Confirmed cases of COVID-19 are continuing to surge in the United States as more than 83,000 new infections were recorded on both Friday and Saturday — the highest daily totals since the pandemic started. Hospitalizations rose in 38 states over the past week. Total confirmed cases in the U.S. have now topped 8.6 million, with a death toll over 225,000 — both numbers are the highest in the world.
A new outbreak in the White House has infected at least five of Vice President Mike Pence’s aides. In spite of the news, Pence, who the White House says has tested negative, has continued campaigning and is refusing to quarantine, in defiance of guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows was questioned by CNN’s Jake Tapper Sunday.
Mark Meadows: “We’re not going to control the pandemic. We are going to control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigation areas.”
Jake Tapper: “Why aren’t we going to get control of the pandemic?”
Mark Meadows: “Because it is a contagious virus, just like the flu. It’s” —
Jake Tapper: “Yeah, but why not make efforts to contain it?”
Mark Meadows: “Well, we are making efforts to contain it, if that’s” —
Jake Tapper: “By running all over the country not wearing a mask?”
Mark Meadows also confirmed in his interview reports the White House attempted to keep news of the outbreak from the public. Democratic vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris spoke out Sunday about her rival Mike Pence.
Sen. Kamala Harris: “Listen, he should be following the guidelines. We’re doing it. I think that we have modeled the right and good behavior, and they should take our lead.”
Meanwhile, President Trump and Joe Biden continued campaigning over the weekend. On Friday, Trump told voters in Florida he would “quickly end this pandemic,” despite the surging cases across the country. Meanwhile, Biden told supporters in his home city of Wilmington, Delaware, that Trump has “quit on America,” and assured voters he would listen to scientists and push to mandate mask-wearing across the country.
Joe Biden: “Wearing a mask is not a political statement. It’s a scientific imperative.”