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White House coronavirus task force coordinator Deborah Birx said Sunday on CNN that the U.S. has shifted into a new phase of the coronavirus pandemic, as infections have spread further into rural areas than in March and April.

Why it matters: Coronavirus infections in rural communities have surpassed the number of cases in big cities — and areas in the U.S. with fewer coronavirus testing sites were predominately rural as of May.

What she's saying: "We are in a new phase. ... We are beginning to see an impact from the mitigation procedures that many of the state and local officials have put into place."

  • "But I want to be very clear, what we're seeing today is different from March and April. It is extraordinarily widespread. It's into the rural as equal urban areas, and to everybody who lives in a rural area: You are not immune or protected from this virus."

Go deeper: Birx: Coronavirus surge creates "essentially 3 New Yorks"

Go deeper

Nov 9, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump adviser leading election legal fight tests positive for COVID-19

David Bossie joins President Trump's motorcade in May 2020. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

David Bossie, one of President Trump's outside advisers, has tested positive for the coronavirus after attending the president's election night party last week, sources familiar with the situation tell Axios.

Why it matters: Bossie is helping the Trump campaign lead a barrage of lawsuits to contest the outcome of the 2020 election, as the president continues to spread unsubstantiated allegations that widespread voter fraud and mail-in ballot irregularities stole the election from him.

Updated 21 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Omicron pushes COVID deaths toward 2,000 per day — The pandemic-proof health care giant.
  2. Vaccines: No evidence that healthy children, teens need boosters, WHO says — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older.
  5. Variant tracker

Ben Carson tests positive for coronavirus

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson tested positive for COVID-19, ABC News first reported on Monday.

Why it matters: Carson is the latest in a string of White House officials to contract the virus — days after Chief of Staff Mark Meadows also tested positive. Like Meadows, Carson attended the White House’s largely mask-free election night party last week alongside a group of other top officials in President Trump's Cabinet.