Secret Service reportedly had to use Obama’s bathroom after being barred from Ivanka Trump’s

Facebook is evidently now looking to minimize politics on its platform, as CEO Mark Zuckerberg says the company hopes to “turn down the temperature.”

Zuckerberg during an earnings call Wednesday announced Facebook will stop recommending political and civic groups to users, which he described as a “continuation of work we’ve been doing for a while to turn down the temperature and discourage divisive conversations,” Politico reports.

The social media company has long faced criticism over the amount of misinformation and polarization on its platform, with its recommendations being a frequent target of these complaints. Facebook previously said it would be putting these recommendations on pause in the lead-up to the 2020 presidential election, Politico notes. Additionally, Zuckerberg said Wednesday the company plans to take action to reduce the amount of politics in users’ news feeds, Axios reports, but he didn’t offer any further information on that effort.

“There has been a trend across society that a lot of things have become politicized and politics have had a way of creeping into everything,” Zuckerberg said. “A lot of the feedback we see from our community is that people don’t want that in their experience.”

Zuckerberg added that if users do want to discuss politics or join political groups, “they should be able to,” but “we are not serving community well to be recommending that content right now.”

The company by looking to “downplay politics” on the platform was “backing away from arguments it’s long made that political speech is vital to free expression,” Axios wrote. The decision came after various companies have taken steps to either ban political ads or limit them in certain situations, not to mention after numerous platforms suspended former President Donald Trump, leading Axios to conclude, “The social platforms that profited massively on politics and free speech suddenly want a way out — or at least a way to hide until the heat cools.” Brendan Morrow

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Colorado Springs artist creates secret garden in new exhibit | Arts & Entertainment

What lurks below a thriving garden might be even more beautiful.

Liz McCombs has spent months building a secret garden in her studio. What has emerged are ceramic and mixed-media humanlike sculptures all caught in the mysterious process of metamorphosis. Greenery sprouts up out of curled-up human figures; rootlike vegetables have grown heads sporting full lips and round eyes; and femalelike figures are given tangled roots for legs while lush gardens push up out of their skulls.


Popular ghost stories walking tours in Manitou Springs expanding this Halloween season

Her pieces start with kiln-fired ceramic to which she adds recycled materials, such as wood, bark and pieces of glass.

“A key element of the show was transformation from one thing to something else,” says the longtime Colorado Springs artist. “In the garden you have birth, death, one thing nourishing something else, all things that make life life. I incorporate those ideas into each of the pieces. Each one has a unique story. They all fall under the overreaching idea of transition.”

“Secret Garden” is open now at Bridge Gallery. You can see the show from noon to 3 p.m. Saturdays through October. McCombs also will be working in the gallery throughout the month. Also on display will be a series of Halloween-inspired pieces, some influenced by the Day of the Dead Mexican holiday.

McCombs, an avid gardener, has always been fascinated by the cycle of life under the surface, and in this case, the garden. A simple seed is planted, watered and nourished with loving care and attention. How will that seed grow? What will it become? The possibilities are endless.

“It’s like the acorn turning into an oak tree,” she says. “I like the revealed and concealed idea. There are secrets inside all things and if given the right nutrients and space and time to grow, anything can happen.”

And how might that apply to human life? Very much the same. To grow, one must allow for new paths and new ideas to take root, which means others must die to make room. There’s a natural letting go that we can either nurture or resist.

As you might guess, McCombs is in favor of weeding out the old to make room for the new. It’s a theme that winds through her life. She eschews the idea of planning out what your life should look like, and instead allowing for the magic of the unknown to flow through.

“Unfortunately, when you have an idea in your mind of what you should be or what your life should be, you don’t leave any room for the possibility of anything greater than that dream,” she says. “If you think ‘If I have this then I’ll be happy’ is so limiting. We never know what’s out there and could be greater than anything you imagined.”

