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Today’s In Crisis headlines

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(NEW YORK) — Here are today’s In Crisis headlines:

Georgia governor signs controversial election bill into law
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp on Thursday signed into law a sweeping election bill that includes new restrictions on voting by mail and gives the legislature greater control over how elections are run.  The law requires a photo ID in order to vote absentee by mail, after more than 1.3 million Georgia voters used that option in the 2020 general election during the COVID-19 pandemic.  It also decreases the time voters have to request an absentee ballot and limits where ballot drop boxes can be placed and when they can be accessed.  Kemp, a Republican, says “contrary to the hyper-partisan rhetoric,” the law “will expand voting access.”  Critics claim the law is designed to make it more difficult for the poor and for Black residents to vote.  Georgia’s Democratic Senate Minority Leader Gloria Butler called the measure “a massive and unabashed assault on voting rights unlike anything we’ve seen since the Jim Crow era.”

Propelled in part by a higher-than-average Black voter turnout, President Biden won Georgia and its electoral votes in the 2020 presidential election, becoming the first Democrat to win the state since Bill Clinton in 1992.  Republicans widely disputed the victory, with many, including former President Trump, claiming election fraud.  A hand audit of the votes and a subsequent recount at the request of Republicans both confirmed Biden’s victory.

COVID-19 numbers
Here’s the latest data on COVID-19 coronavirus infections, deaths and vaccinations.

Latest reported COVID-19 numbers globally per Johns Hopkins University
Global diagnosed cases: 125,614,782
Global deaths: 2,757,339.  The United States has the most deaths of any single country, with 546,825.
Number of countries/regions: at least 192
Total patients recovered globally: 71,188,962

Latest reported COVID-19 numbers in the United States per Johns Hopkins University
There are at least 30,079,973 reported cases in 50 states + the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam.  This is more than in any other country.
U.S. deaths: at least 546,825.  California has the greatest number of reported deaths in the U.S., with 58,434
U.S. total people tested: 384,520,168

The greatest number of reported COVID-19 cases in the U.S. is in California, with 3,653,168 confirmed cases out of a total state population of 39.51 million.  This ranks second in the world after England, which has 3,778,510 cases.  Texas is third, with 2,769,451 confirmed cases out of a total state population of 29 million.

Latest reported COVID-19 vaccination numbers in the United States
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports a total of 173,525,335 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been distributed in the U.S.  Of those, 133,305,295 doses have been administered, with 87,343,622 people receiving at least one dose and 47,419,832 people fully vaccinated, representing 26.3% and 14.3% of the total U.S. population, respectively. The Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines each require two doses to be effective.  The Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires a single dose to be effective.

President Biden doubles COVID-19 vaccination pledge to 200 million shots in 100 days
President Biden on Thursday pledged that during his first 100 days in office, the U.S. will administer 200 million COVID-19 vaccines.  That’s double his initial pledge of 100 million in 100 days, a goal that was attained last week on his 58th day in office.  “No other country has even come close,” the president said of the accomplishment Thursday, during the first press conference of his presidency.  The White House is also sending $10 billion to low-income and minority communities to improve vaccine availability there.  As of Friday morning, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports the U.S. has administered a total of 133,305,295 COVID-19 vaccines.

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