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Trump White House to tell Americans to wear cloth masks in public to protect against coronavirus transmission

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Man Wearing Facemask (Shutterstock)

The Trump White House is expected to urge Americans to wear cloth face masks when in public to help slow the transmission of coronavirus, in a reversal of current guidelines. The CDC says there is increasing evidence asymptomatic coronavirus carriers may be spreading the virus more than first believed, The Washington Post reports.

But studies going back weeks or longer made clear people who show few or no symptoms are “shedding” more of the virus – spreading it – at a rate higher than some who are fully symptomatic.

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“In light of these new data, along with evidence of widespread transmission in communities across the country, CDC recommends the community use of cloth masks as an additional public health measure people can take to prevent the spread of virus to those around them,” the guidance says, according to a copy obtained by The Washington Post.

Social distancing and the stay at home policy are still recommended as the top methods to slow the spread of the virus. The cloth masks would protect others from the virus, not the wearer.

On Wednesday Georgia’s Republican Governor Brian Kemp came under fire for falsely claiming asymptomatic spreading had just been discovered “the last 24 hours.”

Image via Shutterstock


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Italy’s ‘Black Roosters’ fight back as virus hit wine sales

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Two days before the coronavirus pandemic shut down Italy for two months, shattering wine exports and sales, the owner of one of its most historic vineyards headed back into the country a worried man.

Six months later Francesco Ricasoli and his wine-making team are leading the charge by Italy's "Black Roosters" -- the trademark for Chianti Classico -- to put the country's most famous label back on restaurant tables.

"These are probably some of the most turbulent times in Italy," said Ricasoli, 64, the 32nd Baron of Brolio whose family's roots to Tuscany stretches back to 1141.

"We've seen a strong decrease in wine sales -- particularly in restaurants and bars that specialise in the high end of the market," he told AFP at his winery with the same family name.

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2020 Election

Lincoln Project releases devastating new ad against Republican Lindsey Graham

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The chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee had his own words used against him in a hard-hitting new ad from the Lincoln Project.

"If an opening comes in the last year of President Trump's term, and the primary process has started, we'll wait till the next election," Graham promised The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg in October of 2018.

It wasn't the only time Graham had made such a claim, as was pointed out by Vanita Gupta, the president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

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2020 Election

Trump’s chief election watchdog sees the 2020 contest as a ‘spiritual war’

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

One of Trump's early scandalous moves was issuing and executive order directing the IRS to not enforce a law barring tax-exempt organizations from intervening in electoral politics, or at least not to enforce it against churches. At the time, it was mostly notable because directing an agency to use its discretion in enforcing the law was seen as the essence of tyranny when Obama did just that to protect undocumented immigrants who were brought to the US as children from deportation. But the religious right was disappointed that the order wasn't as expansive as they had hoped, and in the rush of other policy disasters and scandals, it was largely forgotten by the public.

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