McCombs was a maker practically right out of the womb, she says. Recently, her mother found old pieces of her art labeled “Liz, age 4.” And even in

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How 2020’s ‘The Secret Garden’ differs from previous adaptations (exclusive)

Watch: The Secret Garden trailer below

First published in 1911, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel The Secret Garden is widely recognised as a classic of English children’s literature, and has been adapted countless times, on stage, on television, and on film.

The first filmed version – sadly now lost – was made just eight years after publication in 1919, while its most recent big screen adaptation, produced by Francis Ford Coppola, came in 1993. Now, in 2020 a new version of the classic childhood tale – which sees a young girl discovering a hidden oasis on her uncle’s land – is being released into cinemas and on Sky Cinema on 23 October.

Produced by Heyday Films and Studiocanal – the team who brought us Paddington and Paddington 2 – this new version stars newcomer Dixie Egerickx in the lead as Mary Lennox, with Colin Firth as her uncle Archibald Craven and Julia Walters as the housekeeper Mrs. Medlock, and promises to do something different with the source material.

Read more: The best new releases on Now TV and Sky Cinema in October

Speaking exclusively to Yahoo Movies UK, producer Rosie Alison (The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas/Testament of Youth) explained that, along with moving the story from the Edwardian period into a post-war setting, the new adaptation draws heavily on Burnett’s own memoirs to offer a new perspective on the tale.

Exclusive behind-the-scenes look at <em>The Secret Garden</em>, which comes to cinemas and Sky Cinema across the UK and Ireland on 23 October. (Sky Cinema)
Exclusive behind-the-scenes look at The Secret Garden, which comes to cinemas and Sky Cinema across the UK and Ireland on 23 October. (Sky Cinema)

They’ve “done more to emphasise the power of imagination which underpins the story,” Alison explains. “This is particularly true of our version of the garden,” which appears more fantastical than previous adaptations.

“For this we drew from the author’s fascinating memoir (‘The One I Knew Best of All’) in which she recalls a key moment in her childhood when she entered her very own ‘secret garden’ in an abandoned house near an industrial quarter of  Manchester. It’s a revelatory account.. [and] clearly a seedbed for her great novel.”

Read on to learn more about The Secret Garden, and to see some exclusive new behind-the-scenes photos from the making of the film.

Why did you decide to adapt Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden

(L to R) Rosie Alison, David Heyman and Alexandra Ferguson-Derbyshire attend a photocall for "Paddington 2", 2017. (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage)
(L to R) Rosie Alison, David Heyman and Alexandra Ferguson-Derbyshire attend a photocall for “Paddington 2”, 2017. (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage)

Rosie Alison: Like so many, I’ve loved this novel since childhood. There’s something so simple yet universal about the idea of a secret garden – and a lonely child in a wintry house finding that hidden lost place with the power to restore and heal her life through nature, and friendship. It’s one of the great redemptive fables. But although I’ve enjoyed all the various filmed versions, the last film was nearly 30 years ago, and it feels worthwhile to try and keep this story fresh for a new generation to discover. 

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How the new ‘The Secret Garden’ differs from previous versions

Watch: The Secret Garden trailer below

First published in 1911, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel The Secret Garden is widely recognised as a classic of English children’s literature, and has been adapted countless times, on stage, on television, and on film.

The first filmed version – sadly now lost – was made just eight years after publication in 1919, while its most recent big screen adaptation, produced by Francis Ford Coppola, came in 1993. Now, in 2020 a new version of the classic childhood tale – which sees a young girl discovering a hidden oasis on her uncle’s land – is being released into cinemas and on Sky Cinema on 23 October.

Produced by Heyday Films and Studiocanal – the team who brought us Paddington and Paddington 2 – this new version stars newcomer Dixie Egerickx in the lead as Mary Lennox, with Colin Firth as her uncle Archibald Craven and Julia Walters as the housekeeper Mrs. Medlock, and promises to do something different with the source material.

Read more: The best new releases on Now TV and Sky Cinema in October

Speaking exclusively to Yahoo Movies UK, producer Rosie Alison (The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas/Testament of Youth) explained that, along with moving the story from the Edwardian period into a post-war setting, the new adaptation draws heavily on Burnett’s own memoirs to offer a new perspective on the tale.

