2 people who attended Trump’s rally in North Carolina have tested positive for coronavirus

The Gaston County Health & Human Services Department said in a statement Thursday that there have been two positive Covid-19 cases “involving individuals attending the recent campaign rally in Gastonia.”

The department stressed that the cases are “not thought to be an indication of spread from the rally at this time, but rather two independent cases among individuals who were in attendance.” The event took place at Gaston Municipal Airport on October 21.

Trump rallied last Wednesday in the Charlotte suburb, where he told attendees the pandemic was “rounding the corner.” Trump was due to return on Thursday but postponed that rally citing “gusts reaching 50 miles per hour and other weather conditions,” according to an email sent by his campaign.

Health officials said that due to the number in attendance last week they are unable to properly contact trace those who may have been exposed.

“Because of the large number of potential contacts from the rally, and the inability to alert them directly, the community is being notified so they can assess their own risk and take appropriate actions,” the health department statement said. “Anyone who was in attendance at the rally is encouraged to monitor their symptoms and seek testing if needed.”

One of the people who tested positive, a reporter who covered the rally for a local TV station, confirmed his positive test on Twitter.

“Full disclosure: I’m one of the two people who tested positive after covering Pres. Trump’s Gastonia rally. Thankfully, I feel okay though I’m quarantining per county guidelines,” Brandon Goldner, a reporter with WCNC Charlotte, wrote on Twitter.

Goldner said that he has contacted everyone who he “interviewed or interacted with” before the positive test result, and that he was wearing a mask at the entire rally, but “Secret Service protocols” occasionally made social distancing not possible.

WCNC Charlotte confirmed the positive test in a statement on its website.

CNN reached out to the Secret Service for comment.

When reached by CNN, the Trump campaign pointed to the county health department’s statement.

Cases on the rise

North Carolina is seeing high case counts and hospitalizations from Covid-19 as the virus continues spreading throughout the state, Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, said Wednesday.

The state has seen nearly 270,000 cases of Covid-19 resulting in 4,283 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tally of cases in the United States.

Cooper said the state continues to monitor hospitalizations, adding, “We have plenty of hospital capacity, plenty of ICU capacity, plenty of labor capacity, but you are concerned when you see it creep up, and (Dr. Mandy Cohen, secretary of the state health department) continues to be concerned about some smaller hospitals that are already feeling a little bit of the pinch here.”

Contact tracers are finding that many Covid-19 cases come from smaller gatherings of extended family and friends, youth group outings, family meals or church, Cooper said.

“We too often let our guard down when we are with people we know and trust. But

Read more

Ben Carson attended indoor fundraiser where attendees didn’t wear masks: report

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson attended a fundraiser for a Virginia congressional candidate on Monday in which attendees were not wearing masks, BuzzFeed News reports.



a young man wearing a suit and tie: Ben Carson attended indoor fundraiser where attendees didn't wear masks: report


© Hill.TV
Ben Carson attended indoor fundraiser where attendees didn’t wear masks: report

Carson attended a fundraiser for Republican Bob Good, who is running to represent Virginia’s 5th Congressional District against Cameron Webb (D). Press was denied access to the event, according to a reporter for the Prince William Times, but several photos of the event were posted on Facebook.

The photos posted show Carson and other attendees congregating at the indoor event without masks, going against the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Virginia Department of Health. While he is shown eating in some of the photos, he is also seen in others simply talking with other guests without wearing a mask.

The Virginia Department of Health requires people to wear masks “when spending time in indoor public settings.” However, it is unclear whether the event took place at a public or private setting.

Virginia also mandates that dining establishments separate parties six feet apart from each other, but the photos do not show the parties separated.

Carson appears to be contradicting his own public advice on face coverings. During an interview with ABC in June, Carson said of wearing masks: “If we all do it, it will make a dramatic difference.”

Video: AP FACT CHECK: Trump flubs study on masks and coronavirus (Associated Press)

AP FACT CHECK: Trump flubs study on masks and coronavirus

UP NEXT

UP NEXT

The Trump administration has been downplaying wearing masks since the beginning of the pandemic, and has not let up despite mandates on face coverings across the country.

During an NBC town hall last Thursday, Trump misrepresented a September study from the CDC, falsely claiming that it showed 85 percent of individuals who wear masks contract the virus.

The study found that adults with confirmed COVID-19 cases were about twice as likely than those who tested negative to have reported dining at a restaurant before falling ill. The CDC later tried to correct misconceptions about the study, tweeting that “the interpretation that more mask-wearers are getting infected compared to non-mask wearers is incorrect.”

The president was asked if he had changed his mind on the effectiveness of masks after contracting coronavirus himself earlier this month, and said he had not.

Good has said he’s not convinced that wearing masks makes a difference.

“I had one doctor tell me that wearing a mask is like putting up a chain link fence to keep out mosquitoes,” he said in an interview with NBC Washington.

Trump endorsed Good in September after he beat out incumbent Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-Va.) in the state’s June primary election. Webb, a physician, has outraised Good in the predominantly right-leaning district on the Virginia-North Carolina state line.

The Hill has reached out to Carson and Good for comment.

Continue Reading
Read more