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Drew Clark

Andrew Feinberg

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Coronavirus Pandemic

G7 Leaders Will Coordinate Response To Coronavirus Pandemic

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The heads of government for the world’s seven International Monetary Fund-designated advanced economies have pledged to do what it takes to ensure a “strong global response” to the novel coronavirus outbreak currently causing massive disruptions to the global economy.

In a statement released after an extraordinary teleconference-based meeting of the Group of 7, the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States said they are “committed to doing whatever is necessary to ensure a strong global response” to the COVID 19 pandemic “through closer cooperation and enhanced coordination of our efforts.”

“While current challenges may require national emergency measures, we remain committed to the stability of the global economy,” they said. “We express our conviction that current challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic need a strongly coordinated international approach, based on science and evidence, consistent with our democratic values, and utilizing the strengths of private enterprise.”

Specifically, the leaders announced that they would commit their respective governments to “coordinate on necessary public health measures to protect people at risk from COVID-19, restore confidence, growth, and protect jobs, support global trade and investment, and encourage science, research, and technology cooperation.”

The G7 member countries’ finance ministers will also confer on a weekly basis to coordinate the mobilization of a “full range of instruments, including monetary and fiscal measures, as well as targeted actions” to support workers, companies, and sectors most affected by the pandemic.

In addition, the leaders said they would ask central banks, the IMF and World Bank to work together to bolster both the G7 economies and those of other countries.

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Coronavirus

Exposed to Quarantined Congressmen, Trump Shrugs Off Coronavirus Test

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President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he has been told that there is no need for him to undergo a test for the novel Coronavirus that has now killed 26 Americans.

Two members of Congress Trump has interacted with in recent days, Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., and Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., announced that they would “self-quarantine” after being informed that an individual with whom they’d interacted at last week’s Conservative Political Action Conference had tested positive for the virus.

But Trump, who spoke to reporters after attending Senate Republicans’ weekly caucus lunch, said White House Medical Unit chief Dr. Sean Conley had informed him that a test was not necessary at this time.

“I spoke to the White House doctor — terrific guy, talented guy — he said he sees no reason to do it.  There’s no symptoms, no anything,” Trump said.

Despite the growing number of cases in states across the country, Trump still insisted on taking credit for keeping the reported number of cases low, despite the fact that part of the reason the number remains relatively low compared to other countries is the Trump administration’s failure to develop and deploy an accurate test for the virus.

“As you know, it’s about 600 cases, it’s about 26 deaths, within our country.  And had we not acted quickly, that number would have been substantially more,” he said, adding that his meeting with Senate Republicans, which was ostensibly to discuss proposals to stimulate the economy in the event of a Coronavirus-induced downtown, was “great.”

“There’s a great feeling about doing a lot of things,” Trump said, though he said “we’re going to see” about some of the suggestions Democrats have made for dealing with the problem in recent days, including using federal funds to allow for paid leave for hourly workers affected by the virus.

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Exit, Stage Left

Warren Ends White House Run, Declines To Endorse Biden or Sanders

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Senator Elizabeth Warren has told staffers that she will end her campaign to be the Democratic Party’s nominee against President Donald Trump this fall, according to a campaign sources.

Her decision to exit the race for the Democratic nomination will leave voters in upcoming primaries with a choice between former Vice President Joe Biden, the current front-runner, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, and Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard, who remains in the race despite having won very few delegates in the primaries and caucuses which have taken place so far.

A source familiar with the senator’s thinking said she has no plans to make an endorsement of either of her now-former rivals at this time.

Though Warren briefly enjoyed front-runner status for a few weeks this past fall, support for her candidacy plummeted after questions were raised over how she would pay for the “Medicare for All” universal health care plan which both she and Sanders have championed.

While she will exit the race having won 65 pledged delegates, she has not been able to garner support at the levels voters have shown for Biden and Sanders, both of whom placed ahead of her in the primary contest conducted by her home state of Massachusetts on Tuesday.

After her support collapsed in the wake of her “Medicare for All” plan’s lackluster reception, Warren refocused her campaign on a sharp anti-corruption message, with which she garnered attention during and the two most recent pre-primary debates, for her evisceration of ex-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

But despite earning herself viral moments by attacking the Manhattan billionaire over his treatment of women and the massive amount of money he spent in his ultimately-quixotic bid for the presidency, that media attention did not translate into support from voters.

And because Bloomberg dropped out of the race on Wednesday, Warren can still claim to have outlasted one of the billionaires who she regularly railed against on the campaign trail.

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