Welcome to September. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter.
*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website
*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
*How you can help in Colorado:
*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
*Coloradans can now get a COVID-19 vaccine at one of six locations without a prior appointment.
► There’s good news and bad news on the COVID-19 front, as The Aurora Sentinel explains:
As of Tuesday 75% of Colorado adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, but for children who are too young to be vaccinated, their risk from the virus is as high as it has been since the pandemic started.
At a Tuesday news conference to discuss the coronavirus, state epidemiologist Dr. Rachel Herlihy said that Colorado has seen a “pretty rapid rise in pediatric cases” beginning in July.
“This is the first time in the pandemic that we’re really seeing this high rate in children,” she said…
…Unvaccinated people make up the majority of hospitalizations, said Scott Bookman, Colorado’s COVID-19 incident commander. The hospitalization rate of the unvaccinated is seven times that or people who are fully vaccinated.
CNN has more on the concerning rise of COVID cases among children:
Contrary to research early in the pandemic, children are just as likely to become infected as adults. According to the CDC, Covid-19 infection rates for adolescents aged 5 to 17 were as high as in adults 18 to 49, and higher than rates in adults over 50.
There have been 4.8 million cases of Covid-19 in children since April 2020, according to the American Association of Pediatrics, making up about 15% of all documented cases in the United States. In the last month, the number of new weekly cases has surged to near-peak levels.
Areas across the country with lower than average vaccination rates are experiencing higher increases in Covid-19 cases among children. In Mississippi, where only 37.7% of residents are fully vaccinated, there has been a 29% increase in cumulative Covid-19 cases in children over the past two weeks.
► The United States military presence in Afghanistan officially came to an end this week. Colorado Public Radio has reaction from some of the members of Colorado’s congressional delegation. As Axios reports, Denver ranks among the most popular locations for Afghan refugees relocating to the United States.
While boots may be off the ground in Afghanistan, the political infighting continues — driven in large part by a wave of misinformation propagated by Republicans.
Meanwhile, President Biden previewed a new foreign policy goal in a speech defending the withdrawal of forces from Afghanistan. As The New York Times reports, Biden’s speech points to the end of a long era of attempts at nation-building.
► Congressperson Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert (R-ifle) almost seems determined to find a way to get herself into legal trouble. As The Colorado Sun reports:
Boebert has removed her name from business paperwork linked to the oil and gas consulting firm run by her husband, Jayson, after drawing scrutiny for nearly $1 million in payments it received from Terra Energy, a drilling company operating in her district…
…The changes, made after The Colorado Sun reported the congresswoman’s ties to Boebert Consulting, distance Boebert from the two companies, which are registered to the couple’s home in Silt. But it’s not clear what ownership or stake, if any, Lauren Boebert has in either company.
A spokesperson for Boebert’s congressional office did not answer a question last month about whether the congresswoman is an owner of Boebert Consulting, and did not respond to requests for comment Tuesday.
This sure seems like an admission of wrongdoing on Boebert’s part regarding the mysterious new wealth she recently reported from her husband, Jayson. This comes at a time when her various scandals are piling up quickly and attracting a new level of national attention.
As if Boebert didn’t have enough problems, she learned this week that she is among the Republican Members of Congress who are being investigated for their role in the January 6th insurrection.
► National Public Radio reports on a new abortion ban in Texas that went into effect today:
With the U.S. Supreme Court mum, a new law went into effect in Texas that bans abortions after about six weeks of pregnancy. That’s well before many women even know they are pregnant.
The law allows private citizens to sue abortion providers and anyone else who helps a woman obtain an abortion — including those who give a woman a ride to a clinic or provide financial assistance to obtain an abortion. Private citizens who bring these suits don’t need to show any connection to those they are suing.
The law makes no exceptions for cases involving rape or incest.
If federal courts allow the Texas abortion ban to stand, other states around the country will likely move swiftly to enact similar bans of their own. As The Daily Beast notes, this is a hugely significant moment for reproductive rights in America.
