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REVEALED: An Obama-era plan to protect medical workers in a pandemic was thwarted under Trump

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President Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed that his Democratic predecessor in the White House, Barack Obama, left him ill-prepared to handle a major health crisis when, in fact, Obama’s administration left behind a comprehensive pandemic game plan that included a 69-page playbook. But Trump’s administration abandoned those Obama-era recommendations. On top of that, National Public Radio’s Brian Mann is reporting that Trump’s administration, in 2017, “stopped work on new federal regulations that would have forced the health care industry to prepare for an airborne infectious disease pandemic such as COVID-19.”

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David Michaels, who headed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration under Obama, told NPR, “If that rule had gone into effect, then every hospital, every nursing home would essentially have to have a plan where they made sure they had enough respirators and they were prepared for this sort of pandemic.”

Trump has often touted his deregulatory efforts as a major success of his administration. But this example shows just one way of many in which these policies can go wrong with disastrous consequences. Many of these negative consequences may not emerge until years later.

According to Mann, NPR reviewed the records confirming that Trump’s team abandoned the regulatory proposal made by under Obama.

Mann also notes that the U.S. still has “no specific federal regulations protecting health care workers from deadly airborne pathogens such as influenza, tuberculosis or the coronavirus.” And the need for such regulations, according to Michaels, was underscored by the H1N1 outbreak in 2009.

Michaels told NPR, “H1N1 made it very clear OSHA did not have adequate standards for airborne transmission and contact transmission, and so, we began writing a standard to do that.”

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Well before H1N1, Mann explains, the HIV/AIDS outbreak of the 1980s, “forced the health care industry to adopt safety plans and buy more equipment designed to protect staff and patients. But making a new infectious disease regulation affecting much of the American health care system is time-consuming and contentious.”

Because of H1N1, Mann reports, Obama’s administration got to work on a “new infectious disease rule”; by 2016, that rule was “ready” — and the Obama White House “formally added it to a list of regulations scheduled to be implemented in 2017.” But in the spring of 2017, Trump’s team “formally stripped OSHA’s airborne infectious disease rule from the regulatory agenda,” according to Mann.

“The infectious disease standard was put on the back burner,” Michaels told NPR. “Work stopped.”

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The COVID-19 pandemic has turned out to be the major health crisis that Obama’s administration feared. As of Wednesday afternoon, the death count from the pandemic was approaching 100,000 in the U.S. and had passed 352,000 worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.

NPR found that “the lack of fixed regulations allowed” Trump’s administration to “relax worker safety guidelines. Federal agencies did so repeatedly this spring as COVID-19 spread and shortages of personal protective equipment worsened.”


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Conservative pastor heartbroken that Trump has proven many Christians are ‘ignorant, greedy, and hypocritical’

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Writing in The Atlantic this Friday, Peter Wehner takes a renewed look at President Trump's white evangelical Christian base, saying that they've sacrifices whatever alleged principles they had in order to support Trump -- a decision that brought them nothing in return.

"Legislatively, Trump, compared with other presidents, has not achieved all that much for the pro-life cause and religious-liberties protection," Wehner writes. "For example, George W. Bush’s pro-life record is stronger and Bill Clinton achieved more in the area of religious liberties, signing into law the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. ... Trump has also achieved next to nothing in terms of enacting education reforms."

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Will Bill Barr try to save Trump with an October surprise?

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President Donald Trump has desperately tried to reignite his 2020 campaign and fix the new recession that began in February. But instead of looking for solutions that rework an economy to take into account social distancing and the coronavirus, hanging his hat on the idea that reopening will solve his problems. It hasn't worked.

Enter Attorney General Bill Barr, swooping in to try and save President Donald Trump's presidency just in time for Election Day. According to Vanity Fair, Barr will likely release the findings from the investigation into the investigation of the Russia Scandal.

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Woman known for racist rants is finally arrested after assaulting Muslim woman and Black teen

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A North Carolina woman known for her racist rants that were captured on video is being accused of attacking a 14-year-old and ripping the hijab off an another woman, the Citizen Times reports.

Rachel Dawn Ruit first received notoriety when she was caught on video yelling racial slurs and threatening people in downtown Asheville. But on July 4, her threats turned physical when she ripped off the hijab from a woman and attacked the 14-year-old, who is Black.

Ernesta Carter witnessed Ruit attack the girl after saying she needed to be "put down" and if she fought back "she would be raped." Ruit then grabbed the girl by the groin, Carter said. When Carter started running towards the altercation, that's when Ruit targeted Nahlah Karimah who was the woman wearing the hijab.

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