March 28, 2020

Week 176

Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things
subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.

This week the U.S. continued exponential growth of coronavirus cases, finding itself with the most cases in the world on Thursday — surpassing Italy and China. The number of deaths likewise continued to grow exponentially. New York was hardest hit, accounting for roughly half the cases, but was also ahead of the rest of the country in aggressively testing and quarantining.

An impetuous Trump, eager to put this all behind him, and concerned about the stock market and his re-election, continued to minimize the pandemic, saying Monday he wanted to reopen the economy at the end of a 15-day period, meaning next Monday. On Tuesday, he tweaked that slightly to say he wanted to have the churches full by Easter Sunday, saying it would be “beautiful.” Dr. Anthony Fauci, who seemed to be the sole voice of reason in the task force, pushed Trump to be flexible and watch the virus. This week, the daily coronavirus task force briefing devolved into Trump campaign rallies, filled with lies and disinformation — causing one death in Arizona where a man and his wife ingested Trump’s supposed coronavirus cure.

This week, Trump shifted from blaming China and using the term “Chinese virus,” to blaming New York as a “hot spot” — by week’s end, threatening a quarantine of the state and neighboring New Jersey and Connecticut. During the week, as confusion reigned with Trump’s inaction, states were left to fend for themselves, often bidding against one another amid a nationwide shortage of medical supplies. Rather than leading and unifying, Trump targeted governors who were, in his view, not nice enough to him — singling out Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer as that state saw a surge in cases and deaths for his ire, refusing to declare the state a disaster, and according to Whitmer, telling vendors not to fulfill orders for medical supplies. States also started to follow Trump’s lead and target one another.

Congress passed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief package, as more than 3 million Americans filed for unemployment. Trump continued to attack the media for their coverage of his and his regime’s failures to lead and take action on this national emergency.

