White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Deborah Birx has faced a backlash for violating the guidelines she touted by travelling to Delaware together with three generations of her family from two households around Thanksgiving.
Birx was accompanied by her husband, a daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren as she set off on a trip to her property on Fenwick Island in Delaware a day after Thanksgiving, AP reported. The trip goes against her own recommendations for Americans to refrain from usual holiday travel and celebrate with “immediate family” from the same household.
It was apparently one of the members of Birx’s extended family who blew the whistle on the doctor’s holiday plans. AP cited Kathleen Flynn, whose brother is the husband of Birx’s daughter, as saying that she wanted to spill the beans “out of concern for her own parents.”
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“She cavalierly violated her own guidance,” Flynn said, as cited by AP.
Birx subsequently admitted that she did make the 50-hour visit to Delaware. But although she acknowledged she dined together with her family while there, she refused to count her visit as a Thanksgiving family outing, instead arguing that it was strictly for the purpose of preparing her Delaware property for a potential sale.
“I did not go to Delaware for the purpose of celebrating Thanksgiving,” she said, arguing that everybody who came there with her is part of her “immediate household,” despite not living in the same home.
As the news over her trip spread, she has been accused of talking the talk while not walking the walk over her lecturing fellow Americans to stay put for the holiday season.
“Another rules for thee but not for me! Tsk tsk,” Fox News Channel host Janice Dean quipped.
“This is a reckless betrayal of public trust,” virologist Angela Rasmussen tweeted.
It is astonishing to me that Dr. Birx thinks a multi-generational Thanksgiving gathering is okay for her—even after publicly urging Americans not to do this—because the trip wasn’t primarily for Thanksgiving. This is a reckless betrayal of public trust.https://t.co/SqJxsbMuJQ
— Dr. Angela Rasmussen (@angie_rasmussen) December 20, 2020
The revelation may deal a blow for Birx’s hopes to stay on the coronavirus taskforce when President-elect Joe Biden takes the reins from President Donald Trump in January.
It was reported earlier this month that Birx was eyeing a “scaled-back role” on Biden’s coronavirus effort amid his transition team’s concerns that her credibility has been tainted by her work with Trump.
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