Despite skyrocketing numbers of coronavirus cases, Donald Trump is ready to get back to business.
During a Fox News town hall from the White House, Trump said he wants the U.S. “opened up and raring to go by Easter,” which is 19 days away. The New York Times writes Trump “expressed outrage about having to “close the country” to curb the spread of the coronavirus and indicated that his guidelines on business shutdowns and social distancing would soon be lifted.”
But later in an appearance in the White House briefing room, the Times writes, the president softened his tone: “[Trump] saying his priority is the health and safety of the American people. His appearance in the briefing room appeared to be an attempt to make it clear that despite his claims that the economic impact of the coronavirus was potentially more harmful to the country than the medical crisis, he was still concerned about keeping Americans healthy and safe.“
The back and forth messaging from Washington has left state and local officials jobs much more difficult.
“Some of the messaging is pretty confusing,” Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, a Republican who moved this week to close nonessential businesses in his state.”
Tom Inglesby, the director of the Center for Health Security at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health believes the idea of loosening the rules early would be catastrophic. He wrote on Twitter:
“Anyone advising the end of social distancing now, needs to fully understand what the country will look like if we do that,” Inglesby wrote. “COVID would spread widely, rapidly, terribly, could kill potentially millions in the yr ahead with huge social and economic impact across the country.”