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On Tuesday, KSHB reported that Missouri state Rep. Rick Roeber has submitted his resignation, effective Friday.
Roeber, who ran to replace his deceased wife in the state House in 2020, was embroiled in controversy when his adult children came forward during the election with graphic details of physical and sexual assault at his hands. He was elected anyway, but his children made a plea to now-GOP state House Speaker Rob Vescovo to prevent him from being seated. Roeber was banned from the GOP House caucus pending an ethics investigation.
According to the report, Roeber did not cite the assault and molestation allegations as the reason for his departure.
"He said he needs to move out of state to be closer to family and cited that as the reason for his departure from the Legislature," reported Summer Ballentine. "He also said he has accomplished his only legislative goals: voting on education bills and memorializing his late wife, former Republican Rep. Rebecca Roeber."
This controversy comes as former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, forced to resign over allegations of sexual assault and blackmailing a mistress, is mounting an attempted political comeback with a run for Senate.
US health authorities on Tuesday recommended pausing the Johnson & Johnson Covid shot over blood clot fears, with the company quickly announcing it would delay its European rollout, in a setback for global immunization campaigns.
Out of nearly seven million Americans who have so far received the single dose vaccine, six women between age 18 and 48 developed a rare type of clot in the brain along with low platelets, officials said.
One later died while another is in critical condition.
Food and Drug Administration scientist Peter Marks said the disorder might be triggered by a rare immune response to the vaccine similar to that seen among a few hundred recipients of the AstraZeneca jab in Europe.
Both vaccines are based on adenovirus vector technology.
"We have made the decision to proactively delay the rollout of our vaccine in Europe," J&J said, in a fresh blow for the hard-hit continent which passed the threshold of one million coronavirus deaths.
The European Union has signed a deal for 200 million shots of the vaccine with an option for 200 million more.
US authorities are now carrying out an investigation which could end up leading to tough regulatory choices, such as restricting the J&J shot to older people.
People who have received a J&J shot within the past three weeks were asked to report to their doctors if they experienced severe headaches, abdominal pain, leg pain or shortness of breath.
But the White House said it was confident there would be no "significant impact" on the vaccination plan in the world's hardest-hit country, where almost half of all adults have now received at least one dose.
Pfizer said it would deliver its 300 million doses by the middle of July -- two weeks early -- while Moderna said it was on course to deliver its total of 300 million by the end of July.
South Africa followed the United States' lead and suspended its rollout of the J&J shot, delaying an already sluggish campaign, which has so far only administered this vaccine.
But the European Medicines Agency said it was continuing to carry out its own investigation, and Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters his country still expected its first shipment of the shot by the end of the month.
More than 800 million vaccine doses have now been administered globally, according to an AFP tally.
India -- which is experiencing a record surge in cases -- was given a boost as it authorized Russia's Sputnik V Covid-19 drug.
The total number of virus deaths is approaching three million, as the World Health Organization warned infections are rising exponentially despite efforts aimed at stopping them.
Muslims around the world started Ramadan after religious leaders confirmed the month of fasting would begin on Tuesday, with many countries facing virus restrictions.
Mosques in the world's most populous Muslim-majority nation, Indonesia, will only be able to host people at a maximum of 50 percent capacity. Worshippers are required to wear masks and bring their own prayer mats.
Saudi Arabia, home to Islam's holiest shrines, announced that the month of fasting was to start on Tuesday, though authorities said only people inoculated against Covid-19 will be allowed to perform the year-round umrah pilgrimage from the start of Ramadan.
In the Kazakh capital Nur-Sultan, coronavirus restrictions irked some worshippers.
"This year for example we won't have the (large) iftars. And we can't have a lot of people in the mosque. We have to queue and wait," said 30-year-old Toparkhan Bergenov.
India gets Sputnik
In India health officials have been battling a huge surge in cases in recent weeks that has prompted night curfews and a clampdown on movement and activities.
The country of 1.3 billion people on Monday reported more than 161,000 new cases -- the seventh-consecutive day that more than 100,000 infections have been recorded.
Experts have warned that huge, mostly maskless crowds at political rallies and religious festivals have fueled India's caseload, and in the Himalayan city Haridwar, maskless Hindu pilgrims have ignored social distancing pleas.
In Europe, Germany agreed to controversial changes to a national infections control law, including a night curfew and stricter rules around private gatherings and sports.
France has suspended all flights from Brazil to curb the spread of a new variant found there.
But Britain said it had met its target to offer a first vaccine dose to all over-50s, the clinically vulnerable and health and social workers by April 15.
Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO's technical lead on Covid-19, said the world was now at a "critical point" of the pandemic as cases once again grow exponentially.
The organization also called for a halt to the sale of live wild mammals in food markets to prevent the emergence of new diseases such as coronavirus.
It was revealed Tuesday that former Seminole County tax collector Joel Greenberg has been cooperating against Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) since last year, reported the New York Times.
Greenberg, who was a close friend of Gaetz's, reportedly received $900 from the Florida congressman via the money app Venmo. He then turned to pay three women $300 each, one of whom had just turned 18. According to the descriptions, the reasons for the money were "tuition" and "school."
According to another report, Gaetz had encounters with escorts in the Bahamas, paid for by a political ally. It triggered an investigation into whether those girls were trafficked from the U.S. into the country.
"Mr. Greenberg began speaking with investigators once he realized that the government had overwhelming evidence against him and that his only path to leniency lay in cooperation," the Times cited those with knowledge. "He has met several times with investigators to try to establish his trustworthiness, though the range of criminal charges against him — including fraud — could undermine his credibility as a witness."
There was speculation about whether Greenberg was cooperating with the Justice Department because he agreed to plead guilty to the existing allegations involving fraud, ID theft and other crimes.
At one point, Greenberg's lawyer even told the press, "I'm sure Matt Gaetz is not feeling very comfortable today."
Gaetz maintains he did nothing wrong and never "paid for sex." In the past, he said that he was "generous" with his "girlfriends" and paid for things like travel and other things they might need.
Leaked chats also reveal that friends of Gaetz were panicking after Greenberg was arrested.
"Prosecutors often seek out cooperators in complex investigations where an insider's account can help make their cases," said the Times. "Typically, the authorities meet with potential cooperators many times before formally agreeing to a plea deal to determine what information they have and whether they could serve as a witness against others."
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