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Editor Daily Rundown: Pence Will Receive COVID-19 Vaccine Live On Camera And Big Corporations Are Thriving During Pandemic

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WALL ST THRIVES WHILE MAIN ST SUFFERS… WAPO: America’s biggest companies are flourishing during the pandemic and putting thousands of people out of work

As the coronavirus pandemic devastated small businesses and plunged millions of Americans into poverty this summer and fall, executives at some of the country’s largest corporations sounded surprisingly upbeat.

“I don’t think we’ve ever been more excited or energized about our prospects,” PayPal finance chief John Rainey said on a November conference call.

“These are times when the strong can get stronger,” Nike chief John Donahoe told analysts in September.

“With all that’s happening around the world, it’s really unfortunate,” said Jensen Huang, chief executive of graphics chip maker Nvidia, during an August earnings call. “But it’s made gaming the largest entertainment medium in the world.”

With few exceptions, big businesses are having a very different year from most of the country. Between April and September, one of the most tumultuous economic stretches in modern history, 45 of the 50 most valuable publicly traded U.S. companies turned a profit, a Washington Post analysis found.

Despite their success, at least 27 of the 50 largest firms held layoffs this year, collectively cutting more than 100,000 workers, The Post found.

 

BO ERICKSON, CBS: New-Biden on school reopenings: “I know it’s going to be controversial for some of you–but I’m going to ask that we’re going to be able to open schools at the end of a hundred days,” he told 31 governors on a Zoom today about his COVID plans. Via pool @toddgillman

 

RORY COOPER: 100 days is the end of the school year, and would mark 14 months for kids who live in districts remaining closed. CDC recommends opening now and has studies to back it up. It should be day 1, not day 100.

 

FOX: Democratic governor encourages people to stay home, gets caught out at wine bar

The governor of Rhode Island is facing backlash this week after she was photographed at a wine and paint night just days after she had discouraged inessential activities to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The picture, taken by Erica Oliveras last Friday, shows Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo sitting at table in Barnaby’s Public House in Providence without a mask, WLNE reported.

Oliveras told the station that backlash over the photo was blown out of proportion because Raimondo had only taken off the mask to drink her wine.

Still, others felt that Raimondo’s actions were hypocritical, given that four days prior she urged Rhode Islanders in a tweet to “stay home except for essential activities & wear a mask anytime you’re with people you don’t live with.”

 

LAT: California population growth hits record lows, stifled by COVID-19 and continued exodus

Like Fuller, a lot of Californians are running for the exit, a trend exacerbated this year by COVID-19 as more people moved away and pandemic restrictions slowed migration into the state, according to data released Wednesday.

California’s population is now growing at its slowest rate in more than a century.

The California Department of Finance, which monitors the state’s population data, found that from July 1, 2019 to July 1, 2020, California saw a net gain of only 21,200 new residents — a 0.05% growth rate not seen since 1900. As of July, the state’s population was 39.78 million.

Over that period, Los Angeles County reported a net loss of 40,036 people, more than any other county in the state.

“This is a real sea change in California, which used to be this state of pretty robust population growth,” said Hans Johnson, a demographer at the Public Policy Institute of California. “It hasn’t been for some time now. But it’s now gotten to the point where the state is essentially not growing population-wise at all.”

 

ALLAHPUNDIT: Pence To Receive COVID Vaccine Friday Morning On TV, Biden To Get It Early Next Week

Vice President Mike Pence plans to receive his coronavirus vaccine shot on camera Friday morning at the White House to build “vaccine confidence” among the American people, according to an administration official with direct knowledge of the plans.

Driving the news: Details are still being worked out, but Pence wants the TV networks to carry the moment live in the morning, the source said, to maximize the audience for the vaccination.

The vice president will be joined by second lady Karen Pence and Surgeon General Jerome Adams…

Adams plans to appear in a town hall later this week as part of his vaccine outreach to African Americans, the source added.

 

MORE BIG TECH CENSORSHIP INCOMING… CNBC: Twitter will label and remove misinformation about Covid-19 vaccines

Twitter on Wednesday announced that, starting next week, it will moderate and in some cases remove harmful misinformation about Covid-19 vaccines, which began to be administered in the U.S. this week.

