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Labor Secretary Scalia’s Wife Is Latest Rose Garden Guest With COVID-19

Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia’s wife has tested positive for COVID-19—becoming at least the 13th person who attended a largely mask-free White House Rose Garden event to contract the coronavirus.



Eugene Scalia et al. standing next to a person in a suit and tie: Chip Somodevilla/Getty


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Chip Somodevilla/Getty

Trish Scalia was seated next to Kellyanne Conway at the Sept. 26 ceremony to announce President Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court, and right behind Melania Trump.

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Conway and the first lady also got infected with COVID-19, along with the president, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and two of her underlings, and Sens, Mike Lee and Thom Tillis, along with several others.

In addition, other members of Trump’s inner circle, like adviser Hope Hicks, who were not at the event also tested positive in the White House outbreak, which put the president in the hospital.

The Labor Department said Secretary Scalia—whose father, the late Justice Antonin Scalia, was a mentor to Barrett—tested negative but will work from home. His wife “is experiencing mild symptoms but is doing well,” the statement said.

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White House Embraces Herd Immunity in Latest Push to End COVID-19 Lockdowns

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U.S. President Donald Trump addresses a rally in support of law and order on the South Lawn of the White House on October 10, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Trump invited over two thousand guests to hear him speak just a week after he was hospitalized for COVID-19.
Samuel Corum/Getty

The White House is doubling down on its push to reopen the economy, now openly embracing a herd immunity strategy at the urging of some health experts.

Two senior advisers told Newsweek and other media outlets on Monday that the Trump administration supports the Great Barrington Declaration, a controversial document that argues against lockdowns and calls for a reopening of schools, businesses and other entities, while protecting people deemed vulnerable to the virus because of age or other risk factors.

“I think Americans should be cautiously optimistic about what’s going on here,” one of the officials said.

The officials were not authorized to speak on-the-record about the matter, but both defended the decision to move toward a broad-scale reopening, even though at least 5,900 people in the United States died with COVID-19 last week.

The coronavirus has contributed to the deaths of more than 214,000 people in the U.S. since the pandemic began earlier this year.

Experts have argued that approaching “herd immunity”—essentially allowing more people to contract COVID-19 in the hopes that they would quickly recover and create a mass immunity—would likely result in many more deaths and illnesses.

World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters during a virtual press briefing on Monday that such an approach would be “unethical.”

“Herd immunity is achieved by protecting people from a virus, not by exposing them to it,” he said.

President Donald Trump has mentioned the idea in the past, mistakenly referring to it as “herd mentality,” and the

The Latest: Trump makes speech from White House balcony

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump spoke from a balcony in his first public appearance since returning to the White House after being treated for the coronavirus.

The president addressed a large crowd on the South Lawn despite the White House refusing to declare whether he is no longer contagious and against the guidance of public health officials.

Trump delivered an address on his support for law enforcement from the Blue Room balcony to a friendly crowd. Most in the crowd wore masks, but there was little social distancing.

The president has not been seen in public — other than in White House-produced videos — since his return five days ago from the military hospital where he received experimental treatments for the coronavirus.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— President Trump makes speech from White House balcony, 1st appearance in 5 days since return to residence

— Religious gathering limit upheld as New York hospitalizations rise

— Dr. Fauci cautions against large gatherings without masks, social distancing

— House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismisses the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks but remains hopeful progress can be made toward a deal.

— Queen Elizabeth II honored the work of doctors and nurses, delivery drivers, fundraisers and volunteers during the coronavirus pandemic.

— The NFL’s Tennessee Titans and the New England Patriots had no positive coronavirus tests Saturday and both teams will be allowed to go back to their facilities.

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— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

ROME – Rome was the site of two anti-mask protests on Saturday, even as Italy undergoes a resurgence of coronavirus infections.

The Health Ministry reported another 5,724 cases in the last 24 hours and 29 deaths. Most cases were

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismisses latest White House coronavirus aid offer

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Saturday dismissed the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks as “one step forward, two steps back,” but said she is still hopeful that progress can be made toward a deal.

The White House had boosted its offer before Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi spoke on Friday afternoon. President Donald Trump is eager for an agreement before Election Day, even as his most powerful GOP ally in the Senate said Congress is unlikely to deliver relief by then.

“Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!” Trump said Friday on Twitter.

A GOP aide familiar with the new offer said it was about $1.8 trillion, with a key state and local fiscal relief component moving from $250 billion to at least $300 billion. The White House says its most recent offer before that was about $1.6 trillion. The aide was not authorized to publicly discuss private negotiations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Pelosi’s most recent public offer was about $2.2 trillion, though that included a business tax increase that Republicans won’t go for.

“I would like to see a bigger stimulus package than either the Democrats or Republicans are offering,” Trump said on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show Friday. Earlier in the week, Trump lambasted Democrats for their demands on an aid bill.

In a letter Saturday to colleagues, Pelosi said, “This proposal amounted to one step forward, two steps back. When the president talks about wanting a bigger relief package, his proposal appears to mean that he wants more money at his discretion to grant or withhold.”

She said that while his administration attempted to address some of the Democratic concerns, disagreement remained on many priorities and Democrats are “awaiting language” on several provisions.

“Despite these unaddressed concerns, I remain

Pelosi dismisses latest White House coronavirus aid offer

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Saturday dismissed the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks as “one step forward, two steps back,” but said she is still hopeful that progress can be made toward a deal.

The White House had boosted its offer before Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi spoke on Friday afternoon. President Donald Trump is eager for an agreement before Election Day, even as his most powerful GOP ally in the Senate said Congress is unlikely to deliver relief by then.

“Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!” Trump said Friday on Twitter.


A GOP aide familiar with the new offer said it was about $1.8 trillion, with a key state and local fiscal relief component moving from $250 billion to at least $300 billion. The White House says its most recent offer before that was about $1.6 trillion. The aide was not authorized to publicly discuss private negotiations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Pelosi’s most recent public offer was about $2.2 trillion, though that included a business tax increase that Republicans won’t go for.

“I would like to see a bigger stimulus package than either the Democrats or Republicans are offering,” Trump said on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show Friday. Earlier in the week, Trump lambasted Democrats for their demands on an aid bill.

In a letter Saturday to colleagues, Pelosi said, “This proposal amounted to one step forward, two steps back. When the president talks about wanting a bigger relief package, his proposal appears to mean that he wants more money at his discretion to grant or withhold.”

She said that while his administration attempted to address some of the Democratic concerns, disagreement remained on many priorities and Democrats are “awaiting language” on several provisions.

“Despite these unaddressed concerns, I