An unlawful scheme to overturn the 2020 election, a vp below strain to take action and a lawyer for Trump who knew it was unlawful.


That lawyer’s title is John Eastman. He is a well-connected conservative lawyer. He pushed a false concept that Pence might block the certification of the electoral votes when he oversaw the depend in Congress on January 6. At Trump’s rally that morning, Eastman known as out the vp.


JOHN EASTMAN: Anyone that isn’t prepared to face as much as do it doesn’t should be within the workplace. It’s that easy.

MARTINEZ: NPR congressional correspondent Deirdre Walsh joins us now. Deirdre, are you able to remind us who John Eastman is?

DEIRDRE WALSH, BYLINE: Good morning. Eastman was an outdoor authorized adviser to Trump. He was a regulation professor who had circulated a memo that acquired loads of consideration from Trump supporters as a result of it argued that Vice President Mike Pence had the ability to reject the licensed electoral votes from some states. Allies like Rudy Giuliani seized on this concept and so did President Trump.

MARTINEZ: How a lot entry did Eastman should the Trump interior circle main as much as January 6?

WALSH: Loads. He met repeatedly with Pence’s authorized counsel, Greg Jacob, who testified yesterday. Jacob had researched the regulation. He really went to the identical regulation faculty as Eastman. And he instructed Eastman in no unsure phrases that the idea that he was pushing to present this unimaginable energy to 1 individual, the vp, who was on the presidential ticket, was not consistent with the Structure. Eastman additionally talked to White Home lawyer Eric Herschmann, who was extremely blunt about what might occur if Pence did what he was asking. This is Herschmann.


ERIC HERSCHMANN: I stated, you are going to trigger riots within the streets. And he stated phrases to the impact of, there was violence within the historical past of our nation to guard the democracy or defend the republic.

WALSH: As we heard earlier, Eastman was there at that rally, which preceded the riot on the Capitol.

MARTINEZ: I do know the committee sued to get Eastman’s emails, and the choose in that case stated it was possible that he broke the regulation. So what can we find out about his potential authorized troubles?

WALSH: Proper. It was federal Choose David Carter in that case the place there was a ruling that Eastman needed to flip over supplies to the January 6 committee. Carter cited two doable prison statute that Eastman might have violated – obstruction of an official continuing and conspiracy to defraud the US. We heard after January 6 Herschmann shut down Eastman as he was nonetheless attempting to problem the election. And he instructed Eastman he ought to get a very good prison legal professional. The committee additionally revealed an e-mail that Eastman despatched to Rudy Giuliani asking for a presidential pardon. He didn’t get one.

MARTINEZ: And yet one more factor. Earlier than the listening to, we realized that Eastman emailed Ginni Thomas, the spouse of Supreme Courtroom Justice Clarence Thomas. Inform us about that.

WALSH: Proper. We already knew that Thomas texted with White Home Chief of Employees Mark Meadows, pushing Eastman’s concept. The Washington Publish reported that the panel has emails between Thomas and Eastman, nevertheless it was notable they really by no means got here up in yesterday’s listening to. Bennie Thompson, the chairman of the January 6 committee, instructed reporters he despatched Thomas a letter asking her to seem. For her half, Thomas stated yesterday she is prepared to come back and speak to the committee and clear up what she says are misconceptions. We haven’t any proof that Justice Thomas knew about his spouse’s actions. We do know that Thomas didn’t recuse himself from circumstances associated to January 6 that got here earlier than the excessive courtroom. And persistently Justice Thomas has voted in Trump’s favor, regardless that the courtroom overwhelmingly dominated in opposition to Trump in these election-related circumstances.

MARTINEZ: NPR’s Deirdre Walsh, thanks rather a lot.

WALSH: Thanks.


MARTINEZ: OK. Properly, how about this? A bit of bit of excellent information popping out of researching the lengthy COVID.

MARTIN: Take it the place you may get it, proper? Individuals who contract the omicron variant look like a lot much less more likely to expertise lingering signs than individuals who acquired the delta variant. That is based on the primary massive research printed in regards to the persistent well being dangers posed by omicron.

MARTINEZ: Right here with extra is NPR well being correspondent Rob Stein. Rob, this sounds reassuring. What is the proof?

ROB STEIN, BYLINE: So researchers at King’s School London in contrast greater than 56,000 individuals who caught omicron with greater than 41,000 who had caught delta and stored monitor of their signs utilizing a particular app. They usually discovered a giant distinction. Those that acquired contaminated with omicron have been about half as possible as those that had gotten delta to nonetheless be experiencing fatigue, complications, mind fog, coronary heart issues, lack of odor or different well being points no less than 4 weeks later. This is Claire Steves from King’s School.

CLAIRE STEVES: Fortunately, with the omicron variant, the chance of happening to get lengthy COVID is considerably decreased in comparison with the delta variant. That is an important information, is not it? As a result of clearly the less folks which can be happening to get lengthy COVID, the higher.

STEIN: It is particularly excellent news as a result of omicron is so contagious, so it is contaminated an unimaginable variety of folks extremely shortly. So if the chance had been the identical or increased, the variety of folks ending up with lengthy COVID would have exploded.

MARTINEZ: So, Rob, although, does that imply that folks do not have to fret about lengthy COVID from omicron?

STEIN: Properly, sadly, in no way. In accordance with this analysis, the possibilities of getting lengthy COVID from omicron is sort of 5% – 4.5% to be precise – in comparison with virtually 11% from delta. So the chance seems to be far decrease, nevertheless it’s removed from zero. And since so many individuals are catching omicron, meaning plenty of persons are nonetheless going to finish up with lengthy COVID. This is Claire Steves once more.

