Monday morning news – July 20, 2020

Ohio Gov. warns of growing virus surge » Ohio Governor Mike DeWine warned on Sunday that his state is on track to become the nation’s next big coronavirus hotspot.

DEWINE: You look at our numbers today versus where Florida was a month ago, we have very similar numbers. Se we’re very, very concerned. It’s occurring in bars. It’s occurring in churches. It’s occurring from people who have traveled out of state. 

But he said much of the spread is caused by people gathering in casual settings like backyards. The GOP governor has ordered face coverings in public for about 60 percent of the state. 

Twenty-eight states now mask mandates. But former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb warned that if many people don’t comply, the mandates might not be enough for containment. 

GOTTLIEB: So if 30 percent of the population won’t wear masks anytime and then you only maybe only have maybe 75 percent compliance among the other portion of the population because nobody’s going to do everything all the time, that might not be enough mask wearing to fully get this under control. 

Trump says he can’t guarantee he’ll accept election results » President Trump, in an interview with Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace said he supports wearing masks. But he still feels that decision is best left to governors. 

Also on Sunday, the president said it’s too early to say whether he’ll accept the results of the November election.

WALLACE: Can you give a direct answer—you will accept the election?
TRUMP: I have to see. Look, I have to see. No, I’m not going to just say yes, I’m not going to say—and I didn’t last time either. 

Joe Biden’s campaign responded—quote—”The American people will decide this election. And the United States government is perfectly capable of escorting trespassers out of the White House.”

The president also scoffed at polls that show him lagging behind Biden. He called them fake polls and noted that he trailed in many surveys four years ago as well. 

Ga. Democrats to decide replacement for late Rep. John Lewis on ballot » Georgia Democrats will gather today to decide a replacement on November’s ballot for the late Congressman John Lewis. He died Friday at the age of 80 after serving for more than 30 years in Congress. 

The civil rights icon helped organize the 1963 March on Washington and suffered a fractured skull during the “Bloody Sunday” clash in Selma, Alabama, two years later. He later worked with Republicans to pass legislation authorizing the Museum of African American History on the National Mall. 

Lewis’ seat will remain empty until Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp schedules a special election.

Meantime, lawmakers and other leaders continued to honor his memory on Sunday. Florida Congresswoman Val Demings told ABC’s This Week

DEMINGS: It really felt like a part of America died on Friday. John Lewis was larger than life. I don’t think I’ve ever really met anybody like him. I was in awe of him growing up in the 60s.

Funeral plans for Lewis are not yet public. He announced in December that he had advanced pancreatic cancer.

Netanyahu trial set to resume in January » A Jerusalem court ruled on Sunday that the corruption trial of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will resume in January with evidentiary hearings three days per week. 

The trial opened in May after a two-month delay prompted by concerns over the coronavirus.

Netanyahu faces charges including fraud, breach of trust, and accepting bribes. Prosecutors say he accepted lavish gifts from billionaire friends, and offered political favors to media moguls in exchange for favorable press coverage. 

Netanyahu maintains that he’s done nothing wrong, and that the prosecution is politically motivated. 

Blue Jays can’t play home games in Canada » As the big league baseball season begins this week, one team will have to move to a new city. 

The Canadian government told the Blue Jays it would not allow them to play home games in Toronto. Major League Baseball needed an exemption to Canada’s coronavirus quarantine rules, and the government there says it’s not safe for players to travel back and forth from the United States. 

Team President Mark Shapiro said the simplest alternative would be for the Jays to pay at their spring training facility in Dunedin, Florida. But the Sunshine State is now a hotspot for the coronavirus.  

SHAPIRO: Dunedin is the only one that is 100 percent seamless right now and ready to go. That from a player health standpoint has some challenges. 

With the Blue Jays home opener just nine days away, Shapiro said the club is exploring other alternatives. That includes Sahlen Field in Buffalo, New York, which is home to Toronto’s Triple-A minor league team.

(AP Photo/John Minchillo, File) In this Dec. 13, 2019, file photo, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine speaks about his plans for the coming year during an interview at the Governor’s Residence in Columbus, Ohio. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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