HOLCOMB HONORS FIRST RESPONDERS AT 9/11 MEMORIAL: During a solemn ceremony Saturday, Gov. Eric. Holcomb thanked all the first responders and the armed forces who served on and after the day of Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, including Indiana's Task Force One, a group of first responders who spent eight days at Ground Zero following the attacks (St. Angelo, IndyStar). "We should use this as a reminder for ourselves to rededicate what we stand for, what we strive for," he said. "To live lives worthy of their ultimate act of devotion, knowing that we will always remember and we will never forget." The Indiana 9/11 memorial was rededicated Saturday on the 20th anniversary of the terror attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people, including nine Hoosiers. The memorial, made of steel from the World Trade Center, was first dedicated on Sept. 11, 2011. Former Vice President Mike Pence also spoke at the ceremony, along with retired Air Force Brigadier General J. Stewart Goodwin, who is the executive director of Indiana War Memorials, and Teri Maude, who is the widow of Indiana-native Lt. General Timothy Maude. Her husband was the highest ranking officer killed on 9/11 and the highest ranking officer to be killed from hostile actions since World War II. A stone memorial for Lt. General Maude was also unveiled. "Let me say to all of the veterans who are gathered here and the families of all who have served, nothing will ever diminish what the armed forces of the United States accomplished in Afghanistan," Pence said. "They kept America safe and they have all earned a place of honor in the annals of American history."


BUSH WARNS OF VIOLENCE EXTREMISTS AT HOME: On the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that changed his presidency, former president George W. Bush on Saturday warned there is growing evidence that domestic terrorism could pose as much of a threat to the United States as terrorism originating from abroad, and he urged Americans to confront “violence that gathers within” (Washington Post). Without naming it, Bush seemed to condemn the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, when a pro-Trump mob overran the complex in a violent siege that resulted in the deaths of five people. Bush compared those “violent extremists at home” to the terrorists who had hijacked planes on Sept. 11, 2001, and crashed them in New York City, Arlington, and Shanksville, Pa., killing nearly 3,000 people. “There is little cultural overlap between violent extremists abroad and violent extremists at home,” Bush said in a speech at the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville. “But in their disdain for pluralism, in their disregard for human life, in their determination to defile national symbols — they are children of the same foul spirit, and it is our continuing duty to confront them.”


3 PRESIDENTS OBSERVE 9/11 ANNIVERSARY: Three American presidents stood somberly side by side Saturday at the National September 11 Memorial in New York, sharing a moment of silence to mark the anniversary of the nation’s worst terrorist attack with a display of unity (AP). Presidents Joe Biden, Barack Obama and Bill Clinton gathered at the site where the World Trade Center towers fell two decades ago. Each man wore a blue ribbon and held his hands over his heart as a procession marched a flag through the memorial before hundreds of people, some carrying photos of loved ones lost in the attacks. Before the event began, a jet flew overhead in an eerie echo of the attacks, drawing a glance from Biden toward the sky. For much of the ceremony he stood with his arms crossed and head bowed, listening while the names of the victims were read. At one point, he wiped a tear from his eye.


COATS RECALLS 9/11: Dan Coats had just finished a long conversation about post-World War II German-American relations in his ambassador residence in Berlin when his staff urged him to turn on the news. It was Coats’ second day on the job as ambassador, mid-afternoon in the German capital, on Sept. 11, 2001 (Ladwig, Bloomington Herald-Times). He rushed to the embassy. It was unclear at that point whether more attacks would come — or where. U.S. officials quickly dispatched armored vehicles to take up stations around the embassy. The ambassador also worried about family. One of his sons-in-law worked at the Pentagon. “We didn’t know whether he was alive or dead … for hours,” Coats said. The son-in-law survived, but crawled out of the building as it was filling with smoke after the plane crashed into the Pentagon. “9/11 was a wake-up call that we had to take some real steps to better protect the country from outside adversaries,” Coats said.


YOUNG, KAINE ATTEMPT TO SHAME CONGRESS INTO TAKING ON PRESIDENTIAL POWER: Todd C. Young and Tim Kaine are an unlikely Senate duo to lead the effort at rewriting the rules of military engagement in fighting enemies abroad. On Sept. 11, 2001, Young (R-Ind.) did his last day as a low-level assistant at the Heritage Foundation, a few weeks before starting as a Senate aide (Washington Post). The former Marine intelligence officer was in a bagel shop a few blocks from the Capitol when a second plane hit the twin towers in Manhattan. Kaine (D-Va.) had resigned the day before as mayor of Richmond to focus entirely on his campaign for lieutenant governor, expecting to do local news interviews all day near the state Capitol. Two decades later — after thousands of U.S. soldiers lost their lives in the ensuing wars, which cost trillions of dollars — these two senators are trying to shame their fellow lawmakers into taking ownership of American foreign policy. “Politically, it’s sometimes a very difficult vote to determine whether to send our young men and women into combat zones, especially when the public hasn’t already been persuaded that it’s necessary,” Young said in an interview last month, before the withdrawal from Afghanistan. “It’s still our job. It’s still our job, but we need to own it.”


