DML Morning Briefing Mon. Apr. 12: Hotels and stimulus for migrants, CEOs dive into voting issues, climate, teachers, more…
By Team DML
Today is April 12 and I am Dennis Michael Lynch. Below are my opinions on the stories grabbing headlines this morning. I hope you share this briefing as doing so will make you the smartest person in the room,
1 – Migrant family holding center virtually empty as Biden spends millions on hotels
The Washington Examiner reports: A massive immigration holding center in Texas is hardly being used amid the worsening border situation as the Biden administration instead opts to dole out multimillion, taxpayer-funded contracts to house families in hotels.
The Biden administration has spent $87 million to put families in seven hotels across Arizona and Texas rather than place them in similar permanent family facilities, according to two people familiar with the administration’s plans.
Sources said the Karnes County Family Residential Center is far better equipped to hold hundreds of families even amid the coronavirus pandemic but claimed Biden officials are making a “PR play” and are concerned about the “optics” of holding people at a facility that is operated by a for-profit group. Hotels holding families are overseen by the Family Endeavors nonprofit group and are not required to be licensed because they are not holding people more than 72 hours.
Karnes cost $57 million and is under a five-year contract between the county and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as a state-licensed facility to hold up to 835 people who arrived at the border as part of a family group. It is technically a detention facility, but unlike other facilities that hold adults, it is designed with classrooms and recreational spaces for children and comes with amenities not seen in jails or prisons.
At present, Karnes is less than 20% full, two people confirmed. Karnes has bunk bed suites that include televisions and have access to the grounds. Meals are served three times a day in a buffet-style cafeteria. The grounds include two soccer fields, a gymnasium, and an outdoor playground. The residents undergo full medical exams, an X-ray screening for tuberculosis, and receive any vaccinations they are missing. Mental health services are also available. Each person is given six full sets of clothing, hygiene products, and a telephone calling card. They have access to in-room phones, laundry rooms, 24/7 refrigerated snacks, and medication. Classrooms for a variety of ages are inside and have continued operating amid the coronavirus pandemic.
DML News reported on Friday that the $87 million contract to put illegal aliens in hotels was awarded to Family Endeavors, a nonprofit group, without going through the normal bidding process.
Family Endeavors has no previous history as an ICE contractor – but a former senior official from Biden’s transition team – Andrew Lorenzen-Strait – is now serving as the organization’s “senior director for migrant services and federal affairs.” He joined the organization on Jan. 20 – on Biden’s inauguration day. Within two months of joining Family Endeavors, Lorenzen-Strait secured the $87 million contract.
DML: I think I’m going to scream.
2 – New York’s Homeless Veterans Ineligible for $15.6K Payments to Illegal Aliens
Breitbart reports: Homeless veterans in New York are not eligible for the $15,600 one-time payments that nearly 200,000 illegal aliens will soon receive, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) notes.
As Breitbart News has reported, Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and state Democrats have struck a budget deal that includes $2.1 billion in taxpayer funding to provide unemployment benefits and stimulus checks to about 187,000 illegal aliens.
Illegal aliens who will be eligible for the one-time payment could receive up to $15,600, the equivalent of about $300 a week for one year. The aid to illegal aliens is $1.1 billion more in funding than tax credits and grants authorized for New York small businesses in the budget.
A June 2020 report conducted by New York state officials revealed in 2019, there were 1,270 homeless veterans in the state with the overwhelming majority living in shelters. More than half of these homeless veterans are in New York City.
Cotton, in a statement posted online, noted the state’s homeless veterans are not eligible for the stimulus benefits:
DML: Once again, it’s Americans last.
3 – CEOs plan new push on voting legislation
Wall Street Journal reports: Dozens of chief executives and other senior leaders gathered on Zoom this weekend to plot what several said big businesses should do next about new voting laws underway in Texas and other states.
Kenneth Chenault, the former chief executive of American Express Co., and Kenneth Frazier, CEO of Merck & Co., urged the leaders to collectively call for greater voting access, according to several people who attended. Messrs. Chenault and Frazier warned businesses against dropping the issue and asked CEOs to sign a statement opposing what they view as discriminatory legislation on voting, the people said.
