Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.
Tropical Storm Isaias grazes Florida, heads up East Coast
The Florida coast looked set to avoid major damage late on Sunday with Tropical Storm Isaias keeping offshore as it rumbles north, although it could strengthen to a hurricane by the time it reaches the Carolinas on Monday packing heavy winds and rain. By 8 p.m. ET (0000 GMT), Isaias was about 55 miles (90 km) east-southeast of Cape Canaveral, Florida, heading north-northwestward with top sustained winds of 70 miles per hour (110 km per hour), the National Hurricane Center said.
NASA astronauts cap historic `odyssey´ aboard SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule
U.S. astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, who flew to the International Space Station in SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon, splashed down in the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday after a two-month voyage that was NASA’s first crewed mission from home soil in nine years. Behnken and Hurley, tallying 64 days in space, undocked from the station on Saturday and returned home to land their capsule in calm waters off Florida’s Pensacola coast on schedule at 2:48 p.m. ET following a 21-hour overnight journey aboard Crew Dragon “Endeavor.”
White House says not optimistic on near-term deal for coronavirus relief bill
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said on Sunday he was not optimistic on reaching agreement soon on a deal for the next round of legislation to provide relief to Americans hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. “I’m not optimistic that there will be a solution in the very near term,” Meadows said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” as staff members from both sides were meeting to try to iron out differences over the bill.
Seven Marines, one sailor presumed dead after training accident off California
Seven U.S. Marines and a Navy sailor missing since a training accident off the Southern California coast were presumed dead on Sunday after the military concluded an extensive 40-hour search. The service members had been missing since their amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) sank during an exercise on Thursday. Seven other Marines were rescued while one was killed, the Marine Corps had said previously.
Southern California ‘Apple Fire’ forces nearly 8,000 to evacuate
Nearly 8,000 residents of Riverside County in Southern California were forced to evacuate their homes on Saturday as a wildfire spread uncontained across more than 4,000 acres, the County fire department said. The fire, dubbed the Apple Fire by local firefighters – who routinely give blazes identifying names – was reported Friday in Cherry Valley, a community about 75 miles east of Los Angeles and had destroyed at least one family home as of Saturday evening.
U.S. CDC reports 4,601,526 coronavirus cases
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Sunday reported 4,601,526 cases of the novel coronavirus, an increase of 58,947 cases from its previous count, and said that the number of deaths had risen by 1,132 to 154,002. The CDC reported its tally of cases of COVID-19 as of 4 p.m. ET on Aug. 1, versus its previous report a day earlier. (https://bit.ly/38rDity)
Arizona congressman tests positive for coronavirus
Representative Raul Grijalva, an Arizona Democrat, has tested positive for coronavirus but feels fine and has gone into isolation, he said in a statement on Saturday. Grijalva, 72, was told of the positive test by the attending physician of the capitol, he said. “I currently have no symptoms, feel fine, and hope to make a quick and speedy recovery,” he said.
U.S. election will be Nov. 3 as planned, Trump advisers say
The White House and Donald Trump’s campaign on Sunday sought to shut down the Republican president’s musings on delaying the 2020 vote, saying there will be an election on Nov. 3. White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said Trump was raising concerns about mail-in ballots when he floated the idea of delaying the U.S. vote.
Trump says federal government should again seek death penalty for Boston bomber Tsarnaev
President Donald Trump said Sunday that the federal government should again seek the death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. In a tweet, Trump said the federal government must challenge a Friday appeals court decision overturning the death penalty for the 2013 attack.
U.S. coronavirus ‘extraordinarily widespread,’ White House experts say
The United States is in a new phase of the novel coronavirus outbreak with infections “extraordinarily widespread” in rural areas as well as cities, White House coronavirus experts said on Sunday. Coronavirus cases continue to surge in some parts of the country and the public health officials are trying to work with governors to tailor responses for each state.