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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell yesterday acknowledged President-Elect Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election for the first time yesterday during remarks from the Senate floor. Several other Senate Republicans have still publicly refused to accept the election results, and McConnell has allegedly dissuaded his GOP allies from objecting to the state’s election results when Congress officially closed Jan. 6. Counts the votes of. While President Donald Trump has not officially accepted the election, his campaign sent some mixed messages to supporters in a recent funding email asking him if Trump should run again in 2024. Meanwhile, Biden will nominate Pete Batigi as his Secretary of Transportation. The former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate served as an avid aide to Biden after the presidential-election nomination, and is expected to be the first Senate-confirmed LGBTQ cabinet secretary in history.
3. Official Hack
US officials are still trying to make sense of a serious data breech that has affected many federal agencies, including Homeland Security, the Department of Agriculture and Commerce. While the investigation continues, officials suspect it was carried out by a group of Russian hackers through SolarWinds, a technology company whose products are used by many federal civilian agencies for network management. The National Security Council and Cyber Response Group are holding daily meetings to determine the scope of the hack to see if the data may be exposed, and just how dangerous the impact can be. However, Russia’s suspected involvement in the hack raises questions about past security violations, and certainly takes into account Russian attempts to infiltrate the 2020 US electoral process. Moscow has so far denied any “aggressive operation” in the cyber domain.
4. El Salvador
An asylum agreement between the United States and El Salvador is set to go into effect, and some migrants must be sent to request for American immigrants to seek asylum for El Salvador. The so-called asylum cooperative agreement is part of the Homeland Security Department’s ongoing efforts for asylum seekers in Central American countries. The US had agreements with Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, but only the agreement with Guatemala has actually been so far off the ground. Immigration advocates criticized these policies, saying that they put migrants more at risk.
Hungary’s parliament has passed a law narrowing the definition of “family” in the country’s constitution, effectively preventing same-sex couples from adopting children. The new law defines marriage between a man and a woman and states that, in a relationship with children, “the mother is a woman, the father is a man.” The decision has been stalled by the LGBTQ rights group and the EU community at large, the latest in a line of anti-LGBTQ decisions made under the administration of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. In May, Hungary made it illegal for transgender and intersex people to change their gender on identity documents, and Orban and his ruling Fidez party are notable against the legalization of same-sex marriage. Human rights organization Transgender Europe has called on the European Union to address Hungary’s recent LGBTQ motions.
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in today’s date
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Today and tomorrow mark the observation of Ludwig van Beethoven’s 250th birthday. Let’s celebrate with some fireworks as veteran pianist Krystian Zimerman who is taking on Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5, none other than Leonard Bernstein. (Click here to see)
Correction: The first version of this story had an incorrect date in the title.