Simon Lewis and Jeff Mason
REHOBOTH BEACH, Del./WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President-elect Joe Biden and sitting Donald Trump, like millions of Americans, stayed close to home like millions of Americans to quietly celebrate Thanksgiving Thursday as the coronavirus epidemic raged across the country.
Biden spent his vacation in the small seaside town of Rehoboth, Delaware, where they are vacationing with his wife, Jill. Bidens will host Ashley Biden’s daughter and husband, Dr. Howard Kerin, at the gala meal.
The former vice president, who appeared in a video ad with his wife on his Thanksgiving Twitter account, said his family usually holds large gatherings on Nantucket Island near Massachusetts, but would stay in Delaware this year “with only a small group” around our dinner table “because of the pandemic.
In a presidential-style speech to more than 260,000 people lost to the coronavirus, the elected Democratic president said Americans “make a common sacrifice for the entire country” and “serve a common purpose” by staying home. with their immediate families.
“I know a lot of us didn’t expect us to spend our vacation. We know that a little home stay is a gift to our American peers,” said Biden, who will take an oath to the president in January. 20. “I know better days are coming.”
Republican President Trump often likes to celebrate holidays at the resort of Mar-a-Largo, Florida. But he stayed around Washington on Thursday and spent part of the morning at Trump National Golf Club in Virginia, where he played golf.
It was far from last year when he made a surprising visit to https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-afghanistan/trump-makes-surprise-afghanistan-trip-voices-hope-for- ceasefire-idUSKBN1Y225Y To Afghanistan, where he served Turkey to U.S. troops before sitting down with them to eat Thanksgiving dinner. The president is scheduled to speak to members of the military on Thursday afternoon.
Unlike Biden, who begged Americans to wear the holiday safely by wearing masks and social isolation, Trump in his Wednesday Thanksgiving manifesto encouraged Americans to “gather” for the holiday.
“I encourage all Americans to gather in homes and places of worship to give thanksgiving prayers to God for many of our blessings,” said the president, who recovered last month from his own COVID-19 incident.
Trump often ignored public health warnings and hosted large groups in the White House, many of his guests refusing to wear masks. In addition to Trump, several other prominent Americans, including Melania Trump’s first lady and members of Congress, also showed positive results for COVID-19 following such events.
On Thursday, the president tweeted “HAPPY THANK YOU!” in response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling late Wednesday that would prevent New York State from restricting attendance at religious ceremonies.
While fewer Americans are expected to travel this Thanksgiving this year, millions have traveled to family reunions despite requests from state and local officials and health experts to stay home due to the rate of spiral infection.
In the United States, daily deaths from COVID-19 exceeded Wednesday’s 2,000 and hospitalization reached more than 89,000.
Biden, who defeated Trump in the Nov. 3 election, made progress in transitioning to his new administration and pledged to make tackling the virus a priority. Earlier this week, he announced key members of his foreign and security team and promised to announce further appointments, including his economic group, in the coming days.
But he sparked fire from members of his own party, including black lawmaker James Clyburn, the majority whip of the U.S. House of Representatives, who on Wednesday voiced his disappointment that African Americans – a constituency critical to Biden’s victory – had not received more emphasis so far. positions in the incoming administration, The Hill reported.
Despite not yet acknowledging his defeat, Trump has agreed to let Biden’s transition officially continue, clearing the way, for example, for Democrats to receive high-level intelligence briefings. But the president continues to make unfounded allegations of voter fraud, tweeting again on Thursday that the election was “cheated” while his legal team continues to make efforts to overthrow the results, with little success.
(Report by Simon Lewis, Jeff Mason and Patricia Zengerle; Additional report by Michael Martina; Writing by Patricia Zengerle; Edited by Michelle Price, Simon Cameron-Moore and Paul Simao)