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Daily News Digest – September 1, 2021

Good morning!

Here’s your Daily News for Wednesday, September 1.



1. Biden defends departure from Afghanistan

  • A defensive President Joe Biden on Tuesday called the U.S. airlift to extract more than 120,000 Americans, Afghans and other allies from Afghanistan to end a 20-year war an “extraordinary success,” though more than 100 Americans and thousands of others were left behind.
  • Twenty-four hours after the last American C-17 cargo plane roared off from Kabul, Biden spoke to the nation and vigorously defended his decision to end America’s longest war and withdraw all U.S. troops ahead of an Aug. 31 deadline.
  • “I was not going to extend this forever war,” Biden declared from the White House. “And I was not going to extend a forever exit.”
  • Biden has faced tough questions about the way the U.S. went about leaving Afghanistan — a chaotic evacuation with spasms of violence, including a suicide bombing last week that killed 13 American service members and 169 Afghans.
  • He is under heavy criticism, particularly from Republicans, for his handling of the evacuation. But he said it was inevitable that the final departure from two decades of war, first negotiated with the Taliban for May 1 by former President Donald Trump, would have been difficult, with likely violence, no matter when it was planned and conducted.
  • Read more and watch the full speech HERE.


2. Rogers: Biden’s words ‘hollow’

  • U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., had sharp criticism for President Joe Biden after his Tuesday address to the nation on the end to the war in Afghanistan.
  • Rogers is the Ranking Member on the House Armed Services Committee, making him one of the top Republican voices on military matters in Congress. He specifically pointed to the fact that hundreds of Americans were left behind after the military completed its evacuation.
  • “One American left behind is one too many. The fact is President Biden abandoned Americans in Afghanistan – leaving them at the mercy of the Taliban and ISIS-K. The President made a promise to the American people that he would stay until every American was out,” Rogers said in a statement.
  • “President Biden’s words today were hollow.”
  • Read more HERE.


3. Alabama community colleges offer students vaccine incentives

  • While state officials have held off offering any kind of statewide COVID-19 vaccine incentives, more than a dozen Alabama community colleges are offering perks for students and staff who get the shot.
  • Colleges like Gadsden State Community College are offering students who are fully vaccinated to be eligible for a $500 book assistance program and full-time employees can receive a $50 voucher to the campus cafeteria or campus bookstores.
  • Alabama still ranks near the bottom in the nation for the percent of people fully vaccinated with about 38%, according to data from the Mayo Clinic.
  • The lack of vaccination has also led to a spike in new cases and a record amount of COVID-19 patients taking up hospitals’ intensive care units.
  • The total number of the virus patients in state hospitals was 2,873 on Tuesday, still below the pandemic high-water mark of 3,087 set in January.
  • Read more from Caroline Beck on exactly what community colleges are offering in vaccine incentives HERE.



4. Dismukes pleads not guilty to theft charge

  • An Alabama lawmaker on Monday pleaded not guilty to theft charges related to his former employer.
  • Court records show Rep. Will Dismukes entered the innocent plea during a hearing in Montgomery.
  • Dismukes is accused of taking property valued at more than $2,500 from his former employer, Weiss Flooring.
  • Dismukes has said he expects to be exonerated. Dismukes’ attorney Trey Norman has said the dispute is more suited for civil court.
  • The criminal case began when the company contacted the district attorney. Dismukes started his own company after leaving Weiss.
  • Montgomery Judge Brooke Reid on Monday also denied a defense request to move the case out of Montgomery County.
  • Read more HERE.



5. US consumer confidence falls in August to 6-month low

  • U.S. consumer confidence fell in August to the lowest level since February amid rising concerns about the rapidly spreading delta variant of the coronavirus and worries about higher inflation.
  • The Conference Board reported Tuesday that its consumer confidence index dropped to a reading of 113.8 in August, down from a revised 125.1 in July. It was the lowest level for the index since a reading of 95.2 in February.
  • The July index was revised down from an initially reported 129.1 which followed a reading of 128.9 in June, the best showing since before the pandemic struck in February 2020.
  • Concerns about the resurgence in COVID cases as well as worries about rising gas and food prices had contributed to the drop.
  • With the August decline, the overall index is 19 points below its pre-pandemic level. The drop in August reflected a weakening in both the current conditions and expectations components of the index.
  • The report showed that spending intentions for purchases of homes, autos and major appliances cooled in August, but the percentage of consumers intending to take a vacation in the next six months continued to climb.
  • Read more HERE.



ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Biden defends departure from Afghanistan


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Rogers: Biden’s words ‘hollow’


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama community colleges offer students vaccine incentives


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Dismukes pleads not guilty to theft charge


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – US consumer confidence falls in August to 6-month low


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – As US military leaves Kabul, many Americans, Afghans remain


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ida’s aftermath: Thousands face weeks without power


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Early numbers in hand, reapportionment committee starts public hearings Wednesday


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Record for virus patients in Alabama intensive care units


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – SEC won’t allow makeup games for short-handed teams


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Analysis: What we learned from the latest Daily News poll


AL.COM – Tropical Storm Ida’s latest headache: Danger from washed out rural Alabama roads


AL.COM – Black Lives Matter backs Bessemer Amazon union effort: ‘We’re not backing down’


AL.COM – Alabama hospital president down 70 nurses due to COVID begs people to get vaccinated: ‘Our staff is very exhausted’


AL.COM – House committee investigating insurrection wants Mo Brooks’ phone records


Montgomery Advertiser – ‘A crisis situation’: Military medical team deploys in south Alabama amid COVID wave


Montgomery Advertiser – Hurricane Ida damage on Grand Isle


Decatur Daily – Hospital applies for permit to open ambulance service


Decatur Daily – Ninth Avenue Southeast residents get meeting with police after complaints about speeders


Decatur Daily – Athens mayor proposes traffic study for downtown square


Times Daily – Army Corps of Engineers, TVA, assessing damage at Wilson Dam


Times Daily – Tropical storm damage mostly trees in Shoals


Times Daily – Shoals Chamber to host governor


Anniston Star – Berman Museum closing for two months to update exhibit halls


Anniston Star – Jacksonville police seek info about man who broke into bank


Anniston Star – Local events planned for 20th anniversary of 9/11


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Gas prices expected to rise due to Hurricane Ida impacts


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – State reports few hospitalizations, deaths in fully vaccinated people


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – How to prepare your child for virtual learning


Tuscaloosa News – ‘A crisis situation’: Military medical team deploys in south Alabama amid COVID wave


Tuscaloosa News – Ida floods roads in southern Alabama


YellowHammer News – Alabama Aerospace and Aviation High School earns State Commission approval; Free public charter set to open in 2022


YellowHammer News – Justice Kelli Wise receives civil justice endorsement


YellowHammer News – Katie Britt blasts failure to evacuate all Americans from Afghanistan — ‘Leaving anyone behind is a disgrace and un-American’


Gadsden Times – County commissioners promote Childhood Cancer Awareness Month


Gadsden Times – ‘A crisis situation’: Military medical team deploys in south Alabama amid COVID wave


Gadsden Times – Hallmark announces run for Etowah County Board of Education


Dothan Eagle – The Latest: Egypt virus cases rise amid variant, fewer rules


Dothan Eagle – Pope inadvertently quotes Putin to chide West’s Afghan war


Dothan Eagle – Dycom Industries: Fiscal Q2 Earnings Snapshot


Opelika-Auburn News – India schools cautiously reopen even as COVID warnings grow


Opelika-Auburn News – Restaurants, malls reopen as Thai virus restrictions eased


WSFA Montgomery – Inside look at new Montgomery Area Mental Health Authority crisis center


WSFA Montgomery – Mayor of small Dallas County town indicted on state ethics charge


WSFA Montgomery – Tornado touches down on Dothan’s west side


WAFF Huntsville – Request for new trial filed for Mike Blakely; What happens next


WAFF Huntsville – Albertville brothers plan to revitalize old Boaz Outlet Mall


WAFF Huntsville – Disaster relief groups collect donations and provide disaster relief in Louisiana


WKRG Mobile – Social Security fund will run out earlier than previously thought, government says


WKRG Mobile – Alabama veterans reflect on end of the war in Afghanistan


WKRG Mobile – Two EF-1 tornadoes confirmed in Mobile and Clarke Counties


WTVY Dothan – Tornado causes damage on west side of Dothan


WTVY Dothan – Geneva police chief closes the book on 34-year career


WTVY Dothan – 334 Prevention Project working to educate on drug overdose awareness


WASHINGTON POST – Declaring Afghan war over, Biden defends evacuation efforts


WASHINGTON POST – Heavy fighting around last province outside Taliban control


WASHINGTON POST – Afghanistan withdrawal exposes Republican divide on foreign policy despite united condemnation of Biden


NEW YORK TIMES – Biden Defends Afghan Pullout and Declares an End to Nation-Building


NEW YORK TIMES – Ukraine’s Leader, Meeting Biden, Seeks Security Assurances After Afghan Pullout


NEW YORK TIMES – Texas’ Near-Ban on Abortions Takes Effect After Supreme Court Fails to Act


WALL STREET JOURNAL – In Leaving Afghanistan, U.S. Reshuffles Global Power Relations


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Taliban Cheer U.S. Exit From Afghanistan, Vow to Enforce Islamic Rule as Biden Stands By Pullout


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Hurricane Ida Leaves Residents Without Power Amid Punishing Heat



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