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article imageIgnoring warnings, White House planning indoor holiday parties

By Karen Graham     Nov 24, 2020 in Politics
Washington - The White House is planning to host a Thanksgiving reception and other holiday parties - despite warnings from public health officials, and against the advice of its own advisers, even as COVID-19 cases surge across the U.S.
With the October Rose Garden "super-spreader" event still fresh in most people's minds, and the White House seemingly a hot-bed for the coronavirus, First Lady Melania Trump has decided to host a "Holiday Reception" on November 30, three days after Thanksgiving.
There will also be a host of other holiday affairs in the weeks to come to celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah, according to ABC News. The First Lady's spokeswoman and chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, said in a statement Sunday that the White House parties will take place in "the safest environment possible" and noted a series of planned precautions.
"The People's House will celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah while providing the safest environment possible. This includes smaller guest lists, masks will be required and available, social distancing encouraged while on the White House grounds, and hand sanitizer stations throughout the State Floor," Grisham said in a statement.
Many Americans are queuing to get coronavirus tests before traveling home for Thanksgiving
Many Americans are queuing to get coronavirus tests before traveling home for Thanksgiving
There is just "one little thing" missing from the invitations, according to two people who have received them - The invitations seemed like any other year, with no mention of coronavirus precautions, reports CNN News.
Warnings from health officials
On Monday, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, in an interview with ABC News, said “We want everyone to understand that holiday parties can be super spreader events." He urged everyone to hold any celebrations outdoors with as few people as possible, reiterating the recommendations by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The "safest choice" is to celebrate "virtually or with the people you live with." If Americans do host a gathering, they should eat outside and limit the number of guests, according to the CDC's guidelines for this holiday season. “These apply to the White House, they apply to the American people, they apply to everyone,” Adams said.
However, as Reuters notes, millions of Americans have chosen to ignore all the warnings and travel to Grandma's house or other places for turkey this year. Even though the number of U.S. air travelers was still down about 60 percent compared to a year ago, federal transportation officials on Monday reported the highest number of passengers since March.
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