Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday he hasn’t been to the White House since early August, citing COVID-19 policies.
“I haven’t actually been to the White House since August the 6th, because my impression was their approach to how to handle this is different from mine and what I insisted that we do in the Senate, which is to wear a mask and practice social distancing,” the Republican senator said.
Numerous members of President Donald Trump’s administration have tested positive for COVID-19 in recent days, including the president and first lady along with top aides like Hope Hicks and Stephen Miller. The president was hospitalized last Friday and spent the weekend at Walter Reed Medical Center before returning to the White House.
Prominent Republicans, including senators, have also tested positive, as have reporters and press personnel.
Safety concerns in the wake of the outbreak prompted the Commission on Presidential Debates to announce Thursday that future debates between Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden will be held remotely. Trump immediately announced he would not participate.
“I don’t have any particular reaction to it,” McConnell said of Trump’s refusal. “It’s really up to him to decide whether it’s to his advantage or not to his advantage to participate.”
Mitch McConnell admits he's known the White House has been unsafe to enter since August: pic.twitter.com/LI4juHSX8r
— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) October 8, 2020