Providence, RI – U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today issued the following statement as the COVID-19 pandemic reached a grim milestone in Rhode Island:

“Today we mourn 1,001 fellow Rhode Islanders lost to COVID-19.  Each victim of this pandemic had a story.  Each was a part of our community.  As we pass this sad milestone, our hearts are with each family grieving a lost loved one.”

The U.S. is now at more than five-million coronavirus cases and counting. The country passed that grim milestone over the weekend. The viral infection has killed more than 162-thousand Americans.       Police in Portland, Oregon again declared a riot Sunday evening as protests continue. It was the 74th night of protests in Portland since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis Police custody. Protesters approached a police building, threw things at officers, blocked a road, and set dumpsters on fire.        Just about everyone expects Joe Biden to announce his choice for his vice presidential running mate this week. California Senator Kamala [[ COMMA-la ]] Harris and former national security adviser Susan Rice are seen as the top contenders.        Democrats in Wisconsin say they've found a long list of problems with Kayne West's nominating petitions. They say hundreds of signatures on petitions turned in over the weekend don't meet state requirement for addresses or voting location.        "America's Got Talent" judge Simon Cowell now has a metal rod in his back after he fell off an electric bicycle and broke his back at his Malibu home Saturday. Variety reports the rod was inserted in the 60-year-old music mogul's back during a five-hour surgery last night. A source says although his injuries are bad, Cowell was told he was lucky.        Serena Williams will be on the court for the first time in six months today at the Top Seed Open in Lexington, Kentucky. This is Serena's first tournament since February and it's the first Women's Tennis Association event since competition shut down in March because of the coronavirus pandemic.