ICYMI: Delta-plus COVID-19 variant emerges, handsy Cuomo should resign, and more headlines you might have missed

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click to enlarge This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S. - NIAID
NIAID
This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S.

J ust when we thought it was safe to take off our masks, a new coronavirus variant has been discovered. The so-called delta-plus variant is believed to possibly be even more contagious than the delta variant, the mutation that was first detected in India now driving a surge in the U.S. — which was already more contagious than the original virus that causes COVID-19. Some studies have suggested that delta-plus has the ability to more easily attach itself to the lung cells and could be resistant to therapies. Though rare "breakthrough" cases of vaccinated people getting the virus have been reported, the vaccines appear to be holding up so far, but experts are asking people to wear masks while in public indoors as a precaution since it seems that vaccinated people can still be contagious.

Does the rise of delta mean an end to the summer concert season? Some experts are calling Chicago's Lollapalooza festival — which was held last weekend and drew more than 385,000 people to the city's Grant Park see acts like Miley Cyrus, Limp Bizkit, Megan Thee Stallion, and Foo Fighters — a possible "recipe for disaster." Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot defended the event, which required attendees to produce either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter. Whether the fest turns out to be a "superspreader" event remains to be seen, as it can take two weeks after exposure for cases to show. Officials say more than 90% of attendees were vaccinated.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed 11 women, according to a searing 165-page report released by the state's attorney general on Tuesday. Those who claimed unwanted advances by the governor include his employees, a violation of state and federal law. Cuomo denied wrongdoing, and produced a slideshow showing photos of him touching people, saying, "I do that with everyone." Uh, someone should tell Cuomo that being an equal-opportunity sexual harasser isn't the defense he thinks it is. Fellow Democrats incluidng NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and even President Joe Biden have called on the handsy Italian-American governor to resign. See, Republicans? It's not hard.

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