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President Trump gestures after speaking at a campaign event at Xtreme Manufacturing on Sunday in Henderson, Nevada. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

President Trump insisted the U.S. was "making the last turn" against the coronavirus as he held his first fully indoor rally since June in Nevada against state regulations and his administration's pandemic health guidelines, AP notes.

The big picture: Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) tweeted that Trump's actions were "shameful, dangerous and irresponsible." Trump told the mostly maskless crowd the U.S. "will very easy defeat" the virus. "We are not shutting the country again," Trump said. "A shutdown would destroy the lives and dreams of millions Americans."

By the numbers: Nevada has limited gatherings to 50 people in response to the virus, which has in the U.S. killed more than 194,000 people and infected 6.5 million, per Johns Hopkins.

  • The World Health Organization announced Sunday that U.S. cases were a leading factor in a record 307,930 new coronavirus cases reported in the previous 24 hours.
  • India reported the most new cases (94,372), followed by the U.S. (45,523) and Brazil (43,718), per the WHO. The U.S and India both reported more than 1,000 deaths in 24 hours from COVID-19.

Of note: While many attendees at the Henderson, Nevada, event didn't wear face coverings, those right behind Trump in the stands were required to wear masks, AP notes.

  • Following Trump's last rally, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, a health official said the event "more than likely" contributed to a surge in coronavirus cases in the city.
  • Among those in attendance in Tulsa was former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, who died of COVID-19 weeks later. It's unclear whether he contracted the virus at Trump's rally.

What they're saying: "If you can join tens of thousands of people protesting in the streets, gamble in a casino, or burn down small businesses in riots, you can gather peacefully under the 1st Amendment to hear from the President of the United States," a Trump campaign official told NBC.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Updated Dec 23, 2020 - Health

Trump asks Congress to increase stimulus payments

A screenshot of President Trump making the announcement. Photo: President Trump/Twitter

President Trump indicated in a video Tuesday evening that he won't sign the $900 billion coronavirus relief bill and $1.4 trillion government funding measure passed by Congress if it's not amended to increase stimulus payments.

Why it matters: The surprise announcement could delay desperately needed aid for millions of Americans if Trump decides not to sign the package as it stands. It also risks a government shutdown on Dec. 28.

Dec 22, 2020 - World

Canada's most populous province orders holiday coronavirus lockdown

The Christmas windows at the Hudsons Bay Company encourage people to social distance and wear masks in Toronto. Photo: Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Ontario officials announced Monday a weeks-long shutdown across Canada's most populous province from Boxing Day as the country is hit by spiking COVID-19 cases.

Driving the news: Nonessential businesses including gyms, salons and indoor dining have been shut in the hardest-hit areas of Toronto and the Regional Municipality of Peel for nearly a month. But Ontario Premier Doug Ford told a briefing "COVID is spreading rapidly from high outbreak areas to areas with fewer cases."

Sarah Palin tests positive for COVID, delaying defamation trial

Sarah Palin. Photo: Matthew Staver/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday, delaying the start of her defamation trial against the New York Times.

Why it matters: The trial will be closely watched, as it's a rare instance of a major media company defending its editorial practices before an American jury.