Bob’s your uncle
When Bob Woodward calls, maybe don’t pick up?
That’s a lesson President Donald Trump could learn from last week, when reviewers got their hands on Bob Woodward’s new book “Rage,” a tell-all that purports to lay bare the Trump administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to audio released by The Washington Post, Trump was well aware of the deadly nature of the coronavirus in its early days and told Woodward over the course of 18 interviews that he intentionally downplayed the severity of the crisis.
Early on, Trump said the virus would disappear “like magic” in warmer months and that it was no worse than the flu. At the same time, he was telling Woodward that he knew how serious the coronavirus was and that it was much worse than a typical flu.
Since the coronavirus took hold in the United States, roughly 192,000 people have died of the disease.
Woodward became a household name for his coverage of the Watergate scandal that ultimately led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. This time, he didn’t even have to wait for the tapes — he made the tapes. But he also did not release them until it was time to promote his new book.
Scoot scoot boogey
The Seattle City Council cleared the way for a long-awaited scooter-share pilot program to launch in the city.
Councilmember Dan Strauss sponsored a pair of bills to allow scooters to come to the streets of Seattle, more than a year after Mayor Jenny Durkan announced that her administration would create a scooter program.
Seattle was a hold-out on scooters while it embraced rentable bicycles. For a time, Seattleites could not walk downtown without moving to avoid a dockless bicycle parked in the middle of a sidewalk. Lime left the city in December 2019, only to return in June with its newly acquired Jump bikes. However, scooters are hailed as a “last mile” alternative, meaning a form of transit that supplements other services, such as the bus or light rail.
The approval of the new program came as Dallas, Texas, shut down its scooter program. The city cited safety concerns and complaints from residents alleging that scooter companies were not following the rules for dockless scooters.
The King County Elections office wants to break records.
The office is trying to get a 90 percent turnout rate for the general election — 5 percentage points higher than the 85 percent turnout record set in 2012.
Washington is in a better position than many states because its residents have been voting by mail since 2011. Residents also know better than to expect results on election night.
Ashley Archibald is a Staff Reporter covering local government, policy and equity. Have a story idea? She can be can reached at ashleya (at) realchangenews (dot) org. Follow Ashley on Twitter @AshleyA_RC.
Read more in the Sept. 16-22, 2020 issue.