Biden’s son-in-law faces scrutiny over startup investment

Move over Hunter, now it’s Howard’s turn to face some Biden family conflict-of-interest scrutiny.

Politico reported Tuesday that Joseph R. Biden’s son-in-law Howard Krein served as an informal adviser to his campaign’s COVID-19 response while also being involved in a venture capital firm that set aside $1 million for startups with ideas aimed at addressing the pandemic and others like it.

StartUp Health, the investment firm that employs Mr. Krein, who is married to Mr. Biden’s daughter Ashley, sought to pump money into ideas related to “mitigating, managing, or treating the coronavirus or future pandemics,” according to the company’s website.

Mr. Krein had been involved in daily briefing calls with Mr. Biden, according to Bloomberg and The New York Times.

Around the same time, Politico reported that his venture capital firm announced it was looking to invest $1 million into startup companies with possible coronavirus breakthroughs.

Mr. Biden has already

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‘It’s not the law of Amy’: SCOTUS nominee Barrett faces Dem skepticism on Day 2 of hearings

WASHINGTON — Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett batted away Democrats’ skeptical questions Tuesday on abortion, health care and a possible disputed-election fight over transferring presidential power, insisting in a long and lively confirmation hearing she would bring no personal agenda to the court but decide cases “as they come.”

The 48-year-old appellate court judge declared her conservative views with often colloquial language, but refused many specifics. She declined to say whether she would recuse herself from any election-related cases involving President Donald Trump, who nominated her to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and is pressing to have her confirmed before the the Nov. 3 election.

“Judges can’t just wake up one day and say I have an agenda — I like guns, I hate guns, I like abortion, I hate abortion — and walk in like a royal queen and impose their will on

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American Horticultural Society faces an uncertain future

On paper at least, the American Horticultural Society, founded in 1922, should be poised to move into its second century as a major player in the green world, an organization with a compelling mission and a rosy future.

The pandemic has reinforced the importance of gardens and gardening, reflected in surging vegetable seed sales and the desire of people to visit public gardens and other green spaces to find succor in anxious times.

        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        

 

COVID-19 aside, public gardens offer enormous potential to connect an ever urbanizing population to a planet in environmental crisis and to bring together diverse groups at a time of social, political and economic unrest.

But the AHS, located at its pastoral 25-acre property on the Potomac, River Farm, is facing its own moment of reckoning.

Citing the pandemic as a contributor, the society recently announced on its website that it was considering leaving River Farm, merging in

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Supply Chains Latest: U.S. Dairy Industry Faces Rough Future

America’s dairy farmers could face another price hit this year as a slowdown in government purchases combines with reduced demand from schools.

Dairy products have gotten a boost from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farmers to Families Food Box program, which includes plans to buy as much as $4 billion worth of food to distribute to those in need. The government purchases have helped to send milk prices on a tear recently. But the program is slated to wind down, and concerns are rising over whether that rally will be sustainable.

Milk markets have already had a roller-coaster year. When coronavirus lockdowns went into place, dairy markets were among the hardest hit in the food world. It turns out, consumers eat a lot more cheese and butter when they’re dining out than they do at home. As restaurants shuttered, farmers were left with an overwhelming glut. Millions of pounds of

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Swedish government faces battle to stay in power as labour talks fail

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – Sweden’s minority government faces a potential rebellion by three small parties that keep it in power over plans to ease rules in the country’s rigid labour market.

Talks between trade unions and employer organisations broke down early on Thursday, handing the job of finding a solution to the Social Democrat-Green government. The government needs the backing of the Left Party as well as two small centre-right parties to pass its budgets.

Prime Minister Stefan Lofven had promised the two centre-right parties that if the unions and employers fail to agree new practices, the government would adopt proposals made by a commission to ease first-in-last-out rules, which critics say hamper companies’ ability to adapt to changing conditions.

Left Party leader Jonas Sjostedt said he would try to bring down the coalition if that plan goes ahead.

“Stefan Lofven cannot remain as prime minister if he plans to put

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Factbox: New faces, new jobs in Poland’s conservative government

WARSAW (Reuters) – Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced a reshuffle of his nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) government on Wednesday, streamlining jobs and appointing an arch conservative to the influential education ministry.

