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What we know so far about Pfizer’s vaccine | Morning Newsletter

And where Trump’s legal challenges stand

This May 4, 2020 photo provided by the University of Maryland School of Medicine shows the first patient enrolled in Pfizer's COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine clinical trial at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.
This May 4, 2020 photo provided by the University of Maryland School of Medicine shows the first patient enrolled in Pfizer's COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine clinical trial at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.Read more/ AP

    The Morning Newsletter

    Start your day with the Philly news you need and the stories you want all in one easy-to-read newsletter

Today, the unseasonably warm November weather is still shining on us.

Before we celebrate early analysis on Pfizer’s announcement of a vaccine to prevent COVID-19, we bring you a breakdown of everything we know so far about the hurdles to come despite those promising numbers.

And President Donald Trump’s campaign has only pumped up the volume on its legal blitz attacking the integrity of the vote since he lost to President-elect Joe Biden. We’ll get into where it all stands in our issue-by-issue guide that includes experts on any potential impact on the election’s outcome.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_ashleyhoffman,

When Pfizer announced early numbers — that its vaccine is more than 90% effective in COVID-19 prevention in volunteers so far — many rejoiced about the shot of hope they offer. But the vaccine comes with various hurdles. We’ll need more information about this still-ongoing trial, specialists who were not involved with the research say.

Reporter Tom Avril unpacks what we know about it so far.

Despite the fact that Trump has produced no evidence of widespread voter fraud, it didn’t stop his campaign from amplifying his legal push since he lost the election. The lion’s share of the challenges in Pennsylvania take aim at the handling and counting of 2.6 million mail ballots cast across the state.

It’s a lot of lawsuits. So reporter Jeremy Roebuck runs down where each issue being brought before state and federal courts stands, and what impact — if any at this point — each could have on the election.

Trump’s continued baseless attacks on the integrity of the voting process have gotten louder. And there have been a considerable number of threats of violence against elections officials in Philadelphia as ballot tabulating continues. In reporter Jonathan Lai’s story, we speak with a Chief Deputy Commissioner on the receiving end of hate.

What you need to know today

  1. President-elect Joe Biden has announced his coronavirus task force, and there are plenty of Philly and Princeton public health veterans represented among the members.

  2. Get a look at the latest breakdown of votes by suburban and city wards as the counting of mail ballots continues with a map of the state by John Duchneskie.

  3. Court documents obtained by The Inquirer show more details about how the men in a Hummer with QAnon stickers planned to travel from Virginia to Philadelphia to “straighten things out.”

  4. How knocking the Green Party candidate off the ballot may have helped to clear the way for Biden’s win in Pennsylvania.

  5. These COVID-related tax benefits you probably haven’t heard of could save small businesses a bundle this year.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

We just love this excellent angle in Rittenhouse Square and a romantic sculpture. Thanks for sharing @_marcphilly_.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

That’s interesting

  1. 💔 Where do we go from here with people who aren’t on the same political page as us? Here’s how to repair personal relationships with people in your life you disagree with.

  2. 🦃 2020 is the year of tradition breakage. Give the oven the slip with these restaurants that are more than happy to handle your Thanksgiving feast.

  3. 😅 Fatigued? This is the absolute best time to exercise if you want to take your brain to the “gym.”

  4. 📊 Now that the pandemic has dramatically reduced the number of nursing home residents, what’s it going to take for nursing home use to rebound?

  5. 🚜 Meet the mayor of a New Jersey town who wants his community to be a marijuana epicenter.


“For progressives, Biden’s election is a doorway, not a destination. We are going to get our foot in that door right quick and make it open for our people.” — Nicolas O’Rourke, the Pennsylvania organizing director for the Working Families Party, writes about the new window Biden’s presidency opens up to fight crises.

  1. The Inquirer Editorial Board, which operates as a separate entity from the newsroom, writes in support of legal weed sales that could give the state $200 million in revenue.

  2. A Philly quizzo host who has been “nerding out” for the last 18 years writes about Alex Trebek’s particular knack for walking the fine line of “serious but fun.”

What we’re reading

  1. Philly Mag tracked down a nonprofit company behind all those dancing mailboxes getting into the groove in the streets for a chat about the postage-themed performance art that reigned on social media.

  2. Charlie Dent, a former U.S. representative from Pennsylvania, penned a CNN opinion piece on what Trump misjudged about Pennsylvania.

  3. Noticing the hazy sky out there recently? Billy Penn helps you navigate Philly’s air quality, which the recent warm weather has affected.

Your Daily Dose of | Modern history

Hamilton’s arrival on Disney+ sent a Branchburg, N.J., family of four on a Revolutionary War tour of historic sites for what they called the “Summer of Revolution.” And they couldn’t have arrived at a more appropriate pit stop recently. They capped it all off with a taste of democracy in action in Philly on Nov. 5 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where the city’s votes in the presidential election were counted.