Exclusive behind-the-scenes look at <em>The Secret Garden</em>, which comes to cinemas and Sky Cinema across the UK and Ireland on 23 October. (Sky Cinema)
Exclusive behind-the-scenes look at The Secret Garden, which comes to cinemas and Sky Cinema across the UK and Ireland on 23 October. (Sky Cinema)

They’ve “done more to emphasise the power of imagination which underpins the story,” Alison explains. “This is particularly true of our version of the garden,” which appears more fantastical than previous adaptations.

“For this we drew from the author’s fascinating memoir (‘The One I Knew Best of All’) in which she recalls a key moment in her childhood when she entered her very own ‘secret garden’ in an abandoned house near an industrial quarter of  Manchester. It’s a revelatory account.. [and] clearly a seedbed for her great novel.”

Read on to learn more about The Secret Garden, and to see some exclusive new behind-the-scenes photos from the making of the film.

Why did you decide to adapt Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden

(L to R) Rosie Alison, David Heyman and Alexandra Ferguson-Derbyshire attend a photocall for "Paddington 2", 2017. (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage)
(L to R) Rosie Alison, David Heyman and Alexandra Ferguson-Derbyshire attend a photocall for “Paddington 2”, 2017. (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage)

Rosie Alison: Like so many, I’ve loved this novel since childhood. There’s something so simple yet universal about the idea of a secret garden – and a lonely child in a wintry house finding that hidden lost place with the power to restore and heal her life through nature, and friendship. It’s one of the great redemptive fables. But although I’ve enjoyed all the various filmed versions, the last film was nearly 30 years ago, and it feels worthwhile to try and keep this story fresh for a new generation to discover. 

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White House staff, Secret Service eye virus with fear, anger

WASHINGTON — The West Wing is a ghost town. Staff members are scared of exposure. And the White House is now a treatment ward for not one — but two — COVID patients, including a president who has long taken the threat of the virus lightly.

President Donald Trump’s decision to return home from a military hospital despite his continued illness is putting new focus on the people around him who could be further exposed if he doesn’t abide by strict isolation protocols.

Throughout the pandemic, White House custodians, ushers, kitchen staff and members of the U.S. Secret Service have continued to show up for work in what is now a coronavirus hot spot, with more than a dozen known cases this week alone.

Trump, still contagious, has made clear that he has little intention of abiding by best containment practices.

As he arrived back at the White House on Monday evening, the president defiantly removed his face mask and stopped to pose on a balcony within feet of a White House photographer. He was seen inside moments later, surrounded by numerous people as he taped a video message urging Americans not to fear a virus that has killed more than 210,000 in the U.S. and 1 million worldwide.

White House spokesman Judd Deere said the White House was “taking every precaution necessary” to protect not just the first family but “every staff member working on the complex” consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and best practices. He added that physical access to the president would be significantly limited and appropriate protective gear worn by those near him.

Nonetheless, the mood within the White House remains somber, with staff fearful they may have been exposed to the virus. As they confront a new reality — a worksite that once seemed like a bubble of safety is anything but — they also have been engaged in finger-pointing over conflicting reports released about the president’s health as well as a lack of information provided internally.

Many have learned about positive tests from media reports and several were exposed, without their knowledge, to people the White House already knew could be contagious.

Indeed, it took until late Sunday night, nearly three full days after Trump’s diagnosis, for the White House to send a staff-wide note in response. Even then, it did not acknowledge the outbreak.

“As a reminder,” read the letter from the White House Management Office, “if you are experiencing any symptoms … please stay home and do not come to work.” Staff who develop symptoms were advised to “go home immediately” and contact their doctors rather than the White House Medical Unit.

Even when Trump was at the hospital, his staff was not immune to risk.

Trump had aides there recording videos and taking photographs of him. On Sunday evening, he took a surprise drive around the hospital to wave to supporters from the window of an SUV. The Secret Service agents in the car with him were

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House Committee Wants Briefing on Secret Service: Trump Update

(Bloomberg) — The House Homeland Security Committee wants a briefing on safeguarding Secret Service personnel from the coronavirus. White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany and two other officials in her office tested positive for the coronavirus.



