NEW HOPE, Pa. — Voters on both sides of the nation’s widening political divide prepared on Monday to render a verdict on President Trump’s four tumultuous years in the White House and, in particular, his management of the coronavirus pandemic that has upended American life for the past eight months.As Mr. Trump and Joseph R. Biden Jr. raced across the most important battleground states in a frenzied final push for votes, the 2020 election was unfolding in a country with urgent problems: an uncontrolled public health crisis, a battered economy, deep ideological divisions, a national reckoning on race and uncertainty about whether the outcome of the vote will be disputed.- Advertisement – In his own meandering and grievance-filled appearances, in which he lashed out against Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff, Hillary Clinton and the news media, Mr. Trump framed his re-election as an economic imperative to avoid “a deadly Biden lockdown” of the economy’s fragile recovery.“This is not the crowd of a second-place finisher,” Mr. Trump said in Scranton, Pa., where Mr. Biden will also appear on Election Day, in a sign of Pennsylvania’s potential to tip the election. On Monday, Mr. Biden dispatched his most potent surrogate, former President Barack Obama, to two of those states: Florida and Georgia. The former president campaigned for Mr. Biden and two Senate Democratic challengers in Georgia, then stumped for Mr. Biden in Florida. Democratic Party strategists are hoping to win the three Senate seats they need to wrest back control of that chamber, along with the White House, and enact a progressive agenda in 2021.The widening map had some Democrats coveting not only victory on Tuesday but also a landslide repudiation of Mr. Trump and his brand of Republicanism, including aspirations of flipping Texas for the first time since 1976. Election administrators braced themselves to pull off the twin challenges of holding an election during a pandemic and fending off efforts by a president who is trailing in the polls to undermine trust in the vote-counting process.“Please be patient,” Jim Kenney, the mayor of Philadelphia — the biggest city in one of the most important swing states — urged, predicting long lines on Tuesday. Both the Trump and Biden campaigns were readying armies of lawyers for a potentially prolonged fight.Voters were wracked with nervous energy. Katie Whelan, a high school history teacher from New Jersey, crossed the Pennsylvania border to knock on doors over the weekend for Mr. Biden in the key battleground. The previous night, she said, she had awakened from a panic dream involving Hillary Clinton and the dread of falling just short at the ballot box. “She was like, ‘Honey, I’ve been there,’” Ms. Whelan recalled Mrs. Clinton telling her in the dream.- Advertisement – Adding to her anxiety, Ms. Whelan could not tell if the nightmare was set in 2016 or 2020. “I stood over the sink and drank three pints of water,” Ms. Whelan said. “And I said to myself, ‘I better get canvassing.’” Updated Nov. 2, 2020, 8:53 p.m. ET Undeterred by the pandemic, Americans have already displayed an uncommon determination to have their voices and votes heard this year. Nearly 100 million cast their ballots in advance of Election Day, shattering records as they endured long lines at early voting sites or sent in their ballots by mail.Much of the country felt on edge, as if the often-predicted “most important election of a lifetime” had finally arrived. Ahead of the polls opening on Tuesday, businesses in cities from Denver to Detroit to Washington, D.C. were boarding up their windows with plywood as they readied for the possibility of civil unrest. Some governors were readying the National Guard. “Everyone is starting to panic,” Fernando Salas, a construction worker, said as he pounded nails into a plywood frame at a storefront in a trendy shopping district near Los Angeles.- Advertisement – Mr. Trump has signaled he may try to declare victory prematurely if the early tabulations favor him, and the Biden campaign held an unusual public briefing on the eve of the election to set expectations. At issue is not just the tallying of the vote but how fast certain states can count. Some key battlegrounds, such as Pennsylvania, are expected to take days while others, like Florida and North Carolina, will likely process most votes within hours.“Under no scenario will Donald Trump be declared a victor on election night,” Jen O’Malley Dillon, Mr. Biden’s campaign manager, bluntly declared.As polling places were set to open on Election Day, Mr. Trump’s road back to the White House was plainly narrower than Mr. Biden’s pathway. Polls show Mr. Trump trailing nationally and in most of the key battlegrounds needed to reach the 270 electoral votes required to win the presidency.Mr. Trump has been forced to defend not just the three Northern industrial states — the former “blue wall” of Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan — that he flipped in a surprise victory four years ago but also an array of diversifying states across the Sun Belt and the South, including Florida, Arizona, North Carolina, Georgia and even Texas.Those latter five states combine for 109 Electoral College votes, nearly all of which analysts believe Mr. Trump must win. In the final stretch, both parties were zeroing in on key demographics. Mr. Biden spoke with the African-American community in Pittsburgh while his running mate, Senator Kamala Harris of California, headlined a Latino get-out-the-vote effort in Bethlehem. Mr. Obama campaigned in Miami-Dade County, Florida’s most populous which is a majority Latino and Black.Mr. Trump continued to obsess aloud about how white suburban women had flocked toward the Democratic Party during his presidency, helping to deliver Democrats the House in 2018 and possibly the White House in 2020.“I say to the women of the suburbs: love me women of the suburbs,” Mr. Trump said.For Mr. Tump, the race’s waning days have been a characteristically chaotic closing stretch. He has threatened to send in lawyers to stop vote counting, cheered on supporters who surrounded a Biden bus on a Texas highway and baselessly accused doctors of exaggerating how many people had died from the virus so that they could make more money.In Fayetteville, N.C., on Monday, Mr. Trump condemned the Supreme Court decision that will allow ballots to be counted in Pennsylvania after Election Day. “Do you know what can happen during that long period of time?” Mr. Trump said without evidence. “Cheating.”Mr. Biden and Mr. Trump’s closing messages captured their divergent approaches to electoral politics.“There will be no red states and blue states, just the United States,” Mr. Biden said of his potential presidency. That Mr. Biden himself began his final full day on the road in Ohio — a state Mr. Trump carried by eight percentage points — appeared a sign his campaign hoped to run up the score. Ohio was not among the dozen closest states in 2016.But voters in both parties are mistrusting of the polls. Mr. Trump has actively questioned them on a near daily basis. And many Democrats are still scarred by the shock of 2016.Outside the Polk County Auditor’s office in Des Moines, the line to vote early stretched around the block. For 18-year-old Mikayla Simpson, who stood in line wearing earbuds and a tan camouflage Trump 2020 baseball cap, the wait to cast her first vote for Mr. Trump was well worth it.“I’d stand here all day if I had to,” she said.Turnout on Tuesday will be critical even with the record early voting.Mr. Trump, who for months has sown mistrust in mail-in ballots, is especially in need of a huge in-person showing, banking that the Republican Party’s early investment in door-knocking will pay off.Mr. Trump’s chances are mostly pinned on luring white working class voters to the polls — many of whom have flocked to his rallies despite the health risks. Seeking to recapture the energy of his surprise 2016 win, Mr. Trump’s final stop is expected to be in Grand Rapids, Mich., the same city he finished his 2016 schedule.The Democratic ticket ended the day in Pennsylvania’s two biggest media markets alongside pop stars at rallies in stadium parking lots, with Ms. Harris in Philadelphia with John Legend and Mr. Biden in Pittsburgh with Lady Gaga. Lady Gaga also performed at Mrs. Clinton’s final 2016 rally, then in North Carolina. For Mr. Trump and Mr. Biden, their final events on the last full day of 2020 campaigning offered as stark a display of their differences as anything they said.Seeking to project a sense of normalcy even as infection caseloads surge, Mr. Trump flouted public health guidelines with a slate of large rallies in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, and even made a winking nod to firing the country’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, should he win another term, in a Florida rally that lasted past midnight on Sunday.In Ohio and Pennsylvania, Mr. Biden argued there could be no return to routine until the virus was under control and his itinerary of socially distanced, drive-in rallies — “Honk if you agree with me!” he shouted in Cleveland — served a visual expression of his sober approach. Mr. Biden, the former vice president, cast race as a referendum on Mr. Trump’s stewardship of a pandemic that has infected more than nine million people in the United States and cost more than 230,000 lives.“The first step to beating the virus is beating Donald Trump,” Mr. Biden declared, adding, “The power to change the country is in your hands.” – Advertisement – Mr. Trump had a very different pitch. “You have the power to vote, so go out and vote,” he said. “Unless you’re going to vote for somebody other than me, in which case, sit it out.”Reporting was contributed by Maggie Haberman in New York; Glenn Thrush in Washington, D.C., Nick Corasaniti and Katie Glueck in Philadelphia; Louis Keene in Los Angeles and Mike Anderson in Des Moines, Iowa. “Vote like this country depends on it because it does,” she said Monday.
Source = Crown Over the past few weeks alone, Crown Melbourne’s precinct of restaurants has scored over a dozen individual accolades. Prestigious awards have been presented by revered international publication, Wine Spectator, respected magazine, Australian Gourmet Traveller WINE and at this week’s Savour Australia Restaurant & Catering HOSTPLUS Awards of Excellence for Victoria. Nicolas Kurban, Crown’s Executive General Manager, Food & Beverage, commented, “We are thrilled to have received these prestigious accolades. We take great pride in our commitment to excellence and are sincerely grateful for this recognition.”At the annual Victorian Savour Australia Restaurant & Catering HOSTPLUS Awards of Excellence, 7 of Crown’s restaurants, including Nobu, Conservatory, Silks, Koko, The Merrywell, Number 8 restaurant & wine bar and Mings were all recognised. In addition, Crown Melbourne’s Food and Beverage Training Department was presented with the prestigious 2012 Victorian George Mure Memorial Award and Crown Melbourne was named a finalist in the Function and Convention Centre Caterer, Restaurant in a Training Institute and Wedding Caterer categories. 2012 Savour Australia Restaurant & Catering HOSTPLUS Awards for Excellence Conservatory Winner New Restaurant Nobu Winner Modern Asian Restaurant Silks Winner Chinese Restaurant Koko Finalist Japanese Restaurant Mings Finalist Chinese Restaurant Number 8 restaurant & wine bar Finalist Contemporary Australia Restaurant Informal The Merrywell Finalist New Restaurant Culinarium Finalist Restaurant in a Training Institute Crown Melbourne Finalist Function/Convention Centre Caterer Crown Melbourne Finalist Wedding Caterer Food & Beverage Training Department Winner George Mure Memorial Award Australian Gourmet Traveller Wine magazine’s annual Australia Wine List of the Year AwardsRecently, Number 8 restaurant & wine bar, Rockpool Bar & Grill, Spice Temple and The Waiting Room were all included in Australian Gourmet Traveller WINE magazine’s annual Australia Wine List of the Year Awards for 2012. Each wine list is assessed on five criteria: content, balance, suitability, presentation and pricing by an expert panel of impartial judges. Number 8 restaurant & wine bar’s wine list is described as “A high roller list that reads like a Langton’s catalogue. Plenty of blue-ribbon names and prestigious wines. Back vintages are available for notable Australian wines, such as Cullen Cabernet Merlot and Penfolds Grange. The global representation for each variety is impressive.”Rockpool Bar & Grill’s award-winning list is praised as, “an impeccable list of the highest standards with balance being its core strength. Top-end respectable wines sit alongside lesser-known gems, with a vein of quality throughout. Not only does it reflect current drinking trends but it sets them.” While Spice Temple’s concise list of 100 wines is declared, “interesting, forcing closer scrutiny and careful selection, especially making certain the wines match Neil Perry’s fabulous cuisine.” The Waiting Room’s list was awarded two goblets and is named “a Southbank star, which has a thoughtful and well-priced wine list, best attacked by the glass, and one of the most exciting spirit collections in the country.” Wine Spectator Magazine – Best of Award of Excellence August 2012 Issue For the fifth consecutive year, both Number 8 restaurant & wine bar and Rockpool Bar & Grill were awarded a “two glasses award” in the Best of Award of Excellence by the world-renowned and revered magazine, Wine Spectator. This award recognises restaurants that offer over 400 expertly chosen wines along with superior presentation and breadth across several wine regions. In 2012, Crown Melbourne has launched Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar at Crown Metropol, the double-storey gastro-pub The Merrywell, a live performance and sports bar named the Common Room, the Lumia cocktail lounge and Cotta, an all-day café; as well as the newly re-launched Conservatory restaurant at Crown Towers.Later this year, Neil Perry will launch his new Italian restaurant, Rosetta, while an addition to Crown’s new West End precinct is also planned with the opening of Jimbo & Rex, modelled on a traditional pub experience.These recent awards and accolades further cement Crown Melbourne’s reputation as Australia’s leading dining precinct. Crown continues to offer guests and visitors an unsurpassed experience with a myriad of choices for dining, entertainment and accommodation.
Sonar Entertainment launching paid-for YouTube channel, Minis + Movies.The TV movie and series producer and distributor will programme the US service with titles from its 500-title catalogue. It will include classic and contemporary miniseries and full-length two-hour TV movies.The channel launched this week and a monthly subscription costs US$1.99 (€1.52). A yearly sub is priced at US$19.99.Sonar said it will refresh the line-up with new titles every month with titles at launch including Lonesome Dove, Merlin (with Sam Neil, not the FremantleMedia series), Tin Man with Zooey Deschanel and Good Fences with Danny Glover and Whoopi Goldberg.“Our library is rich with beloved and acclaimed titles, perfect to be watched over and over again,” said Stewart Till, CEO, Sonar Entertainment. ”We welcome this opportunity to make them available all in one place, easily accessible to a broad audience.”
Fox International Channels has acquired NFL TV rights for its branded sports channels in Europe.The two-year deal gives the Fox Sports channels and blocks one NFL game per match day, in English, starting from this season.The agreement means Fox Sports viewers will be able to see Sunday games, Sunday Night Football, Monday Night Football, Thursday Night Football and the three Thanksgiving Day Games.There will also be wraparound programming including NFL Game Day, NFL Extra, Road to Playoffs and Road to Super Bowl.Jesus Perezagua, president of FIC Europe and Africa said: “21st Century Fox has a longstanding relationship with the NFL in the US, and it has been a fundamental part of the Fox Network and Fox Sports brand there. As we roll out our FOoxSports brand across Europe, we are excited to make the NFL one of our key content partners.”
The QYou, a linear network focused on high-quality, curated web videos, has launched an authenticated app aimed at its operator partners.The youth-skewing network said that the app will allow service providers – including pay TV operators, OTT, SVoD and mobile operators – to deliver The QYou’s linear and VoD content through an interactive, multiscreen experience.The app is available to The QYou’s platform partners either as an authenticated standalone QYou-branded app or integrated into an operator’s existing mobile app.The QYou said that the release reflects the “growing demand” for a combination of lean-back, lean-forward, personalised and social TV experiences.The QYou co-founder and CEO, Scott Ehrlich, described the launch as “an exciting milestone” the company as it expands its support for subscription platforms of all kinds“Using the app, subscription platforms can offer the most compelling curation of commercially appealing short form videos from around the globe as an integrated VOD and linear experience,” he said.“Subscribers can skip forward and back during ‘live’ linear content, favourite content, and share through social media, as well as search using hashtags, artist and genre to find similar videos and build playlists.”The app uses a combination of analytics and curation from The QYou’s team to deliver more personalised in-app recommendations, according to the company.The QYou now operates its linear channel in more than 30 countries across Europe, Africa and the Middle East through carriers including Deutsche Telekom, Telenor, M7 Group, Lattelecom, Star Times and My HD. The first partners for The QYou’s new app are yet to be revealed.
Naren MansharamaniSatellite operator Intelsat has appointed Narendra Mansharamani as vice-president of financial planning and analysis.Based in McLean, Virginia, Mansharamani’s role is designed to bridge strategy and operations with finance and accounting. He will report to CEO and interim chief financial officer, Stephen Spengler.Mansharamani joins Intelsat from Sabic Innovative Plastics, a provider of engineering thermoplastic material solutions, where he was director of the Americas.