Reaction to President Trump's impeachment from Pennsylvania's senators. Following the impeachment of President Trump, Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey issued a release that said in part, "President Trump will be out of office before a Senate impeachment trial can begin. Whether or not the Senate has the constitutional authority to hold an impeachment trial for a president that is no longer in office is debatable. Should the Senate conduct a trial, I will again fulfill my responsibility to consider arguments from both the House managers and President Trump’s lawyers.” Democrat Sen. Bob Casey hasn't issued a post-impeachment comment, but prior to it happening, he tweeted "President Trump should be impeached and removed from office because he betrayed his oath to the Constitution and incited a mob to violence."
As expected, President Trump was impeached Wednesday afternoon and as expected the Lehigh Valley's representative to Congress supported the measure. Democrat Susan Wild says what we've seen over the lsat few years is a president who has not been held accountable for his actions, so it had to be done to send a message and protect the future of democracy. Wild said, "As elected officials, we take an oath to protect this country from all enemies, foreign and domestic. In no uncertain terms, the President has violated this sacred oath by inciting an insurrection that cost five lives."
There are fears the violence at the U.S. Capitol a week ago may be continued this weekend and into next week's inauguration day. Pennsylvania State Police trooper Brent Miller says they're preparing for whatever might happen. "This is nothing new to the Pennsylvania State Police. These conversations happen all the time. 2020 was a very busy year so there was a lot of collaboration between municipal, state and federal partners," Miller says. Officials say they've also picked up intelligence that there could be armed protests at all 50-state capitols beginning sometime this weekend.
Nearly 8000 new COVID-19 cases were reported Wednesday by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, pushing the state's overall total to more than 741,000. 349 new coronavirus-related deaths were also added to the state's number, which now stands at 18,429.
Lehigh Valley Health Network is setting up a mass COVID-19 vaccination site in South Whitehall Township. Tents are being set up at Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom, but they did not give a time frame of when it will be up and running. This operation will mirror the health network's free drive-thru flu vaccination clinics, but those interested in receiving the COVID vaccine will need to set up an appointment. To do that, go to www.mylvhn.org. The vaccine will be free.
Two dozen restaurants were ordered to close this month after they were found to be in violation of the state's COVID-19 mitigation orders. Those 24 restaurants were closed after being found to be operating in violation of the Secretary of Health and Governor’s COVID mitigation orders and management refused to make corrections while the inspector was present. Only one of those restaurants, Mad Dogs Hot Dog in Macungie, is in the Lehigh Valley.
More than 250,000 vaccinations have been administered in New Jersey. Gov. Phil Murphy calls it big news, adding he expected the number to climb quickly as New Jersey ramps up vaccination efforts.
Coronavirus vaccine eligibility is expanding in New Jersey. However, some aren't happy that smokers are now eligible and being place ahead of some essential workers like teachers. "To put someone on the list ahead of these people who are putting their own health on the line because they have chosen to put themselves in a particular medical condition is outrageous," one man says. Starting today New Jersey residents 65 and older are eligible as well as high risk individuals including smokers. The state health department argues they have an underlying condition and 67-percent of COVID deaths involve people with underlying conditions.
A man who spent most of his life in Lehigh Valley law enforcement has died. Ronald Rossi served in the state police for 29 years. Most knew him as the Safety Education Officer, who went to schools and talked to local children about the importance of being safe. He later served as the Lehigh County Sheriff for 24 years. Ron Rossi was 84 years old.
Allentown police are asking for the public's help after two businesses were robbed. Subway on Hanover Avenue and Rite Aid on Tilghman Street were robbed on Tuesday. Police have not released further details on the robberies. Police believe the same man is responsible for both robberies.
Additional Sunday hunting opportunities will be considered by the Pennsylvania Board of Game Commissioners when they meet January 23rd. The commission has proposed expanding the game that may be hunted on 2 of the 3 Sundays that the state legislators allowed the commission to enact last year. In addition to archery hunting for deer, on Sunday, November 14th, hunters would be permitted to pursue squirrel, grouse, rabbit, pheasant, woodchuck, opossum, skunk, weasel, raccoon and porcupine. And, on Sunday November 21st, in addition to bear, they would be permitted hunt for all the small game allowed on the 14th.