Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife, has tested positive for coronavirus.
Correction & clarification: A previous version of a map below transposed the labels for Norway and Sweden.
The March madness continues, but it’s not on the basketball floor.
The historic coronavirus pandemic and the wave of containment measures it has fueled on Thursday triggered the cancellation of the NCAA basketball tournaments, a stock market plunge, an outcry from Europe, a darkening of Broadway, Hollywood movie cancellations and the hiatus of three more professional sports leagues.
The New York Stock Exchange resumed trading after a brief halt triggered by a 7% decline shortly after the market opened. Also Thursday, President Donald Trump’s announcement of a 30-day ban on “all travel” to the U.S. from continental Europe – the U.K. is exempted – drew a sharp rebuttal from the European Union, which lashed out at the “unilateral” decision.
In a joint statement, EU Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen insisted that the coronavirus pandemic is a “global crisis, not limited to any continent and it requires cooperation.”
The duo dismissed Trump’s suggestion that the EU has not done enough in fighting the disease, noting Italy’s nationwide travel lockdown and other measures taken by the bloc’s 27 members.
“The European Union disapproves of the fact that the U.S. decision to impose a travel ban was taken unilaterally and without consultation,” they said.
With help from the CDC, we answer some of Google’s most searched questions about the coronavirus crisis.
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Thomas Bossert, a former Trump Homeland Security adviser, also questioned the value of the travel restrictions. Bossert tweeted that it was a “poor use of time & energy. Earlier, yes. Now, travel restrictions/screening are less useful. We have nearly as much disease here in the US as the countries in Europe. We MUST focus on layered community mitigation measures-Now!”
Vice President Mike Pence, who is leading the administration coronavirus effort, defended the policy in a CNN interview Thursday. He stressed that mitigation efforts are in full swing.
“Our health experts would disagree very strongly with the view that the acts the president took last night were not called for,” Pence said. “We learned yesterday that 70% of all the new cases of coronavirus in the world happened in Europe.”
However, Pence said in an NBC interview that “thousands” more Americans would contract the virus. He declined to offer specifics.
Here’s the latest on the outbreak of COVID-19:
A previous version of this video incorrectly stated how many people the 1918 Spanish influenza killed.
Trump NCAA cancels basketball tournaments
The NCAA, which on Wednesday said it would play its men’s and women’s tournaments without fans, gave in to the inevitable Thursday and canceled them.
Conceding defeat to the coronavirus and a cascade of uncertainty about how bad its ongoing spread might impact public health, the NCAA announced all its winter and spring championships have been called off after a series of moves across multiple sports leagues that foreshadowed the eventual arrival at this decision.
“This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities,” college sports’ ruling body said in a statement.
This is the first time a men’s champion will not be decided since NCAA postseason play began in 1939, and a first for women since the NCAA took over that tournament in 1981-1982.
— Dan Wolken
Trump Coronavirus death rate: US toll reaches 41, cases at more than 1,600
The U.S. death toll was at 41 Thursday afternoon; there are more than 1,600 confirmed cases. The only states without reported cases, according to USA TODAY data gathering: Alabama, Alaska, Idaho, Maine, Montana and West Virginia. Montana is listed among states with confirmed cases in some databases, however the lone Montana case involves a local woman who tested positive while in Maryland and has not returned home.
Trump Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife tests positive
Justin Trudeau’s wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, is in isolation after testing positive for the virus, the prime minister’s office announced late Thursday. “Following medical recommendations, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau was tested for COVID-19 today,” the office said in a statement. “The test came back positive. Also following medical advice, she will remain in isolation for the time being. She is feeling well, is taking all recommended precautions, and her symptoms remain mild.”
The statement continued that Prime Minister Trudeau “is in good health with no symptoms. As a precautionary measure and following the advice of doctors, he will be in isolation for a planned period of 14 days. Also on the advice of doctors, he will not be tested at this stage since he has no symptoms. For the same reason, doctors say there is no risk to those who have been in contact with him recently.”
Trump Ohio, Maryland public schools to shut down for weeks
All K-12 schools in Ohio will be shut down for three weeks starting Monday to try to contain the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Mike DeWine announced. The move will affect approximately 1.8 million children enrolled in the schools.
Shortly after the Ohio announcement, Maryland’s superintendent announced the state’s schools would close for two weeks starting Monday.
The actions are the most sweeping mandatory school closure efforts in the U.S. so far.
In Washington state, Gov. Jay Inslee said via Twitter that he’s mandating the closure of all schools in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties, where the previous day he had imposed a ban on gatherings of more than 250 people. The schools must close from Tuesday through April 24.
