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Latest shots-in-arms tally below average — as share of Illinois residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19 hits 12%
About 78,000 shots were administered Monday, officials said, while the state’s average number of doses given per day is at a new high of more than 102,000.
With the latest 78,287 shots reported by public health officials Tuesday, about 12% of Illinois residents have now been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.
It was the third straight day the state failed to top 100,000 administered doses, but thanks to record-setting totals last week, Illinois’ rolling average is up to a new high of 102,564 shots given per day, according to the state Department of Public Health.
Nearly 4.2 million shots have gone into Illinois arms over the past three months. Almost 1.6 million people have received either both required doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or the one-and-done Johnson & Johnson shot.
Illinois residents 16 and up with chronic health conditions, plus a select group of essential workers, currently are eligible to receive doses, though that’s still not the case in Chicago, suburban Cook County and most other collar counties as supply remains low.
COVID-19 vaccine doses administered by day
Graphic by Jesse Howe and Caroline Hurley | Sun-Times
Source: Illinois Department of Public Health
Chicago Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady has said eligibility will expand in the city March 29. During an online Q&A, she teased that city officials would release more details on that plan Wednesday.
Meanwhile, state officials reported 1,997 new cases of the disease, the highest one-day total logged by the state since March 6.
And those cases were diagnosed among 51,240 tests, meaning 3.9% of samples came back positive — the highest proportion of positive tests in a single day reported by the state in almost seven weeks.
Still, the state’s rolling seven-day average positivity rate is 2.3%, hovering just above the all-time low of 2.1% reported over the weekend. Illinois reported just 782 new cases Monday, marking the first sub-1,000 daily case tally in nearly eight months.
Hospitals are treating just about the fewest coronavirus patients they’ve seen since the pandemic first hit, too, with 1,152 beds occupied as of Monday night. That included 250 patients receiving intensive care and 124 using ventilators, figures that have also bottomed out this month.
New COVID-19 cases by day
Graphic by Jesse Howe and Caroline Hurley | Sun-Times
Source: Illinois Department of Public Health
But the virus is still causing grief statewide, with 19 more COVID-19 deaths reported Tuesday, including that of a Cook County woman in her 40s.
On average, COVID-19 has claimed 28 lives per day over the past week. That rate has fallen from a daily average of about 50 in mid-February.
Illinois’ death toll is now up to 20,973, among more than 1.2 million people who have tested positive for the virus over the past year.
Moderna has begun dosing patients in a mid-to-late stage study of its CCP virus vaccine, mRNA-1273, in children aged six months to less than 12 years, the company said on Tuesday. The study will assess the safety and effectiveness of two doses of mRNA-1273 given 28 days apart and intends to enroll about 6,750 children in the United States and Canada. Sweden Is Latest Country to Halt Using AstraZeneca Vaccine Sweden is pausing the use of the AstraZeneca CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus vaccine as a precautionary measure amid concerns about reports of blood clots in some recipients in Europe. A growing number of European countries—including Germany, France, Italy, and Spain—have suspended the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, though the company and international regulators say there is no evidence the shot is to blame for the blood clots. Masks and Distancing Required for Roadside Spectators During Torch Relay Tokyo Olympic organizers …
Country music star Larry Gatlin of The Gatlin Brothers said he tested positive for COVID-19 after receiving his second Moderna vaccine dose. Gatlin, 72, told Fox News he is feeling fine after the diagnosis. “What are the odds?” he said. According to the singer, he received his second Moderna vaccine dose on March 4. On March 8, he received a rapid test that came back positive. A second test on Tuesday also showed a positive result for the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus. “Folks, I feel like I have a cold, and not even a bad cold at that. I even hit a few golf balls before dinner,” Gatlin remarked in his interview with Fox. “To you who have been terribly sick or have lost friends or loved ones, my heartfelt prayers go out to you. I have a lot of character flaws and defects you can pray about if you …
President Joe Biden’s accuser Tara Reade accused him of both “hypocrisy” and “lies” Tuesday evening for praising the courage of #METOO accusers.
