Supreme Court hears arguments on Mississippi abortion law – National & International News – WED 1Dec2021



Supreme Court hears arguments on Mississippi abortion law. CNN suspends anchor Chris Cuomo for dishing dirt on brother Andrew’s accusers. Experts: Vaccine apartheid gave rise to omicron.



Supreme Court hears arguments on Mississippi abortion law

Today, the Supreme Court is hearing arguments over a Mississippi law that would ban abortions after 15 weeks. Although passed in 2018 and signed by then-governor Bryant, the law was quickly struck down as unconstitutional by both the federal circuit and appeals courts. This is because the 15-week limit contravenes the nearly 50-year-old precedent of Roe v. Wade, which allows abortions up to the point of fetal viability, about 24 weeks.

Nancy Northup of the Center for Reproductive Rights is representing Jackson Women’s Health Organization, Mississippi’s last abortion provider, in challenging the law. Northrup says that if the Supreme Court upholds the law, it would amount to a reversal of Roe v. Wade. It would also further restrict the already very limited access to reproductive care in Mississippi.

The court also recently heard arguments on an even more restrictive law from Texas which effectively prohibits abortions beyond the 6-week mark. The court could give rulings on either of these cases at any time once it reaches a decision. However, the court will most likely wait to give rulings until the end of its current term in June 2022.

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CNN suspends anchor Chris Cuomo for feeding brother dirt on his accusers

Readers may remember broadcast media fawning over then-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo at the height of the state’s COVID crisis last year. The governor held daily folksy press conferences updating New Yorkers about the virus and the actions being taken by his office. At one point, there was serious talk of lobbying Cuomo to jump into the presidential race.

It’s since come out that Cuomo’s office deliberately downplayed the number of deaths in several nursing homes. When Gov. Kathy Hochul took Cuomo’s place, she revised the number of New York’s COVID dead upwards by several thousand. Then the dam finally burst on what started as a slow trickle of sexual harassment allegations from women who worked in Gov. Cuomo’s office.

But at the height of Cuomo’s manufactured popularity, one of his chief cheerleaders was his brother, CNN anchor Chris Cuomo. During the COVID coverage, CNN allowed Cuomo to interview his brother several times on air.

When the sexual harassment scandal eventually pushed Andrew Cuomo out of office a few months ago, Chris Cuomo admitted to “advising” his brother’s office about confronting the allegations. CNN gave him a pass on this, saying they “understood his need to put family first and job second“. But newly released court documents reveal that Chris did a lot more than “advise” in efforts to run interference for his brother. Chris used his connections at CNN to leak information about upcoming stories on the scandal, and even to dig up dirt on his brother’s accusers

Following this revelation, CNN has at last suspended Chris Cuomo indefinitely. Notably, CNN didn’t punish Chris Cuomo at all when he threatened to push someone down the stairs for calling him “Fredo” (a reference to the ineffectual brother in “The Godfather”).

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Experts: Vaccine apartheid gave rise to omicron variant

Scientists remain uncertain about what the global impact of the newly-emerged omicron variant will be. However, experts say it is no mystery how omicron and other potentially dangerous variants have been allowed to evolve and flourish. While the developed world is now rushing to hand out boosters, many in the developing world have yet to be offered even their first shot.

For months, The WHO has been sounding the alarm about growing global vaccine inequity. The organization has been quick to decry wealthy country’s emphasis on boosters rather than distribution of shots to poorer countries. But the original sin in vaccine inequality remains the refusal by vaccine producing countries and manufacturers to lift intellectual property restrictions on the vaccines. Such patent waivers would allow any country with sufficient manufacturing capability to produce enough vaccines for their own populations, rather than waiting on handouts from wealthier countries.

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