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Covid 19 Pandemic

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BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand plans to fully reopen to vaccinated foreign visitors by mid-October as the government seeks to restart the crucial coronavirus-devastated tourism industry, the prime minister announced Wednesday.

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BOSTON (AP) — Some pandemic-era policies that had expired on Tuesday — such as allowing restaurants to offer take-out cocktails — were quickly extended Wednesday after Republican Gov. Charlie Baker signed a bill sent to him by state lawmakers.

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Senate Republicans pushed a trio of election measures through their chamber on Wednesday, including one that would prohibit counting mail-in absentee ballots that aren't received by local officials by Election Day.

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Gov. John Bel Edwards has agreed to turn off federal pandemic unemployment payments at the end of July in exchange for a long-term, modest boost to Louisiana's jobless benefits, announcing Wednesday that he's signed a bill that makes the trade.

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The smell of fresh empanadas wafted through the stands at Portland's Saturday Market. People talked through their masks with artists as others sifted through fork windchimes, crystal necklaces, tie dye dresses and clay mugs.

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NEW YORK (AP) — More than 4 million people say they fear being evicted or foreclosed upon in the coming months, just as two studies released Wednesday found that the nation's housing availability and affordability crisis is expected to worsen significantly following the pandemic.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve signaled Wednesday that it may act sooner than previously planned to start dialing back the low-interest-rate policies that have helped fuel a swift rebound from the pandemic recession but have also coincided with rising inflation.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Speaking near the steamy banks of a shimmering lake in Switzerland, one president nonchalantly removed his jacket and spoke confidently about standing up to an adversary. The other held court in a bland, air-conditioned room where he sought to portray strength amid scrutiny of human rights abuses.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California is giving away more goodies to people who get coronavirus vaccinations and plans to make it easier to show who has been inoculated as health officials and businesses encourage people to get their shots so they can fully partake in the state's newly reopened economy.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — As the coronavirus pandemic raged over the past year, Virginia prison officials released more than 2,100 inmates early to try to control the spread of the virus by reducing the prison population. That practice will end on July 1, the Department of Corrections announced Wednesday.

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DENVER (AP) — A coalition that wants to ask Colorado voters to approve higher taxes on recreational marijuana to help children make up for learning losses during the pandemic and address special needs for low-income and disadvantaged students said Wednesday it’s been endorsed by former Democratic and Republican governors.

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O’FALLON, Mo. — A swath of southern Missouri is seeing a big rise in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations at just the wrong time — as tourists eager to get out after being cooped up for a year make their way to popular destinations like Branson and Lake of the Ozarks.

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A commission that reviews emergency spending requests said Wednesday that it would not approve the allocation of millions of federal dollars sought by North Dakota agencies, due to a state law that limits the panel’s spending to $50 million each two-year legislative cycle.

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Ashley Pearce’s daughter was set to start kindergarten last year in Maryland’s Montgomery County school system. But when it became clear that the year would begin online, Pearce found a nearby Catholic school offering in-person instruction and made the switch.

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As cases tumble and states reopen, the potential final stage in the U.S. campaign to vanquish COVID-19 is turning into a slog, with a worrisome variant gaining a bigger foothold and lotteries and other prizes failing to persuade some Americans to get vaccinated.

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