“It takes a lot of courage for a woman to come forward,” Biden said Tuesday. “Some are not — anyway, takes a lot of courage to come forward.”
Just days before the Biden administration’s first face-to-face encounter with Beijing, two senior American envoys used a visit to Tokyo on Tuesday to set a confrontational tone for the talks, rebuking what they called “coercion” and “destabilizing actions” by China in its increasingly aggressive military forays in the region.
Soon after the first woman accused Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment last December, the governor and his close associates worked to draft a letter attacking the former aide’s credibility, a new report said Tuesday. The letter, which was never released, disparaged Lindsey Boylan and accused her of coming forward for “political retribution,” according to…
Texas Ensures Forgiveness of $29 Million in Unpaid Electric Bills After Griddy Files for Bankruptcy
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said on Tuesday that about 24,000 former customers of Griddy Energy LLC will be released from paying $29.1 million in unpaid electric bills incurred during last month’s winter storm after the power retailer filed for bankruptcy. Paxton said his office has been negotiating with Griddy after the state filed a lawsuit against the energy company for deceptive advertising. Griddy has since filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy after the state grid operator cut off the company’s access to customers for unpaid bills. The attorney general said that his office ensured that Griddy’s proposed bankruptcy plan would release all outstanding payment obligations for Texas residents who were unable to pay their energy bills due to the unexpected spike in prices during the storm. He said that his office and Griddy are also engaged “good faith” talks to also provide relief for Texans who have already paid their bills. “I ensured …
ATLANTA, Georgia—Shootings at two massage parlors in Atlanta and one in the suburbs left eight people dead, many of them women of Asian descent, authorities said Tuesday. A 21-year-old man was taken into custody in southwest Georgia hours later after a manhunt. Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant said three people were killed at a spa […]
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An elderly California man has died from injuries suffered when he was punched in the face by a robbery suspect who prosecutors claim has a history of targeting older Asians. Seventy-five-year-old Oakland resident Pak Ho suffered a traumatic brain injury and brain damage after being knocked to the sidewalk from a single punch in the…
WASHINGTON—President Joe Biden held his first multilateral summit on Friday with the leaders of Japan, India, and Australia to launch a partnership for the distribution of at least a billion doses of vaccines in Asia to counter China’s influence in the region. The four leaders made a joint commitment to bring together Indian manufacturing, U.S. technology, Japanese and American financing, and Australian logistics capabilities to address the severe shortage of vaccine supply across the world, particularly in Southeast Asia. The informal alliance, called the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue or “Quad” that consists of the United States, India, Japan, and Australia, held its first ever leader’s level meeting. Prime Ministers Yoshihide Suga of Japan, Narendra Modi of India, and Scott Morrison of Australia joined the virtual summit hosted by Biden. “We’ve got a big agenda ahead of us,” Biden said in his opening remarks during the summit. “But I’m optimistic about our prospects.” He stressed that …
Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday condemned President Joe Biden’s border agenda, warning that the current administration’s approach would “destroy” the United States. In an interview with Maria Bartiromo aired on Fox News on March 16, Trump lamented Biden’s decision to freeze or reverse several of the previous administration’s border policies, including the construction of […]
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A research director at a Massachusetts biotechnology firm has been arrested by federal authorities for allegedly trying to acquire the highly toxic poison ricin, officials said Tuesday. Dr. Ishtiaq Ali Saaem, 37, who has a doctorate in biomedical engineering, allegedly wanted to extract the toxin from 100 packets of castor beans that he ordered, according…
And These Are Supposed To Be The “Real” News Outlets: Washington Post Adds Lengthy Correction To Report On Trump Call With Georgia Elections Investigator
“Trump did not tell the investigator to ‘find the fraud’ or say she would be ‘a national hero’ if she did so. Instead, Trump urged the investigator to scrutinize ballots in Fulton County, Ga., asserting she would find ‘dishonesty’ there. He also told her that she had ‘the most important job in the country right now.'”
