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5 things to know for September 17: Covid-19, Sally, census, William Barr, Venezuela

Sally is now a tropical depression but despite losing strength, flooding remains a concern as it drenched southeastern Alabama and central Georgia. CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri has the forecast.

Posted: Sep 16, 2020 6:47 AM
Updated: Sep 17, 2020 7:00 AM


Cutting down on greenhouse gases is a huge environmental goal, but if the world wants to get to net zero emissions by 2050, it will cost a staggering $1 trillion to $2 trillion a year. (But scientists warn letting the climate crisis go unchecked could be even more expensive.)

Here's what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

(You can also get '5 Things You Need to Know Today' delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Coronavirus 

We're all waiting for a coronavirus vaccine, but Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, says even if a vaccine were released now, it would take six to nine months for enough people to receive it to create immunity. In the meantime, Redfield says masks may work even better than a vaccine. For when a vaccine does arrive, rich nations including the United States, Britain and Japan have already bought up more than half the expected supply. That's about 51% of available vaccines for about 13% of the world's population. Meanwhile, some local leaders are enacting unusual punishments for people who don't abide by health policies. In parts of rural Indonesia, those caught without masks must dig graves for Covid-19 victims. The governor of one Philippine province is asking people to report loud karaoke singers who disrupt people's sleep during curfew hours.

2. Hurricane Sally

Hurricane Sally thrashed Alabama and Florida as a Category 2 hurricane, swallowing up homes, downing power lines and turning streets into rivers. At least one person is dead, one is missing, and more than 500,000 customers are without power in the aftermath. Three to four months' worth of rain could fall in the region before the storm clears out today. Sally, now a tropical depression, is the fourth hurricane to make landfall in the US this year -- the most to hit by the same date in 16 years. And scientists say the climate crisis is making storms like Sally worse. Warmer waters can make storms intensify more rapidly. Climate factors also can make storms slower and, thus, more destructive as winds stick around longer and more rain gets dumped in the same place.

Check your local forecast here>>>

3. Census 

The Trump administration is trying to get a federal judge to help shield thousands of internal documents about the 2020 census from the public. Many of these records detail the controversial move to cut off the census at the end of September, rather than the end of October as originally planned. The documents are in play because groups are suing the government to extend counting to through October, claiming the Trump administration is trying to create future GOP voting advantages by manipulating census methods. But for the administration to respond to the claims, the documents -- more than 8,800 of them -- must be released. So, the Justice Department actually wants the judge to rule against the administration to prevent that from happening. Remember that last year, revelations from documents cast doubt on the administration's rationale for adding a question about citizenship to the census. That question was eventually forbidden by the Supreme Court.

4. William Barr 

Attorney General William Barr is facing criticism for comparing calls for a nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus to slavery. 'Putting a national lockdown, stay-at-home orders, is like house arrest,' he said during an event at Hillsdale College. 'Other than slavery, which was a different kind of restraint, this is the greatest intrusion on civil liberties in American history.' Barr also launched into a tirade against the hundreds of Justice Department prosecutors working beneath him, equating them to preschoolers and essentially saying the opinions of politically appointed Justice Department leaders are more important than those of career attorneys who have served through multiple presidencies. Barr also recently suggested charging violent protesters with the rarely used accusation of sedition -- conspiracy to overthrow the US government.

5. Venezuela

A new United Nations-backed report accuses the Venezuelan government of committing widespread crimes against humanity over several years. A fact-finding mission commissioned by the UN Human Rights Council investigated 223 cases of alleged extrajudicial executions, enforced disappearances, arbitrary detentions and torture, and reviewed an additional 2,891 to corroborate patterns of violations and crimes. The mission found evidence that Venezuelan authorities and security forces committed 'serious human rights violations' dating back to 2014, including 'arbitrary killings and the systematic use of torture.' The UN report calls for the Special Action Forces, one of the government's police groups, to be dismantled and for those responsible for its actions to be held accountable.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Here's who won at last night's Academy of Country Music Awards

Not to spoil anything, but there was a BIG surprise.

People are flocking to ugly produce right now 

Cheaper, and just as healthy. It's what's on the inside that counts!

Bus passenger uses a live snake as a face mask 

You can bet people were probably social distancing themselves all the way onto another bus.

The Big Ten has reversed course and will play college football after all 

Keeping up with who's playing and who's not is a sport unto itself.