CPL. SANCHEZ BODY ARRIVES BACK IN INDIANA: Sunday, the body of Marine Corporal Humberto Sanchez, 22, Logansport, will be transported to Indiana. Sanchez was one of 13 US military members killed on Aug. 26 while serving on active duty in Kabul, Afghanistan. Funeral for Indiana Marine slain in Kabul to be held Sept 14 (WANE-TV). Sanchez’s body will arrive at Grissom Air Reserve Base at approximately 10:30 a.m. A procession escorting his body to Logansport will depart the airbase at approximately 10:45 a.m.


MUTZ INVESTS $2.3M IN LOCAL NEWS: John Mutz has worn a number of hats in his life, from state lawmaker to Indiana lieutenant governor to president of the Lilly Endowment. Now, at the age of 85, he’s taken on a new task—investing in research to find solutions to help the shrinking local news media (Ketterer, IBJ). Mutz has donated nearly $2.3 million in the last four years to kick-start and support research by the Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism’s Local News Initiative. Medill’s Local News Initiative is a research and development project using deep data analysis of news markets around the country to understand the behaviors and needs of local news consumers. The goal: Provide understanding of how digital audiences engage with local news, and help reinvent and bolster local-news business models. "My thinking first is how we fill the terrible deficit we have at the local level for up-to-date news that’s sustainable and that is reliable,’” Mutz said. “It seems to me that this is extremely important for the future of a democratic society,” Mutz said. “A viable democracy depends on people in the community who know what’s going on, and who have accurate, reliable information.” Indiana has fared better than other states with news deserts, said Steve Key, executive director of the Hoosier State Press Association. Scott and Crawford counties are the only ones in the state without their own news outlets.


DNR ENDS BIRD FEEDER BAN: Hoosiers in all 92 Indiana counties can resume feeding birds, the Department of Natural Resources has announced (AP). The DNR had recommended a statewide moratorium on bird feeding earlier this summer to slow the spread of an undetermined illness killing birds across the state. Biologists identified more than 750 possible cases in 76 counties that involved symptoms including crusty eyes, eye discharge and neurological issues. The department said Friday that residents throughout Indiana may again put out their feeders if they’re comfortable doing so and aren’t finding sick or dead birds in their yards.


HPI DAILY ANALYSIS: Twenty years after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, the body of Marine Cpl. Humberto Sanchez returns to Indiana this hour, perhaps one of the final casualties in this era of the war on terror. We honor Cpl. Sanchez's ultimate sacrifice this morning. - Brian A. Howey




PENCE DISMAYED BY BIDEN MANDATE SPEECH: When former Vice President Mike Pence was watching President Joe Biden’s coronavirus response speech Thursday, he called it “unlike anything he had ever heard from an American President” (WIBC). “I mean, to have the President of the United States say that he has been patient but his patience is wearing thin. That’s not how the American people expect to be spoken to by our elected leaders,” said Pence in a Friday morning interview on “Fox and Friends.” Pence said the President should continue to lead by example and encourage people to take the vaccine just as both he and his wife Karen did on national television in December.


HUPFER STATEMENT ON BIDEN MANDATES: Republican Party Chairman Kyle Hupfer (Howey Politics Indiana): "Joe Biden's authoritarian overreach is an admission of his own failures. He's gone from saying vaccines shouldn't be mandated to threatening to get elected officials who don't abide by his authoritarian power grab 'out of the way.'"




WALORSKI STATEMENT ON BIDEN MANDATES: U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (Howey Politics Indiana): "As our nation faces a ‘help wanted’ crisis from shore to shore, President Biden’s mandate will continue to weaken our workforce and stunt our economic recovery. Like many Hoosiers, I am concerned by the Biden Administration’s obsession with big-government intervention and will continue to oppose all federal mandates.”


