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Inauguration Riot Preparations

We start with the latest details on how the Country is preparing for potential riots ahead of the Inauguration for President-elect Joe Biden. Pennsylvania’s State Capitol in Harrisburg is already surrounded by barriers to keep the public away. The Capitol will be closed from Sunday through the Inauguration with increased security in the area. This comes after Governor Tom Wolf ordered the closure to guard for potential unrest connected to the swearing in of President-elect Joe Biden. Officials say this move was taken out of an abundance of caution. We’ll have more news later on precautions in place as the Inauguration nears.

Besides the safety concerns, people are asking if these potential protests could lead to a spike in COVID-19 cases. We reached out to Health Officials who say they are concerned about these events becoming super-spreaders for COVID-19. After the riot at the U.S. Capitol earlier this month, State Officials are preparing for protests to happen in Washington as well as in Harrisburg leading up to Inauguration day. Governor Wolf announced Friday an additional 1,000 National Guard troops have been activated to go to Washington DC to assist authorities there.

Maggi Barton, Deputy Press Secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Health, says there is that potential, and that people should follow COVID-19 precautions. We also asked if increases in COVID cases within the following weeks could be tied to these protests, to which Barton replied: “It can take time to see any large increases in cases and is difficult to tie to a specific event unless all cases complete a case investigation and share that information.”

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