based on a statement he made in August saying he was “immunized.”
Members of the media called Rodgers a liar and claimed he endangered those around him. Rodgers has not worn a mask during in-person press conferences, a violation of NFL rules for the unvaccinated.
Rodgers Speaks Out
On Friday, Rodgers went on “The Pat McAfee Show” and discussed his reasons for not getting vaccinated, questioning the NFL rules for the unvaccinated, and asking why the vaccine has become so political.
Rodgers said he has an allergy to an ingredient in the mRNA vaccines and he was not comfortable taking the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
He says the NFL was aware of his status, and he petitioned the organization to accept his immunization status, but was denied.
Rodgers said he followed all the protocols “to a T” minus the one that requires mask-wearing while giving a press conference in a room full of masked and vaccinated reporters.
Political Point: He discussed the political nature of the shot, questioning why the Left was against the vaccine when President Trump was in office and now are in favor of vaccines while President Biden is in office.
Hall of Fame quarterback Terry Bradshaw said he was disappointed in Rodgers, while Howard Stern said he should be out of the league.
Rodgers apologized “to anybody who felt misled by those comments” on the show on Tuesday. He said it’s time for him to get back to football, adding “I’m an athlete, not an activist.”
The Packers were fined $300,000 by the NFL on Tuesday, and Rodgers was fined $14,650 for his infractions.
Other Stories We’re Tracking
Actor Matthew McConaughey is under fire from supporters of vaccine mandates for saying he is currently against mandating COVID vaccines for children. The actor, who is himself vaccinated, said he still wants to “find out more information” before giving his kids the shot. The U.S. Surgeon General responded to the actor’s comments, saying, “COVID is not harmless in our children … [vaccines] are remarkably safe, as well.”
SF School Board
San Francisco Mayor London Breed has joined San Francisco parents in their call to recall three members of the San Francisco school board, citing unpopular moves to rename schools, paint over murals deemed “offensive,” as well as opposition to unpopular school closures. While prominent progressive school board members have attempted to tie the growing recall effort to Republican activists, Mayor Breed is a Democrat.
Don Lemon of CNN has sent a legal letter to former NBC host Megyn Kelly, accusing Kelly of allowing listeners to hear a “lopsided and inaccurate” account of events occurring between Lemon and a man named Dustin Hice. Hice, who has previously made sexual harassment allegations against Lemon, joined Kelly on her radio show, where he recounted his version of events relating to the incident. Lemon’s Lawyer is accusing Kelly of failing to push back on Hice’s claims due to a “vendetta” Kelly allegedly has against Lemon.
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