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Weekend Digest – September 1, 2019

Good Afternoon and Happy Labor Day Weekend!
Here’s your Daily News for Sunday, September 1.



1. Hurricane Dorian becomes Category 5

  • An already dangerous Hurricane Dorian intensified yet again Sunday as it made landfall on the northern Bahamas, threatening to batter islands with Category 5-strength winds, pounding waves and torrential rain.
  • “Devastating hurricane conditions” are expected in The Abaco Islands early Sunday and across Grand Bahama later in the day, The National Hurricane Center in Miami said.
  • Millions from Florida to the Carolinas kept a wary eye on Dorian, meanwhile, amid indications it would veer sharply northeastward after passing the Bahamas and track up the U.S. Southeast seaboard.
  • But authorities warned even if its core did not make U.S. landfall and stayed offshore, the potent storm would likely hammer U.S. coastal areas with powerful winds and heavy surf.
  • In the northern stretches of the Bahamas archipelago, hotels closed, residents boarded up homes and officials hired boats to move people from low-lying areas to bigger islands as Dorian approached.
  • You can read more about the Hurricane HERE.


2. Texas and Mobile Suffer mass shootings

  • The death toll in a West Texas shooting rampage increased to seven Sunday as authorities investigated why a man stopped by state troopers for failing to signal a left turn opened fire on them and fled, shooting more than 20 people as he drove before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.
  • While in Mobile a 17-year-old student was arrested Saturday in connection to a shooting that happened at a high school football game that left at least 10 people injured.
  • Mobile Police Chief Lawrence Battiste says that six people were directly shot Friday and one person had a seizure shortly after the shooting at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, a city-owned venue hosting a game between LeFlore High School and Williamson High School.
  • Battiste said the shooting stemmed from a fight, and the suspect pulled a gun and started “indiscriminately shooting.”
  • In Texas, at least one of the shooting victims remains in life-threatening condition and the gunman has been identified but his name, nor a possible motive has been released.
  • The shooting began Saturday afternoon with an interstate traffic stop where gunfire was exchanged with police, setting off a chaotic rampage during which the suspect hijacked a mail carrier truck and fired at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland, two cities in the heart of Texas oil country.
  • You can read more about the Mobile High School Shooting HERE and the Texas shooting HERE.


3. Lawmakers ‘line up’ for leftover bridge funds

  • With the death of a proposed $2.1 billion toll bridge in Mobile, the Alabama Department of Transportation says some state money could now be freed up for other projects.
  • Last week the $2.1 billion project was declared “dead” after a local municipal organization removed it from its transportation list and made it ineligible for federal funds.
  • This all came amid pressure on local and state politicians from anti-toll activists.
  • Now, the Alabama Department of Transportation says some state money could potentially be freed up for other projects.
  • It’s unclear exactly how much state money was going into the Bayway project, but ALDOT spokesman Tony Harris said it would have been “significant.” And when it comes to road projects that need money, most lawmakers have a list at the ready. Harris anticipates officials from all around Alabama will start lining up seeking a portion of it.
  • Some lawmakers were calling dibs even before Gov. Kay Ivey announced the project was dead.
  • Sen. Andrew Jones, R-Centre, wrote in a column in early August that if opposition to tolls for the Mobile project killed it, he’d be “first in line to ask Gov. Ivey” to commit those funds to projects in his district.
  • Not surprisingly, lawmakers from Mobile and Baldwin counties want to keep those funds in South Alabama, and they say they still want a solution for the I-10 corridor problem.
  • You can read the whole story from Mary Sell HERE.


4. Rabbi Scott Looper: Byrne misses mark on Israel

  • Recently, Congressman Bradley Byrne wrote an op-ed for Alabama Daily News expressing his strong support for Israel and criticizing his more liberal colleagues for their statements and actions on the issue.
  • Rabbi Scott Looper of Montgomery’s Temple Beth Or took issue with what Byrne wrote and submitted an op-ed of his own responding to Byrne’s arguments.
  • In particular, Looper is troubled by what he sees as an increased politicization of Israeli-American relations.
  • Here’s an excerpt:
“What the Republican party and some Democrats fail to recognize is that the American Jewish body politic are American citizens. We are concerned about the social safety net for the poor, ending centuries’ old racism, enacting gun control, protecting civil rights, abortion rights and voting rights, ensuring economic opportunity for all, confronting the disconcerting rise of Anti-Semitism and white nationalism, maintaining freedom of the press, and, with deep concern, guaranteeing our own safety.
“Pandering to Israel, especially with the expectation and wrongheaded belief that America’s Jews will abandon the Democratic party en masse, is insulting and alarming. We may love, cherish and unconditionally support the right of Israel to exist, but we are citizens of this country. Our vote is conditioned by our values. We are not a monolithic voting bloc. We vote for Republican and Democratic politicians based on our beliefs and values, not our Jewish identity.”
  • You can read his whole piece HERE.


