Weekly Roundup: February 7—14
The Weekly Roundup by GWCD is a collaboration between members of the news & blog committee to compile three main headlines from the week. As one of the goals of the committee is to keep our GWCD community updated on current events, the Weekly Roundup is intended as an easy way for members to read up on the highlights from each week in addition to the articles published regularly by our members.
Senate Acquits Former President Trump
By Ty Brown
The United States Senate has ended the impeachment trial with only 57 votes for conviction,
falling short of the supermajority needed to convict. Republican Senators Burr, Cassidy, Collins, Murkowski, Sasse, Toomey, and Romney joined with all 50 Democratic Senators to vote for conviction. Many other Republicans, including Minority Leader McConnell, made it clear that they blamed the former President for the events of January 6, but still declined to vote to convict.
On Saturday morning, the House Impeachment managers asked for witnesses to be called in the Senate impeachment trial of the former President. The Senate voted 55-45 in favor of calling witnesses, with Senators Collins, Murkowski, Graham, Romney, and Sasse joining all of the Senate’s Democratic members to vote in favor of witnesses. However, a few hours later, the Senate agreed to enter comments from Representative Herrera Beutler (R-WA) into the record.
CDC Releases New K-12 School Reopening Guidelines
By Abby Osborne
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidelines about reopening K-12 schools on Friday.
These new guidelines explain the possibility of a safe reopening of schools if they follow “measures designed to slow the coronavirus’s spread.” The CDC said elementary school students—even ones residing in “communities with high transmission rates” —can receive some instruction in person, but those in middle and high school “may attend in-person classes safely when the virus is less prevalent” and prepare “to switch to hybrid or remote learning in communities experiencing intense outbreaks.”
Additionally, the CDC said it isn’t a “prerequisite” for schools to vaccinate their teachers in order to reopen schools, but it is a “priority.” On a phone briefing with reporters on Friday, the CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky explained the CDC isn’t “mandating schools reopen.”
GameStop Stock Skyrockets After Reddit Fuels Squeeze
By Ned Heyman
In an effort to inflict some pain on Wall Street hedge funds, recreational stock traders met on the subreddit r/wallstreetbets and purchased large amounts of stock in video game retailer GameStop through apps like Robinhood. By January 23rd, shares in GameStop cost over $500, nearly 30 times the share price on January 1st. This massive increase in price forced several large hedge funds to sell their short positions on the stock at a loss. In essence, these funds had bet on GameStop stock losing value, and were dealt huge losses by the increase.
On January 28th, Robinhood began preventing its users from buying more stock in a number of affected companies, including GameStop. This has caused widespread outcry from both politicians and the app’s users, causing some to file suit and lawmakers to promise investigations and hearings into what they describe as market manipulation.