Trump Disputes Birx’s Assessment Of Outbreak’s Dangerous Phase
While characterizing the coronavirus pandemic as "receding" and "under control," President Donald Trump reinforced a pattern of criticizing his own public health officials after Dr. Deborah Birx delivered a more dire warning.
Trump Claims 'Virus Is Receding' One Day After Birx Says Pandemic 'Extraordinarily Widespread'
President Donald Trump continued to push a rosy outlook on the future of the coronavirus crisis on Monday, claiming "the virus is receding," just one day after a prominent task force doctor warned it's "extraordinarily widespread" as the U.S. enters "a new phase" of the pandemic. "We are beginning to see evidence of significant progress," Trump said Monday evening in a press conference, even as coronavirus cases increase in roughly 15 states and deaths have increase in 35. "The virus is receding." (Siegel and Cathey, 8/3)
Trump: Coronavirus Is 'Under Control'
President Trump said in an interview with “Axios on HBO” that he thinks the coronavirus is as well-controlled in the U.S. as it can be, despite dramatic surges in new infections over the course of the summer and more than 150,000 American deaths. ... In the interview, which took place last Tuesday, Trump returned to familiar themes and areas where the U.S. really has made significant progress. He cited the dramatic increase in ventilator production, the ramp-up in testing and treatment that has reduced the overall fatality rate from the virus. (Baker, 8/4)
The Washington Post:
After Months Of Favor, Birx Raises Trump’s Ire With Grim Coronavirus Assessment
President Trump further disparaged his senior health advisers on Monday even as the pandemic deepened its hold on the nation, as the White House’s top coronavirus coordinator, Deborah Birx, joined Anthony S. Fauci and other scientists on the receiving end of the president’s ire. Birx — who built a career leading public health efforts against HIV/AIDS — quickly garnered Trump’s favor earlier this year for publicly championing the administration’s coronavirus response, becoming a prominent figure both inside and outside the White House. (Parker, Dawsey and Abutaleb, 8/3)
Dr. Anthony Fauci weighs in —
The New York Times:
Fauci Supports Birx’s Coronavirus Assessment After Trump Criticizes Her
Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease specialist, agreed on Monday with his colleague Dr. Deborah Birx that the United States has entered a “new phase” of the coronavirus pandemic, in which the virus is now spreading uncontrolled in some states by asymptomatic people — comments that drew fire from President Trump. Dr. Fauci said Dr. Birx had been referring to the “inherent community spread” that is occurring in some states, adding: “When you have community spread, it’s much more difficult to get your arms around that and contain it.” (8/3)
Fauci Warns Of 'Really Bad Situation' If Daily Coronavirus Cases Don't Drop To 10K By September
Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease expert, warned on Monday that the U.S. could be in a “really bad situation” if the number of new coronavirus cases confirmed daily does not drop to 10,000 by next month. Fauci, the director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said during a livestreamed interview with the Journal of the American Medical Association that he is basing that number on the expected emergence of the flu in the fall as well as the return of colder weather, which will likely drive more people indoors, where health experts say COVID-19 spreads more easily. (Coleman, 8/3)