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Americans have packed beaches and lakes for Memorial Day weekend, often flouting restrictions imposed to tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

In Florida, state police dispersed an unauthorized gathering of hundreds of people in Daytona Beach on May 23.

In Missouri, bars at the Lake of the Ozarks were packed with revelers, who violated social-distancing rules.

Image source: nps.gov

Coronavirus task force chief Dr. Deborah Birx said she was “very concerned” after seeing such scenes.

Dr. Birx said on ABC’s This Week on May 24: “We really want to be clear all the time that social distancing is absolutely critical. And if you can’t social distance and you’re outside, you must wear a mask.”

St Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson said: “It’s irresponsible and dangerous to engage in such high risk behavior just to have some fun over the extended holiday weekend.

“Now, these folks will be going home to S. Louis and counties across Missouri and the Midwest, raising concerns about the potential of more positive cases, hospitalizations, and tragically, deaths. Deeply disturbing.”

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In Tampa area, Florida, the crowds were so big that authorities closed parking lots because they were full, the Associated Press reports.

In California, big crowds were seen enjoying beaches over the weekend. State officials said most people were covering their faces and keeping their distance on beaches and parks.

Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer.

The US has more coronavirus cases than anywhere in the world. It has over 1.6 million known infection and is nearing 100,000 deaths linked to the virus.

All 50 US states have now partially reopened after a two-month shutdown. However, remaining restrictions vary across the country.

Wide discrepancies also remain between states in terms of infection rates and the pace of their economic restart.

Some of the hardest-hit states, including New Jersey, New York and Washington are now showing the sharpest declines, while majority of states have reached plateaus.

Donald Trump has insisted that his campaign is united despite reports of deep divisions in the GOP after he made a series of missteps.

Speaking at a rally in Florida, the Republican presidential nominee said the campaign was “doing really well”.

According to media outlets, it was in turmoil after Donald Trump repeatedly attacked parents of a fallen Captain Humayun Khan.

Staffers told CNN that they “feel like they are wasting their time”.

Donald Trump said in Dayton Beach: “I just want to tell you the campaign is doing really well.

“It’s never been so well united… I would say right now it’s the best in terms of being united that it’s been since we began.”Donald Trump hails Brexit referendum result

Earlier Donald Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort blamed reports of disunity on Trump’s opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton.

“This is another Clinton narrative that she put out there and the media is picking up on,” he said.

“Mr. Trump has appeared this week at crowds that are overflowing into the street,” Paul Manafort added.

Donald Trump has been sharply criticized for his attacks on the bereaved parents of the Muslim soldier killed in Iraq.

His ongoing war of words with Khizr and Ghazala Khan has intensified rifts within the Republican Party.

NBC News reported that senior Republicans plan to stage an “intervention” to get the campaign back on message, stressing issues such as jobs and trade deals.

According to NBC, the effort will be led by Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and Donald Trump allies, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

“I think some of what Trump has done is very self-destructive,” Newt Gingrich told Fox Business Network on August 3.

Three prominent Republicans – including New York Congressman Richard Hanna – have said this week that they would vote for Hillary Clinton, saying Donald Trump was unfit to serve as president.

Many Republicans opposed to Donald Trump have stopped short of supporting Hillary Clinton, saying they would vote for a third candidate instead.

One person who did say he would back Donald Trump on August 3 was Clint Eastwood.

While stopping short of endorsing Donald Trump, Clint Eastwood said he would vote for him.

“I can understand where he’s coming from, but I don’t always agree with it,” Clint Eastwood, 86, told Esquire magazine.

Clint Eastwood also said Donald Trump was an enemy of political correctness, adding: “We see people accusing people of being racist and all kinds of stuff. When I grew up, those things weren’t called racist.”