Lizzie Grover et al. walking down the street: Kayleigh McEnany walks toward the West Wing of the White House after speaking to reporters.


© Bloomberg
Kayleigh McEnany walks toward the West Wing of the White House after speaking to reporters.

Trump has been at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center since Friday, after announcing that he had been infected with Covid-19. Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said Monday morning the White House was “optimistic” Trump will be released, but the decision won’t be made until later in the day. Tuesday is the earliest likely release day, according to people familiar with the matter.

Key Developments:

Trump Recuperates Amid Questions About His Health and CampaignTrump Campaign Hobbled by Virus as Biden Starts to Pull AwayMcConnell’s Plan for Quick Barrett Vote Threatened by OutbreakFrom Bereaved Dads to CEOs: Trump Encounters Spark Covid Fears

House Wants Briefing on Safeguarding Secret Service Personnel (1:21 p.m.)

House Homeland Security Committee Chair Bennie Thompson called for a briefing from the Secret Service on the measures it’s taking to keep staff, including those on the president’s protective detail, safe from coronavirus threats.

Thompson made the request after video footage Sunday showed Trump waving at supporters from behind the closed windows of a black SUV, sparking questions over the potential exposure of Secret Service agents sharing his vehicle.

“The height of reckless disregard for others was the president’s ‘joyride’ yesterday where Secret Service agents were required to drive him around in a hermetically sealed vehicle,” Thompson said in a statement. “Exposing Secret Service personnel to the virus does not just put them at risk, it puts their families and the public at risk.”

Two More White House Press Officials Test Positive (12:37 p.m.)

White House press aides Chad Gilmartin and Karoline Leavitt have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to people familiar with the matter. The duo add to a rapidly expanding group of people in Trump’s orbit who have contracted Covid-19.

The group also includes three reporters who cover the White House, the director of Oval Office operations, the chair of the Republican National Committee and Trump’s campaign manager, along with at least three Republican senators.

White House Press Secretary Joins Ranks With Covid-19 (11:26 a.m.)

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a tweet that she tested positive for coronavirus Monday morning. She said she has had no symptoms and had tested negative consistently since Thursday, when she briefed the press.

McEnany also said that she “definitively” had no knowledge of Trump aide Hope Hicks’s infection with the coronavirus prior to holding the Thursday briefing.

Video: White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany tests positive for Covid-19 (TODAY)

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany tests positive for Covid-19

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UP NEXT

First Lady Melania ‘Feeling Good,’ Resting at Home (10:45 a.m.)

First Lady Melania Trump, who unlike her husband wasn’t taken to the hospital after her diagnosis with Covid-19, tweeted

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Melania Trump didn’t visit husband to avoid exposing Secret Service and medical staff to COVID-19

Doctors and infectious disease experts were highly critical of President Trump’s decision to get driven in a hermetically sealed SUV around Walter Reed Medical Center to wave to supporters while he is contagious with COVID-19, endangering his Secret Service detail, photographed wearing the wrong type of personal protective equipment. The Secret Service has noticed.

Somebody at the White House had considered the safety of Secret Service agents. On Saturday, a White House official told NBC News’ Peter Alexander that first lady Melania Trump would not leave her isolation in the White House residence to visit her husband because “she has COVID” and “that would expose the agents who would drive her there and the medical staff who would walk her up to him.”

The White House defended what spokesman Judd Deere called Trump’s “short, last-minute motorcade ride to wave to his supporters outside.” Deere told Axios‘ Alayna Treene, the White House pool reporter on duty, that “appropriate precautions were taken in the execution of this movement to protect the president and all those supporting it, including PPE. The movement was cleared by the medical team as safe to do.” Deere did not, Treene note, “answer additional questions, such as whether the drive-by happened at the president’s request.”

