President-elect Joe Biden and future first lady Jill Biden will receive the coronavirus vaccine in public Monday in an effort to show the nation the safety of the vaccine. Vice President Pence and the top leaders in Congress received their first doses of the vaccine last week.
Vice President-elect Kamala D. Harris plans to campaign in Georgia for Democratic candidates Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock ahead of the Jan. 5 runoff elections that will determine control of the Senate. President Trumpâ€™s daughter Ivanka Trump also will be in the state Monday seeking to boost turnout for Sens. David Perdue (R) and Kelly Loeffler (R).
Hereâ€™s what to know:
- Trump has intensified efforts to overturn the election, raising the prospect of a series of radical measures in recent days, including military intervention, seizing voting machines and a 13th-hour appeal to the Supreme Court.
- After months of partisan gridlock and rancorous negotiations, congressional leaders announced a bipartisan deal on an approximately $900 billion economic relief package late Sunday afternoon that would deliver emergency aid to a faltering economy and a nation besieged by surging coronavirus cases.
- The Washington Post and the Partnership for Public Service are tracking nominees for about 800 politically appointed positions that require Senate confirmation.
- Election results are under attack: Here are the facts.
9:32 AM: Virginiaâ€™s statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee removed from U.S. Capitol
Workers have removed a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee that represented Virginia in the U.S. Capitol, laboring in the wee hours of Monday morning to take the figure out of Statuary Hall.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) had requested the removal over the summer after a commission chartered by the General Assembly decided that a man who fought to uphold slavery was not a fitting symbol for a diverse and modern state.
Lee had stood with George Washington since 1909 as Virginiaâ€™s representatives in the Capitolâ€™s honorary hall, where every state gets two statues.
In place of Lee, the state commission has recommended installing a likeness of Barbara Johns, who as a 16-year-old in 1951 protested poor conditions at her all-Black high school in the town of Farmville. Johnsâ€™s court case became part of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that struck down racial segregation in public schools nationwide.
In a statement, Virginia Reps. A. Donald McEachin (D-Va.) and Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.) called it a â€œlong-overdue moment for our Commonwealth.â€
â€œWe are proud to have led the effort in the House of Representatives to replace Leeâ€™s statue,â€ they said. â€œIt is thanks to Virginians across the Commonwealth who have stood up to demand a change that we will now have a figure who truly represents Virginiaâ€™s values in the U.S. Capitol.â€
By: Gregory S. Schneider
8:47 AM: Senate majority leader announces approximately $900 billion deal on emergency relief package
Senate leadership announced a bipartisan deal on an approximately $900 billion economic relief package late Sunday afternoon that would deliver emergency aid to a faltering economy and a nation besieged by surging coronavirus cases.
After months of contentious negotiations and seemingly intractable partisan gridlock, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) took to the Senate floor to say that a deal had been finalized and could be quickly approved.
The emerging stimulus package was expected to direct hundreds of billions of dollars in aid to jobless Americans, ailing businesses and other critical economic needs that have grown as the pandemic ravages the country and batters the economy.
By: Jeff Stein and Mike DeBonis
8:46 AM: More than 1.3 million Georgians have already voted in the Senate runoffs, rivaling general election turnout
ATLANTA â€” More than 1.3 million Georgians have already voted in two Senate runoffs taking place next month â€” a number that rivals the turnout at this point in the November election and points to intense enthusiasm in a pair of races that will determine control of Congress.
Democratic voters have an edge in the early turnout ahead of the Jan. 5 runoffs pitting Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R) against the Rev. Raphael Warnock (D), and Sen. David Perdue (R) against challenger Jon Ossoff (D), a Washington Post analysis of Georgia voter data shows. But Republicans are closing the gap, and the current Democratic lead is slightly smaller than it was at this point in the general election.
By: Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Haisten Willis and Lenny Bronner
8:45 AM: A frustrated Trump redoubles efforts to overturn election result
President Trump has intensified efforts to overturn the election, raising the prospect of a series of radical measures in recent days, including military intervention, seizing voting machines and a 13th-hour appeal to the Supreme Court.
On Sunday, Trump said in a radio interview that he had spoken with Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) about challenging the electoral vote count when the House and Senate convene on Jan. 6 to formally affirm President-elect Joe Bidenâ€™s victory.
â€œHeâ€™s so excited,â€ Trump said of Tuberville. â€œHe said, â€˜You made me the most popular politician in the United States.â€™ He said, â€˜I canâ€™t believe it.â€™ Heâ€™s great. Great senator.â€
Tubervilleâ€™s campaign did not respond to a request for comment on Trumpâ€™s statement, which the president made in an interview with Rudolph W. Giuliani, his personal lawyer, on New Yorkâ€™s WABC radio station.
By: Felicia Sonmez, Josh Dawsey, Dan Lamothe and Matt Zapotosky
8:43 AM: How Trump drove the lie that the election was stolen, undermining voter trust in the outcome
Elena Parent, a Democratic state lawmaker from the Atlanta area, listened incredulously in a small hearing room in early December as a stream of witnesses spun fantastical tales of alleged election fraud before the Georgia Senateâ€™s Judiciary Committee.
A retired Army colonel claimed the stateâ€™s voting machines were controlled by Communists from Venezuela. A volunteer lawyer with President Trumpâ€™s campaign shared surveillance video that she said showed election workers in Atlanta counting â€œsuitcasesâ€ of phony ballots that swung Georgiaâ€™s election to former vice president Joe Biden. The presidentâ€™s personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, told the panel: â€œEvery single vote should be taken away from Biden.â€
â€œSince this has been debunked repeatedly, what evidence can you give to us that counters what our elections officials presented us with only an hour ago?â€ Parent asked one of the witnesses, her voice rising in exasperation. When she tried to ask a follow-up question, the Republican committee chairman cut her off.
Her questions â€” and the fact that the claims were misleading, unsubstantiated or just plain false â€” did little to keep the rumors in check. It didnâ€™t matter that state and local election officials had explained what was in the video and conducted a hand recount to show that the machines were not rigged. It didnâ€™t matter that multiple news outlets detailed, over and over, that there was no evidence of widespread fraud. It didnâ€™t matter that, amid a global pandemic and massive demand for mail ballots, a system under historic strain in fact held up decisively.
By: Amy Gardner