What is holding up the coronavirus relief package in Congress?

Ben White, Chief Economic Correspondent for Politico, provides his perspective on the news in US politics:

What is holding up the coronavirus relief package in Congress and how would it help Americans?

The biggest holdup is Democrats are not comfortable with the $500 billion fund to bail out certain industries like the airlines. They think there are not enough strings attached, not enough limits on executive pay or stock buybacks. They also want more unemployment insurance, extensions, and other efforts to aid individuals. But overall, it would send checks to a lot of Americans, earning under $100,000 or $75,000. It would do a lot to help bail out small businesses. So, a lot of good stuff in there and I think they'll make a deal.


Is the coronavirus epidemic bringing our politicians closer together or further apart?

Well, right now, they're pretty far apart. I think more economic damage, further drops in the stock market, will start to bring them together. We'll get one big package done and then they'll have to come back and do a lot more, I think.

Why has Joe Biden been so invisible in recent days?

Well, this has been really puzzling to me. He was pretty much dark for a long period of time. That's starting to change. He did a briefing today on camera. He did some stuff yesterday. I think he's starting to come out and push back on how President Trump has handled this crisis. I think we'll see a lot more from Joe Biden in the coming days.


How will our cities and lives change in the future? What about a structure with a roller skating rink above a swimming pool, made out of transparent solar panels that power the entire park? This was the innovation invented by Eni's young researchers based on Luminescent Solar Concentrators, developed through Eni's research.

Watch the latest episode of Funny Applications, Eni's video series that imagines new uses for technology.

For 30 years, citizens of Hong Kong have gathered in Victoria Park on the evening of June 4 to honor the peaceful protesters massacred in Beijing's Tiananmen Square on that date in 1989. It has been the only public Tiananmen commemoration permitted on Chinese soil.

This year, the park was surrounded by barricades to keep people out. The officially stated reason for the shut-down? Crowds spread coronavirus. (In this city of more than 7 million, COVID has so far killed four people.)

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In an interview with GZERO World host Ian Bremmer, Hong Kong lawmaker Dennis Kwok, an outspoken pro-democracy advocate, expresses his concerns that the current "draconian" laws China's leadership is forcing upon his city has expedited the end of the "one country, two systems" policy established in 1997.

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Big news, of course, that former Secretary of Defense Mattis comes out with a public statement basically calling Trump's rule, his actions, unconstitutional and unfit for office, more divisive than any president he's ever seen.

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French protests over racial injustice: The George Floyd protests in the United States have sparked solidarity demonstrations around the world, with people flocking to US embassies in Berlin, London and elsewhere to express their outrage. But they have also inspired other countries to reexamine racial justice within their own societies. In France, where street demonstrations are practically a national pastime, thousands of people have gathered in support of the family of Adama Traoré, a 24-year old black man who died in police custody back in 2016. At least 20,000 Parisians demonstrated Wednesday, despite coronavirus bans on public gatherings. Protesters adopted similar language to the Floyd protests, demanding accountability for the officers who violently pinned down Traoré during a dispute over an identity check, leading to his death. Renewed focus on this case, which has become a potent symbol of police brutality in France, comes as coronavirus lockdowns have recently stoked tensions between the police and the mostly-minority residents of Paris' banlieues (low-income suburbs).

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