Compiled by Caleb Kerr
Michael Doti opened the last Monday show of the semester with a report on the European Union’s lawsuit against AstraZeneca after it allegedly failed to meet the agreements of its vaccine production contract.
According to the New York Times, AstraZeneca recently announced that it will only be able to deliver approximately one third of the 300 million doses it was supposed to deliver by the end of June. Because of this, European officials have grown suspicious that AstraZeneca may have broken its contract.
AstraZeneca originally said that its deliveries for the first quarter of the year were going to be lower than expected, which set back the continent’s vaccination plans just as cases began to spike across numerous countries.
Doti reported that the main issue in this lawsuit is whether or not AstraZeneca has done everything it can do to deliver vaccines on time. AstraZeneca’s chief executive Pascal Soriot argues that the contract states that the company only needed to make its “best efforts” to deliver the doses on time.
The EU already made it clear that it will not resign with AstraZeneca after the contract is up.
Ansleigh Edwards continued the news with an update on the closing of a local Watkinsville bar. Pub on Main in downtown Watkinsville will soon close so that the location can be transformed into a local Athens favorite.
On Wednesday, co-owner of Pub on Main Scott Parrish announced via Facebook that the restaurant will become a Blind Pig Tavern. Pub on Main’s final day of operations will be May 15. According to Athens Banner Herald, this will be the fourth location in the Athens area since the opening of the first Blind Pig in 1998.
Co-owners of the Watkinsville Blind Pig Tavern, Brittany and Clint Swords, expect the location to be ready to open in early June. The couple met in 2005 when they were employees of the franchise’s old Baldwin Street location. This will be the first Blind Pig opening for the couple.
Michael came back to deliver an update on the race for Georgia Senate in 2022. Republican Doug Collins announced today that he will not be running for Georgia governor or for US Senate in 2022. With the news, it seems unlikely that a top Republican candidate will challenge Brian Kemp for governor next year, and it could open the door for other Republican candidates to potentially challenge Raphael Warnock for the Senate seat next year.
Collins previously served four terms in Congress, as he represented the 9th District in Northeast Georgia. That district has been recognized as one of the most conservative districts in the entire nation. He was the ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee as well.
His claim to fame during that time was when he ferociously defended former president Donald Trump during his first impeachment trial, arguing that the whole process was a Democratic “sham.” Because of actions like that, he quickly became a favorite of Trump.
In the wake of former US Senator Johnny Isakson retiring, Trump nominated Collins to run, but Kemp ended up choosing Kelly Loeffler. Collins finished third in the special election back in November before Warnock defeated Loeffler two months later.
Doti reported that Collins wants to continue sharing the conservative message across the country, as well as help Republicans win back control of Congress.
Caleb Kerr continued the show with a report on President Biden’s recent statement officially announcing the Armenian massacres of World War I as a genocide. Previous administrations were careful to avoid the subject, but as the pressure grew on the United States to take action, President Biden firmly stated the US’s commitment to human rights abroad.
Armenians have for so long protested and demonstrated for this moment, asking other nations to recognize the “forced migrations, massacres, and starvation” of their ancestors as a genocide. CNN reports that during World War I, it is estimated that between 600,000 and 1.5 million people were killed because of their descent.
Turkey, however, was not pleased with the United States’ response. In a statement, the Turkish President called President Biden’s statements a “vulgar distortion of history.”
While Turkey has remained in opposition of the statement, other nations were quick to use this accusation as political ammunition.
In an attempt to maintain good relations with the Middle-Eastern nation, Turkey’s allies in Europe refrained from passing legislation about the killings. But as Turkey has become increasingly ostracized on the international stage, more and more of these bills have resurfaced and have been passed in parliaments.
Turkey’s opponents such as Russia and Syria also took advantage of Turkey’s situation, siding with the West and passing bills recognizing the Armenian genocide. Despite all the deep political undergirding, the Armenian people are thankful that a “historical wrong has been righted.”
Ansleigh returned with an update on the missing Indonesian submarine. In a news conference Saturday, Indonesia’s navy announced that the submarine was confirmed sunk. This news comes after the naval chief presented debris thought to be from the vessel.
