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‘We have the votes’: McConnell taunts Pelosi as he moves to begin Senate trial without impeachment articles

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced on Tuesday that he will leverage the votes of Republican senators to move forward with a trial of President Donald Trump even though House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has not provided articles of impeachment to the Senate.

While speaking to the press Tuesday afternoon, McConnell confirmed reports that he has enough support from Republicans to begin the trial.

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“We have the votes,” McConnell said, adding that he hoped Pelosi would send the articles of impeachment prior to the trial.

McConnell also indicated that Republican senators are willing to move forward with a “phase one” of the trial before deciding whether or not to call witnesses.

Just last week, McConnell said that he would be willing to wait out Pelosi.

“We cannot hold a trial without the articles,” McConnell said in a Friday floor speech. “The Senate’s rules don’t provide for that.”

McConnell argued on Tuesday that the impeachment trial rules would be based on the trial of President Bill Clinton. But in that case, no rules changes were required because the House provided articles of impeachment to the Senate in a timely manner.

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Only 5,500 rapid COVID-19 tests touted by Trump are being deployed — for the entire country: report

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by Rachana Pradham

A coronavirus test made by Abbott Laboratories and introduced with considerable fanfare by President Donald Trump in a Rose Garden news conference this week is giving state and local health officials very little added capacity to perform speedy tests needed to control the COVID-19 pandemic.

“That’s a whole new ballgame,” Trump said. “I want to thank Abbott Labs for the incredible work they’ve done. They’ve been working around-the-clock.”

Yet a document circulated among officials at the Department of Health and Human Services and the Federal Emergency Management Agency this week shows that state and local public health labs were set to receive a total of only 5,500 coronavirus tests from the giant manufacturer of medical devices, diagnostics and drugs, according to emails obtained by Kaiser Health News.

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Maddow reports Florida governor is letting ‘coronavirus-denialist megachurch guy’ hold huge services

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On Sunday, the River Church in Tampa was packed with parishioners despite the COVID-19 coronavirus epidemic.

The following day, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister arrested Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne for violating the county's social distancing rules.

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Here’s how Christian Nationalists have shaped the federal government’s response to coronavirus

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On Thursday, appearing on the Slate radio show "The Gist" with Mike Pesca, journalist Catherine Stewart outlined some of the ways the Christian Right is responsible for the federal government's disastrous response to coronavirus.

"The coronavirus pandemic is real wrath-of-God type stuff, isn't it?" said Pesca. "Well, there are some people who are waiting for this, who are ready for this, and who, quite scarily, have been tasked with the response."

"It's a complex question, and I think that Christian Nationalism, which is what we're dealing with here, is not a religion," said Stewart. "Many evangelicals are doing very positive things, many religious people are doing a lot of positive things in this situation with the coronavirus. But Christian Nationalism is not a religion, it's a political ideology that cloaks itself in religious rhetoric. And it's a movement that put Trump in power."

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