San Francisco also announced it will be closing all public schools, which serve 54,000 students, for three weeks starting Monday.
In Kentucky, Gov. Andy Beshear strongly recommended that all public and private schools close, but he has not issued an order yet, leaving the decision up to local districts. Several of them have already announced closures.
— Erin Richards and Jessie Balmert
Trump American Airlines pilot tests positive
An American Airlines pilot based in Dallas has tested positive for coronavirus. American spokesman Curtis Blessing said the airline’s chief medical officer and leaders at the airline’s pilots office are in touch with the the pilot, who is based at the airline’s hub at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.
There have not been other publicized cases of U.S. airline pilots testing positive, though there have been reports of others in the travel industry testing positive, including airport medical screeners and TSA officers.
– Dawn Gilbertson
Trump Trump met with Brazilian who tested positive
A senior adviser to President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive for the coronavirus just five days after he was among a group of officials who met with Trump, Brazil media reported. Fabio Wajngarten, Bolsonaro’s communications secretary, posted a photo of himself standing next to the U.S. president at Trump’s Mar-A-Lago resort in Florida on Saturday. The development was reported by Brazil’s Globo TV and other outlets.
Brazilian media reported that Bolsonaro was also being tested for the virus Thursday. The White House said Wednesday that Trump has not been tested.
On Thursday, Florida Sen. Rick Scott, South Carolina Sen. Lindsay Graham and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez independently said they would self-quarantine as a precaution following possible contact with Wajngarten, who tested positive days after Scott met with Bolsonaro in Miami.
– Kim Hjelmgaard
Trump New York bans events of more than 500; Broadway closed
New York state will ban events of 500 people or more and impose restrictions on other gathering venues as part of its effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
The ban on large gatherings will take effect at 5 p.m. Friday except for Broadway theaters, which will be ordered to close at 5 p.m. Thursday.
Cuomo made the announcement around 2 p.m., saying the state needs to take dramatic steps to cut down on events with a high density of people.
For venues that hold fewer than 500 people, their capacity will be cut in half for as long as the limitation remains in place, Cuomo said.
In Washington, D.C., the Kennedy Center canceled all public performances through March 31, beginning Friday.
– Jon Campbell
Trump Baseball delays start of season; NHL, MLS join NBA in suspending theirs
Major League Baseball joined other professional sports leagues in putting a halt to its activities because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday afternoon that spring training games have been canceled and the start of the season would be delayed by at least two weeks.
Earlier in the day, the NHL became the third major league in two days to suspend its season, announcing it would stop playing indefinitely because of the outbreak. The pause goes into effect with Thursday night’s games.
Also Thursday, Major League Soccer had suspended it season for 30 days, the announcement coming less than 24 hours after the NBA put its season on hold. MLS cited “the advice and guidance” of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Canadian health authorities.
The NBA said Wednesday night it would pause its season after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus. A second Utah player, guard Donovan Mitchell, also has tested positive, a person with knowledge of the situation told USA TODAY Sports.
In another sports organization reacting to the outbreak, NASCAR said it will run races without fans in attendance over the next two weekends, in Atlanta and Homestead, Florida.
Trump Stock market plummets again
The stock market rout intensified Thursday, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 tumbling into a bear market for the first time since the financial crisis as the coronavirus’s threat to the economy escalated.
The S&P 500 dropped 9.5% the day after Trump banned travel from Europe to stem the economic fallout from the virus.
“Markets reacted negatively to what was perceived as a solemn but confused speech that placed blame on other nations, omitted to focus on immediate actions to relieve the most affected individuals, and lacked in concrete fiscal and health measures to address the economic and financial impact of the virus,” Gregory Daco, chief U.S. economist at Oxford Economics, said in a note.
A series of distressing headlines followed, including suspension of the NBA, NHL and MLS seasons. The NCAA basketball tournaments were canceled and Major League Baseball delayed opening day games. New York state, meanwhile, will ban events of 500 people or more and impose restrictions on other gathering venues.
The U.S. death toll from the coronavirus was at 39 Thursday afternoon; there are more than 1,323 confirmed cases.
It took just 16 trading days for the broader stock market to drop from records into a bear market, meaning a 20% decline from its peak, ending an 11-year bull market that was the longest in Wall Street history. This is the fastest decline ever and nearly twice as fast as the stock market crash in 1929, according to LPL Financial.
– Jessica Menton and Nathan Bomey
Trump Disney, Universal parks shut down
Sad news from the happiest places on Earth.