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Report: GOP Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania to retire in 2022
Doctor slams Trump for leaving hospital to drive by supporters: ‘The irresponsibility is astounding’

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Clintons wish Trumps speedy recovery, hopes for safety of White House staff and Secret Service

Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonICE launching billboard campaign highlighting ‘at-large immigration violators’ Congress can’t stop QAnon but combatting abuse and trauma can Majority of Americans concerned about potential foreign election interference: poll MORE on Friday night sent wishes of a speedy recovery to her 2016 opponent President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump campaign manager tests positive for COVID-19 Trump given Remdesivir as treatment for COVID-19 infection ICE launching billboard campaign highlighting ‘at-large immigration violators’ MORE and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpTrump given Remdesivir as treatment for COVID-19 infection Kellyanne Conway tests positive for COVID-19 Trump to Woodward in April: I’m ‘just not’ worried about contracting COVID-19 MORE after their coronavirus diagnosis, as well as hopes “for the safety of the White House staff, the Secret Service, and others putting their lives on the line.”

“This pandemic has affected so many. We must continue to protect ourselves, our families, and communities,” wrote the former first lady and her husband, former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonArizona Mirror editor says changing demographics could shift battleground state in Biden’s favor Clinton says debate made her worry ‘what the next month is going to be like’ New poll finds Biden narrowly leading Trump in Georgia MORE.

The Trumps revealed their coronavirus diagnosis early Friday morning, sending a shock through Washington and the rest of the world.

In the afternoon, Trump traveled to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center where he will remain “for the next few days. White House officials have said that Trump’s symptoms are mild and he remains in good spirits.

The announcement came after news broke that White House adviser and top aide to the president Hope HicksHope Charlotte HicksTrump campaign manager tests positive for COVID-19 Trump given Remdesivir as treatment for COVID-19 infection Kellyanne Conway tests positive for COVID-19 MORE tested positive for the disease

Both Hicks and the president had been together on Air Force One in Cleveland for the presidential debate as well as a campaign rally in Minnesota on Wednesday.

Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayTrump given Remdesivir as treatment for COVID-19 infection Kellyanne Conway tests positive for COVID-19 Special counsel investigating DeVos for potential Hatch Act violation: report MORE, Trump’s former longtime adviser, also tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday.

Last Saturday, Conway attended a ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White

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These Cheap Fall Decor Finds Are Amazon’s Best-Kept Secret This Season

Amazon

Autumn, arguably the most beautiful time of the year, is officially here, and these surprisingly inexpensive home goods are ready to make your house look (and smell) like the season. 

There are tons of affordable ways to decorate your home for fall — think burlap bunting, orange plaid throw pillows, gorgeous gourds, and cozy candles. We foraged Amazon’s home department and discovered tons of fun fall finds that are all loved by shoppers, come with hundreds of rave reviews, and (perhaps the best part) are all under $30. 

Fall Decor Under $30

  • Yihong Orange Fairy Lights Set, $10.32 with coupon (orig. $13.99)

  • Happy Fall Burlap Bunting Banner, 8.99

  • 4th Emotion Buffalo Check Throw Pillow Covers Set, $12.99

  • Yankee Candle Crisp Fall Night Jar Candle, $23.41

  • Ulmisfee Autumn Outdoor Lantern, $19.99 (orig. $39.99) 

  • Fall Leaf String Light Garland, $9.89 (orig. $10.99)

  • Mulee Plaid Check Pillow Case Covers Set, $14.99

  • Simhomsen Embroidered Leaves Table Runner, $19.99

  • RY King Battery-Operated Flameless Candles Nine-Pack, $25.99 (orig. $39.99)

  • Gold Tan Ivory Tassel Garland, $10.49 (orig. $13.99)

  • Yankee Candle Autumn Wreath Large Jar Candle, $16.88 (orig. $27.99)

  • Denlix Mercury Glass Pumpkin Light, $23.75 with coupon (orig. $25)

Shoppers looking to add shades of red, orange, and yellow to their home can do so with a festive garland or a colorful embroidered foliage table runner. Updating your throw pillows with buffalo check-clad covers is another easy upgrade, and these $13 beauties have earned a near perfect rating and over 4,700 five-star reviews.

