Omicron rates rise and Manchin says ‘no’ to Biden’s plan: Weekend news

December 19, 2021
Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., has resisted the cost of a large package of liberal priorities some Democrats want to attach to legislation on American infrastructure.


Manchin says ‘no’ to Biden’s Build Back Better plan

Sen. Joe Manchin said he won’t support President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better bill, a potentially fatal blow to the president’s signature domestic policy bill that aims to expand the social safety net and tackle climate change. The West Virginia Democrat told “Fox News Sunday” that he is a no vote on the legislation. “I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation,” Manchin said. His declaration likely stops the measure from becoming law because the bill requires the support of every Democrat in the Senate to move forward. The announcement follows months of back-and-forth with the White House on a compromise to the roughly $2 trillion measure. The legislation includes a number of progressive priorities, such as free preschool, major climate change initiatives and extending the child tax credit.

Omicron is ‘raging through the world,’ Fauci says

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious diseases expert, said Sunday that the omicron variant of the coronavirus is “raging through the world” and could possibly replace the highly transmissible delta variant as the dominant strain. The variant has been detected in 89 countries, according to the World Health Organization, and COVID-19 cases involving omicron are doubling every 1.5 to 3 days in places with community transmission. “The one thing that’s very clear – and there’s no doubt about this – is it’s extraordinary capability of spreading,” Fauci said on Sunday. “It is just raging through the world.” The delta variant makes up more than 96% of coronavirus cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But omicron is quickly gaining ground, making up nearly 3% of total U.S. cases. 

Jake Paul knocks out Tyron Woodley in sixth round to win rematch

Love him or hate him: Jake Paul is one of boxing’s biggest stars. Paul knocked out Tyron Woodley, a five-time UFC champion, on Saturday night in brutal and dramatic fashion at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. The sixth-round blow flattened Woodley and left him there for several minutes as the ring doctor checked his condition. Paul led on all three judges’ scoring cards during the scheduled, eight-round bout. Paul, the 24-year-old YouTube celebrity, remains undefeated as a pro boxer. He improved to 5-0 while Woodley, the 39-year-old former UFC champion, fell to 0-2. Woodley agreed to fight when Tommy Fury withdrew as Paul’s opponent, citing a medical condition.

Real quick

Jan. 6 committee will determine if Trump committed a crime, Rep. Kinzinger says

Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger said Sunday that the Jan. 6 committee will examine whether former President Donald Trump broke the law in his efforts to obstruct or impede Congress’s certification of the 2020 presidential election. When asked if he believed Trump had committed a crime, Kinzinger said on CNN, “I don’t want to go there yet.” But he said the Jan. 6 committee, which is investigating the attack on the U.S. Capitol and the events leading up to it, would likely be able to determine that by the time its work is finished. 

Death toll climbs to 146 from Typhoon Rai in Philippines

The governor of an island province in the central Philippines said Sunday at least 72 people died in the devastation wrought by Typhoon Rai in more than half of the towns that managed to contact him, bringing the death toll in the strongest typhoon to batter the country this year to at least 146. Gov. Arthur Yap of Bohol suggested the fatalities may still considerably increase with only 33 out of 48 mayors able to report back to him due to downed communications. At its strongest, the typhoon packed sustained winds of 121 miles per hour and gusts of up to 168 mph, making it one of the most powerful in recent years to hit the disaster-prone archipelago.

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This is a compilation of stories from across the USA TODAY Network. Contributing: Associated Press. 


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