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Citing coronavirus concerns, President Trump on Sunday suspended entry for foreigners who have been in Brazil within 14 days prior to seeking U.S. admittance. The new rules, which will take effect Thursday night, come as Brazil reports more than 300,000 confirmed cases of the virus. “The potential for undetected transmission of the virus by infected individuals seeking to enter the United States from the Federative Republic of Brazil threatens the security of our transportation system and infrastructure and the national security,” the White House said in a statement.

Meanwhile, as the death toll in the United States climbed toward 100,000, the warm weather and holiday festivities drew large crowds to some of the country’s outdoor attractions. People flocked to beaches in Maryland and New Jersey, and video of vacationers flouting social distancing guidelines in Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks was shared widely on social media.

Here are some significant developments:

  • White House coronavirus coordinator Deborah Birx said on “Fox News Sunday” she was “very concerned” some people were neglecting to maintain a safe, six-foot distance during the Memorial Day weekend.
  • The governor of Arkansas said over the weekend that his state was facing a “second peak” in infections after a cluster emerged at a high school pool party.
  • Many local health officials told The Washington Post they have been left in the dark as clusters of cases have emerged in supermarkets coast to coast.
  • As the death toll nears 100,000, covid-19 has made a fundamental shift in who it touches and where it reaches in the United States.
  • Prime Minister Boris Johnson stood by an influential adviser accused of breaking Britain’s lockdown, despite widespread calls for the senior aide’s removal.
  • Italy’s Catholics, emerging from one of the most rigid lockdowns in the West — one that saw a historic halt to religious ceremonies — returned to Mass on Sunday.

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3:23 a.m.
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Armed protesters at ‘Freedom Rally’ hang Kentucky governor in effigy, drawing bipartisan condemnation

Armed protesters gathered at the Kentucky state capitol and governor’s mansion Sunday to decry Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear’s restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic — and hang him in effigy, a macabre move that drew condemnations from liberals and conservatives alike.

“This is disgusting and I condemn it wholeheartedly,” tweeted Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams, who is Republican. “The words of John Wilkes Booth have no place in the Party of Lincoln.”

“This type of behavior must be condemned,” a spokeswoman for Beshear told the Louisville Courier Journal.

Videos and pictures showed several dozen people participating in the “Freedom Rally,” which was organized by several conservative groups. Few appeared to be wearing masks. Speakers included Wesley Morgan, a former state representative who is running against Sen. Mitch McConnell (R) in the Republican primary.

“I believe this entire pandemic was orchestrated to destroy President Trump’s economy and to keep people from voting these political tyrants out of office,” Morgan said, according to the Courier Journal. “I believe it’s all about the election.”

Similar protests have occurred in other states, including Michigan, Colorado and Washington.

Beshear has received high marks for his handling of the pandemic. A few weeks ago, a poll showed him at 81 percent approval.

On Friday, restaurants reopened across the state and residents were allowed to gather in groups of 10 or fewer people. Through Saturday, state health officials had reported about 8,600 covid-19 cases and 391 deaths.

3:22 a.m.
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Trump tweets schools ‘should be opened ASAP,’ a stance that has put him at odds with Fauci

President Trump tweeted Sunday night that schools “should be opened ASAP,” reiterating a position that has put him publicly at odds with the country’s top infectious disease expert, Anthony S. Fauci.

“Much very good information now available,” Trump wrote while tweeting at Fox News Channel and one of its hosts, Steve Hilton, who earlier Sunday promoted a new series, “What’s Next for America.” “Part 1: Recovery- reopen schools now- end stupid shutdown rules- policies to bring back jobs, rebuild the economy,” Hilton tweeted.

Earlier this month, Trump rebuked the White House coronavirus task force adviser a day after Fauci drew the ire of prominent conservatives for urging a cautious approach to lifting restrictions and reopening schools amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“I was surprised by his answer, actually,” Trump told reporters at the White House. “To me, it’s not an acceptable answer, especially when it comes to schools.” He said that he “totally” disagrees with Fauci regarding schools.

