Trump Worried About 2.2 Million Deaths, Extends Shutdown Through April
Trump's National Address
The press conference started 43 minutes late. To watch the video move the timeline to the 43 minute mark.
The press conference was about two hours long.
"We will be extending our guidelines through April 30 to slow the spread. On Tuesday we will finalizing these plans and providing a summary of our findings, supporting data, and strategy to the American people."
"We will have an important statement tuesday, probably Tuesday evening, on all of the finding and all of the data and the reasons we are doing things the way we are doing them."
"We can expect that by June 1, we will be well on our way to recovery"
Dr. Anthony Fauci Comments
"The decision to prolong, not prolong, but to extend this mitigation process until the end of April I think was a wise and prudent decision. Dr. [Deborah] Birx and I spent a considerable time going over all the data, why we felt this was best choice of us and the president accepted it. The idea that we may have these cases played a role in the decision that we don't do something prematurely and pull back when we should be pushing."
1.6 Million to 2.2 Million Deaths - Doing Nothing
The comments by Dr. Fauci were in reference to models, also mentioned by Trump, that showed if nothing was done, there would be 1.6 million to 2.2 million deaths.
80,000 to 200,000 Deaths - With Successful Intervention
"If we can hold that down, to 100,000 - it’s a horrible number, maybe even less, but to 100,000 so we have between 100,000 to 200,000 - we all together have done a very good job,” said Trump.
With social distancing, quarantines, and work stoppages, the models suggested a range of 80,000 to 200,000 deaths according to Dr. Fauci.
Trump had hoped to reopen the economy by Easter, Sunday April 12, but instead accepted the advice of Doctors Fauci and Birx.
As I understand it, the best model now suggests acceleration through April 12 but no trough until June 1.
“Nothing would be worse than declaring victory before victory is won,” said Trump. “It’s very important that everybody strongly follow the guidelines.”
A reporter asked Trump about the Easter restart (now cancelled) and Trump said said it was not a mistake because it was "aspirational".
Trump was also very testy with a reporter from CNN.
Trump displayed a quality I have never seen in him before: empathy. He spoke of black body bags as long as trucks and said "it's not supplies, it's people. I've never seen anything like it."
In reference to Italy, Trump says "We got lucky".
That's certainly a new behavior.
The Trump administration response was slow and nothing to brag about. But any administration in any party would have been slow then bragged if they did anything at all.
Importantly, Trump finally took the advice of his medical team seriously.
Now, June 1 is "modified aspirational because I think we are going to hit it."
Pence came on at roughly the 2:17:20 mark. Pence spoke of the sacrifices the nation has made, and thanked the American people and the healthcare workers.
Press Conference Rating
- Trump: A
- Pence: A+
- Doctors and Industry Leaders: A+
Those are my ratings.
Other than getting into it with CNN and bragging about how early the US reacted, Trump handled himself very well and presidential.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock