Biden to announce economic team
President-elect Joe Biden is set to unveil his economic team Tuesday as the U.S. struggles to dig out of the worst recession in a century. At the forefront of Biden’s team is former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, his pick for Treasury secretary. Other appointees include Neera Tanden, a former aide to Hillary Clinton and chief executive of the left-leaning think tank Center for American Progress, to head the Office of Management and Budget. Cecilia Rouse, dean of the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs, has been tapped to lead the Council of Economic Advisers. The lineup is likely to push for a more aggressive economic blueprint than the Trump administration, including a robust COVID-19 relief package and proposals to upgrade the nation’s infrastructure, build a clean-energy economy and provide tuition-free community college.
It’s Giving Tuesday. Here’s how to help those in need
Giving Tuesday, an annual day recognized for charitable giving, kickstarts December this year — a month big for donating. Woodrow Rosenbaum, chief data officer for Giving Tuesday, said that giving is up 20% year over year in all categories to both nonprofits and small businesses — despite the decline in the first quarter. “The pandemic is motivating a lot of generosity,” he said. “People are finding generosity as an antidote to fear, uncertainty, division.” If you are unable to give financially or otherwise this year, Rosenbaum suggested virtual volunteering, letter-writing campaigns and even sidewalk chalk messages as safe options amid the coronavirus pandemic.
CDC panel to meet on how to allocate the first doses of a COVID-19 vaccine
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention panel is scheduled to meet Tuesday to vote on how to allocate the first supplies of a COVID-19 vaccine. The meeting on who gets the first doses comes as at least two vaccine makers have filed for emergency use authorization with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. When a vaccine is available, it will be in short supply and rationed by the federal government. Moderna said the FDA’s advisory committee will discuss its vaccine on Dec. 17, a week after it meets to discuss Pfizer’s vaccine, and authorization is expected is expected to come a few days after each meeting.
- COVID-19 vaccines are almost ready to be distributed. Who gets them after health care workers? Here’s a list.
White House to host indoor holiday events despite COVID-19 spike
The White House is going ahead with plans to hold holiday parties and receptions despite warnings from public health officials to avoid large in-person gatherings. An invitation to a reception on Tuesday — a copy of which was obtained by USA TODAY — makes no mention of mandatory face masks or social distancing requirements. But Stephanie Grisham, spokeswoman and chief of staff for first lady Melania Trump, said Monday that masks will be required and that social distancing will be recommended while on White House grounds. “Attending the parties will be a very personal choice,” Grisham said. “It is a longstanding tradition for people to visit and enjoy the cheer and iconic decor of the annual White House Christmas celebrations.”
First lady Melania Trump waves as she stands next to the 2020 Official White House Christmas tree as it is presented on the North Portico of the White House, Nov. 23, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) ORG XMIT: DCAH406 (Photo: Andrew Harnik, AP)
Snowstorm targets Great Lakes, Ohio Valley and Appalachians
Tuesday – the first day of meteorological winter – will feature a winter storm for portions of the Great Lakes, Ohio Valley and Appalachian mountains. As much as a foot of snow is possible in some areas, according to the National Weather Service, mainly in northeastern Ohio, northwestern Pennsylvania and western New York State. In West Virginia, where up to 7 inches is possible, the snow will be a boon to some of the state’s ski resorts that are scheduled to open for the season later this week. Accumulating snow is also expected in the Appalachians as far south as Tennessee, western North Carolina and far northeast Georgia.
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