5. Week in Good News

Publix to donate $500,000 to Alabama food banks
  • Publix Supermarkets is giving a total of $500,000 to food banks in Alabama.
  • The Florida-based grocery store chain recently announced the donations. They’re part of $5 million Publix is giving to organizations across the Southeast in September. That’s national Hunger Action Week.
  • reports that the grocery store’s charity organization is donating $150,000 each to the Community Food Bank of Central Alabama in Birmingham and Feeding the Gulf Coast in Theodore and $100,000 each to the Food Bank of North Alabama in Huntsville and the Montgomery Area Food Bank.
  • One in eight people across the country struggles with hunger, including more than 9 million in the Southeast, Publix executives said, citing federal data.
  • You can read the story from HERE.
The Ladies of Labor Day
  • Often when we think about celebrating the hard working laborers during this Labor Day Holiday weekend, many will probably envision men working on steel mills, construction sites, and other roles typically held by men.
  • But John Phillips thinks we should take this weekend to acknowledge the women who took up those roles when needed, like during WWII, and even to this day are still working in those positions.
  • Tony Adams is a fishing guide on Lake Eufaula and says that he wants to support America’s working women by taking them out to catch some fish this Holiday weekend.
  • Read the whole story from John Phillips HERE.



ALABAMA DAILY NEWS- Looper: Byrne misses mark on Israel
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – After Mobile bridge stalls, lawmakers could ‘line up’ for funds
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – 6 teens shot at end of high school football game in Alabama
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Court upholds death sentence for man with IQ of 76
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Death toll in West Texas shooting rampage rises to 7
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Dorian closes in on Bahamas as dangerous Category 5 storm
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Pitcher: Life ‘destroyed’ by slayings of wife, son, in-law
AL.COM – Leaders promise enhanced security after mass shooting at Mobile football game.
AL.COM – Judge tosses ‘Baby Roe’ abortion lawsuit filed against Huntsville clinic.
AL.COM – Amid I-10 fallout, Ivey weighs Amtrak’s Mobile return.
AL.COM – Columnist Frances Coleman: Don’t be the driver who blasts though yellow lights.
AL.COM – Contributor Carol Gundlach: Increase child care funding to invest in Alabama’s future.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Roy Moore: ‘I support’ Ilhan Omar’s expulsion — ‘If they take an oath to the Koran – no, they should not serve in Congress’.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Alabama leads development of U.S. Army’s hypersonic weapons — ‘A critical priority’.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – ‘High quality woman’: Trump backs Ivey after blackface apology.
FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – The Times Daily: ‘You’re the ones that built America’.
FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – Lawmakers ‘line up’ for available funds from toll bridge project.
ANNISTON STAR – Gas tax may yield but little for small towns.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Troy University’s Chancellor Jack Hawkins celebrates 30 years of service.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Greek immigrant families owned, ran many Montgomery restaurants.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Contributor Vanzetta McPherson: White supremacy is Gov. Wallace’s enduring legacy.
DOTHAN EAGLE – The Dothan Eagle : With taxation, hindsight is 20/20.
WASHINGTON POST – 5 killed, 21 injured in a mass shooting in Odessa, Tex.
WASHINGTON POST – $1,000 a month, no strings attached: A Mississippi program giving low-income mothers a year of “universal basic income” reflects an idea gaining popularity with Democrats even as restrictions on public benefits grow.
WASHINGTON POST – New tariffs on shoes, televisions, diapers and other Chinese-made products take effect Sunday.
NEW YORK TIMES – How Much Will the Trade War
Cost You by the End of the Year?
NEW YORK TIMES – The Mysterious Vaping Illness That’s ‘Becoming an Epidemic’
NEW YORK TIMES – How a Trump Tax Break to Help Poor Communities Became a Windfall for the Rich


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