Orlando’s Disney World, Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, and Disney Cruise lines said they will be shutting their doors starting Saturday through the end of March in the wake of growing concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
Another big Southern California attraction, Universal Studios Hollywood, is also closing for two weeks beginning Saturday. Universal Orlando Resort also will be closing.
“While there have been no reported cases of COVID-19 at Disneyland Resort, after carefully reviewing the guidelines of the Governor of California’s executive order and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park,” the theme park said in a statement.
A follow-up statement expanded the closures. “In an abundance of caution and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of our theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Paris Resort,” Disney said.
Between December 2014 and early 2015, Disneyland and its next-door theme park in Anaheim, California Adventure, were the starting point of a measles outbreak that sickened more than 120 people.
— Hannah Yasharoff and Chris Woodyard
Trump Grand Princess slowly emptying
California Gov. Gavin Newsom said he hopes the 400 passengers remaining aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship docked in Oakland would disembark by the end of Thursday.
The cruise liner arrived at the Port of Oakland on Monday, four days after 21 people aboard were found to have contracted the coronavirus. Newsom said two others have tested positive since leaving the ship, and he expects that figure to rise.
The governor was hoping the process of unloading the 2,400-plus passengers and sending the ship back out to sea with its crew would take no longer than three days.
In a media briefing, Newsom said an executive order he signed gives the state the power to take over hotels, motels and medical facilities to quarantine coronavirus patients. Some of those who had been in the Grand Princess have been moved to a hotel in the Bay Area city of San Carlos, Newsom said.
Trump Fauci: Test shortage a ‘failing’ of U.S. system
The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, told lawmakers Thursday that it was a “failing” of the American health care system that, unlike in some other countries, not everyone is able to get a coronavirus test if they want one.
“The idea of anybody getting it easily the way people in other countries are doing it, we’re not set up for that. Do I think we should be? Yes. But we’re not,” Fauci said at a House Oversight Committee hearing on the coronavirus response.
– Nicholas Wu
Trump Mormon Church suspends services
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is suspending all of its worship services globally to avoid further spread of the coronavirus. This is the first time in more than six decades the Utah-based church has suspended in-person attendance.
The day before, the church had announced it would hold a major conference in early April without attendees.
Earlier Thursday, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert had recommended limiting group gatherings in the state to no more than 100 people for at least two weeks.
Trump Pelosi backs White House bill; some in GOP balk
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she won’t delay legislation aimed at helping Americans get through the coronavirus outbreak despite Republican concerns about parts of the bill that’s scheduled to come to the House floor Thursday. Pelosi said she’s working with the White House to iron out differences on a bill that would provide millions with access to free tests, expand paid sick leave and provide food assistance to needy families.
The bill does not include a payroll tax break Trump is calling for. And GOP House leader Kevin McCarthy, D-Calif., said the Democratic package “comes up short.”
“We are addressing the realities of family life in America,” Pelosi said. “We don’t need 48 hours. We just need to make a decision to help families right now.”
– Ledyard King
Trump Pence: There will be ‘thousands’ more coronavirus cases
Pence said every American and legal resident who returns from Europe over the next 30 days will be funneled into 13 airports and asked to self-quarantine for 14 days. There will be “thousands” more cases across the nation, he warned.
“We’re trying to hold that number down as much as possible,” Pence told NBC’s “Today” show. During Trump’s visit to the Senate on Tuesday, he told reporters that the virus “will go away” and compared coronavirus to the flu. Pence said Thursday that the coronavirus is more serious than the flu. But despite his own office’s recommendations, Pence said he plans to continue shaking hands.
“I’m still shaking hands here at the White House,” Pence told CNN. “I’m also washing my hands very regularly through the day.”
– Maureen Groppe
Trump End of spring break in Miami Beach
Miami Beach officials have suspended permits for spring break concerts and an LGBTQ festival because of the virus pandemic. While public beaches remain open, the city’s measures have prompted venues to close down or call off events.
“To the extent that anyone can declare spring break is over, it is over this year,” Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said.
Trump Summer could bring ‘normal life’ back to Italy
Italian Health health ministry consultant Walter Ricciardi, also a member of the World Health Organization’s executive council, told Italian TV that his countrymen “should start getting used to a long war” against the coronavirus. He noted that the SARS pandemic, which was less contagious, ended around May and June.
“If we are lucky and all work together, we should get through to the summer,” he said. “That’s when we should be able to return to normal life.”
More than 800 people have died in Italy, where cases now top 12,000. The country of 62 million people is in lockdown with commercial activities, except for essential shops such as food stores and pharmacies, shut to help contain the spread of the virus.