The new statement could come early this week, the people said, and would build on one that 72 Black executives signed last month in the wake of changes to Georgia’s voting laws. Mr. Chenault told executives on the call that several leaders had signaled they would sign on, including executives at PepsiCo Inc., PayPal Holdings Inc., T. Rowe Price Group Inc. and Hess Corp., among others, according to the people. PayPal confirmed it has signed the statement. PepsiCo, T. Rowe Price and Hess didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
As more companies and their leaders have spoken out on the issue in recent weeks, their stands have drawn the ire of Republican state and federal legislators who say companies are miscasting the matter and shouldn’t act as shadow lawmakers. Meanwhile, activists and others have said that the actions leaders are taking aren’t strong enough. Many CEOs now feel a duty, or pressure, to make their views explicitly known to employees and others, executive advisers said.
DML: So… corporate America doesn’t WANT voter ID?
4 – Joe Biden considers ordering climate confessions
The Washington Examiner reports: President Joe Biden is readying an executive order that would require companies to disclose the risks they face from climate change, special climate envoy John Kerry said this week.
Kerry didn’t elaborate on the details of the order or the timing, but the move would fulfill a promise Biden made on the campaign trail to require all public companies to report their emissions and climate-related risks.
Already, the Biden administration has taken a number of actions to bolster capacity at agencies such as the Treasury Department, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and the Federal Reserve to address the risks climate change poses to the financial system. Last month, the SEC asked for input on establishing a regime for climate disclosures.
The early moves from Biden’s team on climate finance have already drawn fierce opposition from Republican lawmakers, who say the administration’s efforts are a politically motivated attempt to choke off capital to fossil fuels.
DML: Is Biden going to use climate change to put everyone out of business?
5 – CA teacher caught berating students in leaked Zoom over push for in-person learning
Fox News reports: A California high school teacher was caught on camera berating students for their parents’ collective push to end remote learning and return children to their classrooms full time.
In a video shared on Facebook, San Marcos High School teacher Alissa Piro can be heard raising her voice at several seniors during a virtual lesson over Zoom.
Piro, who teaches English, appears to be referencing an ongoing lawsuit launched by a coalition of parents against Gov. Gavin Newsom and six North Country school districts seeking eased COVID restrictions and an accelerated return to physical classrooms, though local unions say doing so would constitute judicial overreach.
“If your parent wants to talk to me about their profession and their opinion on their profession, I would love to hear that…,” she says.
“However, if your parent wants to come talk to me about how I’m not doing a good enough job in distance learning based on what you need as an individual? Just dare them to come at me. Because I am so sick to my stomach of parents trying to tell educators how to do their job.”
The video was reportedly filmed by a family member of a student in attendance, and was shared to a private Facebook group aimed at reopening schools in the district.
Piro can be heard aggressively yelling at a student inquiring about a “White student union.”
“You don’t need a White student union, Jake. You get everything,” the teacher retorts.
DML: Share your thoughts on this in the comments section below.
6 – Fauci: ‘It’s Still Not OK’ to Eat or Drink Indoors Even if You’re Vaccinated
Breitbart reports: White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday advised people who have been vaccinated for COVID-19 to hold off on congregating indoors to eat or drink.
Mehdi Hasan, host of MSNBC’s “The Mehdi Hasan Show,” asked Fauci, “What is the message to vaccinated and unvaccinated Americans as to what they should and should not be doing right now? For example, eating and drinking indoors in restaurants and bars — is that OK now?”
According to Fauci, “it’s still not OK” to gather indoors. He cited the “level of infection” as “still really disturbingly high.”
Fauci pled with the public to get vaccinated and continue wearing masks.
“So, if you’re not vaccinated, please get vaccinated as soon as vaccine becomes available to you, and if you are vaccinated, please remember that you still have to be careful and not get involved in crowded situations, particularly indoors where people are not wearing masks,” he stated. “And for the time being, until we show definitively that a person who’s vaccinated does not get this subclinical infection and can spread to others, you should also continue to wear a mask.”
DML: They don’t want life to EVER go back to normal.