As the U.S. reaches 25,000 coronavirus deaths, our team in Washington, D.C. is examining the issues that likely won’t be featured tonight during primetime cable news — including the impact on farmers and the food supply as well as what’s being done to protect our troops. You can watch their original reporting in a livestream at 9/8c.
President Trump has directed a halt to U.S. payments to the World Health Organization pending a review of its warnings about the coronavirus and China, Trump announced Tuesday evening.
Trump also said he’s open to some states “reopening” before federal social distancing guidelines expire at the end of month, as he appeared to back off his claim of absolute authority to decide when the time was right to act.
Hours after suggesting that the bipartisan concerns of governors about his assertion of power would amount to an insurrection, Trump abruptly reversed course — in substance, if not in rhetoric — saying he would leave it to governors to determine the right time and manner to reopen activity in their states. Trump said he would be speaking with governors, probably on Thursday, to discuss his plans.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S. government’s top infectious disease expert, said the U.S. does not yet have the critical testing and tracing procedures needed to begin reopening the nation’s economy, adding a dose of caution to increasingly optimistic projections from the White House.
“We have to have something in place that is efficient and that we can rely on, and we’re not there yet,” Fauci said in an interview with The Associated Press.
In parts of Europe where infections and deaths have begun stabilizing, the process of restarting the economy was already underway. Certain businesses and industries have been allowed to reopen in a calibrated effort by politicians to balance public health against their countries’ economic well-being.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)