Jim Carrey will play Joe Biden on 'SNL'

Seems promising, but we're gonna have to see the white wig first.

TODAY'S NUMBER

60%

That's the proportion of businesses that closed during the pandemic that will likely not reopen, according to new data from Yelp. That translates to about 163,700 businesses on Yelp that have closed since March 1. Of those, operators of about 98,000 say they've shut their doors for good.

TODAY'S QUOTE

'Everyone deserves to see themselves in government, to follow their dreams, and to be accepted by their community.'

Transgender activist Sarah McBride, who won her party's nomination in Delaware for a state Senate seat, putting her on the path to become the first out transgender person in the US to serve in a state Senate post.

AND FINALLY

Who needs a vacation when you can travel virtually? 

All of us. We all still need a vacation. But maybe a few minutes touring these gorgeous and unusual places will help. (Click here to view.)

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Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Confirmed Cases: 281303

Reported Deaths: 8744
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Cook1406235180
DuPage16955551
Lake16545486
Will13612374
Kane12790325
St. Clair6386187
Winnebago5531149
Madison5463131
Champaign447220
McHenry4463118
Peoria331449
McLean320020
Rock Island286974
Kankakee267677
Sangamon229044
Unassigned2238236
Kendall194725
Tazewell165721
LaSalle164056
DeKalb148438
Macon143642
Coles139630
Williamson135139
Jackson124824
Clinton108820
Boone107423
Adams103210
Randolph92611
Effingham8361
Whiteside70220
Ogle6516
Vermilion6484
Grundy6455
Monroe63915
Henry6365
Morgan62823
Knox6273
Bureau59711
Jefferson57238
Marion5180
Macoupin5157
Union50724
Franklin5053
Stephenson4846
Christian46011
McDonough45915
Logan4401
Woodford4086
Crawford4002
Cass38911
Jersey38514
Fayette3733
Shelby3604
Iroquois35919
Livingston3486
Lee3471
Perry34215
Montgomery33913
Warren3142
Saline2993
Bond2964
Douglas2857
Wayne2565
Lawrence2512
Jo Daviess2462
Carroll2174
Greene2167
Moultrie2083
Jasper2029
Cumberland2014
Hancock1993
Washington1981
Richland1714
Pulaski1611
White1610
Clark1542
Fulton1530
Johnson1480
Wabash1471
Clay1420
Piatt1320
Mason1291
Mercer1295
Menard1200
Pike1131
Edgar1117
De Witt1041
Ford995
Marshall980
Massac972
Scott750
Alexander731
Gallatin692
Hamilton670
Edwards640
Henderson640
Putnam550
Stark532
Calhoun470
Schuyler460
Brown430
Hardin370
Pope261
Out of IL20

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Confirmed Cases: 113337

Reported Deaths: 3530
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion20936761
Lake10334319
Elkhart6438109
St. Joseph6226103
Allen6060200
Hamilton4761109
Vanderburgh349430
Hendricks2681122
Monroe251236
Tippecanoe231213
Johnson2279123
Clark215756
Porter209046
Cass19339
Delaware189561
Vigo178524
Madison161075
LaPorte138239
Floyd132161
Howard129063
Warrick122336
Kosciusko120617
Bartholomew115357
Marshall99424
Dubois95918
Boone95646
Hancock91443
Grant89733
Noble89432
Henry78125
Wayne74714
Jackson7429
Morgan70638
Shelby66629
Daviess65428
Dearborn63928
LaGrange63211
Clinton59513
Harrison56424
Putnam53810
Lawrence50628
Montgomery50521
Knox5039
Gibson4894
White48214
DeKalb46311
Decatur45739
Miami4303
Greene41935
Fayette41813
Jasper3862
Steuben3747
Scott35910
Sullivan33112
Jennings31212
Posey3090
Franklin30325
Clay2985
Orange28624
Ripley2828
Carroll27113
Wabash2628
Washington2611
Whitley2556
Starke2537
Adams2523
Wells2503
Jefferson2443
Fulton2352
Huntington2223
Spencer2223
Tipton22022
Perry21513
Randolph2097
Jay1750
Newton17211
Owen1671
Martin1640
Rush1534
Pike1411
Vermillion1260
Fountain1202
Pulaski1151
Blackford1133
Brown1033
Crawford1030
Parke961
Benton880
Ohio777
Union770
Switzerland690
Warren391
Unassigned0225