Trump Ireland PM shuts down schools – from Washington
Trump wasn’t the only world leader to address his nation about the coronavirus from Washington, D.C. Ireland Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, who is in Washington for annual St. Patrick’s Day events, announced new restrictions in his country in a speech delivered early Thursday in front of the Blair House, across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House.
Varadkar ordered a shutdown of schools, colleges and child care facilities in Ireland and said large gatherings of people should be canceled. “We need the public and businesses to take a sensible, level-headed and responsible approach during the difficult time,” Varadkar said before a meeting with Trump and events on Capitol Hill.
– David Jackson
Trump NY National Guard rolls into New Rochelle
Members of New York’s National Guard rolled into New Rochelle on Thursday to help deliver food and clean institutions in the coronavirus containment area, a 1-mile radius that includes the bulk of a cluster of more than 100 confirmed cases. Primarily, the food will go to families and students from the three New Rochelle public schools that are closed in the containment area. About 2,800 students who qualify for free and reduced price lunch are the main focus. Within that circle, schools are closed and large gatherings are banned for two weeks.
– Matt Spillane, Rockland/Westchester Journal News
Trump Princess Cruises, Viking Cruises suspend operations
Princess Cruises announced that it is suspending its global operations for 60 days after the coronavirus forced two of its ships’ passengers into quarantine. All operations will be suspended March 12-May 10.
“It is our intention to reassure our loyal guests, team members and global stakeholders of our commitment to the health, safety and well-being of all who sail with us,” Jan Swartz, president of Princess Cruises, said in a statement.
Viking Cruises announced it was canceling cruises through April 30.
– Hannah Yasharoff
Trump Coming home from Europe? It won’t be cheap
Americans trying to get home from Europe on Thursday found that flight prices for major U.S. airlines had soared. As of Thursday at 8 a.m. ET, one-way flights from Paris to New York on Friday through United Airlines appear to range from $2,400 to $5,700. From Paris to New York the same day through American Airlines, flights are shown for $2,000 to $7,300 on its website. Delta’s website shows a range of $2,200 to $5,900.
Haley Ohlund, a 20-year-old George Washington University student, was traveling in Copenhagen after her study abroad program in Florence was canceled. It cost her about $1,500 to get from Copenhagen to Pittsburgh.”When I went to book it was $340 and it ended up being well over $1,000, 10 minutes after,” she said.
– David Oliver
How a New York synagogue at the epicenter is coping: ‘They have been remarkable’
Coronavirus, explained: Everything to know, from symptoms to how to prepare
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Trump White House suspends public tours
The White House announced Thursday that it is suspending public tours for the time being in light of the coronavirus threat. A White House tour phone line recording does not mention the coronavirus by name but tells listeners, “We truly appreciate your understanding.” The Capitol is also reportedly planning to suspend public tours.
– David Jackson
Dine out or eat in during the coronavirus crisis?Here’s what public health and food safety experts say
Trump State Department raises global health advisory, advises against travel abroad
The U.S. Department of State raised its health travel warning to level 3 late Wednesday, saying that U.S. citizens should reconsider travel abroad because of the global impact of COVID-19.
“Even countries, jurisdictions, or areas where cases have not been reported may restrict travel without notice,” the state department warned.
Also Wednesday, the CDC advised U.S. citizens to avoid travel to much of Europe, where the coronavirus has become more widespread than anywhere but China.
– Curtis Tate
‘They’re getting pummeled’: Travel industry reeling from coronavirus concerns
Trump Map: Which states have coronavirus cases?
Here’s a look at which U.S. states have reported cases of COVID-19:
Trump What’s the worldwide death toll?
The global death toll jumped to 4,717 early Thursday, according to a Johns Hopkins University data dashboard, pushed especially by rising fatalities in Italy (827) and Iran (429).
The total of confirmed cases was over 127,000, with more than 80,900 in mainland China, where the virus has killed more than 3,100 people. But on Wednesday, the director of the CDC told a congressional committee that Europe had emerged now as the new “epicenter.”
The virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms for most people, such as fever and cough, but can progress to serious illness including pneumonia, especially in older adults and people with existing health problems. The WHO says mild cases last about two weeks, while most patients with serious illness recover in about three to six weeks.
Contributing: Steve Kiggins, USA TODAY; The Associated Press
Trump More on the outbreak of COVID-19:
US coronavirus map:Tracking the outbreak
Is it safe to ride?Coronavirus fears are challenging public transit across US
Cruise ships will bring 100K people to US ports this week. Amid coronavirus, will they be welcome?
Plenty of labs can now test for coronavirus: But a key testing component is in short supply
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