5 things to know for April 6: Ukraine, Storms, Abortion, Student loans, Recession

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Originally Published: 06 APR 22 06:31 ET
Updated: 06 APR 22 06:59 ET

(CNN) — If you’ve battled Covid-19, you were likely relieved when the symptoms went away in one or two weeks. Some people, however, experience long Covid — with conditions like fatigue, headaches and chest pain lingering for more than a month. To better understand long Covid, the Biden administration is boosting its research efforts with a $20 million investment that will expand clinics and help bolster health insurance coverage for long Covid care.

Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

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1. Ukraine

In an emotional address to the UN Security Council yesterday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russian troops of killing civilians for “pleasure” and warned more atrocities could occur. Zelensky’s speech came a day after he visited the Kyiv suburb of Bucha, where shocking images of bodies in the streets emerged over the weekend. Separately, the top US military officer told lawmakers yesterday that the world is becoming more unstable and the “potential for significant international conflict is increasing, not decreasing.” Later today, the US will announce new sanctions on Russia in coordination with several other nations and the European Union, according to an administration official.

2. Severe storms

More than 45 million people are under an enhanced severe weather threat across the Southeast US this morning, where a powerful storm could deliver a triple threat of wind, tornadoes and flooding. Parts of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and the western Carolinas could see damaging winds and a few tornadoes in the coming days, according to the latest forecasts. A flood watch is also in effect for about 2 million people in the region, with some isolated areas getting around 5 inches of rain. The storm system is hitting the region at an unfortunate time, as most areas remain in recovery mode from recent tornadoes and treacherous thunderstorms. At least two people were killed yesterday by the storms, local officials said.

3. Abortion

The Oklahoma legislature yesterday passed a near-total ban on abortion, making exceptions only in the case of medical emergencies. The bill would make performing an abortion or attempting to perform the procedure a felony punishable by a maximum fine of $100,000 or a maximum of 10 years in state prison, or both. The legislation passed the state Republican-led House by a 70-14 vote, without debate or questions on the floor. The bill now heads to Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt, who previously promised to sign every bill limiting abortion that came across his desk. This comes as several state legislatures have advanced bills restricting abortion access. Last week, Arizona’s Republican governor signed into law a ban on abortions after 15 weeks, with no exceptions for cases of rape and incest.

4. Student loans

The Biden administration is planning to extend its pause on federal student loan repayments through August 31. The repayment freeze, which has been in place since the beginning of the pandemic, was scheduled to expire on May 1. But due to increased pressure from other Democrats and consumer advocate groups, President Joe Biden will move the date yet again as inflation and ongoing supply chain issues continue to make everyday items more expensive. Borrower balances have effectively been frozen for more than two years, with no payments required on most federal student loans since March 2020. The administration is expected to announce the extension today, according to an administration official familiar with the matter.

5. Recession

Deutsche Bank is the first major bank to forecast a US recession that will begin late next year. The Federal Reserve’s fight against rising inflation and its “aggressive tightening of monetary policy will push the economy into a recession,” Deutsche Bank economists wrote in a new report. Hopes that inflation would rapidly cool off have been dashed, in part because of the war in Ukraine. Energy and food commodity prices have spiked since the start of Russia’s invasion and there are still looming concerns that the Fed will have to rapidly raise interest rates to get prices under control. The exact severity of recession is uncertain, but Deutsche Bank expects it to be “mild” compared to the past two downturns. Unemployment, for example, is expected to peak at 5% in 2024 — but reached far higher levels of 14.7% in 2020 and 10% in 2009 during the Great Recession.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Animal control has captured a fox after 6 people were bitten or nipped at the US Capitol

Apparently, there are several fox dens on Capitol grounds… and that’s definitely a cause fur concern.

McDonald’s is bringing back a fan-favorite menu item

This item is back for a limited time and is causing a buzz among fast food fans. Hint: You’ll want some sauce!

Rare Michelangelo drawing could fetch $33 million in Paris sale

Take a moment to bask in the beauty of this 15th century work of art.

Twitter announces it’s been developing an edit feature

The ability to edit tweets will probably be helpful for typos (and for people who might regret tweeting outlandish things.)

Man finds 7-foot snake behind couch cushion

At that point, just sell the whole house… with all the furniture included.

IN MEMORIAM

Bobby Rydell, a teen idol from the ’60s known for songs like “Wild One” and his role as Hugo Peabody in the 1963 film “Bye Bye Birdie,” has died, according to a statement released by his representatives. He was 79. Born Robert Ridarelli, Rydell got his first song on the Billboard 100 in 1959 and went on to have a career that included 34 top 100 hits and more than 25 million album sales, according to the statement.

TODAY’S NUMBER

3,000

That’s how many satellites Amazon plans to deploy to provide internet connectivity across the planet. The company announced deals yesterday with three rocket companies that are expected to launch more than half of the satellites by 2026. Amazon has been quietly developing the venture for years, but it is still unclear when the internet service will be available for consumers or how much it will cost.

TODAY’S QUOTE

“They have 24 hours to take their personal belongings.”

— Susset Cabrera, Chief Communications Officer for North Miami Beach, after the city ordered the evacuation of a five-story, 60-unit apartment building Monday following a review by engineers that deemed the building structurally unsafe. The apartment building is about three miles north of the Champlain Towers South, the Surfside condo tower that partially collapsed last summer, killing nearly 100 people. The disaster unnerved some residents of coastal properties in Florida and beyond and prompted North Miami Beach to launch a review of all high-rise condo buildings above five stories.

TODAY’S WEATHER

Check your local forecast here>>>

AND FINALLY

Lion cub gives us his best roar

This cub doesn’t know it yet, but one day, his little roar will turn into a powerful growl. Let this short video remind you to appreciate the present — because maybe the best is yet to come for you too! (Click here to view)

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