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U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said at a Pentagon news conference Wednesday that the nuclear aircraft carrier docked in Guam will move 2,700 members offshore, as more crew members test positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: In a rare plea to the U.S. Navy, Capt. Brett Crozier asked Monday that the crew be quarantined off the ship due to lack of space and concerns of rapid infection.

The big picture: The decision to move crew members onshore in Guam shifted Wednesday after Defense Secretary Mark Esper told CBS' "Evening News" Tuesday he didn't think "we're at that point" of evacuating.

  • So far, 500 coronavirus tests have come back negative, Modly said.
  • He added there are no plans to take all of the members off the ship because they need crew to watch over the nuclear reactor and ensure the safety of the weapons aboard, ABC News reports.
  • The San Francisco Chronicle originally reported at least 150-200 crew members could be positive, citing a senior officer onboard.

Go deeper: Coronavirus dashboard

Go deeper

2 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York COVID restrictions.
  3. World: Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.
  4. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in December Black Friday shopping across the U.S., in photosAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.