The headline and text of the Post report have been corrected to remove quotes misattributed to Trump, the newspaper said.
The correction comes days after The Wall Street Journal obtained audio of the December call between Trump and the investigator.
“When the right answer comes out, you’ll be praised,” Trump told Frances Watson, the chief investigator of the Georgia Secretary of State’s office, the Journal reported on Thursday.
Watson reportedly responded: “I can assure you that our team and the [Georgia Bureau of Investigation], that we are only interested in the truth and finding the information that is based on the facts.”
The original Post report shook the political world just days after the Jan. 5 run-off elections in Georgia, a contest both Republican senators lost, giving Democrats the majority in the upper chamber.
Facebook Global Planning Lead Reveals Need for Government Intervention: ‘The Single Biggest Thing is this Company Needs to be Broken Up’…‘No King in the History of the World has been the Ruler of Two Billion People, but Mark Zuckerberg is’
ON VIDEO: “AI [Artificial Intelligence] is essentially evolving to become like human intelligence. Then, it’s going to go beyond human intelligence and at that point, humans are expendable…If you ever went to a picnic — we would not spend one minute thinking about the ants that we stepped on the grass, right? From AI, we will become like those ants…So, I might be killing hundreds of ants when I walk in the park, I don’t know, and I don’t care. It’s not a thing that I care about. We will be like those ants,” he said.
Children as young as 11 are being beheaded in Mozambique as part of an Islamist insurgency that has killed thousands and forced many more from their homes, a UK-based aid group has said.
A whistleblower has provided evidence to CDMedia of illegal ballot shredding already happening in GA. This is destruction of evidence to head off any serious audit of the massive election fraud that took place on November 3rd of last year in the U.S. general election. Similar actions are happening in Maricopa County, AZ., with fires, shredding, etc.
Henry County Judge Brian Amero on Monday conditionally granted members of a Georgia-based coalition the right to unseal ballots from last November’s presidential election in Fulton County.
Members of that group, VOTER GA, may now inspect those ballots for evidence of voter fraud.
Amero’s decision “is almost unprecedented in Georgia history,” said VOTER GA spokesman Garland Favorito.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump lost Georgia’s electoral votes to current U.S. President Joe Biden.
The Georgia Star News asked Favorito if he and his hundreds of volunteers might find enough evidence of voter fraud in Fulton County to tip the Georgia election in favor of former U.S. President Donald Trump?
“That’s possible,” Favorito said.
Favorito said Fulton County officials have long resisted VOTER GA’s attempts to inspect their ballots.
“We have sworn affidavits from several poll managers who say they handled counterfeit ballots during the hand count audit because those were mail-in ballots that were not marked with a writing instrument like a mail-in ballot should be,” Favorito said.
“And they appeared to be on suspicious paper stock.”
Fulton County spokeswoman Regina Waller on Monday declined comment.
OTTAWA—The National Advisory Committee on Immunization says there is now enough “real-world evidence” to show the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is both safe and effective for seniors. The decision reverses a recommendation made by the body on March 1, when the panel of vaccine experts said AstraZeneca hadn’t included enough people over the age of 65 in its clinical trials. NACI chair Dr. Caroline Quach said Tuesday that two studies of patients who received the vaccine in the United Kingdom have been released since then and show the AstraZeneca vaccine is both safe and effective for seniors, particularly against severe disease and hospitalization. She said that while the clinical trial data show the two mRNA vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna were more effective than AstraZeneca’s, the data on the vaccines since they began being widely used shows similar levels of effectiveness. Still, NACI says if there is a choice, the mRNA …
Dem activists target Ga-based corporations in bid to oppose GOP voting reforms; Coke, Home Depot first to cave
Left-wing activists are using threats of boycotts and other actions against Georgia-based corporations that donate to Republicans as state GOP lawmakers consider a raft of voting reforms in the wake of the chaotic and controversial 2020 elections. Some corporations appear to have already caved to Democrat-aligned activists’ demands: The Coca-Cola Corporation and Home Depot have issued statements saying the companies are “aligned” with the Georgia Chamber’s sentiments.