Specifically, Twitter said it will take action on false claims that suggest immunizations and vaccines are used to control populations, false claims that have been widely debunked about the adverse impacts of the vaccines, and false claims that Covid-19 is not real and therefore vaccinations are unnecessary. The company added that it will take action on statements about the vaccines that invoke deliberate conspiracy.

The company also said that in 2021 it may place labels or warnings on tweets that push unsubstantiated rumors, disputed claims and out-of-context information about vaccines. Those labels will direct Twitter users to authoritative public health information, the company said.

 

‘I WOULDN’T HAVE DONE IT THAT BIG… BUT…’ GEORGE CLOONEY SAYS TOM CRUISE ‘DIDN’T OVERREACT’ IN LEAKED SOCIAL DISTANCING SHOUTFEST…

“He didn’t overreact, because it is a problem,” Clooney told Howard Stern on the radio personality’s SiriusXM show. “I have a friend who’s an AD on another TV show who just had the almost exact same thing happen with not quite as far out a response.

“I wouldn’t have done it that big. I wouldn’t have, you know, pulled people out,” added Clooney. “You’re in a position of power and it’s tricky, right? You do have a responsibility for everybody else and he’s absolutely right about that. And, you know, if the production goes down, a lot of people lose their jobs. People have to understand that and have to be responsible. It’s just not my style to take everybody to task that way.”

Clooney maintained that Cruise’s intent appeared genuine and rooted from the right place but added that he didn’t have enough details from what allegedly transpired on that particular film set to pass judgment.

“I think it doesn’t help necessarily to point to specific people in that way and do it that…but, you know, everybody has their own style. The people who were on that shoot will tell us more about it,” Clooney pressed. “I understand why he did it. He’s not wrong at all about that. You know, I just, I don’t know that I would have done it quite that personally, but I don’t know all the circumstances so maybe he had it 10 or 15 times before.”

 

WHAT ‘THANKSGIVING SURGE’? After Weeks Of Holier Than Thou Howling, The ‘Thanksgiving Surge’ Is A No Show

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauciwarned in October that Americans would have to make an “individual choice” when it came to traveling during the holiday season while speaking during a live Q&A with Yahoo News.

“Each individual family needs to make the decision based upon the risk situation in your own family,” Fauci said, noting Americans may need to “bite the bullet and sacrifice that social gathering.”

“My Thanksgiving is going to look very different this year,” he said, adding that the traveling required to have his family together was not worth the risk.

Just a few days before Thanksgiving, he again warned while speaking on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that there would be “an increase” weeks after Thanksgiving. […]

However, nearly three weeks later, there so far appears to be no post-holiday surge in numerous cities and states.

“We haven’t seen something significant to talk about now,” Illinois Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “We’ll see for sure in this coming week … We’ll keep our fingers crossed that maybe we’re not going to see a big bump.”

 

ANOTHER DAILY CALLER EXCLUSIVE: White House, Senators Pan WHO Investigation Into Chinese Origins Of COVID-19

The White House and Senate Republicans are skeptical at best of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) newly-announced trip to investigate the origins of the coronavirus in China, the Daily Caller has learned.

The WHO will lead a six-week investigation into the pandemic’s origins in Wuhan, China, starting the first week of January. A senior official in President Donald Trump’s administration described the investigation as “too late” and “ridiculous,” given the WHO’s willingness to relay the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) misinformation on the virus in the early days of the pandemic.

The team of researchers will arrive in Wuhan well over a year after COVID-19 first emerged in the city in November 2019. Critically, the team won’t be able to gather its own samples and will instead rely on human and animal samples gathered by Chinese scientists, according to Reuters.

Republican Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse expressed skepticism that the investigation would uncover anything more than a best-case scenario for the CCP.

“I’m going to take a wild guess that they haven’t asked Taiwan to lead the investigation,” Sasse told the Daily Caller on Wednesday. “At the beginning of the year, when the Chinese Communist Party said ‘jump!’ the World Health Organization asked, ‘how high?’ The WHO has a lot of work to do to rebuild trust and they ought to know that a sugar coated China report isn’t going to get the job done.”

