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*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
► Governor Jared Polis announced on Monday that Coloradans can now receive free COVID-19 testing. From :
Ten weeks after the coronavirus’s presence first was confirmed in the state, any Coloradan with COVID-19 symptoms can now get tested, for free, whether or not they have health insurance, Gov. Jared Polis announced Monday.
That’s a major change. In the initial months of the pandemic, testing was limited largely to front-line health workers and people who already were hospitalized with suspected COVID-19, or who had severe enough symptoms they could secure a doctor’s order.
Since mid-March, Polis has said the state needed to be testing up to 10,000 people every day in order to execute an appropriate response — but Colorado, for many weeks, was only testing a few hundred people every day. Only recently has the state consistently been testing several thousand people per day, with its daily peak of about 4,500 reached last week.
That it took the state so long to reach this testing capacity was a point of great frustration for the governor, who previously described himself as “so disappointed” in the country’s meager testing infrastructure.
If you feel like you have any coronavirus symptoms — including a dry cough, shortness of breath or loss of a sense of smell — then you should get tested ASAP. Click here to locate a testing site near you.
► Governor Jared Polis signed an executive order outlining spending for federal stimulus funding related to the coronavirus outbreak — the bulk of which is going to local school districts. Republicans in the state Senate are very sad that Polis didn’t ask for their advice, or something.
► Senator Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) can’t find the words to even come close to criticizing President Trump, and it’s killing his re-election hopes.
Here’s another bad sign for Gardner: He’s being used as a measuring stick for Senate Republican hopefuls in 2020:
McSally entering Gardner territory….dead man walking https://t.co/xqjHaOnrVO
— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) May 19, 2020
► President Trump told reporters on Monday that he has been taking a potentially-deadly medication for the last week or so in order to combat a virus that he doesn’t even have. On Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence said that he is not taking hydroxychloroquine.
If you’re looking for political news that isn’t about Coronavirus, it’s available right after the jump…
SERIOUSLY, THERE WILL BE NON-CORONAVIRUS NEWS MOMENTARILY…
► Lauren “Yosemite Samantha” Boebert was more than happy to get some free press last week for opening her Rifle restaurant and snubbing local and state health regulations. Now, it seems, she’s sorta wishing she had a do-over.
► Senator Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) says that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, is “a national treasure.”
► Colorado Public Radio follows up on Gov. Jared Polis’ statements from Sunday that schools in Colorado may re-open in the fall…with some significant differences.
► In his never-ending quest to cast blame anywhere but toward himself, President Trump is now threatening to permanently cancel funding for the World Health Organization. Despite plenty of evidence to the contrary, Trump continues to insist that the WHO is somehow responsible for not containing COVID-19.
► State Rep. Mark Baisley (R-Roxborough Park) is throwing around some pretty big accusations, as 9News reports:
The Republican state representative who wanted charges brought against the head of Colorado’s public health department said Monday that he does not want anyone to go to prison over death certificates written during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Though State Rep. Mark Baisley (R-Roxborough Park) also said he does not have proof that Jill Ryan, the executive director of the Colorado Dept. of Health Environment (CDPHE), knowingly altered death certificates to inflate COVID-19 deaths in the state.
Baisley told Next, “I’m out for truth,” which is an interesting thing to say after you’ve accused a state department of wrongdoing WITHOUT ANY PROOF.
► The City of Denver is helping local restaurants find a way to reopen by encouraging more outdoor dining availability.
► (D-Northglenn), a registered nurse who has been volunteering to assist with treating COVID-19 patients in a Chicago-area jail.
► A judge has ordered a mental health evaluation for Bradley Bunn, the anti-social distancing protestor who admitted to making pipe bombs in his home.
► As KDVR reports, drive-in movie theaters in Colorado are apparently reopening without permission. Also, Colorado apparently still has a few drive-in movie theaters.
► Municipal leaders in Aurora are pushing for hazard pay for police officers and firefighters.
