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The Morning Rundown™

Sen. McConnell hospitalized, Norfolk Southern to testify: March 9 rundown

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Sen. Mitch McConnell hospitalized 

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has been hospitalized after falling at a hotel late Wednesday. Sen. McConnell, R-Ky., is in the hospital receiving treatment after falling at a Washington hotel during a private dinner, according to his spokesperson. There are limited details available on his recovery.

Sen. McConnell is 81 years old. He is serving his seventh six-year term in the Senate. He was first elected in 1984. McConnell is one of the most powerful lawmakers in Washington. He served as Senate majority leader from 2015 to 2021 and has served as the Senate minority leader since.

President Biden to unveil budget proposal

President Biden will be in Philadelphia on Thursday to unveil his budget proposal aimed to cut deficits by $3 trillion dollars over the next decade, according to the White House.

Part of the plan is to increase the Medicare payroll tax on people making more than $400,000 a year. The plan would also impose a tax on the holdings of billionaires. The budget proposal will be released in full Thursday. It comes at a time the U.S. has reached its debt limit and Republicans and Democrats are at odds on raising the ceiling and spending cuts. By this summer, the U.S. could exhaust emergency measures currently in place to keep Washington running.

Arrest made in American kidnapping in Mexico

The White House says is is working with Mexican authorities to track down the people responsible for ambushing four Americans who crossed into Mexico through the city Matamoros. One person has been arrested in the kidnapping and killing. The bodies of two Americans killed are expected to be returned to the U.S. Thursday. Mexico’s president blames the Gulf Cartel for what he believes may have been a deadly case of mistaken identity. The president said the Americans were caught in the middle of what was a shootout between rival cartels.

Norfolk Southern CEO to testify before Senate

The CEO of Norfolk Southern will testify in a Senate hearing Thursday. Senators are expected to press the rail company on its role in two derailments in Ohio, one in East Palestine that resulted in a toxic chemical release and a second derailment in Ohio that occurred the same month. CEO Alan Shaw is expected to make an apology at Thursday’s hearing and also offer tens of millions of dollars to help in recovery efforts.

The company has announced voluntary safety upgrades following the derailment that could have resulted in an explosion if officials did not initiate the toxic chemical release. Senators are expected to ask the company to do more and thoroughly lay out safety plans as the transportation sector is under the microscope after several high-profile derailments.

House members sensitive data hacked, sold on dark web

Members of the House and their staff have been told their sensitive personal information was exposed and some of it is being sold for purchase on the dark web after DC Health Link, the health insurance marketplace for Washington, was hacked. The data breach was reported on Wednesday. The size and the scope of the hack is unknown.

The FBI said the individuals online selling the stolen information don’t seem to realize the high-level of sensitivity of the stolen data, making them believe elected officials were not targeted in the breach. DC Health Link is providing impacted customers identity and credit monitoring services.

“Zombie viruses” discovered in the Arctic

Apparently, climate change currently creating warmer temps in the Arctic poses a whole other type of danger people may not be aware of. Viruses once frozen in permafrost for nearly 50,000 years are still alive, according to a set of scientists.

The scientists have reportedly revived what they call “zombie viruses” that lived among animals and humans thousands of years ago. They found frozen viruses and are experimenting whether they are still infectious. So far, they have found five that are.

While it sounds like the latest sci-fi movie plot, the scientists say their research is indicative of a big problem. They believe ancient viruses, currently frozen over, can come back to life and threaten humans and animals if the warming of the Arctic continues.