The search continues for the 53 crew members who went missing with the submarine, but hope is fading for the crew as no sign of them has been found so far and they were expected to run out of oxygen early Saturday, according to CNN.
The next step will be pinpointing the exact location of the KRI Nanggala-402 submarine so that authorities can begin the evacuation process. Navy Chief of Staff Yudo Margono said that warships have been deployed to the Bali Sea, where the submarine was last contacted on Wednesday.
The cause of the accident remains unknown. The Navy believes an explosion did not occur but that heavy pressure on the vessel created a crack in the submarine. Yudo said the debris was found floating where the sea is around 850 meters, making a possible evacuation very difficult.
Sarah Train continued the show, warning of a Georgia manhunt in progress. The manhunt is underway for five murder suspects after 37-year-old Rossana Delgado was found dead in Georgia. She was found on April 20 in Gilmer County about 78 miles north of Atlanta.
Authorities have publicly identified the suspects as 30-year-old Megan Alyssa Colone of Stone Mountain, 35-year-old Juan Ayala-Rodriguez of Gainesville, 26-year-old Oscar Manuel Garcia of Austell and 29-year-old Mario Alberto Barbosa-Juarez of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has posted images of a fifth subject as well, asking the public to help identify them.
Train reported that Delgado was a taxi driver in the Atlanta metro area and the mother of two children. Her husband spoke to her on the phone around 7 p.m. on April 16 just before she picked up a passenger.
Investigators ask anyone with information on the suspects to call 1-800-597-TIPS or report information online at the GBI tipline.
Kenzie Harms brought us an update on the charges against a recent University of Georgia graduate. Gary Leach, a UGA graduate student, is in federal custody after being accused of extorting and cyberstalking.
According to the charges, the extortion began in October 2019 when Leach obtained private video calls and photographs of a woman after he promised he would pay her.
He then used these recordings as blackmail and said he would share them with the victim’s family if she didn’t continue to send him content over Instagram. If convicted Leach could be sentenced to five years in prison, years of supervised release and up to a $500,000 fine.
Hunter Townsend continued the news with a critical update on national security concerns. The US military has noticed a startling fact: the location of troops is available for sale on the open market through smartphone data.
The Wall Street Journal reports, “The U.S. government has built robust programs to track terrorists and criminals through warrantless access to commercial data… But those same capabilities are available to US adversaries and the US… has struggled to effectively monitor what software service members are installing on devices and whether that software is secure.”
Last week, Senate Republican Rand Paul and Democrat Ron Wydman released a bill called “The Fourth Amendment is Not for Sale Act,” which would require the US government to obtain a warrant before gaining access to the commercial data of US Citizens.
The Wall Street Journal points out that while this data may upset lawmakers over its constitutional concerns, there are also serious military implications. This has been an issue since 2016, when PlanetRisk, a US corporation, discovered it could track US troop movements during operations despite their phone not being in use.
The Wall Street Journal reports that “The US, by contrast, has few data protections built into its domestic laws—and the result has been that adversaries can monitor a huge swath of the US population through the commercial data bought and sold by U.S. companies—a major risk for intelligence officers, law enforcement and military personnel operating in dangerous environments.”
Sarah returned with an entertainment update. The 93rd annual Academy Award ceremony premiered last night at 8 p.m. on ABC, and it was safe to say that the show was nothing like we’ve ever seen before.
The awards show still had its red carpet moment, but socially distanced with less attendees than usual at Union Station instead of the usual Dolby Theater. This show was more intimate without a live audience and winners were given more time for acceptance speeches.
The night’s big winner was Nomadland, who won the biggest award of the night for Best Picture and Francis Mcdormand took home the award for best actress. Director Chloe Zao became the second woman in history and first woman of color to win best director. Nomadland had a budget of less than $5 million and featured a cast of mostly non-professional actors.
One of the biggest surprises of the night was the last award, best actor, which went to Anthony Hopkins for his work in “The Father.” It was predicted that the award would go to the late Chadwick Boseman.
Pixar took home its 11th best animated feature for Soul and Emerald Fennell won best screenplay for “Promising Young Woman.” Tyler Perry was also honored this year with the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award and gave a powerful speech, urging the audience to “refuse hate.”