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► Republican operatives in Colorado keep tripping over themselves as redistricting discussions near a conclusion. Republicans such as consultant Alan Philp, former House Speaker Frank McNulty, former State Sen. Greg Brophy, and current State Rep. Matt Soper are making a mockery of the idea that Colorado’s redistricting process would be more nonpartisan and transparent in 2021.
► It appears that right-wing activists in Colorado are never going to give up 0n their no-hope efforts at recalling Gov. Jared Polis and/or Secretary of State Jena Griswold. You could donate money to this cause or just light it on fire; at least with the latter choice you can generate a little bit of heat for a moment or two.
► Republican Heidi Ganahl, a CU Regent, is the sole statewide officeholder for the GOP in Colorado. Ganahl appears to be on the verge of launching a campaign for Governor in hopes of challenging incumbent Democratic Gov. Jared Polis, but she has yet to formulate a logical explanation for HOW she might possibly win in 2022.
Ganahl is going all-in on her support for Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert, however.
► Senator John Hickenlooper (D-Denver) told constituents during a tele-town hall meeting that he supports the idea of a carbon-pricing mechanism as a tool to help combat Climate Change.
► Colorado Reps. Jason Crow (D-Aurora) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) are pushing to create a reserve component of the new U.S. Space Force military branch.
► Colorado Public Radio looks at the 142,000 acres of federal land in Colorado that could be opened to oil and gas drilling operations.
► Most of New Orleans remains without power as utilities scramble to repair damage from Hurricane Ida.
► And then there were three. Charles Ashby of The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reports on the third and final ballot measure heading your way in November:
A citizens’ initiative to restrict how non-tax revenues to the state are spent qualified as the third proposed statewide measure that will appear on the fall ballot.
Currently known as Initiative 19, the proposal would prohibit all executive branches of the state — governor, attorney general, treasurer and secretary of state — from spending what is known as “custodial” money.
That’s revenue that the state collects that is not from taxes or fees, which includes things as money from legal settlements or special federal funding for COVID-19 relief.
This measure joins two others that will be on the November ballot: An initiative to reduce the state’s property tax rate and another to impose a new sales tax on legal marijuana sales.
► The Mesa County Commissioners continue to insist that only they have the power to appoint a new election custodian. Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters hasn’t been seen in Colorado for weeks after news broke that she is being investigated by multiple agencies for allegedly breaking into election computers as part of some boneheaded plan to expose nonexistent voter fraud.
► Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser will reportedly make an announcement today regarding a grand jury investigation into the 2019 death of Elijah McClain.
► Nellie Moran is the new Chief of Staff for State Senate Democrats.
► New polling data shows that Coloradans are increasingly concerned about rising out-of-pocket medical costs.
► The Tri-County Health Department, which covers Adams, Arapahoe, and Douglas Counties, made it clear that counties do NOT have the authority to ignore mask mandates in public schools.
Say What, Now?
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► The Secretary of the Arapahoe County Republican Party, Schumé Navarro, will happily explain why her scientific analysis of events proves that QAnon conspiracy theories are largely correct. Voters in Cherry Creek might want to remind neighbors that Navarro is seeking a spot on the Cherry Creek School Board.
► Oklahoma Republican Rep. Markwayne Mullin is being accused of threatening U.S. embassy staff as he tried to help evacuate a few individuals from Afghanistan. The Washington Post has more on this strange story.
► He’s not wrong:
*changes into “Mark Udall Was Right” t-shirt*#copolitics
— Garrett Garner-Wells (@GGW_CO) September 1, 2021
► You DO NOT have a “constitutional right” to refuse the COVID-19 vaccine.
► This week on The Get More Smarter Podcast, hosts Jason Bane and Ian Silverii discuss Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert’s Big Bogus Bonus Bribe (say that three times fast) and the ever-evolving craziness surrounding Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters.