Vice President Mike Pence is under fire for continuing to campaign for re-election despite five of his close advisors, including his Chief of Staff, Marc Short, have tested positive for coronavirus over the past few days.
ABC News reports “at least 5 individuals in the Vice President’s orbit have tested positive as of last night.” The New York Times has reported “up to five” have tested positive. Fox News reports “5 close to Pence test positive for coronavirus.”
The latest COVID-19 outbreak in the White House was exposed once again by Bloomberg News’ Jennifer Jacobs, who first reported Hope Hicks was positive. That report led to President Donald Trump having to admit he and the First lady had also tested positive in an outbreak that infected at least 34 people who had attended the White House Rose Garden celebration of the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
But unlike Senator Kamala Harris, who was exposed to an individual who tested positive and immediately self-quarantined, Vice President Pence will not. He is back on the campaign trail, with the White House Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows, saying doctors have cleared him to campaign.
On Sunday, Meadows claimed the Vice President is an “essential worker” and therefore must continue to campaign, which is false – campaigning is not part of his job as vice president.
After several aides, including his chief of staff, tested positive for Covid-19, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows says VP Pence will keep campaigning: “Essential personnel, whether it’s the Vice President of the United States or anyone else, has to continue on” #CNNSOTU pic.twitter.com/2ZWMmwUHG3
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) October 25, 2020
Meadows admitted on Sunday the Trump administration has no intention of even attempting to control the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’re not going to control the pandemic,” he told CNN. “Because it is a contagious virus just like the flu.”
Meadows also tried to hide that Pence’s Chief of Staff had tested positive. The White House claimed he first tested positive on Saturday, but Meadows on Sunday slipped, admitting “he’s been quarantining these last few days.”
Americans are furious that Pence, the head of the White House coronavirus task force, is ignoring CDC
guidelines – and basic common sense – after coming into contact with five of his close advisors who are positive.
Here’s what many are saying:
This is the most important point this a.m. Pence is now a walking advertisement for the failure of his own task force, the recklessness of the Trump Administration and his spineless in the face of Trump. People will die because Mike Pence has neither character nor competence. https://t.co/o5kwod6vAK
— David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf) October 25, 2020
Vice Superspreader Mike Pence can recklessly campaign all he wants, but I’m not getting within a mile of that infectious fuck
— Jeff Tiedrich (@itsJeffTiedrich) October 25, 2020
5 Pence aides have COVID, but Pence will stay on the campaign trail. Simply reckless. Angering.
— Voice of Reason (@RealJeffreyT) October 25, 2020
This is criminal and shows depraved indifference towards the lives of Pence Trump supporters and all Americans. Makes me wonder if Trump is still positive and willing to put his supporters at even greater risk https://t.co/kPAhIcTzJQ
— Richard Pollack (@richard_pollack) October 25, 2020
By going ahead with campaigning after at least 5 of his staff have tested positive, it’s hard to see how Pence isn’t guilty of reckless endangerment at the very least. https://t.co/Awk852ugym
— JimAndrews518 (@JimAndrews518) October 25, 2020
We are now up to at least 5 people in Pence’s orbit who have tested positive, and yet @VP is not planning to quarantine.
Instead, he plans to continue getting on a plane with staff, Secret Service agents & military personnel in order to keep campaigning in this final stretch https://t.co/kw3L1BkyMV
— Jeremy Diamond (@JDiamond1) October 25, 2020
MOST RECENT DAILY CASE COUNT:
VICE-PRESIDENT PENCE’S STAFF: 5 https://t.co/TDUxD1UyuT
— Ken Tremendous (@KenTremendous) October 25, 2020
— Eric Feigl-Ding (@DrEricDing) October 25, 2020
BREAKING: The coronavirus has turned the corner…..and was last seen driving straight into Mike Pence’s office, as 5 of his aides have now tested positive.
— cαηα∂α нαтεs тя☭мρ (@Trump_Detester) October 25, 2020
Has Pence’s office tested the fly? That might make 6 cases, not 5.
— Greg Dworkin (@DemFromCT) October 25, 2020
@VP @realDonaldTrump This is criminal level disregard for the health and well-being of the people who are around you. This is the most selfish and irresponsible administration in the history of the United States. I can hardly wait to vote you out!!! https://t.co/mqpxJWjAyo
— Tom Corn (@MrTomCorn) October 25, 2020
NYT reports VP Pence CoS, others in close contact, have tested positive for COVID19. All should be in quarantine. Hitting the campaign trail is an act of depraved indifference. https://t.co/6HLiyche70 https://t.co/fRBhO52gWR
— Dan Yurman (@djysrv) October 25, 2020
Mike Pence is coming to Minnesota on Monday after 5 of his staff tested positive for Coronavirus. We don’t want him here . He’s bad and toxic energy and is going to get people sick. Rally after rally is a catastrophic mistake.
— Jesse Lifson (@DoYouEvenLif) October 25, 2020
Makes you wonder–Is Pence the head of the “Coronavirus task force” or is he the head of the “Coronavirus super spreader force”.
— Oreo (@OreoBuffy5) October 25, 2020
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‘How Orwellian’: Top Florida Paper Pounds ‘Do-Nothing DeSantis’ as a ‘Fraud’ and a ‘Phony’
The Editorial Board of one of Florida’s top newspapers is criticizing Republican Governor Ron DeSantis as a “fraud” and a “phony” for his horrific handling of the Sunshine State’s COVID crisis, and then taking a “victory lap” for one week of improved results after “Florida’s summer of suffering.”
“Florida led the nation in case rates for much of the summer, and our governor was silent. Well, not totally silent. He did rail against mask and vaccine mandates, measures intended to prevent people from falling ill,” the Orlando Sentinel’s Editorial Board writes. “Now, a governor whose sole contribution to fighting the outbreak was to expand antibody treatments for people after they got infected is taking full credit for the decline in cases.”
“What a fraud. What a phony,” they declare, chastising the governor with White House wishes for having “the gall, the nerve, to take a victory lap.”
The paper notes that from July to October approximately 21,000 Floridians died from COVID. (The total number of Florida COVID deaths is 59,495.)
“Compare that to California, a warm-weather state with nearly twice the population of Florida and a governor who believes in public health. California had just 8,600 deaths during that same summer surge, according to Johns Hopkins,” they note.
DeSantis “could have made another major push for Floridians to get vaccinated. But he didn’t, possibly because his Republican Party is rapidly aligning itself with the anti-vaxxer movement,” the writer, adding that he chose “to make masks a cultural wedge issue” by banning any local mandates.
“And now, the do-nothing governor is trying to claim credit for this surge coming to an end,” the editors lament. “It is DeSantis’ final and most essential command — to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. How Orwellian.”
Four School Teachers in One Florida County Die in One Day From COVID as DeSantis Continues to Ban Mask Mandates
Four school teachers in Broward County, Florida just died from COVID-19 in one day. Three were unvaccinated, CNN reports (video below.)
Republican Governor Ron DeSantis continues to refuse to allow any mask or vaccine mandates as coronavirus cases, hospitalizations, and deaths explode in his state.
“Within a 24-hour span, we had an assistant teacher pass away, a teacher at her school pass away, an elementary teacher pass away and another teacher at a high school,” Broward Teachers Union President Anna Fusco told CBS News.
Broward County’s School Board this week voted to defy DeSantis’ ban on masks mandates.
Florida recorded 24,869 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, far more than any state in the nation. Less than half of Florida’s total population is fully vaccinated.
357 people in Florida died from coronavirus yesterday, per data from The New York Times.
BREAKING: WFOR is reporting that 4 teachers from Broward county have died of covid in a single day.
Three were unvaccinated. We don’t know the status of the 4th. pic.twitter.com/uT4XW7irc5
— Brianna Keilar (@brikeilarcnn) August 13, 2021
‘Yippee!!!’ Emails Show Trump Officials Celebrating After CDC Caved to Demands to Downplay COVID Risks
Newly released emails show that Trump administration officials openly celebrated after they successfully meddled to get the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to downplay the risks of the novel coronavirus.
The Washington Post reports that former Trump science adviser Paul Alexander wrote an email to then-HHS public affairs chief Michael Caputo in which he boasted about getting the CDC to back off language in two different reports that he believed painted too dire of a picture of the COVID-19 crisis.
“Pointing to one change — where CDC leaders allegedly changed the opening sentence of a report about spread of the virus among younger people after Alexander pressured them — Alexander wrote to Caputo, calling it a ‘small victory but a victory nonetheless and yippee!!!'” the Post reports.
Alexander also told Caputo about how he teamed up with Trump adviser Dr. Scott Atlas to alter a CDC weekly report on coronavirus-related deaths among young Americans.
The emails also show Alexander and Caputo wanted to cook up numbers on the alleged spike in suicides that were occurring during the pandemic, despite the fact that the number of suicides in the United States in 2020 actually fell by 6 percent.
“We need solid estimates to be able to say something like: 50,000 more cancer deaths! 40,000 more heart attacks! 25,000 more suicides!” Caputo wrote.
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