“We have to get the schools open,” Trump said. “We have to open our country. Now, we want to do it safely, but we also want to do it as quickly as possible. We can’t keep going on like this. You’re having bedlam already in the streets. You can’t do this.”

As states reopen and parents increasingly head back to work, pressure is mounting to find solutions for strained families whose children would normally be looked after at school on weekdays.

2:57 a.m.
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With no national mourning, death counts become the rhythm of the pandemic

Before dawn broke in Riverside, Calif., political scientist Kim Yi Dionne grabbed her iPhone from the bedside table to check the grim daily coronavirus toll. Deaths were a bit lower in the United States that morning. But like other hardened watchers of such tallies, Dionne was skeptical that the pandemic was easing. More likely it was just a quirk, she thought, a product of the natural rise and fall in the statistical flow, a bureaucratic rhythm in counting the dead.

This macabre ritual — searching for meaning in numbers that pulse up and down, day after day — is one that countless Americans have adopted. Johns Hopkins University, the source of data for many popular coronavirus tracking sites, is registering about 4 billion hits on its pandemic dashboard each day, presumably because many people are refreshing regularly.

Watchers of the daily death tolls are looking for different things: hints of the future, understanding of the past, a sense of scale, a sense of loss, a wisp of hope.

Read more here.

2:35 a.m.
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Reopening too soon: Lessons from the deadly second wave of the 1918 flu pandemic

As coronavirus shutdowns loosen and Americans flock to restaurants, beaches and other outdoor spaces for Memorial Day weekend, the question of reopening too quickly is striking an eerily familiar echo.

The global flu pandemic of 1918 remains the deadliest on record. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it killed an estimated 50 million worldwide and more than half a million in the United States. J. Alexander Navarro, of the University of Michigan’s Center for the History of Medicine, is one of the organizers of the Influenza Archive, a collection of information cataloguing and studying the effects of the 1918 pandemic in 43 major U.S. cities.

The research sought an answer to a key question: Was social distancing effective in 1918 as a way to slow the spread of the disease and save lives?

2:11 a.m.
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Trump administration vows in new report to distribute 100 million swabs to states by year’s end

In a report to Congress, the Trump administration pledged to buy 100 million swabs by year’s end and distribute them to states to boost testing for the novel coronavirus.

But the report, delivered on the Sunday deadline Congress set for a national testing strategy, doubles down on the administration’s stance that individual states, not the federal government, should bear primary responsibility for carrying out diagnostic tests to help curb the pandemic.

The plan, sought by public health experts and congressional Democrats since the virus began circulating in the United States in late February, arrived as the nation’s coronavirus cases exceeded 1.6 million and deaths closed in on 100,000 — both the highest in the world.

Read more here.

1:46 a.m.
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Grocery workers left in the dark as cases emerge in supermarkets coast to coast

Amid the pandemic, the country’s nearly 40,000 grocery stores have been classified as essential businesses that must remain open, putting the stores on the front lines of the pandemic. Grocery stores, one place most consumers cannot avoid during the crisis, have reported double-digit growth in sales in recent months.

At least 100 grocery workers nationwide have died of covid-19 since late March, and at least 5,500 others have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a Washington Post review of data from the nation’s largest grocery workers union, other workers’ rights coalitions and media reports.

Many local health officials told The Post that they have been left in the dark as clusters of cases have emerged in supermarkets coast to coast.

12:48 a.m.
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Woods and Manning edge Mickelson and Brady in match for covid-19 relief

On a day that featured a downpour, entertaining golf and trash talk from Charles Barkley, among others, Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning held off Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady in the Match II: Champions for Charity, a made-for-TV match-play event to raise money for novel coronavirus relief.

With daylight fading at Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla., the golfers went into what Manning compared to “a two-minute drill,” with Woods and Manning holding off Mickelson and Brady over the last four holes to win 1 up on Woods’s home course.

Read more here.

