McConnell suspends in-person lunches for GOP senators

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is suspending in-person lunches for GOP senators, according to his press secretary Doug Andres, ahead of the Senate’s return next week.

Democrats suspended their in-person lunches in the spring as a precaution because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Coronavirus cases are surging across the country — and in Congress. At least 11 senators have tested positive for the virus or the antibodies since the beginning of the pandemic, including at least nine Republicans.
Earlier this month, Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who is 87, announced that he had tested positive for Covid-19. Grassley, as president pro tempore, is the most senior Republican in the chamber, putting him in the presidential line of succession. He is the second-oldest member of the Senate, and is just a few months younger than Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, who is also 87.
    The oldest member of the House, Republican Rep. Don Young of Alaska, also 87, tested positive earlier this month. More than 40 members of the House of Representatives have tested positive for the virus so far, plus several incoming members.
    Politico first reported McConnell had suspended the gatherings.
      The total number of deaths in the US is up to nearly 266,000 as of Saturday evening, and a fresh wave of public health restrictions have been put in place to attempt to control the spread of the virus.
      Experts fear there will be even further spread of the virus throughout the country after the Thanksgiving holiday, despite warnings from public health officials not to travel or have large gatherings.

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