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Takeaways From Tuesday Primaries: Four Trump-Backed Candidates Win, Omar Survives

Takeaways From Tuesday Primaries: Four Trump-Backed Candidates Win, Omar Survives

Authored by John Haughey via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

November…

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Takeaways From Tuesday Primaries: Four Trump-Backed Candidates Win, Omar Survives

Authored by John Haughey via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

November general election slates for 16 congressional, four gubernatorial, and three U.S. Senate seats were set in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Connecticut, and Vermont in Aug. 9 primaries.

Wisconsin Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim Michels (L), speaks as former President Donald Trump listens at a rally in Waukesha, Wis., on Aug. 5, 2022. (Morry Gash/AP Photo)

Among first-glance takeaways are triumphs by four candidates endorsed by former President Trump and the narrow victory by “squad” honcho Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) in her Democratic primary.

Meanwhile, a Minnesota Republican congressional candidate won two races on the same day, and Vermont voters are positioned to elect the state’s first woman to Congress.

Trump Endorsements

The former president backed three victorious candidates in Wisconsin and one in Connecticut.

Leora Levy won the GOP U.S. Senate primary in Connecticut and will challenge incumbent two-term Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.)

Trump-endorsed Derrick Van Orden, a former Navy SEAL, won his Wisconsin congressional district primary, as did two-term incumbent Republican Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.)

In Wisconsin’s Republican gubernatorial primary, Trump-backed businessman Tim Michels won by four percentage points over a party rival endorsed by former Vice President Mike Pence.

With Michels’ triumph, Trump took a 2-to-1 lead over Pence in head-to-head gubernatorial endorsements.

In May, Pence-supported Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp easily defeated Trump-supported challenger David Perdue. In the Aug. 2 primaries, Trump-endorsed Kari Lake defeated Pence-backed Karrin Taylor Robson in Arizona.

Gubernatorial Primaries

Republicans elected challengers to face incumbent Democrats in Wisconsin and Minnesota, while three-term Vermont Republican Gov. Phil Scott rolled to an easy primary win and will square off against Democrat Brenda Siegel, who was uncontested in her party preliminary.

Michels, who owns a construction company, entered the Wisconsin Republican gubernatorial primary race in April, secured Trump’s endorsement in June, and poured $12 million of his own money into TV ads, portraying himself as a businessman and an outsider.

Michels trumped former Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, who was backed by Pence, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and former Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

A former TV news anchor, Kleefisch launched her campaign last September and appeared to have a significant lead before Michels joined the race.

Trump criticized Kleefisch during an Aug. 5 rally for Michels in Waukesha as “the handpicked candidate of the failed establishment, the RINOs.” Although she claimed the 2020 election was “rigged,” she is the lone Wisconsin GOP gubernatorial candidate who dismissed attempts to overturn the outcome.

Biden won Wisconsin in 2020 by 21,000 votes. Trump called for state legislators to invalidate the results.

Michels will face Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, who defeated Walker by one percentage point in 2018, did not face a primary opponent, and has $11.1 million in his campaign war chest to seek a second term.

In Minnesota, Republican Scott Jensen will take on incumbent Democratic Gov. Tim Walz in November after both cruised to primary wins over nominal opposition on Tuesday.

Jensen is a fierce critic of Walz’s initial COVID-19 response and, at a recent forum, called the incumbent’s mitigation measures at the beginning of the pandemic an “abomination of government overreach.”

Jensen’s past remarks downplaying COVID-19, including a past assertion that hospitals were inflating the number of cases to collect more stimulus money. Jensen also touts his unvaccinated status, sowing doubts over the safety and efficacy of the shots.

In Connecticut, Democratic incumbent Gov. Ned Lamont will seek a second term on Nov. 8 against Republican challenger Bob Stefanowski. Both were uncontested in the Aug. 9 primary.

U.S. House Primaries

In Minnesota, Republican Brad Finstad won twice on Aug. 9—defeating Democrat Jeffrey Ettinger in a special general election for Minnesota’s Congressional District 1 and then winning his GOP CD 1 primary against state Rep. Jeremy Munson (R-Lake Crystal) to run for the seat again in November.

Finstad, a former state representative and head of Minnesota’s USDA Rural Development program, swamped both Ettinger, a former Hormel Foods CEO, 77 percent to 23 percent, and Munson, 76 percent to 22 percent, according to The Associated Press.

He will assume the House seat left vacant after former Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-Minn.) died in February from kidney cancer. He will face Ettinger—who lost one race but won his primary Aug. 9—in November and will be the favorite in the deep red southern Minnesota district.

