Federal Update: Trump Announces U.S. ‘Terminating’ Relationship with WHO, McConnell: Next Coronavirus Aid Bill Will Be The Last, CDC Quietly Revises Coronavirus Warnings on Reopening Religious Sites

May 29, 2020

  • President Trump on Friday announced that the U.S. is "terminating" its relationship with the embattled World Health Organization (WHO) over its failure to enact reforms in the face of U.S. concerns over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and its pro-China bias. "Because they have failed to make the requested and greatly needed reforms, we will be today be terminating our relationship with the World Health Organization and redirecting those funds to other worldwide and deserving urgent global public health needs," Trump said at a press conference.
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he expects Senate Republicans will begin considering proposals for a "fourth and final" coronavirus response bill to address the needs of the country "in about a month." McConnell said the bill will be narrowly crafted and will focus in particular on jobs and schools. He said there could be funding for small businesses and health care but he will not support extending the additional $600 in federal unemployment benefits that run out at the end of July.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has quietly removed some of its warnings about the coronavirus pandemic and added new language about the First Amendment to its guidance on reopening houses of worship. The agency published guidance last Friday to help religious communities safely reopen for public services with modifications meant to minimize the risk of an outbreak. The new guidance now says that it’s “not intended to infringe on rights protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

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