 

ANOTHER DAILY CALLER EXCLUSIVE: Hunter Biden Was Due To Receive ‘Significant’ Payments From Chinese Private Equity Firm Starting In 2019, Emails Show

Hunter Biden was repeatedly told by his business partner that he would begin receiving significant payments from a Chinese private equity firm starting in 2019, emails obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation show.

The business partner, Eric Schwerin, also told Hunter Biden in a December 2018 email that the Chinese private equity firm, BHR Partners, would generate income for him “over the next couple of years.”

The revelations conflict with an October 2019 statement issued from Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, that said Biden had not received any return on his investment in BHR, nor had there been any distributions to the firm’s shareholders since he obtained his 10% equity stake two years prior through his company, Skaneateles LLC.

The emails, which were located on a copy of Hunter Biden’s alleged laptop, show that he took out a $150,000 capital loan with one of BHR’s Chinese-based partners in July 2017 to help fund his $420,000 investment into the firm that year. When the loan came due in December 2018, Schwerin advised Hunter Biden to extend the loan for another year so he could pay it back with future distributions.

 

FOX: Hunter Biden in 2017 sent ‘best wishes’ from ‘entire Biden family’ to China firm chairman, requested $10M wire

Correspondence between Hunter Biden and CEFC Chairman Ye Jianming from 2017 shows President-elect Joe Biden’s son extending “best wishes from the entire Biden family,” and urging the chairman to “quickly” send a $10 million wire to “properly fund and operate” the Biden joint venture with the now-bankrupt Chinese energy company.

The $10 million transfer to the joint venture was never completed.

Fox News obtained an email Hunter Biden sent on June 18, 2017, to Zhao Runlong at CEFC, asking that they please “translate my letter to Chairman Ye, please extend my warmest best wishes and that I hope to see the Chairman soon.”

“I hope my letter finds you well. I regret missing you on your last visit to the United States,” Hunter Biden wrote in the attached letter, dated June 17, 2017. “Please accept the best wishes from the entire Biden family as well as my partners.”

He added: “We are all hoping to see you here again soon, or in Shanghai.”

 

NY POST: President-elect Joe Biden ‘confident’ son Hunter did nothing wrong

President-elect Joe Biden said Wednesday he’s “confident” that Hunter Biden did nothing wrong, addressing directly the federal investigations into his son’s “tax affairs” and business dealings in Ukraine.

Asked by a Fox News reporter at an event to announce his nomination of Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary if he was sure of his son’s innocence, Biden said only, “I’m confident.”

Hunter Biden last week revealed the existence of the federal investigations, and the former vice president since then had only said he was “proud of my son” when asked about the probes that date back to 2018.

 

MEANWHILE… REPORT: Hunter Biden Signs Deal For Solo Art Show With Georgès Berges

Hunter Biden has reportedly signed a deal for a solo art show with the Georgès Berges Gallery.

The exhibition will be shown next year, according to a report published Tuesday by Page Six.

Biden revealed his art has helped him battle addiction and keep his mind off media attention in an interview first published in February by The New York Times.

“It keeps me away from people and places where I shouldn’t be,” Biden told the outlet at the time.

“I want to protect this place,” he added. “The one thing I have left is my art. It’s the one thing they can’t take away from me or conflate with anything else.”

Painting “is literally keeping me sane,” Biden told the outlet. “For years I wouldn’t call myself an artist. Now I feel comfortable saying it.”

 

FOX: Senate hearing explodes as Johnson accuses Dem of spreading Russian disinformation: ‘You lied repeatedly!’

A Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing broke out into a heated exchange between Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis., and ranking member Gary Peters, D-Mich., when the GOP leader accused Peters of lying and spreading Russian disinformation. […]

“I just have to talk about Russian disinformation because the people peddling it are not on my side of the aisle,” Johnson said.

“Senior Democrat leaders, including ranking member Peters,” he continued, “they were involved in a process of creating a false intelligence product, it was supposed to be classified, they leaked to the media, that accused Sen. [Chuck] Grassley, the president pro tempore of the Senate, and myself of accepting and disseminating Russian disinformation.” […]

Peters insisted on responding to Johnson’s allegation, stating that he had nothing to do with the document Johnson referred to. Johnson immediately interjected.

“You lied repeatedly. You lied repeatedly to the press that I was spreading Russian disinformation, and that was an outright lie, and I told you to stop lying and you continued to do it.”

Peters then told Johnson that the hearing was not meant “for the airing of grievances,” as Johnson banged his gavel and tried to move on.

 

FOX: Intel community assessment delayed amid dispute over whether China sought to influence 2020 election

EXCLUSIVE: The 2020 Intelligence Community Assessment focused on foreign election influence will be delayed, Fox News has learned, amid a dispute among senior intelligence analysts over whether China sought to influence the election.

“This afternoon the DNI was notified by career intelligence officials that the Intelligence Community will not meet the December 18 deadline, set by Executive Order and Congress, to submit the IC’s classified assessment on foreign threats to the 2020 U.S. elections,” Amanda Schoch, Assistant DNI for Strategic Communications said in a statement to Fox News.

“The IC has received relevant reporting since the election and a number of agencies have not finished coordinating on the product,” Schoch continued. “The DNI is committed to providing this report to our customers expeditiously.”

The report was expected to be released by Friday, but sources familiar told Fox News that there is a dispute within the intelligence community over what should be included in this 2020 ICA.


BIDEN CONSIDERS CHINA-DEPENDENT HOLLYWOOD EXECS FOR AMBASSADOR GIG… THR:
Bob Iger, Jeffrey Katzenberg in the Mix for Biden Ambassadorship Roles

The Disney executive chairman is at the top of the president-elect’s wish list for a diplomatic assignment, with the DreamWorks and Quibi mogul also in the mix.

It appears that Bob Iger might have a future in public service after all. The Disney executive chairman, who once toyed with the idea of a 2020 presidential run, is at the top of President-elect Joe Biden’s wish list for a key ambassador post, namely China or the U.K., sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.

The U.K. ambassadorship is considered the most plum diplomatic assignment, and China is an intriguing possibility given Disney’s footprint in the Middle Kingdom. Either would be a fitting next act for the most successful Hollywood CEO of the modern era. A Biden spokesperson and Disney rep both declined comment.

If Iger, 69, is offered a post and accepts, it would mark the end of his stunning 25-year run at Disney. On Feb. 25, he shocked Wall Street when he announced that he was stepping down as Disney CEO and into the role of executive chairman. Bob Chapek, who was named his successor, has overseen perhaps the most turbulent nine months in the company’s history, with the pandemic ravaging Disney’s theme parks and theatrical movie business. Iger’s contract is up Dec. 31, 2021.

Considering Hollywood’s broad support of Biden during the 2020 presidential campaign, it should come as no surprise that the president-elect would be looking to reciprocate. Sources say Jeffrey Katzenberg, a prolific Democratic donor, also is in the mix for an ambassadorship.

 

ED O’KEEFE: Secretary-Designate @PeteButtigieg recalls his long love of transportation. Notes he proposed to husband @Chasten at an airport terminal. “Don’t let anyone tell you that O’Hare isn’t romantic,” he quips.

 

GLENN GREENWALD: He proposed to Chasten at an airport terminal, for any of you cynics out there suggesting that Pete never did anything to qualify him to be Secretary of Transportation.

 

ALSO… GREG PRICE ON JENNIFER GRANHOLM: Biden’s pick for Energy Secretary has spent the last four years as a cringe Twitter troll and Russia truther (SCREENGRABS)

 

PLUS… NYT: Biden is considering Diana Taylor, who has deep Wall Street ties, for his administration.

President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. is considering Diana Taylor, a New York finance executive, to serve in his administration, an appointment that would elevate a woman with deep connections in the business community, but that would potentially irritate the party’s left because of her ties to Wall Street.

Mr. Biden is weighing Ms. Taylor for a number of positions, including administrator of the Small Business Administration, according to Democrats familiar with the selection process. There was a specific discussion about that role over a week ago, according to two of the Democrats, although it’s unclear who else is in the running.

Ms. Taylor, a former managing director of Wolfensohn Fund Management and the former New York State banking superintendent under Gov. George E. Pataki, serves on the board of Citigroup and chairs the global nonprofit organization Accion. She is also the longtime partner of former Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, and was the de facto first lady of New York City when he was in office.

