Holidays are usually for gatherings but many get-togethers are complicated or canceled because of COVID-19.


The U.S. is now the only country to reach 8 million cases of the coronavirus — less than a month after reaching 7 million — amid a surge that has resulted in higher case counts in 41 states over the last week, according to a USA TODAY analysis.

Due to COVID-19 cases surging nationwide, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, cautioned against throwing large celebrations for Thanksgiving, calling it “a risk” to gather in indoor settings with people from out-of-town. His own family, he shared, is canceling plans.

And on Thursday, President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden talked coronavirus during dueling town halls.

On ABC, Biden said he would support making a COVID-19 vaccine mandatory. But, he acknowledged, that he can’t force people to get the vaccine when it’s available. Meanwhile, on NBC, Trump said he didn’t remember whether he tested negative the day of his debate against Biden on Sept. 29. 

Some significant developments:

  • A CDC report finds that indoor sports may be “super-spreader” events after one player infected 14 others at a Florida recreational indoor hockey game.
  • The effectiveness of remdesivir has been put into question after a massive World Health Organization study of more than 10,000 patients in 30 countries found ”little or no effect.”
  • Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie told the public to remain vigilant in an appearance Friday on ABC, his first since being released from the hospital for COVID-19.
  • Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the Canada-US border will stay closed until America gets control of the coronavirus outbreak.
  • Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris canceled campaign trips through Sunday after two people associated with the campaign tested positive for COVID-19.

📈 Today’s numbers: The U.S. has reported more than 8 million cases and 217,700 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins data. There have been more than 38.9 million confirmed cases around the world and nearly 1.1 million deaths. A USA TODAY analysis found 14 states set records for new cases in a week while two states had a record number of deaths in a week. 

📰 What we’re reading:  The pandemic and the ensuing recession have taken a toll for students, but they hit particularly hard for community college students who already face many obstacles on their path to getting a degree. 

🗺️ Mapping coronavirus: Track the U.S. outbreak in your state

This file will be updated throughout the day. For updates in your inbox, subscribe to The Daily Briefing newsletter.


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Report: New England Patriots cancel practice after positive test

Only a day after Cam Newton and Stephon Gilmore returned from the COVID-19 list to practice, the New England Patriots had to pause activities due to coronavirus concerns once again.

The team canceled its Friday practice and media session after a positive test, ESPN reported, as the team awaits a positive test