White House staff have been ordered to wear masks when entering the West Wing after two aides tested positive for coronavirus. The White House personnel office has said that staff must cover their faces at all times except when seated at their desks, socially distant from colleagues. The directive comes after an aide for Vice-President Mike Pence and a valet for President Trump fell ill.
President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he believes China’s handling of the coronavirus is proof that Beijing “will do anything they can” to make him lose his re-election bid in November. In an interview with Reuters in the Oval Office, Trump talked tough on China and said he was looking at different options in terms of consequences for Beijing over the virus. “I can do a lot,” he said.
The White House sought to freeze aid to Ukraine just 91 minutes after President Trump spoke to President Volodymyr Zelensky by phone in July, a newly-released government email has revealed. The email, telling the Pentagon to “hold off”, was sent by a senior White House official. In the phone call, Mr Trump asked the Ukrainian leader to investigate his political rival, Democrat Joe Biden.
President Donald Trump named Robert O’Brien, the US hostage negotiator, his new national security adviser on Wednesday. The announcement came a week after Trump fired John Bolton, citing disagreements on several issues, and as he confronts a major foreign policy crisis following the attack on Saudi oil facilities — which the administration has blamed on Iran.
U.S. Secret Service Director Randolph Alles is soon to be out of his job. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement that Alles “has done a great job at the agency over the last two years, and the President is thankful for his over 40 years of service to the country.” In a message to the Secret Service workforce Monday, Alles insisted that he had not been fired. The Secret Service chief’s ouster comes less than a day after the announcement that Kirstjen Nielsen, Trump’s secretary of Homeland Security, will also be leaving the administration.
After nearly two years in the post, Nikki Haley announced her resignation from her position as US ambassador to the UN. Haley did not provide an explanation for her departure. President Trump appeared alongside Haley during her announcement and said she did ‘an incredible job.’ Trump said a replacement will be named within three weeks.
The White House gave authorization to the FBI to interview anyone deemed necessary to expand the investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. President Trump said the FBI can interview ‘anybody they want, within reason.’ The expansion followed criticism by Democrats that the White House was limiting the investigation.
Former adviser to President Trump Omarosa Manigault Newman reportedly released recordings of conversations with Trump and chief of staff John Kelly despite Trump’s comment that aides signed non-disclosure agreements. FBI senior intelligence agent Peter Strzok who oversaw the Hillary Clinton and Russian investigations was fired for violating bureau policies after criticizing Trump in texts.
A government list suggests that less than half of the migrant children under 5-years old who have been forcibly separated from parents will be reunited by the Tuesday deadline. Reports have surfaced that US officials fought to weaken a World Health Assembly resolution that a mother’s breast milk is the best food for infants.
The US Department of Justice will investigate whether FBI agents spied on President Trump’s 2016 election campaign for ‘inappropriate purposes.’ President Trump said he will formally request the investigation, increasing tensions between the law enforcement agency and his administration. Trump’s request comes amid reports that the agency placed a confidential informant in the Trump campaign.