As COVID surges and families urged not to gather for Thanksgiving, WH plans multiple events

The Trumps plan to have several holiday receptions at the White House despite surging virus cases nationwide

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After a COVID-19 outbreak that snared President Trump, Melania Trump, and even their 14-year-old son, Barron, you would think the family’s final holiday season in the White House would be on a more cautious note.

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But according to NBC News, that is not the case. The Trump family has plans to host several holiday gatherings, despite the growing threat of the coronavirus that is surging all around the country.

President Trump Melania thegrio.com
WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 5: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as he and first lady Melania Trump attend the National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony held by the National Park Service at the Ellipse near the White House, on December 5, 2019 in Washington, DC. This year’s National Christmas Tree is a 30-foot Colorado blue spruce from Pennsylvania and is adorned with 50,000 lights and 450 stars. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The nation’s Surgeon General Jerome Adams has warned the public about holiday gatherings on the eve of the Thanksgiving holiday, usually among the highest travel times of any year.

“We want everyone to understand that these holiday parties can be super spreader events,” Adams told ABC News this week, following the CDC recommendation that families plan not to travel for Thanksgiving this year. “These apply to the White House, they apply to the American people, they apply to everyone,” Adams said.

Yet the current occupants of the White House have decided to move forward with holiday plans after foregoing their annual trip to Florida for the holiday. In an invitation obtained by ABC, the first lady plans to host a party on Nov. 30. This comes after White House ceremonies for new Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett led to multiple cases of COVID-19 among White House staffers and politicians who attended them.

According to Melania’s spokesperson, Stephanie Grisham, both a Christmas and Hanukkah party are in the works but with social distancing in place, a smaller guest list than normal, and hand sanitizer and masks “required and available,” per NBC‘s report.

“Guests will enjoy food individually plated by chefs at plexiglass-protected food stations. All passed beverages will be covered,” Grisham said in a statement. “Attending the parties will be a very personal choice. It is a longstanding tradition for people to visit and enjoy the cheer and iconic decor of the annual White House Christmas celebrations.”

U.S. first lady Melania Trump attends the traditional ‘pardoning’ of the national Thanksgiving Turkey in the Rose Garden at the White House November 24, 2020 in Washington, DC. . (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

It might be surprising that Melania is embracing Christmas with such fervor this year. Her former friend Stephanie Winston Wolkoff taped the first lady in 2018 expressing her disdain for Christmas celebrations.

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“I’m working my ass off on the Christmas stuff,” she said to Winston Wolkoff in the recording. “Who gives a f— about Christmas stuff and decorations? But I do it, right?”

Winston Wolkoff’s book Melania and Me came out on Sept. 1 and detailed the now-defunct friendship between the two women. Winston Wolkoff met the former Melania Knauss in 2003 and came with her to the White House in an advisory position. She says that Melania blamed her for financial “irregularities” related to the campaign – a betrayal Winson Wolkoff said almost “destroyed” her and certainly destroyed the friendship.

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