Former President Donald Trump is looking into replacing Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp in the 2022 election, according to an adviser. Jason Miller, spokesman and adviser for the former president, said on March 10 that Trump is serious about winning gubernatorial races in 2022 in order to prevent the same election “shenanigans” that took place during and after the 2020 election. “We’ve started getting granular on the races that are coming up in 2022,” Miller said on Steve Bannon’s War Room. “We’ve discussed House members who voted for impeachment. We’ve also gone through the gubernatorial races, whether it’s an open seat where we need to hold it and get a good person, like Arizona, whether it’s a place where we have a chance for an upgrade, such as Georgia.” Trump had vowed in early January this year to campaign against Kemp in 2022 because the Republican governor was uncooperative with …
The Washington Post in a recent correction revealed it printed falsified quotes attributed to former President Donald Trump. In a March 11 update to a story originally published in January, the paper acknowledged its story featured quotes that weren’t actually said by Trump during a December 2020 conversation with an investigator working from Georgia Secretary […]
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The Washington Post is walking back claims that former President Donald Trump told Georgia’s elections investigator to “find the fraud.” They admit the article falsified quotes attributed to Trump but issued no apology.
U.S. Lawyer Steven Donziger Speaks from House Arrest in NYC After Suing Chevron for Amazon Oil Spills
Decades of reckless oil drilling by Chevron have destroyed 1,700 square miles of land in the Ecuadorian Amazon, but the company has refused to pay for the damage or clean up the land despite losing a lawsuit 10 years ago, when Ecuador’s Supreme Court ordered the oil giant to pay $18 billion on behalf of 30,000 Amazonian Indigenous people. Instead of cleaning up the damage, Chevron has spent the past decade waging an unprecedented legal battle to avoid paying for the environmental destruction, while also trying to take down the environmental lawyer Steven Donziger, who helped bring the landmark case. Donziger, who has been on house arrest for nearly 600 days, says Chevron’s legal attacks on him are meant to silence critics and stop other lawsuits against the company for environmental damage. “Chevron and its allies have used the judiciary to try to attack the very idea of corporate accountability and environmental justice work that leads to significant judgments,” Donziger says. We also speak with Paul Paz y Miño, associate director at Amazon Watch, who says the new attorney general should conduct a review of the case and the dubious grounds for Donziger’s house arrest. “The real thing that’s going on here is Chevron is attempting to literally criminalize a human rights lawyer who beat them,” Paz y Miño says.
A judge in Georgia might unseal absentee ballots in the state’s Fulton County so a government watchdog can investigate voter fraud allegations. Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero said he is inclined to order the ballots unsealed and reviewed by experts hired by Garland Favorito, an advocate of voting integrity, according to a report from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Amero, during a Monday court hearing, said that if the ballots are unsealed, there needs to be a plan in order to make sure they’re kept in secret and kept secure. “We want to do this in such a way that dispels rumors and disinformation and sheds light,” Amero said. “The devil’s in the details.” He made the comment after a lawsuit filed in a Fulton County Superior Court contended that fraudulent ballots were cast during the Nov. 3, 2020, election amid other alleged irregularities as workers counted votes at Atlanta’s State Farm Arena …
Prosecutors in Piedmont said they had seized a batch of 393,600 shots of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine after the death of a man.
The post Italy Prosecutors Seize Batch of AstraZeneca Vaccine After Death of Man appeared first on NTD.
News Corp. on Monday said it has reached a new three-year deal with Facebook in Australia — one of the first major deals announced since that country last month passed a law effectively forcing tech titans to pay for news content they link to on their sites. The agreement calls for Facebook to pay for…
In the latest of many issues to plague the nation’s seriously flawed system to detect biological attacks, a federal audit reveals it lacks detection equipment in more than half the country and is unable to recognize multiple biological agents that pose threats. The beleaguered system, known as BioWatch, has already received north of a billion dollars in government funding and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) keeps pouring money into it despite its well-documented failures. Here is why; the government has no back up plan to deal with a biological terrorist attack, a very realistic threat considering the meteoric rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS). That disturbing information was disclosed by a senior DHS official who confirmed after congressional investigators exposed BioWatch’s deficiencies that it is the only “biosurveillance system designed to detect the intentional release of select aerosolized biological agents.”
