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Facing a crisis, Abbott charts a lonely middle course

In late April, 61% of Texas adults surveyed (not just voters as in most political polls), approved of Abbott’s handling of the pandemic, 3 points below the national average for governors.

By late July, Abbott — a Republican whose standing had been slipping month by month as he sought to make Texas a leader in reopening the economy — had a 38% approval rating, 13 points off the national average and not all that much better than President Donald Trump’s rating of 32% among Texans for his leadership in the crisis, down from 44% in April.

"For me, the response has to be to focus on what is the science, what needs to be done to achieve the best result for the people of Texas, and take actions based upon that, without worrying about the politics," Abbott said.

Threading a needle Two weeks ago, the state Republican Party convention elected as the party’s new chairman retired Army Lt. Col. Allen West, a former one-term congressman from Florida, who in his convention speech, characterized Abbott’s COVID-19 mandates as acts of un-Texan "tyranny."

University of Texas political scientist Daron Shaw, co-director of the Fox News Poll, said that Abbott has a tougher row to hoe than most governors.

published executive (government) business

Hundreds Of Angry Protesters Gather Outside Hamptons Billionaire Mansions To Demand Wealth Tax

At the same time, the governor announced cuts to state funding for schools, public housing, and hospitals amid a budget crisis brought on by the coronavirus crisis, sparking protests.

Cuomo shot down the idea, saying that it would drive New York's 118 billionaires out of state.

The economic crisis brought on by the coronavirus crisis has strengthened calls for a wealth tax, especially in New York, where Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex has proposed a special state tax on the ultrawealthy.

The protesters were joined by State Senatorial candidate Jabari Brisport, who said outside of Loeb's East Hampton mansion "If there is one thing that makes me more mad than billionaires, it's billionaires like Dan Loeb that push and advocate for charter schools," adding "I'm sick of the attacks on our public school children, and I'm sick of people like this donating to Andrew Cuomo so he can sit there in Albany twiddling his thumbs about how to deal with this budget deficit."

Over 200 protesters wielding pitchforks marched through the Hamptons Thursday to demand that Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) slap billionaires with a wealth tax.

Stephen Colbert roasts the White House's bizarre Fauci smear campaign

But don't worry, because the White House is working hard on an aggressive new plan — to discredit Dr. Anthony Fauci," Colbert explained.

Meanwhile, some ways north of the Panhandle Pandemic, the Trump White House is not coping well with the fact that people are rejecting their own narratives about their handling of the crisis in favor of, well, facts.

Plus, the whole state's screwed because their governor's dopey."

"According to the Florida Department of Health, an oxymoron if there ever was one, the state reported 15,299 new COVID-19 cases yesterday," the Late Show host noted.

The president says you spend all your time licking your own butt.'"

published executive (government) technology

Burgum reaches in his own pockets to fund PAC, campaigns

Robbie Lauf, Burgum’s former policy adviser and the head of his first election campaign, has said in emails that the PAC was formed to “help elect conservative Republicans who share the governor’s vision.”

With his resounding primary victory over longtime state Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, who had the GOP convention’s endorsement, Burgum cruised to victory that November in a state that hasn’t had a Democratic governor for more than a quarter-century.

Burgum’s freewheeling political spending has drawn widespread criticism within his own party, especially his non-subtle attempt to unseat GOP House Appropriations Chairman Jeff Delzer, who has clashed with Burgum over policy and spending priorities throughout the governor’s first term.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Former software executive and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum has shelled out more than $1 million ahead of the state’s primary election, with only a fraction of that sum for his own re-election bid, campaign disclosure reports show.

It also is supporting for state treasurer Fargo businessman and GOP Rep. Thomas Beadle, whom Burgum has endorsed for the agency that has just seven employees.

Image of article 'Learn essential skills from Ivy League professors and Nobel Prize winners with this app'

Learn essential skills from Ivy League professors and Nobel Prize winners with this app

Halo needs to be better than this Halo 2's PC launch instability was unacceptable, and Halo 3 can't repeat it The launch state of Halo 2's multiplayer on PC was simply unacceptable, and the fact that the game was allowed to release in this state raises serious concerns about how future Halo ports, especially Halo 3, will turn out.

Here's why this can't happen again if Halo is to be successful on the PC platform.

published executive (government) technology

Elon Musk holds a ‘bake-off’ for a new factory

It’s possible Musk will also have a gnarly surprise when he closes on a location — gnarly surprises are always possible in politics — since there is, you may recall, a pandemic on.

Musk has been very clear that incentives will play a role in which city he chooses — though other considerations he’s cited include logistics costs and the type of workforce that can be supplied.

Anyway, when Bezos was pursuing HQ2, pressuring municipalities into “bake-offs” of perks, it was Musk he had in mind.

I am thinking of Musk’s rivalry with Jeff Bezos, the other billionaire who resists shelter-in-place orders and owns a private space company.

What does matter is the amount of subsidies Oklahoma and Texas will offer — and whether Musk will, once again, be the subject of Jeff Bezos’ envy.

published executive (government) technology
Image of article 'GOP agitates for chance to negotiate COVID-19 re-opening'

GOP agitates for chance to negotiate COVID-19 re-opening

Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer, a Republican from Jacksonville, complained that Pritzker is misleading people into believing that the GOP wants “to just swing doors wide open.”

He was referring to the Democratic governor’s executive orders that have closed businesses and kept people in their homes, as well as his five-stage plan for reopening, called “Restore Illinois.”

Rep. Mike Murphy said during a conference call with reporters that Gov. J.B. Pritzker must move away from a “one-size-fits-all approach that has been devastating to families and small businesses.”

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - House Republicans agitated Thursday for a say in how Illinois reopens for business during the COVID-19 pandemic, urging majority Democrats to add it to the agenda of a long-delayed legislative session.

Critics say central and southern Illinois are ready to move ahead now and shouldn’t have to wait for Pritzker’s stay-at-home order to expire May 30.

Image of article 'Mike Pompeo fires State Dept. watchdog critical of Trump moves'

Mike Pompeo fires State Dept. watchdog critical of Trump moves

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has fired the State Department’s inspector general, an Obama administration appointee whose office was critical of alleged political bias in the agency’s management.

His office had issued several reports critical of the department’s handling of personnel matters, including accusing some of President Donald Trump’s appointees of retaliating against career officials.

Linick will replaced by Stephen Akard, a former career foreign service officer who has close ties to Vice President Mike Pence, said the official, who was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Linick, a former assistant U.S. attorney in California and Virginia, had overseen inspector general reports that were highly critical of the department’s management policies during the Trump administration.

Under Linick, the State Department’s inspector general office was also critical of former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s hiring freeze and attempts to streamline the agency by slashing funding and personnel.

Image of article 'More OT for Ohio’s primary before House incumbent’s big win'

More OT for Ohio’s primary before House incumbent’s big win

In key legislative races, Preble County Commissioner Rodney Creech defeated incumbent state Rep. Todd Smith, of Germantown, for the Republican nomination for House District 43.

In nearby District 10, Republican incumbent Mike Turner, former mayor of Dayton, easily won his party’s nomination and will face Democratic nominee Desiree Tims.

Schroder, experienced in public health locally and globally, ran away with the House District 1 race to to oppose 12-term Republican Rep. Steve Chabot of Cincinnati.

CINCINNATI (AP) - A Democratic U.S. House incumbent knocked away a spirited challenge in central Ohio and a health care advocate won the nomination to take on a potentially vulnerable Republican congressman in the Cincinnati area as Ohio’s extended primary voting came to an end with results still being reported Wednesday.

Former U.S. Rep Jean Schmidt was narrowly winning a three-way race for the GOP nomination for a state House seat in Clermont County, although The Associated Press hasn’t projected her as the winner because of absentee and provisional ballots yet to be counted.

Initial Benchmarks Of Schedutil Performance On Linux 5.7 Show Room Still For Improvement - Phoronix

More Schedutil/performance governor tests will be coming on a greater number of Intel systems using the latest Linux 5.7 Git shortly.