BANKS OPTIMISTIC ABOUT WINNING MAJORITIES: Optimism was at the forefront of Rep. Jim Banks’ message to his the party faithful at the annual Steuben County Lincoln Day Dinner Friday (Harris, KPC News). The optimism ranged from the federal level where Banks serves to the local offices that will be up for election next year. “I am optimistic about winning back the House majority but there is a lot that is going to happen in the next year and half as the Democrats are in charge,” he told fellow Republicans, including Indiana’s Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Richard Lineberry; State Senator Sue Glick, R-13th, State Rep. Dr. Denny Zent, R-51st; Steuben County Commissioner President Wil Howard and Steuben County Prosecutor Jeremy Musser. Banks discussed the following topics: Afghanistan withdraw: “Obviously, as we approach the 20th anniversary of 9/11, I’m sick to my stomach about what’s happening in Afghanistan, what happened a few weeks ago in Afghanistan, the negligence by this administration that caused a disastrous and deadly situation and it didn’t have to be that way,” said Banks.


General Assembly


WHAT REDISTRICTING TERMS MEAN: As state lawmakers start the process Tuesday, get ready to hear words like “compactness,” “bleaching,” “communities of interest” and “proportional” (Kelly, Fort Wayne Journal Gazette). “Redistricting is critically important because it determines who represents a particular community over the next decade,” said Elizabeth Bennion, political science professor at IU-South Bend. “The composition of a district can change, which means one group of people may receive better or worse representation depending on how the line is drawn.” Generally, the population has shifted in Indiana away from rural areas and into more urban areas. And the new districts will have to reflect that change. House Republicans are set to unveil proposed boundary lines Tuesday for Indiana's nine congressional districts and 100 state House of Representatives districts. Senate Republicans will add the 50 state Senate districts in a few weeks.




GOVERNOR: JUDGE WEIGHS EMERGENCY POWER - A top state lawyer argued Friday that Indiana’s constitution gives the Legislature full authority to meet when it wants, urging a judge to reject the governor’s lawsuit challenging the increased power state legislators gave themselves to intervene during public health emergencies (AP). The lawsuit filed by Gov. Eric Holcomb has divided Indiana’s Republican hierarchy as he maintains the law passed over his veto this spring violates constitutional provisions allowing only the governor to call the General Assembly into special session after its annual session ends. State Solicitor General Thomas Fisher told a Marion County judge that a 1970 constitutional amendment allowing the Legislature to meet each year gave lawmakers “maximum flexibility” on deciding when to meet and that legislators could pass a law setting meeting times outside their current annual sessions that adjourn by the end of April. Richard Blaiklock, one of the private lawyers representing Holcomb, emphasized that the constitution gives authority only to the governor for calling the Legislature into a special session. He argued legislators were trying to make an “end run” around the constitution with the emergency session law. The judge gave both sides 10 days to submit more court documents before he makes a decision.


GOVERNOR: HOLCOMB CRITICAL OF BIDEN MANDATE - Gov. Eric Holcomb criticized President Biden's mandates he issued on Thursday (Howey Politics Indiana): “I believe the vaccine is the number one tool that will protect us and our loved ones against COVID-19. It is the tool that will end the pandemic. However, I strongly believe it’s not the state or federal government’s role to issue a vaccine mandate upon citizens and private businesses. This is the approach our administration has taken all along. The announcement from President Biden is a bridge too far. Private businesses should be able to look at their own mission, their staff and their goals and make the decision best for them that will keep their doors open. I believe it is fundamentally a citizen’s right to choose whether or not to get the vaccine. While I wish everyone would get the vaccine, we are a country built on this exact type of freedom.”


GOVERNOR: HOLCOMB LAUDS WAYNE COUNTY - Gov. Eric Holcomb said Wayne County is well-placed for economic success, needing to "sell, sell, sell" itself (Emery, Richmond Palladium-Item). “You already have the location, location, location,” Holcomb said while answering questions for about 175 people who attended Thursday's Wayne County Area Chamber of Commerce Governor's Luncheon at Forest Hills Country Club. The governor said 40,000 vehicles a day pass through Wayne County, many carrying freight. The county is "on the 50-yard-line" of a partnership involving the Indiana Department of Transportation and federal agencies that stretches from Indianapolis to Columbus, Ohio.  “Being on that flight path, being on that thoroughfare is a huge, huge benefit,” Holcomb said. The border county also has an advantage attracting out-of-state residents to move to Indiana. “You have a target-rich environment over there in Ohio,” Holcomb said.


ATTORNEY GENERAL: ROKITA VOWS TO CONFRONT BIDEN MANDATES - Attorney General Todd Rokita (Howey Politics Indiana): “My team and I, along with other like-minded attorneys general, are reviewing all legal action on how to stand against these authoritarian actions by the Biden administration. We will be prepared to file suit if Biden seeks illegal actions restricting Hoosiers' liberties.” Sen. Mike Braun said that Biden is "desperately overstepping his authority."