Myanmar: Vast arsenal and notorious troops deployed during nationwide ‘killing spree’ protest crackdown – new research
Analysis of more than 50 videos show systematic and premeditated killings amid extensive deployment of battlefield weaponry
Soldiers implicated in atrocity crimes against ethnic minorities now operating in Myanmar’s cities
Evidence of extrajudicial executions and killings on orders of commanders
The Myanmar military is using increasingly lethal tactics and weapons normally seen on the battlefield against peaceful protesters and bystanders across the country, new research by Amnesty International has revealed.
By verifying more than 50 videos from the ongoing crackdown, Amnesty International’s Crisis Evidence Lab can confirm that security forces appear to be implementing planned, systematic strategies including the ramped-up use of lethal force. Many of the killings documented amount to extrajudicial executions.
Footage clearly shows that Myanmar military troops – also known as the Tatmadaw – are increasingly armed with weapons that are only appropriate for the battlefield, not for policing actions. Officers are frequently seen engaging in reckless behavior, including the indiscriminate spraying of live ammunition in urban areas.
“These Myanmar military tactics are far from new, but their killing sprees have never before been livestreamed for the world to see,” said Joanne Mariner, Director of Crisis Response at Amnesty International.
“These are not the actions of overwhelmed, individual officers making poor decisions. These are unrepentant commanders already implicated in crimes against humanity, deploying their troops and murderous methods in the open.
“For years, ethnic minorities – including the Chin, Kachin, Karen, Rakhine, Rohingya, Shan, Ta’ang and more – have borne the brunt of horrific violence meted out by the Tatmadaw. Along with other rights groups, we have called on the UN Security Council to refer the situation in Myanmar to the International Criminal Court, and bring the Tatmadaw’s senior commanders, including Min Aung Hlaing, to justice. Instead the Security Council has done nothing, and today we see the same military units turn their fire on protesters.
“The military authorities must immediately cease their deadly onslaught, de-escalate the situation nationwide, and release all those arbitrarily detained.”
The 55 clips, filmed from 28 February to 8 March, were recorded by members of the public and local media in cities including Dawei, Mandalay, Mawlamyine, Monywa, Myeik, Myitkyina and Yangon.
According to the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, the death toll from the protests as of 4 March stands at 61. This official estimate excludes additional known casualties in recent days.
Planned, premeditated and sanctioned use of lethal force
Amnesty International has verified multiple clips showing lethal force is being used in a planned, premeditated and coordinated manner.
In one video taken in Sanchaung township in Yangon on 2 March, a commander can be seen standing over an officer operating a sniper rifle. The commander appears to be giving him orders to direct fire towards specific protesters.
In a disturbing clip from 3 March in North Okkalapa township, Yangon, officers are seen leading a man towards a larger group of security forces. The man appears to be in the group’s custody and offers no visible resistance, when an officer beside him suddenly shoots him. He immediately drops to the ground and is left on the road, apparently lifeless, for several seconds before officers then walk back and drag him away.
Two people were killed and several more injured in Myitkyina, Kachin State, on 8 March. In one verified clip, a group of people can be seen running from a thick cloud of smoke as gunshots sound in the distance. Panicked voices can be heard saying, “It burns so much” and “One person has died,” amid screams of shock as a person with a serious head injury is being carried away. Several apparently injured people are then seen being dragged away, leaving significant amounts of blood on the ground.
In another verified clip dated 28 February, a member of the military in Dawei is seen apparently lending his rifle to a police officer deployed alongside him. The officer crouches, takes aim and shoots, before a group of officers standing with them celebrate.
