Need2Know: DNC Highlights, Arctic Drilling & NBA Side Hustle – Cheddar

Here are the headlines you Need2Know for Tuesday, August 18, 2020:

DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION

LAST NIGHT: Democrats launched the first-ever virtual convention with a unified message: Donald Trump must be defeated in November, and everything else is secondary to that. Sen. Bernie Sanders told his supporters that even though he had disagreements with Joe Biden, the election is about “preserving our democracy.” John Kasich, the Republican former governor of Ohio — standing at a literal fork in the road — pitched Biden as a moderate who wouldn’t move too far left. Michelle Obama ended the evening with an impassioned critique of President Trump, saying his lack of empathy is a disqualifying character flaw: “If you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can.” WATCH
TONIGHT: The second night of the DNC will feature speeches from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Bill Clinton and John Kerry. Dr. Jill Biden will deliver the keynote in the 10 pm ET hour. ABC NEWS
COVID-19: LATEST DEVELOPMENTS: UNC-Chapel Hill, one of the biggest universities to open for the fall semester, has abruptly reversed course after 130 students tested positive in the first week of classes. Starting tomorrow, the school will shift to remote learning for the remainder of the semester. The decision illustrates the difficulties of bringing large groups of people together, even if it’s in a relatively controlled environment like a college campus. In New York, where the rate of positive tests has been hovering around 1 percent for weeks despite fears of a second wave, gyms will be allowed to reopen next week as long as they stay at one-third capacity. BLOOMBERG
ARCTIC OIL DRILLING: The Trump administration has finalized a plan to open up Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil and gas drilling. ANWR, which is home to vulnerable species like polar bears and caribou, has been off-limits to oil exploration for decades. The Republican tax bill that passed in 2017 opened the area up to leases that the Interior Dept. will begin selling off this year, regardless of who’s in the White House come January. There is currently a huge worldwide surplus of excess oil. REUTERS
BELARUS PROTESTS: Massive street protests in Minsk have been taking place almost daily since Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko won his sixth-consecutive term in a corrupted election earlier this month. The authoritarian Lukashenko, known as “Europe’s Last Dictator,” is facing crumbling support in a country not known for staging mass anti-government protests. He has declared that there will not be new elections “until you kill me.” CNN
HOUSING MARKET: The market for newly-built single-family homes in the U.S. is on fire. Homebuilder sentiment, a closely watched gauge for the housing market, is higher than it’s been since 1998, as buyers looking for more space in less dense areas are enticed by record-low interest rates to make their move. (Another sign: Home Depot earnings are through the roof). The flip side is that the cost of lumber is soaring, having more than doubled since April. That could mean higher prices for new homes this fall. CNBC
TIME OFF TO VOTE: Coca-Cola has become one of the largest U.S. employers to give its workers the day off on Election Day. Coke joins Walmart, Patagonia, Best Buy and hundreds of other corporations that have signed the non-partisan pledge at MakeTimetoVote.org to allow employees paid time off to vote, whether it’s a few hours or the whole day. Here’s the list of companies that have signed on so far: SEE IT
HISTORIC NFL HIRE: The Washington Football Team has hired Jason Wright as president of the organization — the first Black team president in NFL history. Wright is a former running back who played for the 49ers, Falcons, Browns and Cardinals before he retired in 2011 to go to business school. He will oversee the embattled team’s business operations and report directly to owner Dan Snyder. ESPN
JAM MASTER JAY COLD CASE: Nearly 20 years after Run DMC founding member Jam Master Jay was murdered, police say they have their suspects. Federal prosecutors unveiled an indictment charging two men suspected of killing the pioneering D.J. in the fall of 2002. Ronald Washington, who is in jail for another crime, and Karl Jordan, who was taken into custody, are alleged to have shot Jam Master Jay in the head after a drug deal went bad. AP
SELF-HELP SMASH HIT: Adele is the latest celebrity to rave about a best-selling inspirational memoir that’s been the talk of book clubs all year. The singer says Untamed: Stop Pleasing, Start Living, by Glennon Doyle, is “solely responsible” for changing her life. (Doyle is the wife of soccer star Abby Wambach.) Kristen Bell, Chelsea Handler, and Reese Witherspoon have also promoted the book on social media. Untamed has been on the New York Times bestseller list for 22 weeks and counting. READ AN EXCERPT
LEFTOVERS: DON’T HATE THE PLAYER…Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler has been running a legit side hustle as a barista while in the NBA’s bubble. Butler brought a french press with him to Orlando, assuming the hotel coffee game would be weak, and he’s now the de facto one-man coffee shop for the league. Based on a pic of the whiteboard outside his room, Butler must know he has the market cornered: a small, medium or large coffee runs $20 — cash only. SEE IT
Listen to the N2K Podcast! Looking for more context and analysis on the big stories of the day? Check out our podcast! Hosts Jill and Carlo break down the headlines, every weekday morning Listen on Apple or Spotify, or watch on YouTube, and send us your feedback!

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