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Arizonans waiting in 104 degree heat for over 5 hours to get COVID-19 tests before Trump arrival: NBC News reporter

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Coronavirus cases have climbed past 52,500 in Arizona, giving the state its highest hospitalization rate for the virus since April. In the midst of the ongoing health crisis, NBC News reporter Vaughn Hillyard told his own story about trying to get tested for the virus in the state — a test he’s seeking out after reporting amongst the massive crowds of protesters.

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“Yesterday & today, all the time slots for CVS testing sites within 30 miles of me are full. There are no walk-ins for COVID tests at CVS,” Hillyard wrote on Twitter, adding that CVS requires one to be a resident of the state they’re getting tested in. Hillyard apparently lives in D.C.

When Hillyard tried to to get a test at a nearby urgent care, he says there was a 5.5 hour wait with folks “sitting outside with masks — it was 104 degrees out.”

“I stopped at the Sonora Quest Labratories on McDowell Rd in Phoenix this Saturday morning,” he wrote. “After waiting in line, I was informed that they were only doing antibody tests — not actual COVID tests. It was suggested I check out Banner Health’s testing operations for the day.”

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He also had no luck when he drove back to an urgent care in Downtown Phoenix, where he was told he could not get a test because he was not exhibiting symptoms.

“I was told by the friendly woman at the counter at the Banner Urgent Care in downtown Phoenix that my best option was to wait until Monday when Banner Health’s drive-thru operation at the state fairgrounds opens back up,” he wrote. Other urgent cares told him that he wouldn’t get the results from his test for 10-12 days.

“So then, giving up on today & looking to tomorrow, all the appointments for the greater Phoenix’s NextCare Urgent Care facilities are booked for Sunday — the nearest available appointment is Prescott (1.5 hours north of Phoenix).”

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Read his entire Twitter thread here.


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2020 Election

Trump officials could face criminal charges for USPS sabotage — and the president may not be able to pardon them

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Members of the Trump administration could face legal jeopardy over efforts to sabotage U.S. Postal Service operations to interfere with the 2020 presidential elections.

"Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ) made a criminal referral to the New Jersey Attorney General on Friday night, asking him to impanel a grand jury to look at possible breach of state election laws by President Trump, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy and others for 'their accelerating arson of the post office,' he said. Alarming headlines have emerged in recent days as many states prepare to facilitate widespread mail balloting due to the coronavirus pandemic. President Trump openly admitted he was withholding federal aid from the postal service to prevent mail-in voting, and USPS has notified 46 states and D.C. that it will struggle to deliver some mail ballots on time," The Daily Beast reported Friday.

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Maddow reveals how one state stood up to Trump’s USPS cuts — and won

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MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow's opening segment on Friday focused on a positive story of political pressure stopping one of the Trump administration's attacks on the U.S. Postal Service.

Maddow reported how NBC Montana reporter Maritsa Georgiou had doggedly reported on the removal of postal boxes in Missoula, where she is based. Missoula has been a long-time Democratic Party stronghold.

Montana has a competitive U.S. Senate election in 2020, with Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock challenging first-term Republican Sen. Steve Daines.

As Georgiou chased the story, she learned there were also plans to remove boxes in the battleground of Billings. And more planned for the blue town of Bozeman. And other towns.

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2020 Election

Pepsi joins the chorus of people dunking on Tucker Carlson over Kamala Harris

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The Pepsi soda company mocked Fox News personality Tucker Carlson on Friday evening.

On Tuesday, Carlson flipped out after a guest attempted to teach him how to pronounce the name of Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), who is running for vice president on Joe Biden's ticket.

Video of the exchange was posted on Twitter by Nikki McCann Ramirez, a researcher at the watchdog group Media Matters for America.

Tucker Carlson loses it when a guest corrects his pronunciation of Kamala Harris's name pic.twitter.com/1fHIrPGuwN

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