“Not only does this incident show a reckless disregard for human life, making sport of shooting live rounds at protesters, it also reveals deliberate coordination among security forces,” said Joanne Mariner.
Extensive military arsenal deployed
On 5 March, state-run media quoted military authorities as denying any role in fatalities, claiming that “unscrupulous persons [might be] behind these cases”.
However, Amnesty International has identified security forces armed with a variety of military firearms, including Chinese RPD light machine guns, as well as local MA-S sniper rifles, MA-1 semi-automatic rifles, Uzi-replica BA-93 and BA-94 submachine guns, and other arms manufactured in Myanmar. These weapons are completely inappropriate for use in policing protests. According to international law and standards, security forces must not use firearms unless there is an imminent threat of death or serious injury, and there is a no less harmful alternative available.
“The weaponry deployed by the Tatmadaw reveals a deliberate and dangerous escalation in tactics,” said Joanne Mariner.
“Not content with indiscriminately using less-lethal weapons, each new day shows an apparent order to deploy semi-automatic rifles, sniper rifles, and light machine guns in increasing numbers. Make no mistake, we are in a deadly new phase of the crisis.”
This deployment follows the excessive use of tear gas, water cannons, South Korean Dae Kwang DK-44 flashbang grenades and other contentious ‘crowd control’ methods, as well as incidents of egregious beatings at the hands of the security forces, such as in this verified clip filmed in Mandalay on 7 March.
Photos and videos also show that police have access to traditional less-lethal arms, including “pepperball” launchers, and shotguns loaded with rubber bullets manufactured by the Turkish company Zsr Patlayici Sanayi A.S., using cartridges from Franco-Italian company Cheddite.
Reckless and indiscriminate use of lethal weapons
Amnesty International has also verified footage of security forces using lethal weapons in ways that are reckless, indiscriminate, and very likely to cause fatal injuries.
Verified footage from 1 March in Mawlamyine in Mon State shows security forces riding pick-up trucks while apparently indiscriminately firing live ammunition in multiple directions, including into people’s homes.
In a clip from Yangon’s Hledan township published on 28 February, the man recording the footage is peering over a balcony and describing the scene below, where armed forces personnel appear to be shooting teargas and ammunition directly at people in the street. Huddled with others on the balcony he continues to record the scene, when a group of officers at street level seem to spot him filming. A single shot can be heard before people on the balcony say “[someone has been] hit! Get inside [the apartment]!”. A woman on the balcony can then be seen lying with a head injury.
“As the death toll surges, the UN Security Council and the international community must move beyond words of concern and immediately act to halt violations and hold perpetrators accountable,” said Joanne Mariner.
Notorious military divisions deployed
Further analysis of photos and videos show that the military units involved in this lethal repression include the Yangon Command, Northwestern Command, and the 33rd, 77th and 101st Light Infantry Divisions (LID), often operating alongside – and sometimes lending their weapons to – police officers.
According to footage examined by Amnesty International, the 33rd LID is currently deployed in Mandalay, the 77th in Yangon, and the 101st in Monywa. All three cities have seen extreme instances of excessive force, including killings, by security forces in recent days.
Some of these military divisions are notorious for atrocities and serious human rights violations committed in Rakhine, Kachin, and northern Shan States. Amnesty International has implicated soldiers from the 33rd LID in war crimes in northern Shan State in 2016 and 2017, and in crimes against humanity against the Rohingya in Rakhine State in 2017.
Judicial Watch: Federal Court Slams Potentially Illicit Sales of Body Parts of Aborted Fetuses – Orders Release of Additional Information on Organ Purchases
(Washington, DC) Judicial Watch announced today that a federal court ordered the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) to release of additional information about its purchases of organs harvested from aborted human fetuses. The Court also found “there is reason to question” whether the transactions violate federal law barring the sale of fetal organs. Documents previously uncovered in this lawsuit show that the federal government demanded the purchased fetal organs be “fresh and never frozen.”
