The Morning Dispatch: States Seesaw on Pandemic Restrictions

Happy Wednesday! Unless you are one of the guys who was angling to get into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Then today is not a happy Wednesday at all.

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • President Joe Biden said yesterday his administration is working toward purchasing an additional combined 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer and Moderna, which, if secured, would be manufactured and delivered this summer. The 200 million doses would be in addition to the combined 400 million the two companies have pledged to provide the United States.

  • Biden issued a series of executive orders yesterday as a part of his “racial equity agenda.” Among them was an order designed to phase out the Justice Department’s contracts with private prisons, citing the need to “reduce profit-based incentives” for the mass incarceration of people of color. The president also issued a memorandum directing the Department of Housing and Urban Development to examine the federal government’s role in “systematically declining to invest in communities of color and preventing residents of those communities from accessing the same services and resources as their white counterparts.”

  • All but five Senate Republicans—Lisa Murkowski, Mitt Romney, Susan Collins, Ben Sasse, and Pat Toomey—voted against tabling a motion introduced by Sen. Rand Paul dismissing former President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial as unconstitutional. Senate Democrats successfully tabled the motion, but the GOP support Paul’s point of order received is likely a preview of what to expect at next month’s impeachment trial.

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