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Swanky Soirée Turns Swamp Superspreader

The elites of journalism and politics — 630 of them! — gathered just over a week ago for the 137th annual Gridiron Club and Foundation dinner. The New York Times describes the fête as “an annual white-tie roast between journalists and presidential administrations.” The dinner was held at the Renaissance Washington Hotel.

But all was not champagne and caviar — as of this writing, 73 of the glitterati who attended the bash have tested positive for the dread disease, COVID-19.

It’s not like the beautiful people were being careless. Fearful of catching the ‘rona, they canceled the dinner altogether for the past two years. And though they courageously held the event this year, “All guests at the Gridiron Club dinner were required to show proof of vaccination,” avers Gridiron President Tom DeFrank. (If you want to know how incestuously social the establishment politicians and prestige media who attend this sort of event are, check out DeFrank’s bio.)

But in spite of everyone’s innoculation state of grace, the newest variant in town — BA.2 — crashed the party. The New York Post reports that “At least three cabinet secretaries, several members of Congress, multiple White House officials and a large number of journalists are among the dozens to test positive.”

Chortling with mirth at the spectacle of the most pious COVIDidians inadvertently passing around the latest infection, I checked various news sources to find out who, exactly, had been stricken. Here are the names I was able to tease out of the reportage:

~ Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo
~ Attorney General Merrick Garland
~ Joe Biden’s sister, Valerie Biden Owens
~ Vice President Harris’s Communications Director Jamal Simmons
~ Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.)
~ Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas)
~ Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack
~ Sen. Susan Collins (technically a Republican, but a squishy one)
~ Rep. Elaine Luria (D-Va.)
~ NYC Mayor Eric Adams
~COVID Pope Dr. Anthony Fauci and CDC Director Rochelle Walensky were also at the Dinner but have thus far tested negative. How very dull of them.

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The even higher profile White House Correspondents’ Dinner is scheduled to take place in a few weeks. Attendees will need to show proof of vaccination and a negative same-day COVID test to be admitted. But since many of those attendees will have already recovered from the infection they received at the Gridiron Dinner, it is hoped that the Correspondents’ event will be less virulent.

Story cited here.

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