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5 things to know for October 20: Covid, Congress, Capitol riot, supply chain, Haiti


By AJ Willingham, CNN

Your morning routine could be getting a little pricier. Procter & Gamble, one of the largest consumer goods manufacturers, is raising prices on some grooming, beauty and oral care products.

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

(You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Coronavirus

The FDA plans to allow a “mix and match” approach to Covid-19 booster shots, meaning people can get a different vaccine for their booster dose than they did for their original dose. Last week, FDA vaccine advisers reviewed research from National Institutes of Health that suggested it didn’t really matter which type of booster people got — it still provided more protection. Some hope it may encourage people to get boosters and cut down on brand confusion. So far,  Pfizer’s is the only Covid-19 booster authorized for some Americans, but that could change when advisers meet this week to discuss Moderna and Johnson & Johnson boosters. While boosters have been recommended for people 65 and over and some who are immunocompromised, a source says boosters for Americans as young as 40 could be recommended soon.

2. Congress

President Biden has dictated the first cuts to the pared-down economic spending bill. Tuition-free community college is out, despite being a major White House priority. The child tax credit, another key priority, would likely be extended for only one more year, which is much shorter than many Democrats wanted. Other provisions for elder care, disability care and paid leave benefits may also be on the chopping block. The cuts are an attempt to pare the proposed $3.5 trillion price tag down to about $1.9 trillion to appease moderate Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, who holds a critical vote. However, Biden said they plan to keep an expansion of Medicare to keep more progressive members on board.

3. Capitol riot

The House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection has formally approved holding ex-President Trump ally Steve Bannon in criminal contempt of Congress after he defied a subpoena to appear before the panel. The full House is expected to vote on the resolution tomorrow. As serious as criminal contempt sounds, the process of prosecuting it could take years and may not result in hard consequences. It’s seen by many as more of a warning shot to discourage similar action by other Trump allies. One committee member said Congress will use “all of the tools” available to force Bannon to testify, even if he just shows up and uses his constitutional right to plead the Fifth Amendment.

4. Supply chain

The global supply chain crisis could result in fewer discounts and deals as the holiday shopping season approaches. Because of backups and shortages, stores are already having trouble keeping products on shelves, and some may not get the inventory they need before Black Friday-type bargain shopping begins. Supply chain challenges aren’t just a result of backed-up ports and manufacturing shutdowns. There’s also a shortage of workers to unload and transport products. The trucking industry needs about 80,000 drivers, a reported record high and about a 30% increase since the beginning of the pandemic. Worker shortages are why some efforts to alleviate backlogs, like Biden’s recent directive that some ports operate 24/7, aren’t fully solving the problem.

5. Haiti

The gang that kidnapped a group of 17 American and Canadian missionaries in Haiti has asked for $17 million for their release — $1 million for each person. The 16 American citizens and one Canadian were kidnapped Saturday by the powerful 400 Mawozo gang and are reportedly being held outside a Port-au-Prince suburb. The missionaries, affiliated with an Ohio-based ministry, include four children and an 8-month-old. A wave of brazen kidnappings has hit Haiti as the country deals with political unrest and severe poverty. Such kidnappings have increased 300% since July, and many are at the hands of the 400 Mawozo gang, according to a Haitian nonprofit. The kidnappers usually demand ransom for their hostages, which in this case is another calling card of gang activity.


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