 

BIDEN ROLLS OUT THE RED CARPET FOR WALL ST… FOX: Biden inaugural committee offers special VIP access to corporations that donate $1 million

For a donation of $1 million, President-elect Joe Biden’s inaugural committee is offering a special VIP package to organizations.

The committee is offering four package options to donors, depending on how much they give.

It costs $1 million for corporations and $500,000 for individuals to be listed as “chairs” on the inaugural committee. Such a package includes an invitation to virtual events with the President-elect and Vice President-elect and their spouses with virtual signed photos, along with “preferred viewing” for the inauguration, among other things. It also includes four VIP tickets for a future in-person event at an undetermined date.

Organizations that give $500,000 or individuals that give $250,000 are designated vice-chairs and are invited to a virtual event with VP-elect Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff, the virtual inauguration, a virtual concert during Inauguration Week and two tickets to a future in-person event.

 

AXIOS: Scoop: Top Biden aide’s “f*cker” quote under fire

Some advisers close to President-elect Joe Biden are frustrated over a Glamour magazine interview in which incoming White House deputy chief of staff Jen O’Malley Dillon referred to Republicans on Capitol Hill as “f*ckers.”

Why it matters: Biden campaigned for the presidency by promising to “restore the soul of America” and not to question the motives of political opponents, whom he insists aren’t enemies. Fighting words from a high-level staffer could give Republicans ammunition to cast doubt on Biden’s sincerity.

 

HERE IT IS, YOUR MOMENT OF ZEN: Joe Biden mispronouncing names(VIDEO)

 

NY POST: AOC says Nancy Pelosi needs to go, but doesn’t want to be next House leader

Far-left New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says fellow Democrats need to plan to replace House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, but that it “can’t be me” filling her shoes.

The 31-year-old socialist says the leadership swap can’t happen immediately because there aren’t many options among House Democrats.

“I do think we need new leadership in the Democratic Party,” AOC said in a podcast published Wednesday by The Intercept.

“I think one of the things that I have struggled with,” she added, “is the internal dynamics of the House has made it such that there [are] very little options for succession.”

The 80-year-old Pelosi has as her deputies Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC), also 80, and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), who is 81.

“We need to make sure that we have a transition of power in the Democratic Party,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

 

GEORGIA SENATE RACES…

 

Warnock Vowed To ‘Dismantle the Value System’ Of The American ‘Empire’ (VIDEO)

Georgia Senate candidate Rev. Raphael Warnock once vowed to “dismantle the value system” of the American “empire,” video footage shows.

“I want you to hear me now, because most of Christian America is focused on two or three issues,” Warnock, a reverend headed into a January runoff election against Republican Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler, preached at Ebenezer Baptist Church in 2017, Breitbart first reported.

“Meanwhile, the Bible spends most of its time talking about how to treat the poor, the struggling, and the stranger,” he continued. “And so, don’t misinterpret what Jesus is saying. Jesus is saying you will always have the poor with you, not because God ordained it; not because it is what it is, and that’s the way it has to be; the poor are with you because of the evils and the excesses of the empire.”

Warnock then promised to “dismantle the value system of the empire,” saying, “I already told you that I came to preach good news to the poor, to open the eyes of the blind, and to set the captives free, and to preach the year of the Lord’s freedom. In other words, I came to dismantle the value system of the empire. But here’s the problem: the religious folk who should be fighting with me against the empire are in cahoots with the empire.”

 

FOX: Jill Biden’s dissertation criticized in viral Twitter thread: ‘It’s bad’

A viral Twitter thread breaking down incoming first lady Jill Biden’s 2007 dissertation to earn her doctorate in education outlined examples of poor writing and math errors.

Biden’s 137-page “executive position paper” discussed issues of student retention at community colleges.

“It’s bad,” Matt Bethlehemanti tweeted Sunday, according to RedState, before listing examples of word salad like, “The unique nature of the classroom allows for a complexity of problems as well.”

Elsewhere, Biden appears to forget her fractions, writing, “Three quarters of the class will be Caucasian; one quarter of the class will be African American; one seat will hold a Latino; and the remaining seats will be filled with students of Asian descent or non-resident aliens.”

 

TUCKER LIGHTS ‘DR’ BIDEN’S DISSERTATION ON FIRE… (VIDEO)