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Afternoon News Break, 11/10/20

By Mickey Hutchings

In campus news, University Housing is allowing students to move back home early this semester. After several coronavirus clusters broke out in dorms this fall, students now have the option to opt out of their housing contracts before the end of the year. According to The Appalachian, students who do so will receive a refund depending on when they move out and how much their residence halls cost to live in per semester. Students who move out before November 1st are also entitled to credits for the remainder of their unused meal plan money. University Housing is urging students who moved out of their dorms early to not return for the spring semester. Students who opted out before October 30th are eligible for early registration so that they can have first dibs on online classes.

Locally, the town of Blowing Rock has decided to cancel its annual Christmas events. Due to COVID-19 concerns, the town will not be hosting its Christmas in the Park event, the lighting of the town Christmas tree and Christmas parade, which usually occur the weekend before Thanksgiving. According to the Watauga Democrat, Blowing Rock Parks and Recreation Director Jennifer Brown said that the town will be decorated for the holiday as normal, but the events won’t be happening out of an abundance of caution. Brown hopes that the cancellations won’t hinder people’s holiday spirits and that visitors make their way up the mountain to see the decorations and do some holiday shopping.

National: Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said Monday that he supports President Donald Trump’s legal challenge of voting results in several key battleground states. The senator said the president is, “100 percent within his rights to look into allegations of irregularities and weigh his legal options,” and cited that ballot counting is not over in several states and recounts are likely to occur within the coming weeks. The New York Times reported that by Monday evening, only a few Republican senators broke rank with their party leader. Senator Mitt Romney of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, have acknowledged Joe Biden’s victory.

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