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Good evening. Here’s the latest at the end of Thursday.
1. President Biden unveiled his framework for a $1.85 trillion economic and environmental bill. Now he has to persuade his party to back it.
By late afternoon, the president’s appeal appeared to have failed to break the logjam among Democrats. Crucial details of the legislation remained in flux, and progressives were resisting pressure to quickly throw their support behind a separate $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package that has already passed the Senate.
The largest key provision commits $555 billion to climate programs. Some $400 billion is devoted to universal prekindergarten and reducing child care costs. Some Democratic priorities like paid family leave, free community college and lower prescription drugs for seniors were dropped.
The new framework comes days before Biden is set to attend a global climate summit in Glasgow, where he hopes to point to the deal as evidence of America’s commitment to tackling climate change.
2. A complaint for forcible touching has been filed against former Gov. Andrew Cuomo, according to a spokesman for New York State’s court system.
The complaint, signed by an investigator from the Albany County Sheriff’s Office, said Cuomo “forcibly” placed “his hand under the blouse shirt of the victim” and touched the victim’s left breast “for the purposes of degrading and gratifying his sexual desires, all contrary to the provisions of the statute.”
The complaint, which was signed on Oct. 25, said the incident took place on the afternoon of Dec. 7, 2020, on the second floor of the governor’s Executive Mansion in Albany. There was some confusion today surrounding the complaint, which was reportedly filed erroneously.
Cuomo has repeatedly denied the accusations that eventually led to his resignation in August.
3. The leaders of some of the most powerful energy companies in the world faced questioning on climate change during a House hearing.
House Democrats grilled executives of Exxon Mobil, Chevron, BP and Shell over allegations that they spread disinformation about the role played by fossil fuels in global warming in order to slow action on climate change. Representative Carolyn Maloney pressed the companies to acknowledge their “central role in this crisis” and to commit “to meaningful and immediate action.”
The executives denied the allegations, promoting their support for a transition to clean energy, including the Paris accord.
In other climate news, China’s new pledge changes little, in what may be a bad omen for the global climate summit next week. The country is also rushing to burn more coal to address an energy shortage.
4. Goodbye Facebook, hello Meta (kind of).
Facebook is changing its corporate name to Meta in a nod to its push into the “metaverse,” a unification of online, virtual and augmented worlds. The change comes with a new logo designed like an infinity-shaped symbol. Facebook, Instagram and other apps will remain, but under the Meta umbrella.
The move punctuates how Mark Zuckerberg, the chief executive, plans to refocus his company on what he sees as the next digital frontier. The change may also help distance the company from its many controversies, including how it spreads hate speech and misinformation.
5. How common are Covid breakthrough cases, really?
Federal data shows notable differences in breakthrough death rates by age and slight differences in both case and death rates by vaccine brand, trends that experts say are important to consider as Americans weigh whether to get a booster shot. While the data indicates that immunity against the infection may be slowly waning for vaccinated people, vaccines continue to be very protective.
Separately, China is the only country still chasing full eradication of the coronavirus, staking its political legitimacy on controlling it better than other countries are.
7. There’s a new crop of employees determining the norms and styles of the workplace.
People in their 20s rolling their eyes at the habits of their elders is a longstanding trend, but many employers say there’s a new boldness in the way Gen Z dictates taste. The generational frictions are now particularly apparent in companies run by and catering to a largely millennial demographic.
“They celebrate human emotion, instead of having an outdated framework of what corporate should be,” one 42-year-old manager said.
The coronavirus pandemic has spawned a new kind of worker who wants an office out of, but close to, the home. Here’s why co-working spaces are betting on the suburbs.
8. The World Series is tied at a game apiece as it heads to Atlanta.
The championship has not been to town since 1999, and the atmosphere should be electric, our baseball columnist writes — not least because Atlanta fans perceive the Houston Astros, and Major League Baseball, as villains. Games 3 and 4 are on Friday and Saturday.
9. How did elephants and walruses get their tusks? It’s a long story.
Researchers dated the first emergence of tusks 255 million years ago to a family of mammal relatives known as dicynodonts — tusked, turtle-beaked herbivores ranging in stature from gopher-size to six-ton behemoths. A new study determined that two key adaptations allowed teeth to evolve into tusks: Ligament-like attachments supporting teeth appeared, and, like modern mammals, the dicynodonts didn’t continuously replace their teeth.
Today, New York City is experiencing a surprising return of native wildlife. One naturalist called it “the greenest big city on Earth.”
10. And finally, dressing up your bagels and schmear.
By one count, New York had more than 1,500 Jewish delis in the 1930s. With changing demographics, diet trends and rising rents, that number has dwindled into the 10s. But as extinction approached, a new species emerged: the designer deli.
As part of our special section on design, we look at the décor of the new sandwich shops. Our writers also look at a Parisian apartment in a classic district with a highly personal makeover, explore how the Memphis design movement made a comeback and offer advice for decorating, cleaning and warming your home.
Have a cozy night.
David Poller compiled photos for this briefing.
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