FILE PHOTO: Law and Justice (PiS) leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski wears protective mask as he attends the Polish Parliament session to debate new limits on abortion and sexual education, in Warsaw, Poland April 16, 2020. Slawomir Kaminski/Agencja Gazeta via REUTERS

PiS chief Jaroslaw Kaczynski took up a post of deputy premier, in what Morawiecki described was an effort to make the three-party coalition govern more effectively.

Only one ministry went to a woman, compared with four in the previous lineup.

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER, JAROSLAW KACZYNSKI, 71

As a founding head of PiS, Kaczynski is seen as the main arbiter on policy and government jobs in Poland, even though he has held no executive posts since a conservative government

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Factbox: New Faces, New Jobs in Poland’s Conservative Government | World News

WARSAW (Reuters) – Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced a reshuffle of his nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) government on Wednesday, streamlining jobs and appointing an arch conservative to the influential education ministry.

PiS chief Jaroslaw Kaczynski took up a post of deputy premier, in what Morawiecki described was an effort to make the three-party coalition govern more effectively.

Only one ministry went to a woman, compared with four in the previous lineup.

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER, JAROSLAW KACZYNSKI, 71

As a founding head of PiS, Kaczynski is seen as the main arbiter on policy and government jobs in Poland, even though he has held no executive posts since a conservative government he headed collapsed in 2007.

He is said to prefer pulling the levers of power from behind the scenes since the death of his twin brother, Lech, in a plane crash over Russia. Poland’s president at the time, Lech

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Wales lockdown: Ryanair holidaymaker faces losing money or breaking law

Tourists on the AlgarveImage copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Local lockdown restrictions in Wales mean people cannot leave those areas for holidays

People who have booked holidays say they are left choosing between losing their money or breaking the law.

It is illegal for people living in Welsh areas subject to local lockdowns to leave their county except for essential reasons which do not include holidays.

People living in England’s hotspots are still able to travel.

But some people in Wales are struggling to get refunds for booked holidays they are no longer allowed to take.

“I either flout the law or lose the money spent on my flights,” Jeff Norman from Cardiff said.

The 58-year-old was due to fly to Portugal on 5 October, having booked tickets before Cardiff became subject to a local lockdown.

Image copyright
Jeff Norman

Image caption

Jeff Norman says he has been left choosing between losing money
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Swedish PM Faces Labor Dispute That Could Destabilize Government

(Bloomberg) — Trade unions and employers are approaching a deadline for talks that could determine the future of Sweden’s center-left government, and challenge the country’s established model for labor market relations.

The negotiations will need to be concluded by Wednesday. Failing that, Prime Minister Stefan Lofven may need to force through a solution, potentially triggering a vote of no confidence in his government as he breaks with tradition.



Stefan Löfven wearing a suit and tie: EU Leaders Gather As Brexit Deal Still 'Far Away'


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EU Leaders Gather As Brexit Deal Still ‘Far Away’

Stefan Lofven

Photographer: Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg

The issue originates with the 2018 elections, in which the ruling coalition failed to gain a majority. One of the key concessions that Lofven had to make in return for the support of the Center Party and the Liberals was a deal to “modernize” the labor market and make it more flexible.

A parliamentary committee has since drafted proposals based on that January 2019 deal.

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Johnson’s Law-Breaking Brexit Plan Faces Defeat, Ministers Fear

(Bloomberg) — Boris Johnson is braced for defeat in Parliament over his controversial plan to re-write the Brexit withdrawal agreement, a blow that could throw negotiations with the European Union into chaos at a critical time.



a statue of Boris Johnson in a suit standing in front of a building


© Bloomberg
Boris Johnson

The draft legislation has been attacked by all five of Johnson’s living predecessors as U.K. prime minister because it breaches international law by reneging on parts of the Brexit deal he signed with the European Union. Two senior legal officials have already quit the government in protest.

Johnson eventually bowed to pressure from rebels in his own party and gave Parliament a veto on whether to use the most controversial powers in the legislation.

The Internal Market Bill is expected to clear the House of Commons on Tuesday — but it will then move to the House of Lords, where Johnson’s Conservative Party doesn’t have a majority. Ministers expect

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