“The states where face coverings are mandatory” – Axios / Data: Compiled by Axios; Map: Danielle Alberti / Axios

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Markets remained choppy Wednesday morning as election results pointed to a close contest. Amid the uncertainty, traders appeared to be reverting to some of the most trusted trades of the past few years – betting on technology stocks rising and currencies in emerging markets falling. 

The U.S. reported 91,530 new COVID-19 infections on Election Day, marking the second-highest number of new infections. Pennsylvania saw its highest single-day increase in coronavirus cases on Tuesday at nearly 2,900 cases. About 75% of the estimated vote total has been reported in the state and officials say they expect most votes will be counted by Friday. 

Many are still awaiting financial relief from a coronavirus stimulus package. The biggest-size bill would be most likely if Democrats win control of the White House and Senate. If Joe Biden won but Republicans still control the Senate, a new stimulus package will likely still happen, but the total spent would be less. Though some Senate races remain too close to call, Republicans appear poised to retain a narrow majority after winning a number of tough races. A Georgia Republican who supports QAnon conspiracy theories and has espoused racist views won a U.S. House seat representing the northwest portion of the state. Her candidacy was bolstered by the President.  

Across the country, voters have received an estimated 10 million automated, spam calls that contained a cryptic message instructing people to “stay safe and stay home.” More than 800,000 people with phone numbers tied to six presidential swing states were targeted on Election Day. Government officials and voters interpreted the messages as potential voter suppression, though the intent is not clear. 

A conservative federal judge in Texas rebuffed GOP attempts to invalidate 127,000 drive-through votes in Harris County, ruling Republicans did not have standing to sue. Drive through voting was adopted as a safe way to cast a ballot during the pandemic. The votes account for roughly 10% of the total early vote turnout in Harris County and the ruling ensured votes were counted.  

A federal judge has ordered inspectors from the U.S. Postal Service to “sweep” postal facilities in battleground areas Tuesday afternoon to ensure no ballots get left behind. USPS said it was unable to complete the review in time for the court’s deadline and would continue its check throughout the night. The court order came after the agency disclosed that more than 300,00 ballots nationwide could not be traced. 

On the Navajo Nation, a woman is empowering Native American youth to vote in the 2020 election while connecting with their cultural heritage by leading them on horseback along a 10-mile route to the polling stations in Kayenta, Ariz. Native Americans often experience few available polling stations and limited access to transportation. Horseback riding is common on Navajo Nation, which spans 27,000 square miles.

NAVIGATING THE PANDEMIC

Five ways to find focus despite election stress – Quartz – 11/4/2020
Before you give in to the distracting task, whether it’s checking election forecasts, scrolling through Twitter, or opening a text from a family member you know is seeking reassurance, stop yourself and set a timer for 10 minutes. Sit with the feeling, and let it float away without giving in to it. “Allow it to crest and then subside,” Eyal says.

Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic, Take Time to Reconnect with Nature – ArchDaily – 11/3/2020
She recommended walking or sitting or looking closely at a tree, plant, bug, or animal. “Get rid of your tech — your smart phone — and actively pay attention to something in nature. The experience of nature is what is key. The intentional focus gets you the stress reduction faster.”

No Winner for President Yet and Health Care Hangs in the Balance – Kaiser Health News – 11/4/2020
In Louisiana, however, voters easily approved an amendment to the state constitution to say that nothing in the document protects the right to, or requires the funding of, abortion. That would make it easier for the state to outlaw abortion if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, which makes state abortion bans unconstitutional.

The pandemic has created a middle class private jet boom – WIRED UK – 11/4/2020
While the commercial airline industry has been largely grounded following various global lockdowns – with outbound international travel from the UK set to be banned on Thursday – private aviation has soared among new customers.

A.I. Algorithm Can Tell If Your Cough Is Coronavirus – Digital Trends – 11/4/2020
A MIT news report said the cough of a COVID-infected individual is not the same as a cough by a healthy individual, but the difference is so subtle that it’s inaudible to the human ear. Technology using artificial intelligence, however, is able to spot the difference and, with a high degree of accuracy, determine if the person has the virus.

WHAT INFLUENCERS ARE SAYING

Anthony DeRosa  @Anthony 4 Nov The U.S. reported its second-highest count of daily new Covid-19 cases on record and hospitalizations reached their highest levels since early August, on the day Americans voted in a presidential election where the coronavirus pandemic was a central issue

WNCT @wnct9 4 Nov Despite fears of clashes at polling places, chaos sparked by the coronavirus pandemic, and confusion due to disinformation and swiftly-changing voting rules, millions across the U.S. cast ballots in a historically contentious election with few problems.

Eugene Scott @Eugene_Scott 4 Nov “Democratic hopes for a resounding coast-to-coast repudiation of Trump over his management of the coronavirus pandemic, the economy and race relations did not materialize.”

New York Daily News @NYDailyNews 4 Nov Hand sanitizer jammed one of the ballot scanners in swing state Iowa.

KETK NEWS @KETK 4 Nov A North Dakota state legislative candidate who died in October due to COVID-19 complications won his election on Tuesday.

CONTENT FACTS

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