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Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Ilhan Omar gets caught lying, AOC out-dumbs herself, Biden’s brain forgets... again

Manhunt on gunman who shot and critcially injured a Mississippi judge in a parking lot outside a courthouse

A judge has been shot and critically wounded outside a courthouse in Mississippi, police said.

Chancery Judge Charlie Smith was shot Monday morning in the parking lot outside the Lauderdale County Courthouse in downtown Meridian, WTOK-TV reported.

Smith was getting out of his truck to go inside the courthouse when the gunfire happened, Meridian Police Lt. Rita Jack said.


Coronavirus: Macy's closing stores nationwide amid COVID-19 outbreak

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Macy's announced Tuesday it is closing all stores nationwide amid the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

This includes all Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Bluemercury, Macy's Backstage, Bloomingdales the Outlet and Market by Macy's stores.

Macy's, Inc., will provide benefits and compensation to its impacted workforce.

The stores will be closed through at least March 31, 2020.


Coronavirus pandemic sparks massive jail break in Brazil as over 800 prisoners escape from four prisons as the country reports its first virus-related death

More than 800 inmates broke out of four prisons in São Paulo, Brazil, after the Justice Department announced it was postponing a work program that allowed inmates to leave jails amid the coronavirus panic.

The massive jailbreak came as Brazil confirmed its first coronavirus-linked death Tuesday, a 62-year-old man who died at a private hospital in São Paulo. Health officials said he had suffered from diabetes, hypertension and prostatic hyperplasia.

Authorities have now recaptured around half of the 834 that fled on Monday.

Video footage showed the disturbing moment some of 577 men escaped from the Progression Center Penitentiary in the São Paulo municipality of Mongaguá. Officials reported that 172 were recaptured.


Diamond Princess Mysteries

OK, here are my questions. We had a perfect petri-dish coronavirus disease (COVID-19) experiment with the cruise ship “Diamond Princess”. That’s the cruise ship that ended up in quarantine for a number of weeks after a number of people tested positive for the coronavirus. I got to wondering what the outcome of the experiment was.

So I dug around and found an analysis of the situation, with the catchy title of Estimating the infection and case fatality ratio for COVID-19 using age-adjusted data from the outbreak on the Diamond Princess cruise ship (PDF), so I could see what the outcomes were.

As you might imagine, before they knew it was a problem, the epidemic raged on the ship, with infected crew members cooking and cleaning for the guests, people all eating together, close living quarters, lots of social interaction, and a generally older population. Seems like a perfect situation for an overwhelming majority of the passengers to become infected.

And despite that, some 83% (82.7% – 83.9%) of the passengers never got the disease at all … why?



Maryland Transportation Authority

Cashless Tolling at All MDTA Facilities Begins 3 p.m. Today
E-ZPass® Customer Service Centers to Close Beginning Wednesday
March 17, 2020 – In response to Governor Larry Hogan’s executive order this morning and to help limit the spread of COVID-19, the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) will initiate statewide all-electronic (cashless) tolling effective at 3 p.m. today until further notice, and will close all E-ZPass® Maryland Customer Service Centers effective Wednesday, March 18, until further notice.
To assist Marylanders with these changes, the MDTA will provide video tolling at the cash rates at toll facilities where cash is normally accepted, and establish grace periods for E-ZPass® Discount Plan expirations, Notices of Toll Due and citations.
We thank drivers for their understanding as we strive to protect our employees and customers.
All-Electronic Tolling Statewide
Toll collection will be automated at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95), Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95), Baltimore Harbor Tunnel (I-895), Bay Bridge (US 50/301) and Nice/Middleton Bridge (US 301).
All drivers should KEEP MOVING through toll plazas without stopping. Cash payment lanes will operate as video tolling (cashless) lanes. Motorists who usually pay with cash will be mailed a Notice of Toll Due for the cash toll rate.
E-ZPass® will be accepted in all open toll lanes. E-ZPass® customers using a rental vehicle can add the vehicle temporarily to their E-ZPass® account. Rental car drivers without an E-ZPass® should contact the rental car company prior to traveling a route that includes a toll facility. 
The Intercounty Connector (ICC)/MD 200, I-95 Express Toll Lanes in Baltimore, Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695) and Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge (US 40) already operate all-electronic tolling.
Closure of E-ZPass Customer Service Centers
All E-ZPass® Maryland Customer Service Centers, including those at MDOT Motor Vehicle Administration branches, will close effective Wednesday, March 18, until further notice. MDTA will extend the time to pay Notices of Toll Due and citations without penalty, and will extend E-ZPass® Discount Plan expirations. Additional details on these extensions will be released as information becomes available.                                                             
Customers should visit or call 1-888-321-6824 (711 for MD Relay) to replenish/update their accounts or pay video tolls. The interactive voice response system is available 24/7. However, to speak with a customer-service representative, customers may call the toll-free line between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. New customers can also open E-ZPass® accounts online at
All E-ZPass® outreach events, including pop-up events scheduled in Queen Anne’s and Anne Arundel counties, have been postponed until further notice.
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Walmart In Berlin is Hiring!

