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White House chief of staff refuses to ‘talk through a mask’ to reporters

White House chief of staff Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsAdministration officials call on Congress to immediately pass bill to spend unused PPP funds Trump claims he is ‘immune’ from coronavirus, defends federal response Senate Republicans rip new White House coronavirus proposal MORE refused to “talk through a mask” to reporters on Monday after initially removing the mask, telling them he was “more than 10 feet away.”

“I’m more than 10 feet away … that way I can take this off,” Meadows told reporters at the Capitol during Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing.

After a reporter asked him to put it back on, Meadows replaced the mask and walked away, saying, “I’m not going to talk through a mask.”

The chief of staff wore a mask in the hearing room with White House counsel Pat Cipollone, according to NBC News.

Meadows is among the White House employees who continued to work out of the White House and directly interact with President TrumpDonald John TrumpDes Moines mayor says he’s worried about coronavirus spread at Trump rally Judiciary Committee Democrats pen second letter to DOJ over Barrett disclosures: ‘raises more questions that it answers’ Trump asks campaign to schedule daily events for him until election: report MORE since the president was diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier this month. Meadows said he tested negative for the virus as of Monday.

White House doctor Sean Conley said Saturday that the president meets Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “criteria

Two more White House residence staff have tested positive for the coronavirus

WASHINGTON — Two more White House residence staff tested positive for Covid-19 nearly three weeks ago, a White House official confirmed to NBC News on Friday.

That brings the number of residence staff who have tested positive for the coronavirus in recent weeks to four, including three members of the housekeeping staff who work on the third floor of the residence and an assistant to the chief usher.

None of the four came into contact with the first family, the official said, and all of them wore masks.

The news, first reported by The New York Times, comes a week after President Donald Trump was checked into Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after testing positive for Covid-19.

Trump returned to the White House on Monday evening and is receiving treatment for the disease amid concerns that he remains contagious and could infect people inside the White House complex.

On Wednesday, the president returned to the Oval Office and released a video declaring himself essentially “cured” of Covid-19. Trump’s doctors, however, have been guarded about the details of his medical condition; White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said earlier this week that they wouldn’t know whether he was out of the woods until after this weekend.

The White House has been hit hard by the virus, with top aides Hope Hicks and Stephen Miller testing positive for the coronavirus as well as press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, numerous members of the press office and White House staff.

More than a dozen people who have been around Trump in recent days have tested positive for Covid-19, many of whom attended the White House ceremony for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett on Sept. 26.

White House chief of staff hosted 70-person wedding in Georgia despite COVID-19 restrictions: report

Mark Meadows
Mark Meadows

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows speaks to the press in Statuary Hall at the Capitol on August 22, 2020 in Washington, DC. Gabriella Demczuk/Getty Images

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, President Donald Trump and his Republican allies have publicly downplayed the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic and failed to acknowledge the value of social distancing measures. One such Republican is White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, who — according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution — hosted a “lavish wedding” in Atlanta in May that violated the city and state’s social distancing guidelines.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, a Democrat, has been an aggressive supporter of social distancing in her city and has had some major disagreements with Georgia’s far-right Republican governor, Brian Kemp, over the coronavirus pandemic — which, according to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, has killed more than 1 million people worldwide and over 212,000 people in the United States. Back in May, under Bottoms’ stay-at-home order, gatherings of more than ten people were prohibited in Atlanta — and Georgia had a statewide social distancing order as well at the time. But according to Atlanta Journal Constitution reporters Patricia Murphy and Greg Bluestein, the wedding that Meadows hosted for his daughter had about seven times as many people.

“The wedding took place May 31 at the Biltmore Ballrooms in Midtown Atlanta,” Murphy and Bluestein report. “The 70 or so guests, including U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, donned tuxedos and ball gowns for the indoor affair, but no masks, as Meadows walked his daughter, Haley, down the aisle through a path of soft white flower petals. With crystal chandeliers, marble floors and a frame of soaring Roman arches, the lush scene could have come from any wedding magazine — were it not taking place

White House chief of staff hosted lavish wedding despite COVID-19 restrictions

ATLANTA — White House chief of staff Mark Meadows hosted a lavish wedding for his daughter in Atlanta this May, despite a statewide order and city of Atlanta guidelines that banned gatherings of more than 10 people to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

The wedding took place May 31 at the Biltmore Ballrooms in Midtown Atlanta. The 70 or so guests, including U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, donned tuxedos and ball gowns for the indoor affair, but no masks, as Meadows walked his daughter, Haley, down the aisle through a path of soft white flower petals.

With crystal chandeliers, marble floors and a frame of soaring Roman arches, the lush scene could have come from any wedding magazine — were it not taking place at the height of a global pandemic.

Although the state of Georgia had loosened some restrictions by the end of May, Gov. Brian Kemp’s orders at the time expressly banned gatherings of more than 10 people.

The statewide order in effect — which Kemp signed on May 12 — restricted gatherings of more than 10 people so long as they’re not “transitory or incidental,” or spread out across different locations.

Pictures of the wedding reviewed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution show groups of people clustered closely together in the same room throughout the evening. Under that emergency order, law enforcement could have potentially written citations to the venue for exceeding the gathering size, state officials said.

The next statewide order, which took effect the day after the wedding on June 1, specified for the first time that event venues and banquet facilities must follow the same safety guidelines as restaurants.

It also raised the number of people allowed at gatherings from 10 to 25 — still a fraction of the number of guests at

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows ignored virus rules at wedding, report says

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a castle on top of a building: The White House is seen in Washington, early Tuesday, the morning after President Trump returned from the hospital where he was treated for COVID-19.


© J. Scott Applewhite
The White House is seen in Washington, early Tuesday, the morning after President Trump returned from the hospital where he was treated for COVID-19.

President Trump made the stunning announcement that he and First Lady Melania Trump had tested positive for COVID-19 early Friday, Oct. 2. Since that time, several others in Trump’s circle have tested positive for the virus. Here’s the latest about what we know:

  Thursday, Oct. 8 10:07 a.m.  

Trump touts progress in stimulus talks days after spiking them

By Bloomberg News

President Trump said talks on providing additional fiscal stimulus are now “starting to work out,” after he pulled his side out of negotiations earlier this week.

“I think we have a really good chance of doing something,” Trump said Thursday morning in a live interview with Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business. There are now “very productive talks” on coronavirus relief, he said.

Months of hard-fought negotiations on a stimulus package to shore up a slowing economic recovery came to an abrupt end Tuesday, when Trump pulled his team out of the talks. He then called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to send him standalone assistance bills, including for airlines and individual stimulus checks.

  Thursday, Oct. 8 9:52 a.m.  

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows ignored virus rules at wedding, report says

By Associated Press

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows hosted a large wedding for his daughter that appeared to violate a Georgia order and city of Atlanta guidelines aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19, an Atlanta newspaper reported Thursday.

Photos of the event show that social distancing guidelines were not followed during the May 31 nuptials at the Biltmore Ballrooms Atlanta, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

About 70 guests, including US