Fragrant candles and twinkling lights are the way to go if you want to warm up your space. Battery-operated candles and fairy lights can be set up just about anywhere, while fall-inspired scents, like “Autumn Wreath” and “Crisp Fall Night,” will infuse your abode with seasonal aromas. Take a cue from Meghan Markle and fill your home with both scented candles and unscented pillars that you can light up during your next cozy night in.

If you’re in need of more inspiration, there are seemingly endless decorations and styling ideas featured in the retailer’s home section, or you can keep it simple and stick to these shopper-loved pieces below. With tons of Prime-eligible options, you can give your house an affordable refresh in no time. 

Amazon

Buy It! Yihong Orange Fairy Lights Set, $10.32 with coupon (orig. $13.99); amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Happy Fall Burlap Bunting Banner, 8.99; amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! 4th Emotion Buffalo Check Throw Pillow Covers Set, $12.99; amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Yankee Candle Crisp Fall Night Jar Candle, $23.41; amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Ulmisfee Autumn Outdoor Lantern, $19.99 (orig. $39.99); amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Fall Leaf String Light Garland, $9.89 (orig. $10.99); amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Mulee Plaid Check Pillow Case Covers Set, $14.99; amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Simhomsen Embroidered Leaves Table Runner, $19.99; amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! RY King Battery-Operated Flameless Candles Nine-Pack, $25.99 (orig. $39.99); amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Gold Tan Ivory Tassel Garland, $10.49 (orig. $13.99); amazon.com

Amazon

Buy It! Yankee Candle Autumn Wreath Large

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Outbreak at Secret Service Training Center Underlines Proximity of Virus to White House

Rick Nelson, a former official on the National Security Council under the George W. Bush administration who dealt with homeland security issues, said few other law enforcement agencies faced such pressure to continue operations while at the whims of political candidates prone to travel.

“They have a relatively small work force that doesn’t allow them to absorb and respond to the fluctuation,” said Mr. Nelson, a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “They’re at higher risk than the general public because they can’t do their job if they’re social distancing.”

The Secret Service trains its officers and agents at a sprawling campus in Laurel, Md. The center has mock versions of Air Force One, Marine One, the president’s helicopter and the White House grounds. There is a large parking lot where agents learn how to drive the hulking armored limousine the president is driven in, which is known as the Beast. A nearby garage houses many of the older limousines that the agency has used in recent decades.

As cities began to carry out social distancing guidelines in the spring, the Secret Service closed its training facility in Maryland from March to June 1. Agency officials said it reopened after four months in part to respond to mounting pressure to add to the nearly 7,800 employees in the agency. An inspector general report in 2016 found the agency’s training “continues to be hindered by low staffing levels and high operational demands on the work force.”

The agency enacted various safety procedures, including relocating classes outdoors, instituting temperature checks and requiring agents to wear personal protective gear while participating in close-contact drills, according to Julia McMurray, a spokeswoman for the Secret Service, who declined to provide a total number of confirmed cases among agents.

“Any U.S. Secret Service employee who may have tested positive would have been immediately isolated and returned home and out of the working environment. Considerations would also be taken to ensure the least amount of contact with the public,” Ms. McMurray said. “Throughout the pandemic, the U.S. Secret Service has taken significant precautions at its training center to protect the health and welfare of its trainees and training staff.”

The agency declined to specify daily staffing levels at the facility. The service reduced the number of classes allowed to train there — normally about 10 groups — to no more than six when it reopened in June. But even those precautions could not stop a virus that has now left more than 200,000 people in the United States dead.

The covert work of agents in the Secret Service, and how it conflicts with social distancing guidelines, has not captured as much public attention as the law enforcement agencies with visible patrol officers like the New York Police Department, which has had thousands of confirmed cases of the coronavirus. But the task of serving on a protection detail, and specifically training for the job, requires coming into the exact close contact with others that the

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