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Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows refused to speak to reporters outside Amy Coney Barrett's confirmation hearing on Monday after they requested that he keep his face mask on.

Why it matters: Meadows has been working out of the White House, which has become a hotspot for the coronavirus over the past two weeks.

  • Meadows has been in constant contact with President Trump, even during his stint at Walter Reed Medical Center when Trump was hospitalized with COVID-19.
  • White House physician Sean Conley announced on Saturday that Trump meets "CDC criteria for the safe discontinuation of isolation" and "is no longer considered a transmission risk to others," but never mentioned when Trump's last negative coronavirus test was.

Driving the news: A video of Meadows has been circulating on social media, in which he refuses to put on a mask after claiming to be standing 10 feet away from CNN reporter Kristin Wilson.

  • After receiving pushback from Wilson, Meadows begins walking away and says, "I'm not going to talk through a mask."
  • Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), who tested positive for COVID-19 a little over a week ago and has since said he received clearance from his physician, also received criticism for giving his opening statement at the confirmation hearing without a mask.

The big picture: This is not the first time Meadows has been in the news for disregarding CDC guidelines. In May, he hosted his daughter's 70-person indoor wedding in Atlanta despite major coronavirus lockdowns and local ordinances blocking large gatherings.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Go deeper

Jan 20, 2021 - Health

California Rep. Raul Ruiz contracts COVID-19

Photo: Greg Nash-Pool via Getty

Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-Calif.) tweeted Tuesday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: He is the latest member of Congress to contract the disease since pro-Trump rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, forcing lawmakers to lock down in close quarters. Some lawmakers have criticized colleagues for refusing to wear masks while in lockdown.

Jan 19, 2021 - Health

U.S. surpasses 400,000 coronavirus deaths on Trump's final full day in office

Expand chart
Data: CSSE Johns Hopkins University; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Over 400,000 people have died from the coronavirus in the U.S. as of Tuesday, per Johns Hopkins data.

Why it matters: It only took a little over a month for the U.S. to reach this mass casualty after 300,000 COVID deaths were reported last month. That's over 100,000 fatalities in 36 days.

Andy Slavitt cuts ties with face masks sponsor before joining Biden's COVID team

Andrew Slavitt is seen during congressional testimony in October 2013. Photo: Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call

It's not just family members of President-elect Joe Biden or Vice President-elect Kamala Harris with an early optics problem.

What's happening: Andy Slavitt, an incoming White House adviser on the COVID-19 response team, has also cut ties with a major brand sponsor in anticipation of joining the Biden administration.

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