12:26 a.m.
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Packed beaches and boardwalks renew concerns in Washington region, as Northam mingles without mask

As the total number of coronavirus infections in the District, Maryland and Virginia topped 90,000 on Sunday, viral images of a packed boardwalk in Ocean City, Md., and a mask-free Virginia governor mingling with crowds had many wondering whether safety guidelines meant to contain the disease were being taken seriously.

Gov. Ralph Northam (D) was slammed on social media over the weekend after he appeared without a mask and up close with visitors in Virginia Beach. Northam has encouraged Virginians to wear a mask in public and indicated Friday that he plans to issue a mask mandate this week, although it is not clear whether it will apply to outdoor public spaces.

Northam, a physician, has also urged social distancing.

Read more here.

12:02 a.m.
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Britain’s Boris Johnson stands by influential adviser who drove 260 miles to visit parents during lockdown

Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Sunday stood by an influential adviser accused of breaking Britain’s coronavirus lockdown, despite widespread calls for the senior aide’s removal.

Dominic Cummings had “no alternative” but to travel from his home in London to visit his parents at the end of March, Johnson said, as he and his wife needed to self-isolate because of her covid-19 symptoms and needed someone to care for their young son.

“I think he followed the instincts of every father and every parent, and I do not mark him down for that,” the prime minister added at the government’s daily coronavirus briefing.

Two British newspapers, the Guardian and the Daily Mirror, reported Friday that Cummings had traveled from London to Durham to stay at his parents’ property during the lockdown. Johnson said that some of the allegations in the reports were “palpably false” and that Cummings had acted with the overwhelming aim of “stopping the virus and saving lives.”

Britain imposed its lockdown on March 23, ordering people to remain at their primary residence except for grocery shopping and exercise.

Officials who have broken the lockdown have resigned for breaches of rules: Scotland’s chief medical officer, Catherine Calderwood, resigned in April after twice traveling from Edinburgh to her second home, while epidemiologist Neil Ferguson stepped down as a government scientific adviser after a newspaper revealed that his lover had visited his house during the lockdown.

In a now-deleted tweet posted shortly after Johnson’s news conference — “unauthorized,” a government spokesman told the Guardian — even the official account of the U.K. Civil Service was critical.

“Arrogant and offensive," read the tweet widely interpreted as a comment on Johnson’s defense of Cummings. "Can you imagine having to work with these truth twisters?”

Among the British public, Cummings is unusually controversial for an unelected political adviser, having played an important behind-the-scenes role in the 2016 referendum on Brexit.

11:26 p.m.
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New Zealand mulls over four-day workweek amid coronavirus

The world is watching New Zealand.

Decisive early action, along with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s empathetic style of leadership, quashed the country’s coronavirus outbreak in fewer than 50 days, earning it a place on the short list of nations the rest of the world is looking to for guidance — not just on how to fight the initial wave of the pandemic, but on what could come next.

So, when Ardern uploaded a video to Facebook last week floating the idea of a four-day workweek, an audience outside New Zealand took notice, judging by the headlines. Amid the flexibility companies have had to show in response to the novel coronavirus crisis, what once in many quarters would have come across as a fringe notion no longer seemed so unthinkable.

Ardern said she was seeking creative ways to stimulate domestic tourism, to help the industry recover as the country begins to reopen with strict border measures still in place. But she couched the idea in the context of broader changes to the workplace wrought by the pandemic.

Read more here.

9:54 p.m.
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Citing virus concerns, Trump suspends entry for foreigners who have recently been in Brazil

President Trump on Sunday expanded sweeping travel restrictions on countries hit hard by the coronavirus, moving to suspend entry to the United States for foreigners who have been in Brazil within 14 days before seeking admittance.

The announcement comes as Brazil reports more than 300,000 confirmed cases of the virus and becomes a raging hot spot still struggling to enact social distancing measures.

“The potential for undetected transmission of the virus by infected individuals seeking to enter the United States from the Federative Republic of Brazil threatens the security of our transportation system and infrastructure and the national security,” the White House said in a statement. Press secretary Kayleigh McEnany called the new rules a “decisive action to protect our country.”