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SENATE MINORITY LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL HAS BEEN HOSPITALIZED AFTER FALLING AT A HOTEL LATE WEDNESDAY.
THIS IS STRAIGHT ARROW NEWS.
UNBIASED. STRAIGHT FACTS.
[L3: SEN. MCCONNELL HOSPITALIZED]
{MITCH MCCONNELL FALL VO}
SENATOR MITCH MCCONNELL OF KENTUCKY IS IN THE HOSPITAL THIS MORNING RECEIVING TREATMENT — AFTER FALLING AT A WASHINGTON HOTEL DURING A PRIVATE DINNER — ACCORDING TO HIS SPOKESPERSON.
THERE ARE LIMITED DETAILS RIGHT NOW ON HIS RECOVERY.
MCCONNELL IS 81 YEARS OLD — SERVING HIS SEVENTH SIX-YEAR TERM IN THE SENATE —
FIRST ELECTED IN 19-84.
MCCONNELL IS ONE OF THE MOST POWERFUL LAWMAKERS IN WASHINGTON —
SERVING AS SENATE MAJORITY LEADER FROM 2015 TO 2021.
AND SERVING AS THE SENATE MINORITY LEADER SINCE.
{ANCHOR}
[L3: BIDEN TO UNVEIL BUDGET PROPOSAL]
PRESIDENT BIDEN WILL BE IN PHILADELPHIA TODAY TO UNVEIL HIS BUDGET PROPOSAL —
AIMED TO CUT DEFICITS BY THREE TRILLION DOLLARS OVER THE NEXT DECADE ACCORDING TO THE WHITE HOUSE.
{BIDEN BUDGET PROPOSAL VO USE THIS ONE}
PART OF THE PLAN IS TO INCREASE THE MEDICARE PAYROLL TAX ON PEOPLE MAKING MORE THAN 400 THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR.
AND IMPOSE A TAX ON THE HOLDINGS OF BILLIONAIRES.
WHILE THE PRESIDENT PLANS TO GENERATE MONEY THROUGH INCREASED TAXES ON THE WEALTHY —
HE IS LOOKING TO ALSO EXPAND AND SECURE MEDICARE AND SOCIAL SECURITY LONG TERM.
{BIDEN BUDGET PROPOSAL SOT}
[NAME SUPER: Karine Jean-Pierre | White House press secretary]
[LABEL: MARCH 8, 2023 | WASHINGTON]
{“The president does not believe in trickle down economics. This is something that he’s talked about even during the State of the Union, where we know it doesn’t work. So the president has rejigger that thinking and wants to build an economy that matters for everyone.”}
{ANCHOR}
THE BUDGET PROPOSAL WILL BE RELEASED IN FULL TODAY.
IT COMES AT A TIME THE U.S. HAS REACHED ITS DEBT LIMIT —
AND REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS ARE AT ODDS ON RAISING THE CEILING AND SPENDING CUTS.
BY THIS SUMMER — THE U.S. COULD EXHAUST EMERGENCY MEASURES CURRENTLY IN PLACE KEEPING WASHINGTON RUNNING.
THE WHITE HOUSE SAYS THEY ARE WORKING WITH MEXICAN AUTHORITIES TO TRACK DOWN THE PEOPLE RESPONSIBLE FOR AMBUSHING FOUR AMERICANS WHO CROSSED INTO MEXICO THROUGH THE CITY MATAMOROS.
SO FAR ONE PERSON HAS BEEN ARRESTED IN THE KIDNAPPING AND KILLING.
THE BODIES OF TWO AMERICANS KILLED ARE EXPECTED TO BE RETURNED TO THE U.S. TODAY.
MEXICO’S PRESIDENT BLAMES THE GULF CARTEL FOR WHAT HE BELIEVES MAY HAVE BEEN A DEADLY CASE OF MISTAKEN IDENTITY.
THE PRESIDENT SAYING THE AMERICANS WERE CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF WHAT WAS A SHOOTOUT BETWEEN RIVAL CARTELS.
HAPPENING TODAY —
THE CEO OF NORFOLK SOUTHERN WILL BE TESTIFYING IN A SENATE HEARING TODAY.
SENATORS ARE EXPECTED TO PRESS THE RAIL COMPANY ON ITS ROLE IN TWO DERAILMENTS IN OHIO — ONE IN EAST PALESTINE THAT RESULTED IN A TOXIC CHEMICAL RELEASE AND A SECOND DERAILMENT IN OHIO THAT OCCURED THE SAME MONTH.
{NORFOLK SENATE HEARING VO}
CEO ALAN SHAW IS EXPECTED TO MAKE AN APOLOGY AT TODAY’S HEARING —
AND ALSO OFFER TENS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO HELP IN RECOVERY EFFORTS.
THE COMPANY HAS ANNOUNCED VOLUNTARY SAFETY UPGRADES FOLLOWING THE DERAILMENT THAT COULD HAVE RESULTED IN AN EXPLOSION IF OFFICIALS DID NOT INITIATE THE TOXIC CHEMICAL RELEASE.
BUT THE SENATORS ARE EXPECTED TO ASK THE COMPANY TO DO MORE —
AND THOROUGHLY LAY OUT SAFETY PLANS AS THE TRANSPORTATION SECTOR IS UNDER THE MICROSCOPE AFTER SEVERAL HIGH PROFILE DERAILMENTS.
MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE AND THEIR STAFF HAVE BEEN TOLD THEIR SENSITIVE PERSONAL INFORMATION WAS EXPOSED — AND SOME OF IT BEING SOLD FOR PURCHASE ON THE DARKWEB — AFTER “D.C. HEALTH LINK” —
THE HEALTH INSURANCE MARKETPLACE FOR WASHINGTON — WAS HACKED.
THE DATA BREACH WAS REPORTED ON WEDNESDAY —
THE SIZE AND THE SCOPE OF THE HACK IS UNKNOWN.
{ANCHOR}
THE FBI SAID THE INDIVIDUALS ONLINE SELLING THE STOLEN INFORMATION DON’T SEEM TO REALIZE THE “HIGH-LEVEL OF SENSITIVITY” OF THE STOLEN DATA — MAKING THEM BELIEVE ELECTED OFFICIALS WERE NOT TARGETED IN THE BREACH.
DC HEALTH LINK IS PROVIDING IMPACTED CUSTOMERS IDENTITY AND CREDIT MONITORING SERVICES.
APPARENTLY CLIMATE CHANGE CURRENTLY CREATING WARMER TEMPS IN THE ARCTIC POSE A WHOLE OTHER TYPE OF DANGER YOU MIGHT NOT BE AWARE OF —
VIRUSES ONCE FROZEN IN PERMAFROST FOR NEARLY 50 THOUSAND YEARS —
ARE STILL ALIVE — ACCORDING TO A SET OF SCIENTISTS.
THEY HAVE REPORTEDLY REVIVED WHAT THEY CALL “ZOMBIE VIRUSES” THAT LIVED AMONG ANIMALS AND HUMANS THOUSANDS OF YEARS AGO.
THEY FIND FROZEN OVER VIRUSES AND EXPERIMENTED WHETHER THEY ARE STILL INFECTIOUS.
AND WHILE IT SOUNDS LIKE THE LATEST SCI-FI MOVIE PLOT —
THE SCIENTISTS SAY THEIR RESEARCH IS INDICATIVE OF A BIG PROBLEM.
THAT ANCIENT VIRUSES — FROZEN OVER — CAN COME BACK TO LIFE.