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Treasury approves $700 million loan to company being sued for overcharging Pentagon

YRC Worldwide ygets $700m loan

The Treasury Department on Wednesday approved a $700 million loan to YRC Worldwide, a financially-troubled trucking company that is also being sued by the Defense Department (DOD) for overpricing shipping costs.

“We are pleased for Treasury to make this loan pursuant to the CARES Act,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement. “This loan will enable a critical vendor to the Department of Defense to maintain significant employment while providing appropriate compensation to taxpayers.”

The CARES Act, just one of several pieces of coronavirus stimulus legislation, was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump in late March.

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Texas Governor Issues Statewide Mask Mandate

Abbott orders Texans to wear masksyTexas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order mandating that all Texans wear face masks if they live in a county with more than 20 cases of the new coronavirus.

He also deputized local governments and courts the authority to impose restrictions on gatherings of more than 10 people, which public health experts advise against. Coronavirus cases are surging across the country, with more than 50,000 new cases reported in a single day, and especially in Texas, which had begun reopening for business as usual in recent weeks.

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Herman Cain Hospitalized With COVID-19 Days After Attending Trump’s Tulsa Rally

herman CainFormer GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain has been hospitalized with the coronavirus, his team announced Thursday afternoon.

News of his diagnosis comes just days after Cain appeared at President Trump’s rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, which was attended by scores of maskless supporters.

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Another Unwanted U.S. Record: 50,000 New Coronavirus Cases In 1 Day

50,000+ cases again

In a grim accounting of the coronavirus's progress in the United States, another milestone was reached Wednesday: more than 50,000 new cases reported in a single day.

Johns Hopkins University & Medicine's Coronavirus Resource Center, which tracks the virus worldwide, says the total number of cases reported in the U.S. stands at 2,686,480, an increase of 50,700 over Tuesday's figure. U.S. deaths attributed to the coronavirus stand at 128,062.

Brazil is ranked second in the world behind the United States, with 1,448,753 cases and 60,632 deaths.

In testimony Tuesday before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease specialist, predicted that the number of new coronavirus cases in the U.S. could soon reach 100,000 per day.

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Facebook, YouTube, Twitter to face same EU rules on hateful content as broadcasters

facebookFacebook, Alphabet-owned YouTube, Twitter and other social media will for the first time be subject to EU broadcasting rules on hate speech and harmful content under European Commission guidelines announced on Thursday.

The amendments to the Audiovisual Media Services Directive adopted in 2018 came in part from lobbying by broadcasters who wanted online platforms to have the same obligations as traditional media companies.

“Online players will have to ensure, in a similar way to traditional media players, that users are protected against hate speech and that minors are protected from harmful content,” the Commission said.

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City officials warn young people going to 'COVID parties' to see who gets sick first

Covid parties

Students in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 have been attending parties in the city and surrounding area as part of a disturbing contest to see who can catch the virus first, a city council member told ABC News on Wednesday.

Tuscaloosa City Councilor Sonya McKinstry said students have been organizing "COVID parties" as a game to intentionally infect each other with the contagion that has killed more than 127,000 people in the United States. She said she recently learned of the behavior and informed the city council of the parties occurring in the city.

She said the organizers of the parties are purposely inviting guests who have COVID-19.

"They put money in a pot and they try to get COVID. Whoever gets COVID first gets the pot. It makes no sense," McKinstry said. "They're intentionally doing it."

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Florida reports more than 10,000 new coronavirus cases, setting a new daily high

Florida cases at 10,000 a day

Florida added 10,109 cases of the novel coronavirus Thursday, a new record and making it the ninth consecutive day that at least 5,000 new cases have been counted, according to data from the Florida Department of Health.

The total number of COVID-19 cases statewide is now 169,106.

The state's total number of cases has nearly tripled since the Phase 2 reopening began on June 5 (61,488). Bars were closed for the second time during the pandemic June 26 to try to limit the spread of the virus.

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The bounty price against US troops in Afghanistan reached as high as $100,000, report says

Bounty could havw reched 100,000 dollars

Rahmatullah Azizi, a small-time drug smuggler operating in Afghanistan, progressed through the criminal underworld in the war-torn country to become the middle-man for bounty contracts against US service members, according to a New York Times report published Wednesday.

Azizi, who is believed to be around 40, was implicated in US intelligence reports that named his as a central figure in the distribution of Russian-supplied money to pay for bounties against US troops deployed in Afghanistan, The Times reported.

Azizi collected the money supplied by the Russian military intelligence agency, the GRU, in Russia, and is reportedly believed to have paid Taliban-linked militants in Afghanistan through other countries. The bounties netted upwards of $100,000, according to Afghan officials cited in The Times.

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Ghislaine Maxwell, Associate of Jeffrey Epstein, Is Arrested

Maxwell arrested

Ghislaine Maxwell, the former girlfriend and longtime associate of the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, was arrested Thursday on criminal charges linked to his alleged sex-trafficking operation.

In an indictment, Ms. Maxwell was accused of helping Mr. Epstein “recruit, groom and ultimately abuse” multiple girls, including one as young as 14. Ms. Maxwell also faces perjury charges.

The arrest came nearly a year after Mr. Epstein was charged in a federal indictment with sexually exploiting and abusing dozens of underage girls at his mansion in Manhattan, his estate in Palm Beach, Fla., and other locations.

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