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Minnesota bars, restaurants set to reopen with restrictions Monday

Plus: Pelosi says House will proceed with impeachment legislation; Walz orders flags flown at half-staff to honor Capitol Police officers; Jessie Diggins becomes first American to win the Tour de Ski; and more.

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Photo by Evan Wise on Unsplash

Jeremy Olson and Briana Bierschbach write in the Star Tribune: “Bars, restaurants and other venues will reopen with restrictions on Monday amid continued declines in COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in Minnesota. Gov. Tim Walz announced the dial-back in the state’s pandemic response on Wednesday, noting that Minnesota’s COVID-19 case rate has fallen below ‘pre-surge levels’ and that bars and restaurants can operate at minimal risk if customers comply with rules that prevent viral transmission. …  Bars and restaurants can resume indoor service at 50% capacity but with 10 p.m. curfews and caps of six-person tables and two-person bar groups spread 6 feet apart.”

The Associated Press reports: “House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday the House will proceed with legislation to impeach President Donald Trump as she pushes the vice president and Cabinet to invoke constitutional authority to force him out, warning that Trump is a threat to democracy after the deadly assault on the Capitol. Pelosi made the announcement in a letter to colleagues, saying the House will first vote to push Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the powers of the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office. After 24 hours, she said, the House would proceed with legislation on impeachment. Trump could become the only president to be impeached twice.”

The Washington Post reports: “In his first interview since pro-Trump rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol last week, [Capitol Police Chief Steven] Sund, who has since resigned his post, said his supervisors were reluctant to take formal steps to put the Guard on call even as police intelligence suggested that the crowd President Trump had invited to Washington to protest his defeat probably would be much larger than earlier demonstrations. House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving said he wasn’t comfortable with the ‘optics’ of formally declaring an emergency ahead of the demonstration, Sund said. Meanwhile, Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger suggested that Sund should informally seek out his Guard contacts, asking them to ‘lean forward’ and be on alert in case Capitol Police needed their help.”

The AP’s Kyle Brown writes: “Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz on Sunday ordered all flags at state and federal buildings to be flown at half-staff to honor the ‘service and sacrifice’ of two U.S. Capitol Police officers who died this week. The order follows a proclamation issued by President Donald Trump earlier in the day and requires all flags to remain at half-staff until sunset Wednesday. Capitol Police Officers Brian Sicknick and Howard Liebengood both died in the days after a mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.”

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In the Pioneer Press, Kristi Belcamino writes: “The mother and father of a 3-year-old girl found dead Sunday morning in Dayton’s Bluff have been booked into jail on suspicion of the girl’s murder, marking St. Paul’s first homicide of the year. Sgt. Mike Ernster called the murder of the girl ‘heartbreaking and extraordinarily tragic.’ … The last homicide in St. Paul was also was of a young child, 2-year-old Jayse Wilson, at a North End apartment on Dec. 23, 2020. A man who lived in that apartment is charged with manslaughter for allegedly leaving a gun where the child was able to access it and accidentally shoot himself.”

For The Washington Post, Jeremy Barr reports, “Mike Lindell, a.k.a. ‘the MyPillow guy,’ vaulted to national fame for his loud and proud support of President Trump and the commercials for his bedding company that have aired in heavy rotation on Fox News, making him the network’s top advertiser in 2020. But, in a surprising twist befitting the upheaval in the conservative media since Trump’s defeat, Lindell has emerged in recent weeks as a loud critic of Fox — even as he continues running MyPillow advertisements on the network. Lindell is among the Trump supporters who have accused Fox News of hurting the president’s chances of winning a second term and who claim baselessly that Trump was the victim of widespread voter fraud. … After a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday afternoon, Lindell chose Newsmax, not Fox, to make some unsupported allegations about the cause of the violence.”

Says Jeffrey Collins of the AP, “A caravan of about 40 cars circled Sen. Ron Johnson’s office in Madison, Wisconsin, urging him to resign. Johnson initially supported Trump’s baseless claims of election fraud, but after the riot, he voted in favor of Biden’s win. Johnson condemned the violence but did not back off voter fraud allegations.  The editorial boards of two of Wisconsin’s biggest newspapers called for Johnson to resign, joining with editorials published across the country that targeted GOP politicians.”

Sarah Danik for KMSP-TV reports, “A beloved tailor in south Minneapolis was months away from retiring when she found herself the victim of a crime this week. But as soon as customers and neighbors of Anna’s Tailoring heard what happened – they rallied to help.  … At last check, the GoFundMe for Anna’s retirement has raised more than $10,000.”

NBC Sports reports: “Olympic and world champion Jessie Diggins notched the biggest individual title of her cross-country skiing career, becoming the first American to win the Tour de Ski.… Diggins held onto the overall lead in Sunday’s eighth and final stage of the Tour de France-like event, finishing second on the day to Swede Ebba Andersson on the final climb up Alpe Cermis in Cavalese, Italy. Diggins topped the overall standings — combining finishes from all eight stages — by 1 minute, 24.8 seconds over Russian Yuliya Stupak. She won two of the eight stages and finished on the podium four other times. Norwegians won the previous seven women’s Tours, but no man or woman from the powerhouse nation entered this year’s competitions due to coronavirus pandemic-related concerns. The Tour de Ski debuted in 2006-07.”

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