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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tweeted Monday that he is basing his decisions for coronavirus policy on information from "healthcare professionals like Dr. Fauci and others, not political punditry."

Why it matters: In an apparent public rebuke, Graham added a link to a Washington Post article about the Trump administration's signals that it might move to loosen restrictions on businesses at the end of the White House's 15-day social distancing period as an economic salve, as reported by Axios' Jonathan Swan. "There is no functioning economy unless we control the virus," he said.

What he's saying: "Try running an economy with major hospitals overflowing, doctors and nurses forced to stop treating some because they can’t help all, and every moment of gut-wrenching medical chaos being played out in our living rooms, on TV, on social media, and shown all around the world," Graham tweeted.

The other side: Trump tweeted late Sunday: "WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF. AT THE END OF THE 15 DAY PERIOD, WE WILL MAKE A DECISION AS TO WHICH WAY WE WANT TO GO!"

  • Larry Kudlow, Trump's top economic adviser, said on Fox News Monday: "We can't shut in the economy. The economic cost to individuals is just too great. ... The president is right. The cure can't be worse than the disease. And we're going to have to make some difficult trade-offs. Let's give it another week."

Go deeper ... Surgeon general on coronavirus: "This week, it's gonna get bad"

Go deeper

SoCalGas agrees to $1.8 billion settlement for 2015 gas blowout

An evacuee with a Save Porter Ranch sign outside Southern California Gas Company's Aliso Canyon gate in Porter Ranch in January 2016 as the gas leak continued. Photos: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Southern California Gas Company and its parent company announced Monday they've agreed to pay up to $1.8 billion in settlement claims over the 2015 Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility blowout.

Why it matters: Some 100,000 tons of methane, ethane and toxic chemicals poured into the air for 112 days, forcing over 8,000 families to evacuate from their Los Angeles-area homes and sickening many with headaches, nausea and nosebleeds, per the L.A. Times.

Updated 4 hours ago - World

North Korea fires short-range missile to sea, slams "hostile" U.S. policy

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Photo: API/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said Tuesday that North Korea's military had fired a short-range missile toward its eastern sea, per AP.

Why it matters: North Korea's ambassador to the United Nations defended the latest launch in remarks to the UN General Assembly, demanding the U.S. and South Korea end their "hostile policy" against the country.

Arizona Judge: Adding mask mandates ban to budget bill unconstitutional

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) Photo: Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

An Arizona judge ruled Monday that the state's ban on mask mandates in schools, and other measures put into the state budget by Republicans, are unconstitutional, the Arizona Republic reports.

Why it matters: The sweeping ruling voids a ban on vaccine requirements for public universities, community colleges and local governments, and strikes down some non-COVID-related measures like a ban on teaching critical race theory in classrooms and anti-fraud measures for ballots.

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