► Scientists report that carbon emissions worldwide dropped 17% because of restrictions related to the coronavirus.
AT LAST: POLITICAL NEWS THAT IS (MOSTLY) NOT ABOUT CORONAVIRUS…
► Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is trying to explain away President Trump’s Friday firing of yet another inspector general, but as writes, it’s not working:
OK. So, Pompeo — according to Bulatao’s explanation — asked Trump to fire Linick because of leaks to the media about ongoing IG investigations that they had absolutely no evidence that Linick had been involved in? Uh, what?
Fishy, right? Especially when you consider what we know about Linick and Pompeo…
…Republicans’ willingness to let Pompeo (and Trump) skate doesn’t change the fact that the secretary of state’s explanation of why Linick deserves to be fired simply doesn’t check out. At all.
As Colorado Public Radio reports, Colorado Republicans such as Sen. Cory Gardner and Rep. Ken Buck (also the Chairman of the State Republican Party) have absolutely nothing to say about Trump’s ongoing purge of inspector generals.
► On the topic of Trump’s political purging, James Hohmann of writes that Trump has been emboldened by the fact that he gets little resistance from elected Republicans:
As the novel coronavirus killed nearly 90,000 people in the United States and tens of millions lost their jobs, President Trump has fired or sidelined the chief watchdogs for the intelligence community, the Pentagon, and the Departments of Health, Transportation and State. This systemic effort to shield his administration from oversight and accountability has been aided and abetted by the relative silence of congressional Republicans after each move…
…Republican senators are privately petrified of the president using his bully pulpit against them. The president holds the Machiavellian view that it’s better to be feared than loved, and this approach has proved particularly potent with other leaders of the party he didn’t even join until 2009. “Real power is, I don’t even want to use the word, fear,” Trump told The Washington Post in 2016.
For fear of being on the wrong end of a mean Tweet…
► A coalition of business leaders in Colorado is suing Gov. Jared Polis and Secretary of State Jena Griswold over a decision to allow online petition gathering for ballot initiatives.
► Discussions continue to percolate about a potential “emergency tax” provision that could theoretically be implemented by lawmakers. State Rep. Daneya Esgar, the Chairwoman of the Joint Budget Committee, explained why this probably wouldn’t work in the latest episode of .
► Republicans outlined their priorities for the remainder of the Colorado legislative session once lawmakers reconvene on Tuesday. As Denver7 notes, most of the GOP’s talking points have a familiar focus: Tax cuts.
► Former Gov. John Hickenlooper received the endorsement of the Congressional Black Caucus in his bid to win the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination.
► As NBC News reports, there is nothing that President Trump won’t do for a minor slight:
It’s been a White House tradition for decades: A first-term president hosts a ceremony in the East Room for the unveiling of the official portrait of his immediate predecessor that will hang in the halls of the White House for posterity.
Republican presidents have done it for Democratic presidents, and vice versa — even when one of them ascended to the White House by defeating or sharply criticizing the other.
“We may have our differences politically,” President Barack Obama said when he hosted former President George W. Bush for his portrait unveiling in 2012, “but the presidency transcends those differences.”
Yet this modern ritual won’t be taking place between Obama and President Donald Trump, according to people familiar with the matter. And if Trump wins a second term in November, it could be 2025 before Obama returns to the White House to see his portrait displayed among every U.S. president from George Washington to Bush.
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► House Speaker Nancy Pelosi trolled President Trump on his, uh, fitness on Monday. This was trending on Twitter on Tuesday:
Jane Roe’s shocking deathbed confession: Her anti-abortion turn was “all an act” perpetrated by the Christian right, who paid her close to a half million dollars and fed her anti-abortion scripts to read https://t.co/kfYvhZNgRV
► Don’t forget to listen to latest episode of , featuring an in-depth interview with Rep. Daneya Esgar (D-Pueblo), the Chairwoman of the Joint Budget Committee.
For more political learnings, check out The Get More Smarter Show or The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to give Colorado Pols a thumbs up on Facebook and Twitter.
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