Introducing Dirds (Doggo Birdos)

COVID-19 Department of Commerce Update

A Letter From Secretary Schulz

Dear Valued Members of Maryland’s Business Community,

Today, the Maryland Department of Commerce in conjunction with the Maryland Department of Labor, the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation, and several other state agencies launched a new webpage dedicated to business resources during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

The webpage, available on the Maryland Business Express portal, features several resources available for business throughout the state, including guidelines for employers, fair labor standards, information on insurance claims, opportunities for financial assistance, tax questions, and more.

To find resources or learn more about how to keep yourself, your families, and your workers safe, please visit

We are working diligently to help keep businesses informed as updates are available. Do not hesitate to reach out to us with additional questions at

Thank you,


Temporary Park Closure

Tom Brady to leave Patriots: ‘my football journey will take place elsewhere’

Tom Brady, the centerpiece of the New England Patriots’ championship dynasty over the past two decades, appears poised to leave the only football home he has ever had.

The 42-year-old six-time Super Bowl winner posted Tuesday on social media “my football journey will take place elsewhere.”

The comments were the first to indicate the most-decorated player in NFL history would leave New England.


LA releases inmates from jail early over coronavirus concerns while Legal Aid Society asks for a freeze on arrests in New York to combat the pandemic

The Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has moved to cut the number of prisoners in its jails by more than 600 over concerns about the coronavirus.

Despite there being are no confirmed cases of the virus in the jails, 21 inmates have been quarantined at Men's Central Jail, five are in quarantine at Twin Towers Correctional Facility and a further nine at the Correctional Treatment Center.

'All of them are receiving the necessary level of care,' Villanueva said at a news conference Monday.


Distilleries are making hand sanitizer and giving it out for free to combat coronavirus

As people around the U.S. prepare to self-quarantine amid the coronavirus pandemic, hand sanitizer has flown off the shelves of local supermarkets and pharmacies. Now, distilleries are stepping in to help and using their own alcohol to make free sanitizing solutions.

Aside from soap and water, public health experts say that cleaning your hands with a 60% alcohol-based solution is one of the best ways to avoid infection, leading consumers to panic-buy hand sanitizer in large quantities. Some businesses are limiting the number of sanitizers customers can buy per visit, while others are increasing their prices in stores and online.

While it's possible to make your own hand sanitizer at home, even the necessary ingredients have proven difficult to find in recent weeks. And distilleries across the country have taken note, coming up with a clever solution to the sanitizer shortage: using in-house alcohol for homemade sanitizer.


Delmar Police


Former NSC official denies claims that Trump administration cut pandemic response office

A former National Security Council official shot down claims that the Trump administration cut the White House pandemic response office.

In an op-ed published in the Washington Post on Monday, the former senior director for counterproliferation and biodefense at the NSC, Tim Morrison, objected to an argument made by another former NSC director, Beth Cameron. Cameron asserted that the president unnecessarily closed the office under her watch, but Morrison said the claim is merely a political narrative crafted by Democrats.

"This is Washington. It’s an election year. Officials out of power want back into power after November. But the middle of a worldwide health emergency is not the time to be making tendentious accusations," Morrison wrote.


Trump shames reporters for coverage of partnership with Google to fight coronavirus

President Trump criticized reporters for what he said were false reports about the federal government partnering with Google to provide information about the coronavirus.

“I want to thank the people at Google and Google Communications because, as you know, they substantiated what I said on Friday,” Trump said during a White House news conference on Sunday. "The head of Google, who’s a great gentleman, called us, and he apologized. I don’t know where the press got their fake news, but they got it someplace.”

Trump continued: "It would be great if we could really give the news correctly. It would be so, so, wonderful.”


Former Obama adviser urges Congress to give every adult $1,000 during coronavirus outbreak

A former adviser to President Barack Obama urged Congress to provide a rescue package that would give every adult $1,000 amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Jason Furman, who served as the chair of the Council of Economic Advisers during the 2008 financial crisis, told NBC News that after exhausting all other options, giving people a one-time check for $1,000 and every child $500 is the best approach to the economy and ensuring the health of citizens.

“You should spend as much as you can on health, on testing, on hospital infrastructure. You should spend as much as you can in a targeted way on things like unemployment insurance, nutritional assistance, paid leave, and help for states,” he said.


Somali man who confirmed that Ilhan Omar married her brother says he is living in fear after a friend of the congresswoman posted a threatening YouTube video urging Somali-Americans to attack him

The man who came forward to say on the record that leftist congresswoman Ilhan Omar married her own brother has told he is now in fear for his life.

A woman close to Omar posted a YouTube video packed with degrading insults about wheelchair-bound Abdihakim Osman and pressed members of her Somali-American clan to go after him.

Osman has made a complaint to police in Minneapolis and repeatedly demanded that YouTube take down the offending video — which was met with silence from the media giant until asked why it was still on the site.


'Almost no one there': De Blasio defends hitting the gym after warning against it during coronavirus pandemic

There was "almost no one" at the gym Bill de Blasio visited after telling everyone to avoid going to public gyms, he said.

The New York City mayor visited a YMCA on Monday morning to get in a workout one day after announcing that restaurants, bars, and gyms would be closing to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. He defended the decision on Monday afternoon, saying, "There was almost no one there."

"I had heard that information prior,” he explained. “I suspected that we were all going to be about to close them down, and this would be the last time to get some exercise.”


Surgeon general says U.S. cases are at the point where Italy was 2 weeks ago

WASHINGTON — The U.S. surgeon general said Monday that the number of coronavirus cases in the United States has reached the level that Italy recorded two weeks ago, a sign that infections are expected to rise in America as the government steps up testing and financial markets continue to fall.

“We are at a critical inflection point in this country, people. We are where Italy was two weeks ago in terms of our numbers,” U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams told Fox News. “When you look at the projections, there’s every chance that we could be Italy.”

Two weeks ago, there were 1,700 cases of coronavirus in Italy and the country had reported 34 deaths. Now, Italy is reporting an estimated 25,000 cases and more than 1,800 people have died. There are about 3,800 cases reported in the United States and so far, more than 65 people have died from coronavirus.


Members of the Coronavirus Task Force hold a press briefing 3-17-2020

CDC denies Democrats' claim Trump slashed funding to anti-pandemic programs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pushed back on claims from Democratic lawmakers that President Trump slashed funding to the department's anti-pandemic efforts.

Amid nationwide concern regarding the federal government's ability to contain the spread of the coronavirus, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer blasted Trump late last month for “drastic cuts to the global health division at CDC," likely referring to a five-year, nearly $600 million supplemental package that ran out in September 2019.

"All of the warning lights are flashing bright red. We are staring down a potential pandemic, and the administration has no plan," the New York Democrat said. "We have a crisis of coronavirus, and President Trump has no plan, no urgency, no understanding of the facts, or how to coordinate a response."


Taking ibuprofen and other over-the-counter anti-inflammatories may worsen coronavirus, French health minister warns

Taking ibuprofen may worsen symptoms of the deadly coronavirus, France's health minister has warned.

Olivier Véran claimed the over-the-counter medication – which the NHS says could help tackle symptoms – may aggravate the infection.

The controversial statement goes against health chiefs' advice to use ibuprofen as well as paracetamol to self-medicate for the killer disease.

Ibuprofen is widely taken to relieve pain as well as reduce a fever and aches caused by common colds and flu.


Coronavirus Latest: Maryland Cases Grow To 43

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — There are now 43 positive cases of coronavirus in Maryland, according to the state health department Monday.

Over the weekend, Baltimore City as well as Howard and Talbot counties reported their first cases of coronavirus.

Howard County reported three more cases Monday. Prince George’s County also announced an additional case Monday. Baltimore City also reported a second case Monday.


Happy St. Patrick's Day 2020

NIH employee tests positive for coronavirus

WASHINGTON — The National Institutes of Health says a staff member has tested positive for the coronavirus, the federal health agency's first known report of an employee infected with COVID-19.

NIH says in a statement released on Sunday that it's reported the case to state and local public health officials. It says the individual is quarantined at home and doing well.

NIH, the nation's medical research agency, is part of the Department of Health and Human Services, and is located just outside Washington, D.C. in Bethesda, Maryland.

The employee works for the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, but is not involved in patient care. The person was not showing symptoms at work, which could mean a lower the risk of virus transmission.


Coronavirus Latest: Ocean City, Maryland Couple On Cruise Ship Not Being Allowed To Enter Ports

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Two Marylanders are aboard a cruise ship that isn’t being allowed to enter a number of ports in the South Pacific amid fears of the coronavirus, their daughter told WJZ.

Jolene Atkins said her parents, Dottie and Ed Pinto, who are from Ocean City, Maryland, are stuck on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship that has been turned away from multiple ports.

The 21-day cruise aboard the Norwegian Jewel had been set to visit Australia, New Zealand and French Polynesia before ending March 20 in Tahiti, the Pintos told their daughter.


Las Vegas Strip Goes Dark As MGM, Wynn Shutter Casinos Until May

Several casino management companies are closing properties along “The Strip” in Las Vegas, Nevada, over concerns hotels, banquets, auditoriums, and gaming floors could play host to the spread of coronavirus.

MGM Resorts International and Wynn Resorts both said Sunday that they would close their casinos until, at least, the end of April, amid coronavirus concerns. Wynn, which operates both the Wynn and Encore resorts, told reporters that the pair of five-star properties will cease operations at midnight Tuesday.

MGM, which owns the MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, the Luxor, Excalibur, and New York New York casino resorts, the Park MGM, the Bellagio, and two of the casinos in on the Strip’s “City Center,” Aria and Vdara, will end operations Tuesday morning.


Cambridge-based Moderna announces start of coronavirus vaccine testing

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. —The first test dose of a local company's vaccine intended to fight coronavirus infections was administered Monday.

Forty-five healthy adults will eventually be enrolled in the test, which is being conducted by the National Institutes of Health, Cambridge-based Moderna announced Monday.

Participants will receive two doses of the trial vaccine, administered 28 days apart. They will receive one of three different dosage amounts, as part of the test of safety and efficacy of the vaccine.

With a careful jab in a healthy volunteer’s arm Monday, scientists at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Research Institute in Seattle began the study.


Dollar General to dedicate first hour of shopping day to senior citizens

OKLAHOMA CITY —Dollar General announced plans on Monday to dedicate the first hour of each shopping day to senior shoppers.

Beginning Tuesday, Dollar General is strongly encouraging that the first hour of operations each day be dedicated solely for the shopping needs of senior customers, who are one of the groups most vulnerable to the COVID-19 coronavirus. In keeping with the company’s mission of serving others, Dollar General wants to provide the at-risk customers with the ability to purchase the items they need and want at the beginning of each day to avoid busier and more crowded shopping periods, according to a news release.

Other customers are encouraged to plan their shopping trips around this window of time to allow the most susceptible customers in our communities the ability to shop during the first hour that stores are open, company officials said.


A Brief History of Toilet Paper

Executive Actions Announced to Slow the Spread of COVID-19 in Maryland

Governor Larry Hogan  announced Executive Orders aimed to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Maryland. These orders include the closure of bars, restaurants, fitness centers, and theaters. Restaurants may continue carry-out, drive-thru, and delivery services. Also announced was the prohibition on gatherings of more than 50 people including social, community, recreational, and leisure events.

I am committed to assisting my constituents during this time and keeping them informed as these updates become available and also encourage everyone to practice good health habits and social distancing. For more information:

I encourage small businesses impacted by these executive actions to utilize the resources available through the Maryland Business Express website:

Governor Hogan also issued an Executive Order prohibiting electric, gas, water, sewage, phone, cable TV, and internet service provider companies from shutting off any residential customer’s service, or charging any residential late fees; and one prohibiting Maryland courts from ordering the eviction of a tenant who can prove that their failure to pay rent was the result of COVID-19 such as lost or reduced employment or needing to care for a child or elderly relative affected by COVID-19.

If you have specific questions about COVID-19 or the latest announcements to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, you may contact me at on this or any other constituent matter.

Onward and Upward!

Political Memes

Tuesday Morning Funnies

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

OC Mayor Declares Civil Emergency, Gov. Orders Bars & Restaurants to Close, & Modified Schedules Continue for Town Services, Programs and Events

OCEAN CITY, MD – (March 16, 2020): On Tuesday, March 16, Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan signed a local declaration of emergency proclaiming COVID-19 a health crisis in Ocean City. After following the strict actions by Gov. Hogan, the Town has continued to take several steps to minimize the impact of COVID-19 in our community.

“The Town of Ocean City’s emergency management team has been working for weeks to develop plans and procedures to protect the health and safety of employees, residents and visitors,” commented Mayor Meehan. “We support the Governor’s strong action and will continue to do whatever it takes to put the health and safety of our community first.”

The following web page has an updated list of cancelations, postponements and changes to services throughout the Town of Ocean City

While essential services, including grocery stores and banks will remain open, all Marylanders have been encouraged to limit their exposure to others. Social distancing, hand washing and cleaning/disinfecting are greatly encouraged.

Citizens are also encouraged to stay informed. The Town will continue to post daily updates on the website and social media sites. To learn more about what the town is doing, visit

An informational call center has also been opened (during business hours). For questions or concerns at 410.520.5279