- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 10, 2020

Dr. Anthony Fauci said Friday the White House hosted a “super-spreader” event that caused multiple new cases of the novel coronavirus by recently letting maskless visitors gather on its grounds.

The infectious disease expert and member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force made the remark in response to a question raised about the administration’s efficiency at fighting the outbreak.

“I think the — the data speaks for themselves,” Dr. Fauci said on CBS News Radio.

“We had a super-spreader event in the White House, and it was in a situation where people were crowded together and were not wearing masks. So the data speak for themselves,” Dr. Fauci added.

Dr. Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, did not elaborate in the interview to say which specific event he considered a super-spreader.

He likely was referring to events that happened in and around the White House on Saturday, Sept. 26., when Mr. Trump announced his nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court.

A number of people in attendance in that event were seen not wearing face masks while in close proximity to others, effectively disregarding the advice health officials recommend to slow the spread of the virus.

Several attendees tested positive afterward for COVID-19, the contagious disease the coronavirus causes, including most notably President Trump and his wife, first lady Melania Trump, among others.

Other prominent Republicans close to Mr. Trump who attended the nomination event and subsequently tested positive for COVID-19 include Trump reelection campaign manager Bill Stepien, former counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Thom Tillis of North Carolina.

Mr. Trump is set to hold an event outside the White House again Saturday afternoon marking his first public in-person appearance since disclosing his COVID-19 diagnosis earlier this month.

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