Stephen Miller Tests Positive as White House Outbreak Grows

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Credit…Anna Moneymaker for The New York Times

On Tuesday evening, senior administration officials confirmed that Stephen Miller, Mr. Trump’s top speechwriter and a policy adviser, had tested positive for the coronavirus, joining a growing list of Mr. Trump’s close aides who have the virus.

“Over the last five days I have been working remotely and self-isolating, testing negative every day through yesterday,” Mr. Miller said in a statement. “Today, I tested positive for Covid-19 and am in quarantine.”

Mr. Miller is married to Katie Miller, Vice President Mike Pence’s communications director. A senior administration official said Ms. Miller, who contracted the virus this spring and returned to work in May, was tested Tuesday morning and was negative for any new infection.

On Tuesday, many White House offices were empty as officials stayed home to wait out the infectious period from an outbreak of the coronavirus within the building and among people who had been there.

President Trump was in the White House residence, convalescing, as a number of advisers and other officials stayed home, either because they had contracted the coronavirus or had been near people who did.

The White House communications and press shops were bereft of people. The White House press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, announced on Monday that she had tested positive. Two other press office aides have also contracted the virus, and two more aides on Tuesday were said to have tested positive, people familiar with the results said.

The outbreak in the White House, which has extended to some lawmakers on Capitol Hill, has raised concerns in the city that surrounds it. Washington, D.C., which has managed to bring infection rates down in recent weeks through preventive laws and high rates of compliance, has almost no control over the federal government.

The city reported 105 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, the highest number since June 3.

The gathering at the Rose Garden would have violated the city’s mandates limiting the size of gatherings and requiring masks. But because the White House is on federal property, it is exempt from such rules.

City officials said they would be closely monitoring infection trends for several days to see if the Capitol and White House cases affected the city’s overall infection rate.

Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

The White House physician, Dr. Sean P. Conley, said on Tuesday that President Trump was experiencing no symptoms of Covid-19 and doing “extremely well” on his first full day at home since a three-night stay in the hospital.

But outside doctors and medical experts in Covid-19 and lung disease said they were struggling to piece together an accurate picture of Mr. Trump’s health. Far from having vanquished Covid-19, the outside experts said, Mr. Trump is most

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Trevor Noah, Stephen Colbert pummel Trump and White House for its coronavirus spread

“A massive outbreak at the White House is not karma, it’s consequences,” Noah said on “The Daily Show.” “It’s not karma to get hit by lightning when you’re standing on the roof of a skyscraper holding a metal rod while there’s lightning. The universe didn’t do that s— to you. You did that s— to yourself!”

While details remain murky about Trump’s true condition and questions linger about the White House’s lack of safety protocols and decision not to do contact tracing amid the mass outbreak, late-night comics lambasted Trump on Monday over his own infection and his handling of the pandemic.

“They are inveterate liars, they can’t help themselves. They’re also really bad at it. Seriously, what’s more troubling — that they lie all the time or that they lie all the time and have shown no improvement in lying?” Seth Meyers said on NBC’s “Late Night.” “It’s like sending your kid to math camp for a week and when they come back, they tell you it was the toughest nine days of their life.”

Several hosts homed in on a staged photo op the White House released of Trump working inside Walter Reed Military Medical Hospital over the weekend. Although the photos showed the president sitting in two different rooms, metadata reviewed by The Washington Post showed the images — including one of Trump writing on a blank sheet of paper — were taken minutes apart.

“People are saying that he’s just writing his name on a blank piece of paper. But that’s not true,” Jimmy Fallon said on NBC’s “The Tonight Show.” “That’s not a blank piece of paper. That’s just his entire plan to stop covid.”

“President? He looks like he should have a booth at Comic-Con,” Meyers said.

Trump also drew particular scorn from the comics over his decision on Sunday to ride in an SUV so he could wave at supporters outside the hospital, potentially exposing Secret Service members to the virus.

“Nothing projects strength like waving from the back seat of an SUV like a kid headed for soccer practice,” Meyers said. “Smart move keeping your juice box between your knees.”

The president’s stay in the hospital didn’t stop him his usual Twitter rants. On Sunday, Trump posted a video of him standing in his hospital suite, which Meyers said “cost more than the $750 you paid in taxes.” In that video, the president said he had “learned a lot about covid” from his treatments.

