April 13, 2021

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J&J COVID-19 vaccine distribution, voting rights debate, FBI director to testify: 5 things to know Tuesday – USA TODAY

3 min read

Doses of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine to hit distribution centers

Vaccine distribution centers will start receiving 3.9 million doses of the new Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine as early as Tuesday, according to White House officials. A total 20 million doses will be sent throughout March, concentrated more toward the latter half of the month, officials said. Most communities will have all three types of the coronavirus vaccine (J&J, Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech), but not at every vaccination site. All three are safe and effective at preventing what is feared most – severe illness, hospitalization and death, said a senior administration official.

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Supreme Court to debate voting rights case

Five years after Arizona criminalized what critics call “ballot harvesting,” and four months after a presidential election in which the practice was bitterly debated, the Supreme Court will hear arguments Tuesday in a pair of cases that will determine when states may limit voting and, potentially, whether a provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act will stand. Supporters say ballot collection enfranchises low-income voters who work multiple jobs or can’t access transportation. Critics see a potential for ballot tampering and voter intimidation. The outcome of the dispute could have far-reaching implications for the ability to challenge other controversial election laws, including voter ID requirements, that critics say have a disproportionate impact on Black and Latino voters.

FBI director Wray to testify before Senate for first time since Capitol riot

The last time Christopher Wray testified before a congressional committee, the FBI director offered a now-prescient warning of the threat posed by domestic extremists.Six months later, the director returns to the Senate after the deadly Capitol assault that involved some of the very classes of extremists featured in Wray’s stark September warning. Wray is expected to be pressed by lawmakers Tuesday on an array of questions, from law enforcement’s response to the Jan. 6 siege to its capacity to deal with a domestic terror threat. Wray’s testimony also comes as a separate joint committee continues its investigation of the Capitol attack and law enforcement’s failed effort to anticipate it and repel the riots that left five dead, including a Capitol police officer.

‘Read Across America Day,’ once synonymous with Dr. Seuss, is diversifying

Monday marked the start of National Reading Month — with celebrations across the nation planned for “Read Across America Day” on Tuesday. However, the day will look a little different this year, with many U.S. students learning virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s not the only difference: The National Education Association has pivoted from popular children’s author Dr. Seuss to a focus on diverse children’s books, a decision that has generated controversy on social media. While President Joe Biden noted in his “Read Across America Day” presidential proclamation that “for many Americans, the path to literacy begins with storytime in their school classroom,” he differed from Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama in leaving out Dr. Seuss’s name. Here’s what to know about the annual reading celebration, and the recent controversy surrounding it

Starbucks’ spring menu includes oat milk expansion

Oat milk is now a permanent fixture on the Starbucks menu with the coffee chain rolling out Oatly as an option nationwide starting Tuesday. To usher in the non-dairy milk alternative, Starbucks is also introducing a new beverage: the iced shaken espresso. Consumers can purchase the Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso, which combines Blonde espresso, brown sugar, cinnamon and oat milk. Earlier this year, Oatly made headlines for an unusual ad aired during the Super Bowl. The 30-second spot features Oatly CEO Toni Petersson singing the praises of oat milk, with lyrics such as “it’s like milk, but made for humans” and “wow, no cow.” 

Contributing: The Associated Press

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