ISDH: WEST NILE CASE DISCOVERED -  State health officials are asking Indiana residents to protect themselves from mosquito bites after the first West Nile virus case of 2021 was identified in a Lake County resident, and in mosquitoes in multiple other counties (AP). As of Friday, 83 mosquito pools positive for West Nile virus were detected in Allen, Clark, Daviess, Elkhart, Floyd, Gibson, Hamilton, Jennings, Lake, Marion, Martin, Pike, Scott, Steuben, St. Joseph, Vanderburgh and Vigo counties. Mosquitoes are still active in cooler fall weather, and all Hoosiers should take precautions against mosquito-borne diseases until the first hard freeze, State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box said in a statement.


CORRECTIONS: 3 MORE LAWSUITS FILED BY MIAMI INMATES -  Three more inmates have filed lawsuits against Miami Correctional Facility alleging they were confined in near total darkness and received painful shocks from live wires hanging from broken lights (Logansport Pharos-Tribune). Kwin Boes, De'Shay Hackner and Isaac Lukes join 10 other inmates who filed suits against the prison alleging they were subjected to cruel and unusual punishment while being held inside isolation units. The lawsuits have all been filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana on behalf of the inmates. In the grievances, the inmates said they were placed in isolation cells inside the restrictive housing unit, where prison officials had covered broken outside windows with sheet metal and never replaced or repaired the single light inside the cell.


PURDUE: 84 STUDENTS DISCIPLINED FOR COVID INFRACTIONS - Some students at Purdue University are receiving disciplinary action for failing to follow the school’s requirements for COVID (WIBC). Before the fall semester started, Purdue gave students the option to either be fully vaccinated or participate in weekly routine testing. A large majority of students are doing that, but the school says there are 84 students receiving disciplinary action for not doing the weekly testing after getting two warnings. The school says if they get a third warning, they’ll be suspended.


BIG 10: IU ROMPS PAST IDAHO 56-14 - For $1.2 million, IU shook off its Iowa blues Saturday night, and got right for next weekend’s visit from top-10 Cincinnati (IndyStar). That was the fair and going rate for the Vandals to come to Bloomington and get pounded when the contract between these two teams was signed. That Idaho has gone back down to the FCS since only further underscored the gulf in talent between these two teams, a gap Indiana was happy to examine in every facet. The Hoosiers won 56-14 in a game so barely in doubt Idaho only had 10 total offensive yards by the time IU increased its lead to 35-0.


BIG 10: BOILERS DRUB UCONN 49-0 - The second half was underway Saturday afternoon of what would become a 49-0 lopsided victory by Purdue and most of the second row in the Rentschler Field press box was empty (IndyStar). Two reporters. Two members of Purdue’s Athletic Communications department were the only individuals who remained. The other chairs were occupied by nearly 10 NFL scouts. At least in the first half. After halftime, they were headed home or to their next destination.


NOTRE DAME: IRISH ESCAPE TOLEDO 32-29 - The No. 8 Irish (2-0) gave their fans a little too much excitement during Saturday’s home opener (ND Insider). The 32-29 victory over Toledo (1-1) in Notre Dame Stadium was filled with big plays for both teams just six days after Notre Dame’s 41-38 overtime victory at Florida State.


MAC: BALL STATE FALLS TO PENN STATE 44-13 - No. 11 Penn State routed Ball State 44-13 at College Station Saturday.




KENTUCKY: LEGISLATURE SCRAPS MASK MANDATES - Republican lawmakers in Kentucky voted in a special session to scrap a statewide mask mandate in schools (WFIE-TV). The GOP-dominated legislature passed the pandemic measure Thursday during the third day of a special session. “The legislature owns this pandemic moving forward,” says Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear. The bill approved Thursday sets education policies in response to disruptions caused by the coronavirus. Another bill winning final passage would impose an extended ban to any statewide mask mandate, leaving the decision up to local governments and businesses. Beshear responded by vetoing the mask provisions in both bills late Thursday night. Republican lawmakers overrode the vetoes before ending the special session.


ALASKA: LAWMAKER BANNED BY AIRLINE FOR NOT MASKING - An Alaska lawmaker who is banned from flying on the state’s leading airline for refusing to wear a mask was excused from attending floor votes for the rest of the year after telling legislative leaders she has no way to fly to and from the state capital (Washington Post). State Sen. Lora Reinbold, a Republican representing an Anchorage suburb, said this week that Alaska Airlines offered the only flights between her district and Juneau from now through the end of the year. The airline banned her indefinitely in the spring after she clashed with staffers over the airline mask mandate issued by federal transportation officials.


