The UK’s on track to get a new PM.
Meet the Conservative Party’s leader: Rishi Sunak. He takes the position after a wave of UK resignations (see: Boris Johnson, Liz Truss) and a failed run at PM earlier this year. But yesterday, the party made him the latest political tribute to pick up where others wilted off. Sunak’s big sell: finance. As in, he served as finance minister under Johnson and warned everyone that Truss’s economic plans spelled bad news for the pound. He’s also relatively young in the political scene, first getting elected to Parliament in 2015. And at age 42, he’s on track to be the UK’s youngest PM in more than 200 years.
Sometimes I feel like everybody is a sexy baby.
Yes, well. It’s not just his age: Sunak’s the son of Indian immigrants who had moved to the UK from East Africa. Now, he’s on track to become the first person of color to run the UK — a former colonial power. One Hindu leader called it a “Barack Obama moment” for the UK. But Sunak has his critics. He’s the richest parliamentarian, ever. And some wonder how interested he is in helping the working class. He’s also married to a well-known tech heiress who had a *little* tax scandal.
What happens now?
Sunak is scheduled to meet with King Charles at 10 am ET to get the formal invite to form a government. But given the revolving door of UK PMs, there are growing calls for a general election — something that’s next scheduled for January 2025. Sunak says the country needs “stability and unity.” And that his top priority will be bringing the UK together.
Skimm the Midterms: Abortion
We’re two weeks out from Election Day. Here’s the latest on one of the big topics voters care about: Abortion.
Yesterday, a report found that Mississippi birth rates are expected to increase by 5,000 a year since SCOTUS overturned Roe v. Wade. Anti-abortion advocates see that number as thousands of lives that wouldn’t otherwise exist. Pro-abortion-rights advocates are concerned about the public health impact: Mississippi has the highest infant mortality rate in the country — and Black women are nearly three times more likely to die from childbirth than white women in the state.
The news comes after Kansas voted this summer in favor of keeping abortion access legal. On the November 8 midterms, voters in five states will cast their ballots directly on abortion access. Others will vote in attorneys general, governors, and local leaders that play an increasingly large role on the state level. And all US voters will weigh in on the national level, with some GOP leaders calling for a 15-week abortion ban and President Biden promising to codify Roe if Dems make gains.
What parents are worrying about…
RSV. Almost everyone gets the cold-like virus at some point in their lives, often by age 2. But for babies under six months and children with weakened immune systems, the impacts can be severe — and may include pneumonia and bronchiolitis. Now, in recent days, dozens of hospitals across the US are reporting spikes and even reaching capacity, at least a month earlier than usual. The alleged culprit: COVID-19. Some think that after years of kids being underexposed to viruses thanks to lockdowns and distancing, those viruses are now spreading without much resistance. Doctors say to look out for babies who are eating less than usual, coughing, and having trouble breathing.
…Oh and another thing parents are worried about: test scores. The US’s assessment shows math and reading scores are way down for fourth- and eighth-graders — and in nearly every state regardless of socioeconomic status. Remote learning and school closures were to blame.
Who’s giving Ye the boot…
His business partners. Yesterday, another wave of people reportedly cut ties with the rapper — including his talent agency CAA and his lawyer, Camille Vasquez. The news came after ex-wife Kim Kardashian joined a slew of celebrities condemning Ye’s antisemitic hate speech saying she “stands together” with the Jewish community. And after an antisemitic hate group this weekend flew three banners on the LA freeway, with one reading “Kanye is right about the Jews.” Now, many are calling on Adidas — which has collaborated with West since 2013 and launched the $2 billion Yeezy line — to do the same. And there’s reports that could happen as soon as today.
Who people are remembering…
Leslie Jordan. Yesterday, the Emmy-winning actor and LGBTQIA+ icon died at 67 years old. Officials suspect Jordan suffered some sort of medical emergency before his car crashed into a building in Los Angeles, CA. Pre-pandemic, Jordan was best known for his roles in “Will & Grace” and “American Horror Story.” But in 2020, he became a social media sensation thanks to Instagram videos chronicling his quarantine survival experience. Jordan’s agent paid tribute saying he provided an “emotional sanctuary to the nation at one of its most difficult times.” And “Will & Grace” co-star Sean Hayes says his “heart is broken.”
What’s not the breeze in our hair on the weekend…
Why our lives are apparently about to get good tonight…
While Taylor Swift’s breaking glass slippers…
Kim Petras is breaking barriers.