“Really? You’re learning now?” Stephen Colbert said on CBS’s “The Late Show.” Imitating Trump, Colbert added: “For the last eight months, I’ve heard about millions of people getting infected with covid, hundreds of thousands of [them] dying. But how could I know these people were real if they weren’t me? But now they are me. My thoughts and prayers go to all of myself.”

Meyers noted that it was no surprise that at least 10 guests at a White House event introducing Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney

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STEPHEN THOMPSON: Here’s a handy guide to spray-painting kitchen cabinets | Lifestyle

In the ‘70s and ‘80s, I sold a lot of Sherwin-Williams paint. Back then spray-paint machines were expensive, temperamental and definitely for professional use only. A lot has changed since then. Now the mystique and complexity of spray-painting has been vastly simplified. DIYers can easily purchase and operate an entry-level ($89 home-owner grade spray gun and compressor from Wagner Home Decor) for their difficult painting projects. OK, full disclosure, I have never used the Wagner Home Decor HVLP Stationary Sprayer I’m recommending here, but I’m very impressed by its videos. I strongly advise practicing on a small project before you tackle the large job of painting all your kitchen cabinets.

When you want a smooth finish, especially when using high-gloss paint, a sprayed-on finish is absolutely the best way to go. You’ll get a far more even, uniform surface by spraying than by brushing and rolling. Why? Because a high-gloss paint will literally highlight and accentuate every single one of your roller and brush mark imperfections in the finish coat.

Before spraying, the surface you are painting should appear as smooth as glass. That means 90% of any spray-paint job is time you’ll spend in preparation, with just 10% percent in actual painting. You might be surprised, but that amount of prep time for spray work isn’t much longer than prep time for brush or roller painting. However, what you gain by spraying is a huge savings in the amount of time spent painting.

So, what does the 90% prep work involve? First, remove all the hardware and take the doors off their hinges. Put up plastic and lay drop cloths to keep sanding dust and paint overspray from adjacent surfaces. Use a degreaser to clean throughly and to completely remove dirt, oils, grease and grime. Fill in all dents and scratches and sand smooth. Using a sanding sponge or sandpaper, lightly go over all the cabinet parts to ensure every surface has an even consistency – sanding with the grain of the wood to prevent any surface damage – and remove all sanding dust with a tack cloth or clean sponge.

If your cabinets have been painted many times, you can skip the cleaning part above, but you will need to apply a stripping agent to remove those previous coats of paint.

Depending on how dark your cabinets are and how opaque your primer is, plan on applying at minimum two to three coats of paint, the first of which should be a fast-drying primer. A quality primer will (1) help conceal imperfections, (2) block past cooking stains from bleeding through the finishes and (3) make it easy for paint to adhere to your cabinets. Let your base coat dry, use your sanding sponge again – just not too aggressively this time – and remove any sanding dust.

Let each additional coat of paint dry thoroughly (about 24 hours) before lightly sanding and applying another coat. Let the paint fully cure for about 48 hours before reattaching the doors,

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Stephen Wright House – Paw Paw, Illinois

Before we get to the Reagan landmarks in Dixon we stop in Paw Paw, Illinois, a small village many of you Illinois residents have probably passed on Interstate 39, you know you are there when you see the large electricity generating windmills on the horizon. Before 2005 the 850 person village of Paw Paw had no properties included on the federal National Register of Historic Places. The listing of the Stephen Wright House changed that in May of that year.

After mingling amongst the windmills of the Mendota Hills Wind Farm for a bit, I made my way over to the village proper and sought out the Wright House. The house was constructed sometime between 1895 and 1906 by Paw Paw native, and real estate speculator Stephen Wright.

The home is an excellent example of Queen Anne style architecture. It very clearly illustrates the hip roof (wiki) with flanking cross gables (wiki) that is found on about 50 percent of Queen Anne style houses. The roof style is a quick way to identify many less obvious examples of Queen Anne. Viewed from the cross gables, the hip roof is less obvious, making for an interesting visual play, depending on where the viewer stands.

Tomorrow we visit our first Reagan landmark in Dixon. Paw Paw is a village in Lee County, located in northern Illinois. Norther Illinois is full of interesting places listed in the National Register of Historic Places and well worth the look for any history student or buff. Feel free to Google it and have a look for yourself.

Online Resources

Stephen Wright House: National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form (PDF)

Wikipedia: Stephen Wright House, Mendota Hills Wind Farm (both by me, for you).

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