From the United States accepting 100,000 Ukrainian refugees to Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation hearing, this week’s news changed rapidly.

Missed some of our updates? Catch up now with our weekly Breakdown.

UNITED STATES ANNOUNCED PLAN FOR UKRAINIAN REFUGEES

President Joe Biden announced on Thursday that the United States will accept 100,000 Ukrainian refugees from the Russian invasion. The administration has yet to reveal a timeline or specifics but stressed that America had to do more than sanction Russia and provide financial aid.

The United States refugee program “is not an emergency response program, so our goal would be to provide humanitarian assistance to keep people safe where they are for now,” a senior official told ABC News. Last week, President Biden provided Ukraine with over $13.6 billion in financial aid and defense training.

President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. will accept 100,000 Ukrainian refugees after sending billions in aid for defense training
President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. will accept 100,000 Ukrainian refugees after sending billions in aid for defense training. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

PUTIN DECLARED HE WANTS RUBLES FOR RESOURCES

As European gas prices soared, Russian President Vladimir Putin mocked the struggling nations by suggesting that if they wanted natural gas and other resources, they would have to pay in rubles. The United States, and other countries who have banned imports of Russian energy, were also placed on an “unfriendly” list put together by Putin.

Sanctions against Russia have sought to destroy the country’s economy, but many of the EU’s moves have hurt European citizens, as well. After canceling the completion of the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline, gas bills in Europe jumped 30 percent.

JUDGE KETANJI BROWN JACKSON FACED CONFIRMATION HEARINGS

D.C. Court of Appeals Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson faced four full days of questioning in her confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court this week. She was nominated by President Biden to replace Justice Breyer and will most likely become the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court.

While many Democrats in the senate hearings supported Judge Jackson and said that she would make an excellent Supreme Court justice, she faced stiff criticism from Republicans who looked to turn the confirmation process into campaign stumps. The partisan affair saw republican senators question the nominee over her opinions on criminal reform, prisoners of war, and child sex abuse, that critics hailed as an “outlandish affair.”

Ketanji Brown Jackson Faces Three Days of Aggressive Questions from Republican Senators in Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings
Ketanji Brown Jackson faced three days of questions in Supreme Court Confirmation hearings. Photo Credit: U.S. Senate Hearings / YouTube

MADELEINE ALBRIGHT DIED AT AGE 84

Madeleine Albright, the first female Secretary of State in the U.S., passed away at the age of 84 on Wednesday. She suffered from cancer following a long political career.

Albright led the United States out of the cold war and championed the expansion of NATO, serving in President Bill Clinton’s administration from 1997 to 2001. In her final statement last month, she wrote in a New York Times op-ed that Russian leader Vladimir Putin would be making “a historic error” by choosing to invade Ukraine.

UTAH GOVERNOR VETOED TRANS-ATHLETE BILL

Utah Gov. Spencer Cox vetoed a bill seeking to ban trans athletes from competing on sports teams that correspond with their gender. The bill was introduced by many states in response to critics who thought trans swimming star Lia Thomas had an “unfair advantage” over her competitors.

“Rarely has so much fear and anger been directed at so few. I don’t understand what they are going through or why they feel the way they do. But I want them to live,” Gov. Cox stated, adding that rates of violence and suicide can be reduced among trans students if they’re shown “even a little acceptance and connection.”

Protestors in Brooklyn supporting trans lives and the rights of trans people nationwide
Protestors in Brooklyn supporting trans lives and the rights of trans people nationwide. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

HUMAN REMAINS WERE FOUND AT CHINESE PLANE CRASH SITE

Authorities this week found human remains at the site of the China Eastern plane crash, where 132 people on board are believed to have perished. Investigators have yet to determine just watch caused the plan to suddenly nose-dive and are hoping that recovery of the black box can provide some answers.

Efforts to recover the black box proved difficult due to heavy rains and risk of landslides, but the device appeared to be in good shape. There have been zero survivors of the plane crash reported, as many family members and friends arrived at the site to help first responders search the area.

ASHLEIGH BARTY RETIRED FROM TENNIS

The No. 1 women’s tennis player Ashleigh Barty announced this week that she would be retiring from the sport, even though she is just 25 years old. She won three major titles over the past three years at the French Open, Wimbledon, and the most recent 2022 Australian Open. She also won 25 of her last 26 matches, retiring in what was most likely the prime of her career.

“Ash Barty, the person, has so many dreams that she wants to chase after that don’t necessarily involve traveling the world, being away from my family, being away from my home, which is where I’ve always wanted to be,” she said in an official statement. “There was a perspective shift in me in the second phase of my career, that my happiness wasn’t dependent on the results, and success for me is knowing I’ve given absolutely everything I can.”

World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty retired from tennis at age 25
World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty retired from tennis at age 25. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

BRIDGERTON’ SEASON 2 PREMIERED ON NETFLIX

Bridgerton Season 2 premiered on Netflix this week to the delight of fans of the period drama. This season focuses on another of the hit series’ characters: Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey). The oldest member of the family, Anthony ended Season 1 stating that he was ready to find a wife. Season 2 will explore his quest to find the perfect match without falling prey to the dangers of love.

The story is based on Julia Quinn’s second novel, The Viscount Who Loved Me, and its success has already renewed Bridgerton for Seasons 3 and 4. Fans have a lot more of the Regency-era series to be excited for, however, as show creator Shonda Rhimes told audiences last year that, “There are eight Bridgerton siblings, and as far as I’m concerned, there are eight ‘Bridgerton’ seasons. … and maybe more.”

94TH ACADEMY AWARDS SET TO HONOR HOLLYWOOD STARS

The 94th Annual Academy Awards will air on Sunday, honoring actors and filmmakers for their work in 2021 and celebrating a return to movies in a post-pandemic world. Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes will host the ceremony in front of a live audience, following controversy from the Hollywood Foreign Press and the announcement of categories going un-televised.

Films such as The Power of the Dog, CODA, and West Side Story are expected to take home the evening’s biggest awards, with performances from Beyonce and Billie Eilish planned. Award hopefuls such as Will Smith, Troy Kotsur, Ariana DeBose, and Kristen Stewart are also hoping to take home their first-ever Oscars, while others such as Lin-Manuel Miranda hope to become potential EGOT Award winners.

Make your predictions now and watch along on ABC at 6:30 p.m. EST for the red carpet, and 8 p.m. EST for the ceremony.