Monday, 06 April, 2020


Trump wants to ease coronavirus restrictions by Easter, despite warnings from experts

Donald Trump says the economy may be more important than continuing with coronavirus restrictions Donald Trump says the economy may be more important than continuing with coronavirus restrictions
Patty Aguilar | 25 March, 2020, 09:50

"You're going to lose more people by putting the country in a massive recession or depression.You're going to have suicides by the thousands".

Mr Trump has shown impatience with those measures in recent days, saying Tuesday he wants the USA economy re-opened by Easter.

"FEMA says we're sending 400 ventilators".

"Easter is our timeline, what a great timeline that would be", Trump said but asserted that his first priority was always the health and safety of the American people. More than 50,000 cases have been reported in the USA, and more than 600 people have died from the virus.

Speaking of the economy, Trump said at the town hall, "The faster we go back, the better it's going to be".

But public health experts, including those working on the White House coronavirus task force, have warned the comparison is not analogous and that the coronavirus is significantly more contagious.

At the same Monday briefing, Trump resorted to an analogy between deaths from the novel coronavirus to deaths from vehicle accidents, and claimed without evidence that deaths from a prolonged lockdown and the economic damage that would ensue would exceed the number of deaths from COVID-19.

Dr Fauci said it is important to obtain more data about the virus through testing to determine the next steps in the federal government's response efforts.

"Trump is excited about the prospect of packed churches for Easter Sunday, "said political commentator Joshua Potash".

But Trump has supporters: Yet Trump is far from alone in pushing for some parts of the economy to reopen quickly, with some Republican lawmakers and other expressing similar desires.

Donald Trump at the daily coronavirus response briefing at the White House on March 23, 2020.

The White House's guidelines now include an admonition that members of the public not gather in groups larger than 10 and avoid dining out in restaurants or bars. "Let's go to work. It's not going to be a long time, temporarily".

In New York, California, Illinois, Washington, and New Jersey, which are bearing the greatest brunt from COVID-19 - and have gone the furthest to fight it - Trump's words will nearly certainly fall on deaf ears. "So it does have that potential [to become the centre of the pandemic]", said Margaret Harris, a World Health Organization spokeswoman.

"Dr Fauci is a truth-teller", Ms Pelosi, a Democrat from California, said on MSNBC.

Fox has come under criticism for its own treatment of the virus as some opinion program hosts played it down in the early period of its spread.

When announcing a forthcoming order to close all nonessential businesses in Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser said on Tuesday that it is "alarming" that the president would put "the economy over saving lives".

"Our people want to return to work", he said on Twitter earlier on Tuesday. "They will practice Social Distancing and all else, and Seniors will be watched over protectively & lovingly".

Gov. Andrew Cuomo of NY, epicenter of the US outbreak, expects infections to peak in two to three weeks' time - roughly coinciding with Trump's hoped-for date to reopen America for business.

Trump, who is seen as prioritizing an economic response to the outbreak, on Tuesday reiterated his sentiment that the "we can not let the cure be worse than the problem itself" - a notion he first tweeted Sunday night and repeated at a White House briefing Monday.

"I gave it two weeks", Trump said during the virtual town hall from the Rose Garden. The Dow made its biggest one-day percentage gain since 1933.

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