On Linux 5.6 the default powersave configuration was tested while on Linux 5.7 the governors were all tested.

A near final Ubuntu 20.04 snapshot was running on this Intel server while running Linux 5.6 stable and then a Linux 5.7 Git snapshot last week following the power management changes landing.

For some preliminary tests of the state of Schedutil vs. performance/ondemand governors in Linux 5.7 I ran some benchmarks on an Intel Xeon Gold 6226R server with Supermicro X11SPL-F motherboard, 188GB of RAM, and 4TB Micron NVMe SSD.

With Linux 5.7 the kernel is preparing to use the Schedutil governor more often on Intel systems.

Meet Gretchen Whitmer: Joe Biden's Likely Vice Presidential Pick

Her leadership, including a national spat initiated by President Donald Trump, has raised her profile and put her on the map as a possible running mate for Joe Biden in the fall.

In 2013, while still in the state senate, Whitmer made national news during an abortion bill debate where she publicly discussed her personal experience with sexual assault.

In office only a year, Whitmer’s state now has the fourth most coronavirus cases in the United States, and the third most deaths.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to encapsulate the United States, multiple governors have been obligated to step up and control the public health crises that have overtaken their states.

Her leadership, including a national spat initiated by President Donald Trump, has raised her profile and put her on the map as a possible running mate for Joe Biden in the fall.

Image of article 'SC governor adds criminal penalties to COVID-19 orders'

SC governor adds criminal penalties to COVID-19 orders

The inmate in the Charleston County jail appears to be the first inmate to test positive for coronavirus in the state.

The governor’s latest order came as an inmate in a local jail in South Carolina tested positive for COVID-19, leading officials to isolate the nearly three dozen inmates in his housing unit.

The new order attaches potential criminal penalties to the more than a dozen orders and recommendations he has made since COVID-19 was first detected in South Carolina on March 6.

WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina’s governor on Monday issued what he called a work-to-home order, adding fines and possible jail time to keep residents away from each other and from catching the coronavirus.

Several police officers across the state also have COVID-19, including Pageland Police Chief Craig Greenlee, who isolated himself on March 27 when he noticed he had symptoms and learned he tested positive Saturday, according to the town’s Facebook page.

NJ lowering flags indefinitely to remember COVID-19 deaths

New Jersey state police can now commandeer health supplies to address the COVID-19 outbreak under an executive order issued by Murphy.

A number of other counties, including northern New Jersey counties that have seen the most cases, also have testing facilities.

Cumberland County in southern New Jersey is opening its first drive-thru testing center, the governor said.

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Friday ordered flags across the state to half-staff indefinitely to commemorate people who died from COVID-19.

New Jersey is a hot spot for the virus, with more than 500 deaths and over 25,000 positive cases.

Image of article 'Gov. Cuomo announces NY primary will move to June 23rd as Trump considers ‘enforceable’ quarantine'

Gov. Cuomo announces NY primary will move to June 23rd as Trump considers ‘enforceable’ quarantine

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said New York will postpone its April 28th presidential primary election until June 23rd, as the Empire State deals with the largest coronavirus outbreak in the US, the New York Times reports.

New York’s primary for state legislative and congressional elections already is scheduled for June 23rd.

Meanwhile on Saturday, President Trump told reporters he was considering an “enforceable” quarantine for New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, NBC News reported.

We might not have to do it but there’s a possibility that sometime today we’ll do a quarantine, short term, two weeks, on New York.

The president said he had spoken with the governors of New York and Florida, but according to the AP, Cuomo said he had not talked about a quarantine with the president.

published executive (government) technology

National Guard call-ups may double by the weekend, chief says

Hours after Lengyel spoke, Pentagon spokesperson Alyssa Farah announced that the administration plans to keep Guard troops under state control.

"The #COVID19 response is dynamic, but at this time Governors remain in control of their states’ National Guard forces & can request additional assistance from federal Title 10 forces through @FEMAgov."

During his briefing with reporters, Lengyel made the case for keeping the Guard units under state control.