Both the FDA and NIH purchased the organs from California-based Advanced Biosciences Resources (“ABR”) to create “humanized mice” for use in HIV research. ABR partners with Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers to dismember fetuses and sell their parts for research. The decision notes that ABR:
sold second-trimester livers and thymi for hundreds of dollars apiece. The same for brains, eyes, and lungs. After tacking on fees for services like shipping and cleaning, ABR could collect over $2,000 on a single fetus it purchased from Planned Parenthood for $60. The federal government participated in this potentially illicit trade for years.
The court raised concern about whether these transactions are legal:
Happily for the Government (and ABR), this means that the Court need not reach Judicial Watch’s argument that the Government cannot withhold the information at issue because ABR engaged in criminal conduct. Recall that it is illegal to transfer “any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration. 42 U.S.C. § 289g-2(a). Judicial Watch contends that the invoices disclosed here show that the Government paid “valuable consideration” to ABR and so the Government cannot keep the withheld information confidential.
The court found it “dubious” that a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) exception invoked by the government could be used to “shield illegal business practices under the guise of ‘confidential business information’” and declared that “[t]here is reason to question the lawfulness of the transaction between the Government and ABR.”
In ruling in Judicial Watch’s favor, U.S. District Court Judge Trevor N. McFadden ordered HHS to disclose:
- Any currently withheld names and addresses of ABR’s contract laboratories
- Any redacted unit pricing information for fetal tissue, shipping, or other fees and services relating to the 2013-2015 years that can found in the fee schedules appended to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee report entitled “Human Fetal Tissue Research: Context and Controversy”
- Any redacted per-specimen pricing information for the second-trimester fetal tissue relative to the 2016-2018 years
Judicial Watch initially filed this lawsuit in March 2019 after HHS failed to respond adequately to a September 2018 FOIA request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department Health and Human Services (No. 1:19-cv-00876)). Judicial Watch asked for:
- All contracts and related documentation between FDA and ABR for the provision of human fetal tissue to be used in humanized mice research.
- All records reflecting the disbursement of funds to ABR for the provision of human fetal tissue to be used in humanized mice research.
- All guidelines and procedural documents provided to ABR by FDA relating to the acquisition and extraction of human fetal tissue for its provision to the FDA for humanized mice research.
- All communications between FDA officials and employees and representatives of ABR related to the provision by ABR to the FDA of human fetal tissue for the purpose of humanized mice research.
“This court victory will shed additional light on the federal government’s barbaric practice of purchasing organs of aborted human beings,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The American people deserve to know how their tax dollars are being spent on this grotesque and potentially illegal activity.”
In June 2020, Judicial Watch uncovered records from the FDA showing that, between 2012 and 2018, the FDA entered into eight contracts worth $96,370 with ABR to acquire “fresh and never frozen” tissue from first and second trimester aborted fetuses for use in creating “humanized mice” for ongoing research.
In February 2020, Judicial Watch uncovered records from NIH showing that the agency paid thousands of dollars to ABR to purchase organs from aborted human fetuses to create “humanized mice” for HIV research.
Biden administration officials appear to recognize a theory about the origin of the pandemic. The theory comes from a Trump-era fact sheet, which says the virus accidentally leaked from a Wuhan virology lab. The United States is kick-starting talks with China. Officials from both sides are set to meet this week, but China’s history leads some to question the outcome. A U.S. judge pauses a ban on Chinese phone maker Xiaomi. The company was originally blocked from American investment to stop U.S. funding from going toward Chinese military development. Beijing endures its worst sandstorm in decades. Air quality across parts of northern China is deteriorating, reaching over 150 times higher than international standards call safe. A car parade in Atlanta, Georgia, raises awareness about the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights abuse, encouraging the world to “end the CCP.”
The New York Legislature has proposed nearly $7 billion in new and increased taxes on businesses and the wealthiest state residents. The tax proposals were announced as more than $100 billion is being doled out to New York in federal aid as part of the COVID-19 stimulus bill that was passed and signed into law by […]
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