The restrictions will go into effect May 28 at 11:59 p.m.

The Trump administration has also restricted travel from China, Iran and much of Europe, citing concerns that incoming travelers will bring the virus.

The Europe travel ban produced unfortunate side effects, The Post reported last week, with a policy intended to block the pathogen’s entry into the United States instead delivering one more viral infusion. As exposed travelers rushed home to clogged airports and then fanned out into U.S. cities and suburbs, they became part of an influx of cases from Europe.

Earlier Sunday, White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien had said on CBS News’s “Face the Nation” that the United States could soon restrict travel from Brazil.

“We hope that’ll be temporary,” he said.

U.S. citizens, permanent U.S. residents and their family members — spouses, parents and guardians, siblings, wards or children — are among the groups exempted from the ban.

Chris Mooney contributed to this report.

9:47 p.m.
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White House adviser compares China’s handling of virus to Soviet Union’s Chernobyl

The Trump administration Sunday continued to blame China for the global pandemic that has killed almost 100,000 Americans, with one adviser making comparisons to how the Soviet Union tried to cover up the Chernobyl disaster.

On NBC’s “Meet the Press” and CBS’s “Face the Nation,” national security adviser Robert C. O’Brien cited the 1986 nuclear crisis in Ukraine.

“This was a virus that was unleashed by China,” he said on CBS. “There was a coverup that someday they’re going to do an HBO show like they did with Chernobyl.”

On NBC, he accused China of a coverup and said it would go “down in history along with Chernobyl,” an accident that killed about 30 in the explosion but, studies showed, indirectly resulted in the deaths of thousands for years to come.

The comparisons come amid White House efforts to deflect blame for its response to the outbreak in the United States, which, since early March, has infected 1.6 million Americans and resulted in more than 96,000 deaths.

China has been widely criticized for initially concealing the dangers of the novel coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan in the fall. However, as the world learned more about the virus, the Trump administration was slow to respond, critics contend.

In a recent ABC News/Ipsos poll, 60 percent disapproved of President Trump’s handling of the crisis, while 39 percent approved. A Fox News poll found 55 percent disapproved.

9:38 p.m.
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Expert cautions first vaccines developed may not be the most effective

The first vaccines that are developed to combat the coronavirus may not be the most effective, according to Peter Hotez, the director of the Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development.

“The first vaccines released out of the starting gate, in say a year from now or a year and a half from now, may not be the ones we wind up with,” Hotez said Sunday. “History tells us that they get replaced with new and improved vaccines. So this is a gradual process, it’s not like there’s going to be a magic bullet a year from now. It’ll take time. We’ll see new and improved vaccines and — but things will get better.”

Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press," Hotez said that while he is “confident” there will be vaccine, it will take time to show whether the first vaccines created are “safe and effective.”

“What we’re seeing from some vaccines is that they’re partially protective, meaning they don’t protect 100 percent, but they may reduce hospitalization and death, which is still very important,” Hotez said.

Dan Barouch, a virologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston who also appeared on Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” said it was theoretically possible for a vaccine to be developed in the 12- to 18-month time frame that has been widely discussed in the medical community, but it would be “truly unprecedented.”

“To be successful, multiple parameters would have to be successful, all at the same time,” Barouch said.

9:19 p.m.
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A top Florida football coach is suspended for allegedly holding practice during pandemic

A Florida coach whose high school football teams have won three straight state championships was suspended pending an investigation into “an unauthorized athletic activity” during the coronavirus pandemic.

Max Edwards, the head coach at Miami Northwestern, allegedly held “an unsanctioned event” at a time when schools were closed and athletics across the state were suspended. Daisy Gonzalez-Diego, a Miami-Dade County Public Schools spokeswoman, said in a statement provided to the Miami Herald that the school’s investigation had begun “as soon as it learned about this unauthorized athletic activity.”

She added, “Further action may be taken against others who may have been involved in this unsanctioned event. The school is in the process of communicating with parents of students who may have participated.”

Read more here.