MLB: BOSTON DOWNS CHISOX 9-8 IN 10 INNINGS -  Travis Shaw hit a tiebreaking single in the 10th inning after belting a three-run homer in the third and the Boston Red Sox beat the Chicago White Sox 9-8 on Saturday night (ESPN). Shaw found out toward the end of batting practice that he was going to be in the lineup with J.D. Martinez scratched because of back spasms. On short notice, he sure delivered. Shaw capped a seven-run third with a drive that made it 7-2 and chased Chicago starter Dylan Cease. The AL Central-leading White Sox tied it with five in the fourth and took an 8-7 lead in the fifth when Yasmani Grandal homered off Ryan Brasier. Boston tied it in the eighth on Enrique Hernández's sacrifice fly against Craig Kimbrel.


MLB: GIANTS ROUT CUBS 15-4 -  Tommy La Stella and Brandon Belt each hit three-run homers, and the San Francisco Giants pounded the Chicago Cubs 15-4 on Saturday for their sixth straight win (ESPN). La Stella finished with three hits, including a double, five RBI and scored three runs for surging San Francisco, which improved to a major-league best 92-50. The Giants entered 2½ games ahead of the Dodgers in the NL West.


MLB: ST. LOUIS DOWNS REDS 6-4 -  Nolan Arenado hit a two-run homer in the eighth and had three RBI and Paul DeJong had a solo shot to help the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cincinnati Reds 6-4 on Saturday night (ESPN). St. Louis has won three of four and gained a game on Cincinnati in the NL wild-card race. The Reds, who have lost four of six, started the day percentage points behind San Diego for the second spot.


Sunday Talk


MANCHIN WON'T SUPPORT BIDEN SPENDING PLAN: Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.), a key moderate Democrat, said on Sunday that he can't support President Biden’s $3.5 trillion spending plan. "We don't have the need to rush into this and get it done within one week because there's some deadline we're meeting or someone's going to fall through the cracks," Manchin said on NBC's "Meet the Press."  "I want to make sure that children are getting taken care of, that people are basically having an opportunity to go back to work. We have 11 million jobs that we haven't filled, 8 million people still unemployed. Something's not matching up there." Manchin also said he would look at adjusting the tax code first if he were writing the bill from scratch.


GOV. RICKETTS SEEKS WAYS TO STOP BIDEN MANDATES: Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts (R) on Sunday said his attorney general and officials from other states are looking into how they can “attack” President Biden’s new vaccine mandate in court. Ricketts, during an interview with Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday,” called the new vaccine requirement that requires private employers with 100 or more employees an “egregious overreach of federal authority.” “I've been talking to my attorney general, he is coordinating with the other attorneys general across the country who share similar views about the overreach,” Ricketts told Chris Wallace during an interview on “Fox News Sunday.”




WHITING: SUAREZ SELECTED FOR COUNCIL — There is a new councilman in the city's 1st District, as Nick Suarez was chosen at a caucus held on Saturday morning at City Hall to take the place of former Councilman Ken Zubeck (NWI Times). Zubeck had served on the City Council since 2004 but resigned on Aug. 23 due to a planned move to another district within the city. Suarez, 33, was the only person to file the proper documents in the required time frame and was thus the only candidate the district's two precinct committeemen had to consider, and he was elected unanimously.


COLUMBUS: HOSPITAL SUSPENDS ELECTIVE SURGERIES — Citing a surge in hospitalizations, Columbus Regional Hospital is canceling all elective, non-urgent surgeries and procedures as of Monday, September 13 (WRTV). The hospital says a process has been determined which procedures meet criteria on a case-by-case basis. "The suspension of non-urgent and non-emergent surgical procedures is geared toward the preservation of healthcare resources, which are at critical capacity," a statement on its website said. "The health and wellbeing of those we serve is top priority; therefore Columbus Regional Health remains committed to prioritizing those procedures and interventions that are emergent and cannot safely be delayed for the patient."


COLUMBUS: HATE CRIMES INCREASE - At least 10 hate crime incidents have been reported in Columbus over the past three years, with statistics from the FBI released last month showing that Black and LBGTQ+ residents being targeted more than any other group — and all but one of the incidents involved white perpetrators (East, Columbus Republic). The FBI recorded two incidents in Columbus in 2018, three in 2019 and five last year, the highest number reported in the city in one year in at least two decades. The FBI defines a hate crime incident as a criminal offense that was at least partially motivated by the offender’s bias against the victim’s race, ethnicity, ancestry, gender, gender identity, religion, disability or sexual orientation.