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Daily News Digest – March 23, 2022

Presented by

The Alabama Municipal Electric Association

Good morning!

Heh, whoever thought legislative spring break would be a slow news week?

Here’s your Daily News for Wednesday, March 23.



1. Trump pulls endorsement from Brooks in Senate race

  • Former President Donald Trump announced early this morning he is rescinding his endorsement of Congressman Mo Brooks in the race for U.S. Senate in Alabama.
  • Trump had hinted at an un-endorsement last week after the first poll emerged showing Brooks’ slide from frontrunner to distant third.
  • Yesterday, an Alabama Daily News / Gray Television poll showed Brooks polling at just 16.1%, down from 40.8% in August.
  • Trump claims to be upset with Brooks’ comments at a Cullman rally last summer saying voters should look to the future to win elections instead of relitigating the 2020 election Trump lost.
  • In his statement, Trump said he would be making a new endorsement “in the near future!”
  • Read more HERE.



2. Opinions on gambling, gas tax, charter schools steady among Alabama Republicans

  • Fresh polling of Alabama Republican primary voters shows views holding decidedly steady on key issues like gambling, education and gas taxes.
  • A recent survey commissioned by Alabama Daily News and Gray Television included several questions on topical issues that are being debated in the Legislature and on the campaign trail.
  • Many of the questions mirrored a similar poll conducted in August, offering an apples-to-apples comparison of voter sentiment after several months.
  • ADN Insiders can see the full poll results HERE.
  • Not an ADN Insider? It pays to subscribe! See rates and packages HERE.




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3. Alabama COVID hospitalizations lowest since pandemic start

  • The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Alabama has dropped to the lowest point since the earliest days of the pandemic, state statistics show.
  • Just 156 people statewide were being treated for the illness caused by the new coronavirus earlier this week, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health. That was the least since late March 2020, when the same number were hospitalized as COVID-19 was just beginning to spread across the state.
  • Regional Medical Center in east Alabama hasn’t seen any new COVID-19 cases in more than a week. Dr. Raul Magadia, an infectious disease specialist, told WBRC-TV it was the first time in more than a year the hospital had gone so long without new patients sickened by the virus.
  • “Wednesday last week was our last patient. We discharged and we released our last patient in the COVID ward,” he said.
  • Nearly 3,000 people were hospitalized statewide with COVID-19 in late January at the height of the latest wave, which health officials said was linked to the highly contagious omicron variant. Experts are hopeful that subsequent waves won’t be as bad because so many people have been vaccinated or gained immunity by contracting the illness.
  • About 19,100 people have died of COVID-19 in the state, giving Alabama the nation’s third-highest death rate from the illness at 391 fatalities for every 100,000 residents.
  • Read more HERE.



4. Defending her record, Jackson back for 3rd day of hearings

  • Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson is returning to the Senate for a third day of hearings as Republicans try to paint her as soft on crime and Democrats herald the historic nature of her nomination to become the first Black woman on the high court.
  • In Tuesday’s marathon hearing, Republicans aggressively questioned Jackson on the sentences she has handed down to sex offenders in her nine years as a federal judge, her advocacy on behalf of terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay, her thoughts on critical race theory and even her religious views. At one point, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas read from children’s books that he said are taught at her teenage daughter’s school.
  • Several GOP senators grilled Jackson on her child pornography sentences, arguing they were lighter than federal guidelines recommend. She said she based the sentences on many factors, not just the guidelines, and said some of the cases had given her nightmares.
  • Could her rulings have endangered children? “As a mother and a judge,” she said, “nothing could be further from the truth.”
  • The committee’s Republicans, several of whom have their eyes on the presidency, tried to brand her — and Democrats in general — as soft on crime, an emerging theme in GOP midterm election campaigns.
  • Jackson told the committee that her brother and two uncles served as police officers, and that “crime and the effect on the community, and the need for law enforcement — those are not abstract concepts or political slogans to me.”
  • Today’s hearing is the second day of questioning, and the third day of hearings, after Jackson and the 22 members of the panel gave opening statements on Monday. On Thursday, the committee will hear from legal experts before an eventual vote to move her nomination to the Senate floor.
  • Read more HERE.



5. Ukraine thwarts Russian advances; fight rages for Mariupol

  • Ukrainian forces battled continuing Russian efforts to occupy Mariupol and claimed to have retaken a strategic suburb of Kyiv on Tuesday, mounting a defense so dogged that it is stoking fears Russia’s Vladimir Putin will escalate the war to new heights.
  • “Putin’s back is against the wall,” said U.S. President Joe Biden, who is heading to Europe this week to meet with allies. “And the more his back is against the wall, the greater the severity of the tactics he may employ.”
  • Biden reiterated accusations that Putin is considering resorting to using chemical or biological weapons, though Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the U.S. has seen no evidence to suggest that such an escalation is imminent.
  • The warnings came as attacks continued in and around Kyiv and Mariupol, and people escaped the battered and besieged port city. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russian forces of not only blocking a humanitarian convoy trying to take desperately needed aid to Mariupol but seizing what another Ukrainian official said were 15 of the bus drivers and rescue workers on the aid mission, along with their vehicles.
  • Zelenskyy said the Russians had agreed to the route ahead of time.
  • Read more HERE.




ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Trump pulls endorsement from Brooks in Senate race


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Opinions on gambling, gas tax, charter schools steady among Alabama Republicans


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama virus hospitalizations lowest since pandemic start


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Defending her record, Jackson back for 3rd day of hearings


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ukraine thwarts Russian advances; fight rages for Mariupol


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – New ADN-Gray TV poll: Durant leads Britt, Brooks falls far behind


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Jackson pledges to decide cases ‘without fear or favor’


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Pence distances himself from Trump as he eyes 2024 campaign


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ukraine retakes key Kyiv suburb; battle for Mariupol rages


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Poll shows Ivey with strong approval, growing lead in primary field


AL.COM – Alabama severe storms trap residents inside homes, flood streets, tear roofs apart


AL.COM – Contributor State Rep. Anthony Davis: Politicians putting money where it matters: Public education


AL.COM – Why Birmingham flash floods are part of a much bigger problem


AL.COM – ‘Childish,’ ‘Catastrophe,’ ‘Blame’: Judge, fire union blast Mobile mayor


AL.COM – Donald Trump Jr. launching news aggregation app; Alabama’s Cliff Sims, ex-Trump advisor, on team


AL.COM – University of Alabama researchers share plan to close education gap in Black Belt: State lottery


AL.COM – Daylight saving time bill springs forward in Senate, falls back in House


AL.COM – Grocery prices hit 40 year high: Inflation, Ukraine has costs going up across the board


AL.COM – An Alabama teacher overcame a gunshot wound, paraplegia to change state law


Montgomery Advertiser – Alabama House approves $8.1 billion education budget that includes raises for teachers


Montgomery Advertiser – Alabama Senate committee approves bill banning ‘divisive concepts’ from classrooms


Montgomery Advertiser – Tallassee man gets $2 million cash bond in fatal workplace shooting


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Cars stall in flooding in Jefferson County


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – UPDATE: Voters pass property tax increase in Irondale


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Birmingham’s FOP reports a ‘disproportionate number of officers’ out sick amid pay raise talks with the city


Tuscaloosa News – ‘We could not be more excited’: Habitat Tuscaloosa to receive some of $436 million donation


Tuscaloosa News – Tuscaloosa city and county schools will dismiss early because of severe weather threat


Tuscaloosa News – Class of 2022: When, where Tuscaloosa high schools will hold graduations


Decatur Daily – Experts: Another COVID surge likely, but maybe not as bad


Decatur Daily – Residents say lower speed limit not enough to improve safety at Limestone intersection


Decatur Daily – R.A. Hubbard principal agrees to step down in July


Times Daily – Colbert County opts out of 3M class action lawsuit


Times Daily – Residents getting chance to learn more about wage study


Times Daily – Irelan announces his candidacy for District 2 House seat


Anniston Star – Brigham Young students visit city’s civil rights site on Gurnee


Anniston Star – Main Street Oxford hosts a walk for ideas


Anniston Star – Jacksonville launches new city app


YellowHammer News – 97-year-old Ret. Cpl. Robert Curtis Andry of Mobile County awarded Purple Heart for WWII heroics


YellowHammer News – Alabama GOP congressional delegation signs onto letter demanding end to ‘arbitrary’ transportation mask mandate


YellowHammer News – Tuberville endorses Herschel Walker in Georgia U.S. Senate race — ‘I need a great running back in Washington, D.C.’


Gadsden Times – Democrat Rhonda Gore enters race for U.S. House of Representatives District 4


Gadsden Times – Man stabbed to death in Marshall County; suspect charged with murder


Gadsden Times – Alcohol allowed? A spa, a past trouble spot, a club with a pending court case are asking


Dothan Eagle – 4 weeks, still defiant: Ukraine fights into 2nd month of war


Dothan Eagle – UN taking up 3 resolutions on Ukraine humanitarian crisis


Dothan Eagle – Tornado rips through New Orleans and its suburbs, killing 1


Opelika-Auburn News – A new fund directs its support to Ukraine’s long-term needs


Opelika-Auburn News – Ukraine says Russia seized relief workers in Mariupol convoy


Opelika-Auburn News – Live updates: France sends rescue cars, supplies to Ukraine


WSFA Montgomery – ALEA launches ‘Think Smart Before You Start’ campaign


WSFA Montgomery – Video shows large tornado that touched down in Baldwin County


WSFA Montgomery – VIDEO: Tornadoes devastate parts of Orleans, St. Bernard Parishes


WAFF Huntsville – VIDEO: Tornadoes devastate parts of Orleans, St. Bernard Parishes


WAFF Huntsville – Huntsville planning commission approves rezoning proposal for townhomes, dozens oppose


WAFF Huntsville – Athens City School student left unattended at Nashville Zoo


WKRG Mobile – Mother of teen shot in back says she’s willing to take matters into her own hands


WKRG Mobile – Russian Olympians face backlash after Vladimir Putin rally


WKRG Mobile – World Meteorological Day 2022: Early Warning and Early Action


WTVY Dothan – Cars stall in flooding in Jefferson County


WTVY Dothan – Trees down, storm damage, flooding in West Alabama


WTVY Dothan – State superintendent talks combating learning loss after 2 years of COVID-19


WASHINGTON POST – Supreme Court nominee Jackson faces second day of questions after marathon session


WASHINGTON POST – Ketanji Brown Jackson passionately defends her sentencing of sex offenders


WASHINGTON POST – Biden heads to Europe; Poland to expel 45 Russians ‘pretending to be diplomats’


NEW YORK TIMES – Live Updates: Ukraine Holds Line as Biden Is Poised to Increase Pressure on Russia


NEW YORK TIMES – How Russia and Right-Wing Americans Converged on War in Ukraine


NEW YORK TIMES – Trying to Solve a Covid Mystery: Africa’s Low Death Rates


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Biden, Allies Aim to Project United Front Against Russia at NATO Meeting


WALL STREET JOURNAL – U.S. Stock Futures Edge Lower, Oil Prices Jump


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Judge Jackson to Face More Questions in Supreme Court Hearings



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