Trump discredits Dr Fauci’s advice on cautious opening

trum and fauci

Washington: President Donald Trump has questioned the assessment of Dr Anthony Fauci, a top infectious disease expert, on reopening the country’s schools and the country in general, a day after the latter advised caution.

“Look, he wants to play all sides of the equation,” Trump told reporters during a White House event on Wednesday when asked about Dr Fauci’s comments at a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

“I was surprised by his answer actually,” Trump said. “To me it’s not an acceptable answer, especially when it comes to schools.”

“I think you should absolutely open the schools. Our country has got to get back, and it’s got to get back as soon as possible. And I don’t consider our country coming back if the schools are closed,” he added.

Fauci, a leading member of the White House’s coronavirus task force, told US lawmakers a day earlier that it would be “a bridge too far” to expect a vaccine or treatment to be available by fall to facilitate students returning to college campuses, reports Xinhua news agency.

He also pushed back on the claim that schools should be reopened because the coronavirus does not appear to be as lethal to young children.

The remarks came as the US was debating whether it is safe for states to open up, prompted by a growing economic pressure and massive job losses (36.5 million as of this week) amid concerns over a possible surge in coronavirus cases and fatalities if steps were not taken properly. The US currently accounts for the world’s highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday that US Congress may need to do more to prevent a worse economic downturn triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. He  warned of dire economic consequences without additional stimulus.

As if on cue, House Democrats unveiled this week a new $3 trillion coronavirus relief bill designed to blunt the coronavirus pandemic’s devastating effects on the economy and health-care system. The proposal includes nearly $1 trillion in relief for state and local governments, and sending more cash to eligible Americans.  Party leaders expect to vote on the package on Friday. “Dead on arrival”, said  some Republican senators. But  Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was not that dismissive, saying that the White House may wait “a few weeks” before considering another relief bill to stem the economic devastation.

Image courtesy of thesatimes |

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