Coronavirus USA news summary: cases and deaths - 16 May

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Coronavirus live US updates: cases, deaths and news - 16 May

Obama rebukes President Trump

Former President Barack Obama has attacked sitting President Donald Trumps' handling of the coronavirus pandemic. 

"More than anything, this pandemic has fully, finally torn back the curtain on the idea that so many of the folks in charge know what they’re doing. A lot of them aren’t even pretending to be in charge."

Obama was speaking at an online commencement ceremony for Historically Black College and Universities this afternoon. Later, he'll be giving the speech at Graduate Together, for High School Graduates.

Stimulus check eligibility expanded under Heroes Act

The Heroes Act would expand eligibility for stimulus checks to some undocumented immigrants. 


Beach idiot

New Yorker Tarique Peters has been arrested in Hawai'i after posting photos of himself on Instagram on the beach with a surfboard, sunbathing and wandering around Waikiki at night. He arrived on O'ahu Monday and was arrested yesterday. 

Hawai‘i Attorney General Clare Connors said, “We appreciate the assistance of local people who spot flagrant violations of our emergency rules on various social media sites and report them to the appropriate authorities.”

Hawai'i law enforcement has been cracking down on rogue tourists who have been flouting strict rules that they quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

Graduate Together

This evening sees a primetime special honouring the more than three million graduating high school students who are missing out on graduation celebrations. Here's how to tune in...

NY governor slams political bias when it comes to Covid-19

Andrew Cuomo took to his Twitter account and slammed those trying to use the pandemic to seek political gain.



Bundesliga returns

Top flight soccer returned in Germany with the Bundesliga the first of the European leagues to return to action with all games being staged behind closed doors which through up some unusual images.


A cutout of President Donald Trump sits in the window of the headquarters for the Walworth County Republicans on May 15, 2020 in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. In a 4-3 decision, the Wisconsin Supreme Court overturned the state's stay-at-home order, deeming it 'unlawful' and 'unenforceable', allowing non-essential businesses to reopen this week. Scott Olson/Getty Images/AFP

Trump defends US coronavirus response

The US President used his social media account to defend his administration's handling of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

NYC to address overcrowded subways

The city's chief of subways has added his voice to the debate about overcrowding on the NYC system. 

Wall Street Journal headlines

Saturday's edition of the WSJ focuses on the US economy, Graduation Day and plans to temperature check airline passengers. 

US to test century-old tuberculosis drug

Trials have begun on BCG, which researchers believe could prove to be a stopgap while the search for a Covid-19 vaccine continues. 


US President Donald Trump speaks to reporters before boarding Marine One before departing from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on May 15, 2020. - Trump is heading to Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP)


The state of Florida had a high projection of coronavirus confirmed cases but they have managed to control the spreading throughout the outbreak.

Trump's vaccine claims

"By the end of the year if we can, maybe before," is the most recent of POTUS' claims, but health experts have other views.

WHO funding: Trump to match China

U.S. President Donald Trump's administration is set to restore partial funding to the World Health Organization, Fox News reported late on Friday, citing a draft letter.

The Trump administration will "agree to pay up to what China pays in assessed contributions" to the WHO, Fox News reported, quoting from the letter, which would mean about one-tenth of its previous funding amount of about $400 million per year.

Trump suspended U.S. contributions to the WHO on April 14, accusing it of promoting China's "disinformation" about the coronavirus outbreak and saying his administration would launch a review of the organisation. WHO officials denied the claims and China has insisted it was transparent and open.The United States was the WHO's biggest donor.

Holding out for a Heroes Act

It's likely going to remain a major talking point today, and here's one opinion piece on it.

What if the Senate rejects $3tn Heroes Act spend?

Although it won Friday's vote in the House of Representatives, the Heroes Act looks likely to be sent packing by the Republican-controlled Senate.

Full story:

House passes Heroes Act 

The Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (Heroes) Act, a $3-trillion relief bill that includes provision for a second round of $1,200 stimulus checks, has been approved by the US House of Representatives by a vote of 208 to 199.

However, the package is thought to be unlikely to get through the Republican-controlled Senate.

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

All the information you need to understand the coronavirus and ways to stay safe during the Covid-19 pandemic:

Track your stimulus check

Advice on how to follow the progress of your coronavirus Economic Impact Payment if the IRS is sending it to you in paper-check form.

More about finding your stimulus check status here:

New members of US Coronavirus Task Force 

New members include Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, Labor Secretary Gene Scalia, National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins, Food and Drug Administration Director of the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research Dr. Peter Marks and Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration Thomas Engels.

Some of the new task force members, such as Perdue, had been fairly regular participants in task force meetings despite not previously being official members.

New York subway may have played role in spreading Covid-19

There is scientific evidence that the public transit spread the coronavirus in the city that became the epicenter of the pandemic.

Read more:

Trump gives update on Covid-19 vaccine

President Donald Trump said on Friday that the US government is working with other countries to quickly develop a vaccine to prevent infection by the coronavirus while also preparing for its distribution once one is ready.

Trump said the government would invest in all the top coronavirus vaccine candidates, and said a list had been narrowed to 14 promising potential vaccines with a plan to narrow those down further.

J.C. Penney files for bankruptcy

J.C. Penney, a 118-year-old retailer which survived the Great Depression, filed for bankruptcy on Friday as US retail sales tumbled at a record pace, crushed by restrictions meant to stall the pandemic.

Heroes Act goes to vote in House

House speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday unveiled the Heroes Act, a $3tn coronavirus relief bill that would see eligible Americans receive a second stimulus check. It is being voted on by the House today.

Read the full story here

United States preparing airport measures

Coronavirus live US: welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, United States-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which has now led to over 306,000 deaths worldwide. We'll endeavour to keep you abreast of the latest news and statistics as they emerge.