This limitation does not apply to the National Guard when activated by a state's governor and operating under Title 32.

When under state control, Guardsmen have "additional authorities that can assist law enforcement and they maintain their direct command and control links within their states," Lengyel said.

published executive (government) security

Bear Sniffs Human Friend To Make Sure He Hasn't Been Hanging With Other Bears

This is 'Sniffing Jim over to make sure he hasn't been with other bears', a video of a couple bears at the Orphaned Wildlife Center in Otisville, New York sniffing caretaker Jim Kowalczik to make sure he hasn't been fraternizing with any other bears.

Now I'm not sure what they'd do if they did smell another bear, but I don't think you'd want to be Jim in that situation.

Keep going for the video while I wish I had bear friends.

Thanks to Christina D, who agrees you should never cheat on your bear friends.

Image of article 'Former VP Joe Biden Picks Up Key Endorsements Ahead of Super Tuesday Balloting'

Former VP Joe Biden Picks Up Key Endorsements Ahead of Super Tuesday Balloting

A total of 415 delegates to July's National Democratic Convention are at stake in California, which could give Sanders a substantial edge in the race for delegates no matter how many other states Biden might win in the Tuesday balloting.

The trio of withdrawals leaves four major Democratic contenders: current leader Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, a self-declared democratic socialist; Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, another liberal who has fared poorly in early voting; former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a billionaire whose name is appearing on ballots for the first time Tuesday; and Biden, who served two terms as the country's vice president under former President Barack Obama.

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar ended her bid for the Democratic presidential nomination Monday and, along with former Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke, endorsed Biden at a rally in Dallas.

WASHINGTON - Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden picked up three key endorsements Monday from former rivals for the Democratic presidential ticket, adding momentum to his campaign ahead of voting in primaries in more than a dozen states known as Super Tuesday.

But Biden is already pressing his case that Sanders at the top of the Democratic ticket would prove a disaster in some parts of the country for other Democratic candidates in the November election.

Image of article 'RuPaul shares the inspiration behind his drag persona'

RuPaul shares the inspiration behind his drag persona

RuPaul is a living legend.

But how did RuPaul become the Queen of Drag?

If you're a fan of RuPaul, you'll likely already know that his drag name also happens to be his real name IRL.

"RuPaul is my real name and I tell all the kids if you're getting into show business.

do not use your real name because it winds up on all your public records," he said.

published executive (government) technology
Image of article 'Bernie Sanders asking for your support is a meme for the entire campaign season'

Bernie Sanders asking for your support is a meme for the entire campaign season

Just before the start of the new year, Sanders tweeted a short video imploring supporters to donate to his campaign before the FEC fundraising deadline.

"I am once again asking for your financial support," Sanders said in his signature Brooklyn accent.

And as he surges in polls, Sanders is also surging in the meme economy.

He leaned into the joke, once again asking for financial support in a post on his campaign subreddit last week.

And like Refinery29 points out, Sanders' campaign is already "millennial and Gen Z bait," as popular bands like Vampire Weekend and Bon Iver perform at his rallies.

published executive (government) technology
Image of article 'Former U.S. prosecutor plans to oppose Georgia’s new senator'

Former U.S. prosecutor plans to oppose Georgia’s new senator

Isakson’s retirement further raised Georgia’s profile in the 2020 elections by ensuring both of the state’s U.S. Senate seats will be on the ballot.

Tarver served as an Army officer and in the Georgia legislature before Obama appointed him U.S. attorney in 2009 for a region that includes Savannah and Augusta.

Tarver, 60, confirmed his intention to run in a brief email to The Associated Press on Friday, saying: “I will announce soon my plan to enter the race to fill the seat vacated by former U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson.”

Ed Tarver of Augusta, who served as U.S. attorney for Georgia’s Southern District during Obama’s two terms, is the second Democrat to confirm plans to seek the seat that three-term GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson left at the end of 2019 because of faltering health.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - A former federal prosecutor who served under President Barack Obama said Friday he plans to join the race to challenge newly sworn-in Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler of Georgia.