Washington Week

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This Week on Washington Week: A New COVID Variant and the Fight Over Abortion Rights

Airs Friday, December 3, 2021 at 8PM on WETA PBS (check local listings)

This week, the first case of the omicron variant of covid-19, which has caused global concern and rocked international markets, was detected in the United States. The infected person, who was fully vaccinated but had not received a booster shot, travelled from South Africa to San Francisco and tested positive on November 29.The news rattled the markets and comes as Americans prepare for winter and more time spent in doors.  On Thursday, President Biden announced new plans to fight the spread of covid-19 including more stringent testing for international travelers and an expansion of at-home tests. Biden and White House officials are also encouraging all eligible Americans to get vaccinated or get their booster shots. 

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court also heard arguments on whether a Mississippi law that prohibits abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy should be upheld. With the majority conservative court signaling they will not stand in the way of the Mississippi law, the future of abortion rights faces its most significant test in nearly 30 years.

Plus, after being threatened with contempt of Congress for failing to cooperate with the committee investigating the January 6th Capitol insurrection, a former Department of Justice official who served during the Trump admiration, Jeffrey Clark, now plans come before the committee and plead the fifth. Former White House Chief of Staff to President Trump, Mark Meadows, has also changed his mind and agreed to cooperate with the committee. 
And, though the House is set to vote to fund the government through February, the possibility of a government shutdown still hovers over Washington as Senate Republicans are threatening to close the government over opposition to vaccine mandates.

Joining moderator Yamiche Alcindor with more insight on Friday’s Washington Week:

  • Eugene Daniels, White House Correspondent for POLITICO and Co-Author of the POLITICO "Playbook"
  • Sahil Kapur, National Political Reporter for NBC News
  • Seung Min Kim, White House Reporter for The Washington Post
  • Jonathan Martin, National Political Correspondent for The New York Times


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Contact: Jeff Bieber, JBieber@weta.org
Simon Epstein, SEpstein@weta.org