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California Gov. Gavin Newsom conducts his weekly news conference on Monday. Photo: Office of the Governor via AP

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has admitted he shouldn't have attended a birthday party with a dozen people at the French Laundry, a Michelin-starred restaurant in Napa County.

What he's saying: "While our family followed the restaurant’s health protocols and took safety precautions, we should have modeled better behavior and not joined the dinner,” Newsom said in a statement.

  • The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the Nov. 6 event was a 50th birthday party for Newsom friend and adviser Jason Kinney.

The state of play: California guidelines currently restrict gatherings, defined as “social situations that bring together people from different households at the same time in a single space or place,” to no more than three households.

  • As of Friday, the state reported 998,502 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and a total of 18,137 deaths since the pandemic began.

Go deeper

Nov 21, 2020 - Health

U.S. surpasses 12 million COVID-19 cases

People wait in line to get tested for COVID-19 at the Ann Street School Testing Center in Newark, New Jersey. Photo: Timothy A. Clary/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. surpassed 12 million coronavirus cases on Saturday, per data from Johns Hopkins University, the second time the country has recorded more than 1 million new cases in less than a week.

Why it matters: The grim milestone comes as the U.S. prepares for the Thanksgiving holiday, when millions of people, despite warnings, planning to travel and gather with family and friends.

1 hour ago - Sports

The end of COVID’s grip on sports may be in sight

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Packed stadiums and a more normal fan experience could return by late 2021, NIAID director Anthony Fauci said yesterday.

Why it matters: If Fauci's prediction comes true, it could save countless programs from going extinct next year.

Trump's 2024 begins

Trump speaking to reporters in the White House on Thanksgiving. Photo: Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump is likely to announce he'll run again in 2024, perhaps before this term even ends, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Trump has already set in motion two important strategies to stay relevant and freeze out other Republican rivals. 

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