STEVES: Sadly, whereas the chance of lengthy COVID is decrease, the numbers of individuals which can be affected by lengthy COVID will really go up quite than go down, regardless of the actual fact that there’s a discount in danger. So it is definitely not a time for us to scale back providers for lengthy COVID as a result of it isn’t an issue, sadly, that is going away.

STEIN: And who is aware of what sort of danger from lengthy COVID the following variant may pose.

MARTINEZ: Does Steves know why somebody who catches omicron is a lot much less more likely to find yourself with lengthy COVID?

STEIN: Properly, this research did not straight deal with that, however Steves and others say it is sensible that omicron can be much less more likely to depart folks with long-term well being issues as a result of it would not are inclined to make folks as sick as delta.

STEVES: Due to that lesser severity of illness and likewise as a result of it appears to be a bit extra superficial by way of the illness, that it is most likely getting in to our our bodies much less. It is much less affecting us by way of severity of our immune response. And due to this fact, that is resulting in much less chance of lengthy COVID.

STEIN: And never as a result of folks within the research have been vaccinated.

MARTINEZ: Now, I acquired to say, Rob, I imply, this appears like excellent news. Is it?

STEIN: Yeah. On the one hand, it positively is nice information. However, you recognize, I talked about this with Akiko Iwasaki, who research lengthy COVID at Yale, and she or he says the outcomes are nonetheless alarming as a result of it reveals that even vaccinated persons are ending up with lengthy COVID from omicron.

AKIKO IWASAKI: Individuals assume that as a result of omicron is milder, that, you recognize, let’s simply get it over with, you recognize, let’s simply get contaminated and get it over with. However the truth that shut to five% of the folks with breakthrough infections are getting the lengthy COVID, that is scary.

STEIN: So, you recognize, A, she hopes the findings will immediate extra folks to do issues like hold sporting their masks and taking different precautions to guard themselves from COVID and from probably nonetheless getting lengthy COVID.

MARTINEZ: NPR well being correspondent Rob Stein. Rob, thanks.

STEIN: Certain factor, A.


MARTINEZ: All proper. One in every of President Biden’s marketing campaign guarantees was pupil debt forgiveness. Now dealing with the midterms, together with his approval numbers slumping, the president is below extra strain to ship on that promise.

MARTIN: A brand new NPR/Ipsos ballot asks People which is extra essential – mortgage forgiveness or extra inexpensive school sooner or later?

MARTINEZ: NPR’s Cory Turner is right here to stroll us by the outcomes. Cory, let’s begin with whether or not People assist some form of pupil mortgage forgiveness. What’d you discover?

CORY TURNER, BYLINE: Barely greater than half, 55%, of all respondents do assist the trail Biden is reportedly contemplating, A, which is forgiving as much as $10,000 per individual. For extra beneficiant reduction, like $50,000 and even full cancellation, assist dips under a majority. Biden has additionally floated the concept of excluding prime earners, presumably to broaden assist for cancellation. However the ballot discovered that utilizing revenue limits did primarily nothing to budge folks’s assist for or in opposition to debt reduction.

MARTINEZ: What in regards to the borrower aspect of issues? What does the ballot inform us particularly about how debtors are feeling?

TURNER: A few issues. , not like non-borrowers within the ballot, massive majorities of debtors assist all three debt reduction choices. We additionally know that pupil mortgage funds have been paused for greater than two years and that almost all debtors haven’t been repaying their loans throughout that point. Now, within the ballot, we discovered practically half of debtors stated this fee pause had improved their psychological well being. So Ipsos particularly requested debtors, how have they used the cash that they have not needed to pay? Debtors talked about three massive buckets. They spend it on necessities, like meals and gasoline. They used it to pay down different money owed, like bank cards or a automotive fee. After which they put it in financial savings. Mallory Newall at Ipsos says the pause gave debtors a form of freedom.

MALLORY NEWALL: However that freedom will not be actually to make a giant buy like a home or a automotive or take a trip. It truly is about reprieve, just a little little bit of respiratory room in your day-to-day life.

MARTINEZ: Now, within the ballot, you requested, ought to the federal government prioritize forgiving some debt for these with present pupil loans or making school extra inexpensive for present and future college students? What do they are saying?

TURNER: This, for me, it was possibly an important end result or most attention-grabbing end in the entire ballot. Eighty-two % of all respondents stated the federal government ought to prioritize making school extra inexpensive for future college students over erasing pupil money owed. Even a majority of respondents with pupil loans, A, 59%, stated the federal government ought to prioritize serving to future college students.

MARTINEZ: Wow. I did not count on that. What do you make of that?

TURNER: I am not fully certain. , it is no secret. Clearly, school will not be inexpensive for a lot of People who take out big loans as a result of they see it as their solely path into the center class. And forgiving a few of these money owed would clearly assist tens of hundreds of thousands of individuals. As we have stated, President Biden is below loads of strain to do one thing forward of the midterm elections. Nevertheless it additionally tells us, you recognize, erasing money owed with out altering the system that created them is basically fraught. The issue is President Biden’s plans to make school extra inexpensive up thus far have not gotten very far. And so this fall, you recognize, we will see an entire new technology of scholars who might be taking out new loans with even increased rates of interest than they have been final yr. And in 10 or 15 years, they’re going to be those pointing again to this second and asking, what about me?

MARTINEZ: NPR’s Cory Turner. Thanks rather a lot, Cory.

TURNER: You are welcome, A.

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