Over 130 Secret Service officers may be infected with coronavirus
The coronavirus cases in the Secret Service may have stemmed from a Trump rally
More than 130 Secret Service officers, which is about 10% of all Secret Service officers, are said to have either tested positive for coronavirus or been exposed to an infected person, according to the Washington Post. The officers involved are now quarantining.
The Secret Service is a specialized law enforcement agency responsible for the protection of past and present government leaders, their families and foreign leaders that are visiting the U.S. The department also conducts high-level investigations relating to government interests.
A source told the Washington Post that the cases may have stemmed from one or a few of the many rallies President Donald Trump held during his campaign for a second term.
Trump’s personal security teams, which sometimes consisted of 20 people to several dozen according to the Washington Post, traveled with him to multiple cities in weeks leading up to the election. His rallies rarely enforced social distancing rules and many people were seen at the events without masks.
President-elect Joe Biden was also accompanied by the Secret Service, but his team was much smaller than that of the sitting president.
“Being down more than 100 officers is very problematic,” said one former senior Secret Service supervisor to the Washington Post. “That does not bode well for White House security.”
A spokesperson for the Secret Service declined to comment on the Washington Post’s request for comment, but a source said that officials within the Secret Service are looking to see whether or not the outbreak could have stemmed from inside of the White House as opposed to the constant travel.
The day-to-day operations at the White House are said to ignore public health advice as many don’t wear masks or take extra precautions. A similar quarantine mandate was enforced within the Secret Service after Trump’s Tulsa rally.
In early October, Donald and Melania Trump tested positive for coronavirus. Soon after that, more than 30 aides and allies of the president tested positive and indicated a widespread outbreak in the White House, according to Politico.
The U.S. has had over 10.6 million coronavirus cases resulting in over 243,000 deaths at the time of reporting. President-elect Biden has a detailed plan to curb the virus and says that as soon as he can, he will enact strict measures and promote mask mandates so as to eradicate the threat once and for all.
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