In Congressional District 4, May Lor Xiong edged three GOP rivals with 44 percent of the vote and in November will take on 11-term incumbent Rep. Betty McCollum (D-Minn.), who rolled to an easy win.

Omar, the first Somali-American elected to Congress, faced a difficult test in her Democratic CD 5 primary against former Minneapolis City Councilman Don Samuels. Omar won by two percentage points.

Samuels, a Jamaican immigrant, ran as a moderate who claimed Omar’s progressive platform makes her divisive and ineffective. He made crime his top campaign issue.

Omar will seek a third term in November against Cicely Davis, who defeated former NBA player Royce White in their Republican primary. Royce will be an underdog in CD 5, which has not elected a Republican since 1960.

In Wisconsin, 13-term Rep. Ron Kind (D-Wisc.) is retiring from Congressional District 3. State Sen. Brad Pfaff (D-Onalaska) garnered 39 percent of the tally to defeat small-business owner Rebecca Cooke, former CIA officer Deb McGrath, and Mark Neumann, a La Crosse alderman.

Pfaff will take on Trump-endorsed Van Orden, who was on the grounds during the Jan. 6 Capitol breach but maintains he never entered the building. He lost by 1 percent in 2020 to Kind.

“The real campaign starts today,” he said in a statement. “My opponent Brad Pfaff has never had a job outside of politics and enthusiastically supports President Biden and Pelosi’s radical policies and spending that are destroying America in real time.”

“Make no mistake, this election will be one of the most important of our lifetime,” Pfaff said in his victory speech. “Derrick presents a clear and present danger to democracy and has proven time and time again that he lacks the temperament, character, or the judgment to be in Congress.”

In Vermont, which has never elected a woman to serve in Congress, state Senate President Pro Tempore Becca Balint (D-Windham) beat Lt. Gov. Molly Gray.

Balint was endorsed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) and boosted by nearly $1 million in contributions from the LGBTQ Victory Fund’s PAC.  She will be vying against Madden for the state’s lone congressional seat that is being vacated by Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), who is running to succeed the retiring Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)

U.S. Senate Primaries

In Wisconsin, Johnson breezed to a GOP primary victory but faces a tight race against Democratic Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes in the general election.

The Johnson-Barnes contest will be among the most-watched Senate races in the nation, and one of the most expensive. According to his campaign’s July 20 Federal Elections Commission (FEC) filing, Johnson has received nearly $17.7 million in contributions. He’d spent all but about $2 million. Barnes’ campaign reported to the FEC that it had raised about $7 million and had spent all but $990,000.

Johnson is regarded as one of the most vulnerable Republican senators seeking reelection for his comments on the coronavirus, the Jan. 6 Capitol breach, and his wealth.

Johnson, an accountant whose family owns a plastic manufacturing company, was first elected in 2010 after defeating Democrat incumbent Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.). He beat Feingold again in a 2016 rematch.

Johnson, who served as chair of the Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee 2015-21, maintains the “size, scope, and cost of government” is the “root cause” of problems such as budget deficits, a slowed economy, and high unemployment.

Barnes served two terms in the state legislature before being elected Wisconsin’s lieutenant governor in 2018. His priorities  include “fighting inflation and lowering taxes,” “reproductive justice” in the form of “abortion rights,” legalization of marijuana use, “LGBTQIA+ rights,” helping “those who are coming to the U.S. in search of better lives,” and “climate change” that’s “already taking a toll on our communities.”

Looking Ahead

With Aug. 9 primaries in the books, 41 states have completed inter-party preliminaries, with seven states set to do so between Aug. 16 and Sept. 13.

Alaska and Wyoming—the nation’s two least-populated states—will stage their primaries on Aug. 16. Three Trump-endorsed candidates will feature in those races.

Read more here...

Tyler Durden Wed, 08/10/2022 - 17:00

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Decrease in Japanese children’s ability to balance during movement related to COVID-19 activity restrictions

A team of researchers from Nagoya University in central Japan investigated how restrictions on children’s activities during the COVID-19 pandemic affected…

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A team of researchers from Nagoya University in central Japan investigated how restrictions on children’s activities during the COVID-19 pandemic affected their life habits and their abilities to perform physical activities. By comparing medical examination data before and after the onset of the pandemic, they found that physical functions among adolescents deteriorated, including their dynamic balance. They also found that the children had higher body fat levels and worse life habits. Rather than a lack of exercise time, this may have been because of a lack of quality exercise due to activity restrictions.  

Credit: Credit must be given when image is used

A team of researchers from Nagoya University in central Japan investigated how restrictions on children’s activities during the COVID-19 pandemic affected their life habits and their abilities to perform physical activities. By comparing medical examination data before and after the onset of the pandemic, they found that physical functions among adolescents deteriorated, including their dynamic balance. They also found that the children had higher body fat levels and worse life habits. Rather than a lack of exercise time, this may have been because of a lack of quality exercise due to activity restrictions.  

During the COVID-19 pandemic, in Japan, as in other countries, schools and sports clubs tried to prevent the spread of infection by reducing physical education and restricting outdoor physical activities, club activities, and sports. However, children who are denied opportunities for physical activity with social elements may develop bad habits. During the pandemic, children, like adults, increased the time they spent looking at television, smartphone, and computer screens, exercised less, and slept less. Such changes in lifestyle can harm adolescent bodies, leading to weight gain and health problems. 

Visiting Researcher Tadashi Ito and Professor Hideshi Sugiura from the Department of Biological Functional Science at the Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, together with Dr. Yuji Ito from the Department of Pediatrics at Nagoya University Hospital, and  Dr. Nobuhiko Ochi and Dr. Koji Noritake from Aichi Prefectural Mikawa Aoitori Medical and Rehabilitation Center for Developmental Disabilities, conducted a study of Japanese children and students in elementary and junior high schools, aged 9-15, by analyzing data from physical examinations before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. They evaluated the children’s muscle strength, dynamic balance functions, walking speed, body fat percentage, screen time, sleep time, quality of life, and physical activity time.  

The researchers found that after the onset of the pandemic, children were more likely to have decreased balance ability when moving, larger body fat percentage, report spending more time looking at TV, computers or smartphones, and sleep less. Since there were no changes in the time spent on physical activity or the number of meals eaten, Sugiura and his colleagues suggest that the worsening of physical functions was related to the quality of exercise of the children. The researchers reported their findings in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.  

“Since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Japan after April 2020, children have not been able to engage in sufficient physical education, sports activities, and outdoor play at school. It became clear that balance ability during movement was easily affected, lifestyle habits were disrupted, and the percentage of body fat was likely to increase,” explained Ito. “This may have been because of shorter outdoor playtime and club activities, which impeded children’s ability to learn the motor skills necessary to balance during movement.” 

“Limitations on children’s opportunities for physical activity because of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus have had a significant impact on the development of physical function and lifestyle and may cause physical deterioration and health problems in the future,” warned Ito. “Especially, the risk of injury to children may increase because of a reduced dynamic balance function.” 

The results suggest that even after the novel coronavirus becomes endemic, it is important to consider the effects of social restrictions on the body composition of adolescents. Since physical activities with a social element may be important for health, authorities should prioritize preventing the reduction of children’s physical inactivity and actively encourage them to play outdoors and exercise. The group has some recommendations for families worried about the effects of school closings and other coronavirus measures on their children. “It is important for children to practice dynamic balance ability, maintaining balance to avoid falling over while performing movements,” Ito advised. “To improve balance function in children, it is important to incorporate enhanced content, such as short-term exercise programs specifically designed to improve balance functions.” 


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Contradictions, Lies, And “I Don’t Recalls”: The Fauci Deposition

Contradictions, Lies, And "I Don’t Recalls": The Fauci Deposition

Authored by Techno Fog via The Reactionary,

Today, Missouri Attoney General…

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Contradictions, Lies, And "I Don't Recalls": The Fauci Deposition

Authored by Techno Fog via The Reactionary,

Today, Missouri Attoney General Eric Schmitt released the transcript of the testimony of Dr. Anthony Fauci. As you might recall, Fauci was deposed as part of an ongoing federal lawsuit challenging the Biden Administration’s violations of the First Amendment in targeting and suppressing the speech of Americans who challenged the government’s narrative on COVID-19.

Here is the Fauci deposition transcript.

And here are the highlights…

EcoHealth Alliance - the Peter Daszak group - is knee-deep in the Wuhan controversy, having been funded by the Fauci’s NIH for coronavirus and gain of function research in China (and having worked with the Chinese team in Wuhan). What does Fauci say about EcoHealth Alliance? Over two years after the COVID-19 pandemic began, and after millions dead worldwide, he’s “vaguely familiar” with their work.

In early 2020, Fauci was put on notice that his group - NIAID - had funded EcoHealth alliance on bat coronavirus research for the past five years.

This coincided with early reports - directly to Fauci, from Jeremy Ferrar and Christian Anderson - “of the possibility of there being a manipulation of the virus” based on the fact that “it was an unusual virus.”

Fauci conceded that he was specifically made aware by Anderson that “the unusual features of the virus” make it look “potentially engineered.”

Fauci couldn’t recall why he sent an article discussing gain of function research in China to his deputy, Hugh Auchincloss, telling him it was essential that they speak on the phone. He couldn’t recall speaking with Auchincloss via phone that day. But remarkably, Fauci did remember assigning research tasks to Auchincloss

Fauci was evasive on conversations with Francis Collins about whether NIAID may have funded coronavirus-related research in China, eventually stating “I don’t recall.”

The phrase “I don’t recall” was prominent in Fauci’s deposition. He said it a total of 174 times:

For example, Fauci couldn’t remember what anyone said on a call discussing whether the virus originated in a lab:

During that same call, Fauci couldn’t recall whether anyone expressed concern that the lab leak “might discredit scientific funding projects.” He also couldn’t recall whether there was a discussion about a lab leak distracting from the virus response. Fauci did remember, however, that they agreed there needed to be more time to investigate the virus origins - including the lab leak theory.

What else couldn’t Fauci remember? Whether, early into the pandemic, his confidants raised concerns about social media posts about the origins of COVID-19.

Yet Fauci did admit he was concerned about social media posts blaming China for the pandemic. He even admitted the accidental lab leak “certainly is a possibility,” contradicting his prior claims to National Geographic where he said the virus “could not have been artificially or deliberately manipulated.”

Fauci also couldn’t recall whether he had any conversations with Daszak about the origins of COVID-19 in February 2020, but admitted those conversations might have happened: “I told you before that I did not remember any direct conversations with him about the origin, and I said I very well might have had conversations but I don't specifically remember conversations.” And he couldn’t recall telling the media early on during the pandemic that the virus was consistent with a jump “from an animal to a human.”

Fauci said he was in the dark on social media actions to curb speech and suspend accounts that posted COVID-19 information that didn’t fit the mainstream narrative: “I’m not aware of suppression of speech on social media.” Yet it was Fauci’s proclamations of the truth, whether about the origins of COVID-19 to the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine, that led to social media companies banning discussions of contrary information.

Regarding those removals of content, Fauci had no personal knowledge of a US Government/Social Media effort to curb “misinformation.” But he conceded the possibility numerous times.

Then there’s the issue of masks. In February 2020, Fauci informed an acquaintance that was traveling: “I do not recommend that you wear a mask.” Fauci would later become a vocal proponent of masks only two months later.

I’m near my Substack length limit - posting the excerpts does that - but you can see from Fauci’s testimony that his public statements about COVID-19 origins and the necessity to wear a mask didn’t match his private conversations. This has been known for some time, but it’s finally nice to get him on record.

Again, read it all and subscribe here.

Tyler Durden Mon, 12/05/2022 - 21:40

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Global Wages Take A Hit As Inflation Eats Into Paychecks

Global Wages Take A Hit As Inflation Eats Into Paychecks

The global inflation crisis paired with lackluster economic growth and an outlook…

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Global Wages Take A Hit As Inflation Eats Into Paychecks

The global inflation crisis paired with lackluster economic growth and an outlook clouded by uncertainties have led to a decline in real wages around the world, a new report published by the International Labour Organization (ILO) has found.

As Statista's Felix Richter reports, according to the 2022-23 Global Wage Report, global real monthly wages fell 0.9 percent this year on average, marking the first decline in real earnings at a global scale in the 21st century.

You will find more infographics at Statista

The multiple global crises we are facing have led to a decline in real wages.

"It has placed tens of millions of workers in a dire situation as they face increasing uncertainties,” ILO Director-General Gilbert F. Houngbo said in a statement, adding that “income inequality and poverty will rise if the purchasing power of the lowest paid is not maintained.”

While inflation rose faster in high-income countries, leading to above-average real wage declines in North America (minus 3.2 percent) and the European Union (minus 2.4 percent), the ILO finds that low-income earners are disproportionately affected by rising inflation. As lower-wage earners spend a larger share of their disposable income on essential goods and services, which generally see greater price increases than non-essential items, those who can least afford it suffer the biggest cost-of-living impact of rising prices.

“We must place particular attention to workers at the middle and lower end of the pay scale,” Rosalia Vazquez-Alvarez, one of the report’s authors said.

“Fighting against the deterioration of real wages can help maintain economic growth, which in turn can help to recover the employment levels observed before the pandemic. This can be an effective way to lessen the probability or depth of recessions in all countries and regions,” she said.

Tyler Durden Mon, 12/05/2022 - 20:00

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