It was no surprise that the Oscars would be different because of the pandemic. It created one of the longest award seasons ever, with eligibility being extended into February of this year and a theatrical run wasn’t a requirement for nominees. However, the ceremony was still a prime example that even in a pandemic, the show must go on.
Kenzie Harms came back to deliver an update on the long-anticipated Kentucky Derby coming back to Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May. At the racetrack, social distancing guidelines will spread out the crowd and seating will be limited to 40-50%.
Harms reported that there will be an estimated 45,000 fans in attendance impacting the economy with an estimated $34.6 million versus the $400 million the event typically generates.
Rosanne Mastin said, “There is still excitement and brand awareness associated because it’s such a big tradition. It may not be the 100% capacity we are used to but we are fortunate. We will still realize some of the economic impact from what is usually Louisville’s largest tourism generator.”
Caleb returned to report on the resignation of Georgia’ Attorney General as chairman of the Republican Attorneys General Association. Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr cited a “fundamental difference of opinion” with the other members of the association.
The Associated Press reported that an organization called the Rule of Law Defense Fund, which finances the Attorneys General Association, paid for a robocall to be sent out to supporters encouraging attendance at the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.
Sent prior to the riots on Jan. 6 and referring to the 2020 Presidential election, the robocall stated, “At 1 p.m., we will march to the Capitol building and call on Congress to stop the steal…We are hoping patriots like you will join us to continue to fight to protect the integrity of our elections.”
Attorney General Carr explained after the events at the Capitol that he had not been aware of nor approved of the robocall or the violence it insinuated.
Democratic critics heavily criticized Carr for not stepping down sooner after the Capital riots, noting his recent support of Georgia’s newly passed voting law. Carr stated in a letter that he had “vastly opposite views of the significance of the events of Jan. 6,” and that “the differences have continued as we have tried to restore RAGA’s reputation…”
Michael wrapped up the Monday show with the Sports Power Minute. The Georgia Baseball team was in Columbia taking on the Missouri Tigers, but Friday’s matchup did not go that well. Missouri had a 6-1 lead through seven innings. Josh McAllister hit a three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning to bring the Dogs within two. However, that came with two outs, so Cole Tate was the next man up for Georgia and he struck out and Georgia lost 6-4.
Saturday’s contest was back-and-forth. Missouri scored the first two runs in the bottom of the third inning. Georgia answered with two runs of its own in the top of the fourth inning. Georgia took a 5-4 lead in the top of the seventh inning off of a fielders’ choice. Georgia was one out away from victory, but the Tigers tied the game on an error.
The Bulldogs responded in the top of the 10th with a two RBI triple from Cole Tate and won the game 7-5. Next up for the Dogs is a duel with Georgia Tech at Foley Field tomorrow at 7 p.m.
The Hawks had a great weekend. The team swept a quick two game weekend homestand in their first two games of a stretch without an injured Trae Young. On Friday they defeated the Heat 118-103. Atlanta’s bench outscored Miami’s bench 51-21 and it was too much for the starters to overcome.
Sunday’s win may have been even more impressive, as they shocked the Milwaukee Bucks 111-104. Bogdan Bogdanovic led the team with 32 points, which was one more than Giannis Antetokounmpo’s 31. It was the Hawks’ first regulation win against the Bucks since Jan. 15, 2017. Atlanta sits in fifth place in the eastern conference with 11 games left on the schedule.
It was a Sunday to forget for the Atlanta Braves. In their first game of a seven inning doubleheader against the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Braves lost 5-0. Zac Gallen pitched a complete game. In 83 pitches, he gave up one hit, two walks, and struck out six batters.
And things only got worse. Madison Bumgarner threw 98 pitches on the mound for the Snakes. He gave up no hits, no walks, struck out seven Braves batters and the Diamondbacks won 7-0.
It was a historic day statistically. The Braves now hold the record for fewest hits in a doubleheader in MLB history, with one. Also Gallen and Bumgarner become the first pitching duo to throw complete game shutouts on the same day in 44 years. Atlanta starts a four game set at home with the Chicago Cubs tonight at 7 p.m.