Here's your daily roundup of all the local and national news about COVID-19. (Like our coverage? Please consider donating to the Mercury to keep it comin'!)
• According to the Oregon Health Authority, the state currently has 3,967 positive COVID-19 cases (that's up almost 100 since Friday) and one additional death, for a total of 148. More than 98,000 (that we know of) have died of coronavirus in the United States.
• Deschutes County has seen a recent spike in COVID-19 cases, but here's the twist: The uptick isn't tied to an increase in public gatherings at pubs or restaurants, but in family get-togethers like barbecues and birthdays.
• Clackamas County was allowed to start reopening this weekend. For businesses in the county, demand for their services was mixed.
• Meanwhile, there's been a spike in COVID-19 cases in Central Oregon. Local public health officials say the increase can be traced back to before Deschutes County entered Phase 1 of the state's reopening plan.
• The Baker County judge who proclaimed Gov. Brown's emergency stay at home orders were "null and void" is standing by his decision—which means he has a date with the Oregon Supreme Court.
In a three sentence response, Baker County Circuit Court Judge Matthew Shirtcliff, who vacated more than 20 of @OregonGovBrown executive orders on the state’s response to #Covid_19, told the Oregon Supreme Court he wouldn’t back down from his decision.— Conrad Wilson (@conradjwilson) May 26, 2020
IN NATIONAL NEWS:
• On Friday Trump called for churches to resume in-person services immediately. But instead of popping a couple of hydroxies and sitting in a pew on Sunday, he hit the links at Trump National Golf Club.
Federal records show OSHA worked for six years to create new rules to prepare for an airborne infectious disease pandemic. The Obama White House formally added it to a list of regulations to be implemented in 2017.
Then President Trump took office. https://t.co/D0KJ2HInzt
— NPR (@NPR) May 26, 2020
• While we're all tentatively shuffling towards this pandemic's inevitable second wave, Dr. Mike Ryan of the World Health Organization wants to make it clear we're still not done with the first wave.
• Today in "to the surprise of no one" from the New York Times: "Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee are among the states that have seen recent increases in newly reported cases, several weeks after moving to reopen."
• Despite the fact that White House health experts are increasingly stressing the importance of wearing masks in public, with many businesses mandating their use on their premises, our idiot president is still inclined not to wear them, ever, and retweeted political commentator Brit Hume when he suggested the primary reason is because it's not particularly attractive.
• Related: This Staten Island supermarket scene
• Processing plants for factory farmed meat are starting to reopen, after many were shuttered because they were sites of COVID-19 outbreaks. But these meatpacking facilities aren't being transparent about how many employees currently have the coronavirus. That number is estimated to be over 5,000 across the country.
• The NBA is pursuing a re-opening option that would see their season resumed at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at Orlando's Walt Disney World. Whether the season would pick up in the regular season or skip straight to the playoffs, Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard has already said he's not going to be a part of it if there's "no true opportunity to get into the playoffs."
• Sweden, whose leadership decided to forgo lockdowns in the hopes that young people would speed up a herd immunity, is now questioning whether that (bad) decision was the right one, as herd immunity is not expected to hit their end-of-May target as expected. Sweden's per-capita mortality rate (39.57 deaths per 100,000) is actually higher than America's (30.02 per 100,000).
• Need laughs? Then don't miss the livestream I, Anonymous Show this Thursday, May 28 at 8 pm! Hilarious comedians, jaw-dropping rants and confessions... what more could you possibly need? (Don't say "love.")
• And finally, stop being jealous of this father/daughter singing duo and just enjoy.
Ain’t no mountain high enough for this daddy and daughter.🌎❤️ pic.twitter.com/89mYzKoPDr— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) May 26, 2020