Thursday Numbers

Quote for today…

I don’t trust words. I even question actions. But I never doubt patterns. – Unknown

Welcome to “Thursday Numbers!” In case you are a first-time visitor, this is the weekly column where I look at the numbers in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm and humor.

This week’s topics include Mega Millions jackpot, coronavirus deaths/cases, unemployment claims, fully immunized Montanans, insurrection commission, The Western Word poll results, Texas & abortions, plus much more!


Wow! That is the jackpot ($515 million) for Friday night’s Mega Millions lottery. (

Last week the jackpot was $430 million.


That is how many people have died in the United States from coronavirus, according to the latest data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. There have been 33,027,220 cases across the country so far. The first death in the USA was reported on February 29, 2020. (Johns Hopkins)

Last week the death total was 583,690.


In the week ending May 15, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial unemployment claims was 444,000, a decrease of 34,000 from the previous week’s revised level. This is the lowest level for initial claims since March 14, 2020 when it was 256,000. The previous week’s level was revised up by 5,000 from 473,000 to 478,000. The 4-week moving average was 504,750, a decrease of 30,500 from the previous week’s revised average. This is the lowest level for this average since March 14, 2020 when it was 225,500. The previous week’s average was revised up by 1,250 from 534,000 to 535,250. (DOL)

*Note: On Thursdays, this column is published right after 6:30 a.m. (Montana time), so I can post the latest unemployment numbers.


That is how many Montanans have been fully immunized for COVID-19. (Source)

Last week the number of fully immunized Montanans was 358,177.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Montana’s estimated population in July 2019 was 1,068,778.

Find COVID-19 Vaccines Near You by clicking HERE.


That was the vote in the U.S. House to create an independent commission on the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. There were 35 Republicans who voted for the commission. (AP)

U.S. Representative Matt Rosendale (R-MT/AL) voted NAY (No). (Source)


This week’s poll question asks, “Should the Montana Board of Regents legally challenge the new state law that allows firearms on college campuses?”

YES: 97%
NO: 3%

On Wednesday, the Associated Press (AP) reported that the board that oversees Montana’s university system voted unanimously Wednesday to file a lawsuit against the state seeking a ruling over whether the state Legislature or the Board of Regents has the constitutional authority to regulate the possession of guns on campuses.

Good for the Montana Board of Regents.


Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on Wednesday signed a law that bans abortions in Texas before many women even know they are pregnant and differs singularly from similar efforts nationwide: leaving enforcement to private citizens, who can sue doctors or anyone who helps a woman get an abortion. The law puts Texas in line with more than a dozen other states that ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, possibly as early as six weeks. It would take effect in September, but federal courts have mostly blocked states from enforcing similar measures. (AP)

This Texas law seems very extreme.

U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) talking about abortion says it best in a recent Facebook post:

The law of the land has been and remains clear — the government has no place between a woman and her doctor. A woman’s right to make her own health care decisions should always be protected.

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2 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. Jackie, you obviously have a few die hard Trump readers that follow your posts. The tip off is in your last 3 Western Word polls. In grading the Montana legisture poll 2.56% actually gave them grade “A”. In the poll should Liz Cheney be removed 6% said yes and in this week’s poll should Board of Regents sue the guns on campus law 3% said no. So I wonder if right wing wacko crazy hat Representative Lola Sheldon-Galloway and her husband Representative Steve Galloway follow you since they reside in Great Falls. At least you can’t be accused of being biased. Except maybe your loyalty to the Chiefs. Go Seahawks!(I still read you everyday) Good work.

    • Dennis – I imagine there are a few Trump folks who check in or subscribe. It’s nice that they do so they see another view.
      Seahawks Chiefs Super Bowl would be great. Thanks, JmB

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