FDA approves remdesivir to treat COVID-19
On Monday, Meadows tried to do some cleanup. He said, “The only person waving a white flag along with his white mask is Joe Biden.”
Meadows said Trump won’t give up until all Americans are safe and the virus is defeated. He said, “We are going to defeat the virus. We are not going to control it. We will try to contain it as best we can.”
Meadows spoke to reporters at the White House on Monday before the Republican president traveled to campaign events in the critical battleground state of Pennsylvania.
The president, for his part, rallied backers in New Hampshire and visited an orchard in Levant, Maine, where he signed autographs and assured a crush of mostly unmasked supporters that a “red wave” was coming on Nov. 3. He and first lady Melania Trump wrapped up the busy weekend by hosting costumed children for a socially distanced Halloween trick-or-treating on the White House grounds.
Biden attended church and participated in a virtual get-out-the-vote concert. He said in a statement that Meadows was effectively waving “the white flag of defeat” and “a candid acknowledgement of what President Trump’s strategy has clearly been from the beginning of this crisis.”
In a brief exchange with reporters before the orchard visit, Trump demurred when asked if Pence should step off the campaign trail as a precaution. “You’d have to ask him,” Trump said.
The White House said none of the staff traveling with Trump on Sunday had been in close contact with any individuals in the vice president’s office who had tested positive. But public health experts said Pence’s decision to keep up in-person campaigning was flouting common sense.
Lawrence Gostin, a public health expert at Georgetown University’s law school, said Pence in his decision to forgo quarantine was violating his own task force’s recommendations.
“It’s one standard for the vice president and another for all the rest of us,” Gostin said.
CDC changes guidance on 'close contact' with those infected with COVID-19
The U.S. set a daily record Friday for new confirmed coronavirus infections and nearly matched it Saturday with 83,178, data published by Johns Hopkins University showed. Close to 8.6 million Americans have contracted the coronavirus since the pandemic began, and about 225,000 have died; both totals are the world’s highest. About half the states have seen their highest daily infection numbers so far at some point in October.
Trump, campaigning in Londonderry, said the rising rate of infections was nothing to be concerned about. “You know why we have cases so much?”′ Trump asked a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd. “Because all we do is test.”
Entering the final full week before the Nov. 3 election, it’s clear the Trump team remains committed to full-throttle campaigning. Trump himself has resumed a hectic schedule since recovering from his own recent coronavirus case and planned to campaign Monday in Pennsylvania. Pence will campaign Monday in Minnesota and return to North Carolina on Tuesday.
Despite the rising virus numbers, the White House said the U.S. economy needs to fully reopen, and it has tried to counter Biden’s criticism that Trump is not doing enough to contain the worst U.S. public health crisis in more than a century.
Trump and his aides again on Sunday lashed out at Biden, falsely asserting Biden was determined to lock down the economy, while the president is centering his attention on getting therapies and vaccines to market.
“We want normal life to resume,” Trump said. “We just want normal life.”
Biden, in fact, has said he would only shut down the country if that is what government scientists advise. He has said that if elected he would make the case for why a national mask mandate might be necessary and would go to the governors to help increase Americans' mask-wearing.
Pence’s office said there are no plans to curtail campaigning. In addition to chief of staff Marc Short, who tested positive Saturday, a “couple” other aides also have also contracted the disease, Meadows said.
Meadows said Pence will wear a mask — “because the doctors have advised him to do that” — but take it off when he gives a speech, as the vice president did Sunday in North Carolina.