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White House and State Department Plan In-Person Holiday Parties as Pandemic Rages

HeadlineDec 03, 2020

At the White House, officials are planning to hold at least 25 indoor parties celebrating Christmas and Hanukkah this month, ignoring federal guidelines on mass gatherings, face masks and social distancing. White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was asked how she could defend such indoor gatherings.

Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany: “If you can loot businesses, burn down buildings, engage in protest, you can also go to a Christmas party.”

Meanwhile, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his wife have invited hundreds of people to indoor holiday parties at the State Department this month — even as the agency warned members of the diplomatic corps to cancel any “non-mission critical events” in favor of online gatherings. The Washington Post reports over 900 invitations have gone out to one such party — planned for December 15 — raising fears of more “superspreader” events in Washington, D.C., hosted by senior Trump administration officials.

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