  1. On Tuesday, a Gallup poll found Trump’s approval rating rose to 49%, matching the highest point of his time in office, and up from 44% earlier this month. Trump improved among Independents (+8) and Democrats (+6).
  2. Gallup noted, “historically, presidential job approval has increased when the nation is under threat,” from Franklin Roosevelt through George W. Bush, who saw a 35 point surge in the aftermath of 9/11.
  3. On Trump’s handling of the coronavirus, 60% approve and 38% disapprove. 94% of Republicans, 60% of Independents, and 27% of Democrats approve of his response.
  4. On Saturday, Politico reported the Justice Department asked Congress for emergency powers amid the coronavirus crisis to detain people indefinitely without trial during national emergencies, which Trump has declared.
  5. The DOJ proposed granting the attorney general power to ask any chief judge to pause proceedings, to grant top judges the power to pause, and to use videoconference hearings without the defendant’s consent.
  6. The proposal also asked to empower Trump or his successors to eliminate legal protections for asylum seekers, a permanent change to immigration law. This idea was reported to be dead on arrival.
  7. On Sunday, NYT reported Trump sent a letter to North Korea’s Kim Jong-un offering help in fighting the coronavirus, according to North Korea state media. Kim’s sister called the letter “a good judgment and proper action.”
  8. On Sunday, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost ordered clinics to stop performing ‘non-essential and elective’ surgical abortions during the coronavirus health emergency, or face consequences from the state.
  9. On Sunday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Fox Business, “I’ve seen a bunch of fake news over the last couple of days about a complete shut down of the economy,” adding, Trump “has not made that decision.”
  10. On Sunday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told “Meet the Press” that Trump “will not lift a finger to help his hometown,” adding, “If the president doesn’t act, people will die who could have lived otherwise.”
  11. On Sunday, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker told “State of the Union” that federal government inaction has forced states to compete “against each other” for supplies, adding, “It’s a Wild West out there…We are overpaying.”
  12. On Sunday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo requested a temporary hospital be built at the Jacob Javits Convention Center, as the number of confirmed cases in the state hit 15,168. Cuomo added, “There are masks that we were paying 85 cents for. We’re now paying $7.”
  13. On Sunday, Reuters reported the Trump regime eliminated a key CDC public health position in Beijing in July 2019 intended to help detect disease outbreaks in China, months before the first case in November.
  14. The American expert, Dr. Linda Quick, trained Chinese field epidemiologists who were deployed to the epicenter of outbreaks. No other foreign disease experts were embedded after Quick left.
  15. On Sunday, Trump sent scores of tweets, promoting conspiracy theories about the coronavirus and sharing an article suggesting a miracle cure was at hand. Trump sent 66 tweets before 9:30 a.m. alone.
  16. On Sunday, Germany banned meetings of more than two people in public, in addition to shuttering businesses. German Chancellor Angela Merkel self-quarantined after contact with a doctor who tested positive.
  17. On Sunday, Sen. Rand Paul became the first U.S. Senator to test positive for the coronavirus. Paul was the only senator to vote against the first round of $8.5 billion in coronavirus funding earlier in March.
  18. Sens. Mitt Romney and Mike Lee announced they would self-quarantine, after having had “extended” interactions with Paul, and would miss floor votes. Paul worked out in the Senate gym and pool Sunday morning.
  19. On Sunday, governors from Ohio and Louisiana became the latest states to issue state-at-home orders, joining NY, NJ, CA, IL, and CT, as U.S. confirmed coronavirus cases passed 33,000, with at least 390 dead.
  20. On Sunday, in an op-ed, a doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital on the front line of fighting the coronavirus wrote about “How America Can Avoid Italy’s Ventilator Crisis,” where life rationing choices have been made.
  21. Dr. Daniel Horn warned, “Without swift action, parts of the United States will run out of ventilators in the coming weeks,” and urging Trump to invoke the Defense Production Act and organize American companies now in production.
  22. On Sunday, at his daily press briefing, Trump said he was deploying the National Guard to California, New York, and Washington, saying, “I’m a wartime president,” and, “This is a war — a different kind of war.”
  23. Trump rejected calls from governors around the country and others to invoke the DPA, saying, “We’re a country not based on nationalizing our business. Call a person over in Venezuela.”
  24. White House adviser Peter Navarro added, “We’re getting what we need without putting the heavy hand of government down,” pointing to company 3M shipping masks to New York and Seattle.
  25. When asked about Romney being in isolation after exposure to the coronavirus, Trump responded, “Romney’s in isolation? Gee, that’s too bad.”
  26. Later Sunday, Trump tweeted, “My friend (always there when I’ve needed him!), Senator @RandPaul was just tested “positive” from the Chinese Virus,” adding, “That is not good! He is strong and will get better.”
  27. On Sunday, as Trump was speaking, the Dow Jones futures fell sharply, triggering a halt after reaching a 5% drop due to the Senate not reaching a funding deal. The deal size was expected to be $2 trillion.
  28. On Sunday, NYT reported that under the leadership of Lachlan Murdoch, Rupert’s son, Fox News played down the dangers of the coronavirus to it viewers, saying it was a Democratic- and media-led plot against Trump.
  29. For weeks, as the number of cases rose, Lachlan failed to correct the narrative that the virus was not a big threat in the U.S. Experts say the misinformation spread by the network will lead to American deaths.
  30. On Sunday, late evening, Trump tweeted, “I watch and listen to the Fake News,” listing networks and newspapers, adding, “all I see is hatred of me at any cost. Don’t they understand that they are destroying themselves?”
  31. Trump also tweeted, just before midnight, “WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF. AT THE END OF THE 15 DAY PERIOD, WE WILL MAKE A DECISION” on which way to go.
  32. The 15 day period ends next Monday. Health care officials have warned social distancing, school and office closing, and other measures were needed. The U.S. had the third most cases, behind China and Spain.
  33. On Monday, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow told Fox News, “The president is right. The cure can’t be worse than the disease,” adding, “And we’re going to have to make some difficult trade-offs.”
  34. On Monday, the Federal Reserve announced it would launch a barrage of programs to help markets function more efficiently, including an open-ended commitment to buy assets under quantitative easing measures.
  35. On Monday, Bank of America Securities found the S&P 500 drop of 30% in 22 trading days from its record high on February 19 is the fastest stock market drop of this magnitude in history.
  36. On Monday, CNBC host Jim Cramer, discussing how companies can profit during the crisis, suggested uninfected airline passengers could wear a star: “maybe we have to give people a star. Then, WE’RE BACK!”
  37. On Monday, NYT reported South Korea, which quickly ramped up testing, reported just 64 new cases Sunday. South Korea is producing 100,000 tests per day, and is in talks with 17 other countries about exporting to them.
  38. On Monday, in a nighttime address to the nation, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced what amounted to a national lockdown, closing all shops not selling “essential goods,” including libraries and playgrounds.
  39. Johnson also said not to meet friends or “family members who do not live in your home,” adding only shopping for “essentials like food and medicine” was allowed, and that the police would enforce the new rules.
  40. On Monday, Surgeon General Jerome Adams warned on the “TODAY” show that Americans are not taking coronavirus seriously enough, saying, “I want America to understand this week, it’s going to get bad.”
  41. Adams cited there are still young people flocking to the beaches and heading to the National Mall to see the cherry blossoms, saying, “Right now, there are not enough people out there who are taking this seriously.”
  42. Asked about Trump’s failure to invoke the DPA, Adams said, “You don’t need to compel someone to do something they are already doing,” citing companies Honeywell and Hanes that are producing items needed.
  43. On Monday, Rep. Ben McAdams, who said last week he had tested positive for Covid-19, said in a statement that he had been hospitalized since Friday because of “severe shortness of breath.” McAdams is 45 years-old.
  44. On Monday, Sen. Amy Klobuchar announced on Twitter that her husband, John Bessler, had tested positive and was admitted to a hospital and is on oxygen. Bessler, who had quarantined himself, is 52 years-old.
  45. On Monday, at his daily press conference, Gov. Cuomo said New York coronavirus cases had surged overnight by 38% to 20,875. Cuomo issued an emergency order, telling hospitals to increase their capacity by 50%.
  46. Cuomo said 13% of cases had been hospitalized, adding, “This could go on for several months.” New York has 78,289 Covid-19 tests — roughly 30% of the U.S. total — and is testing more than 16,000 people a day.
  47. On Monday, Trump attacked NYT for changing a headline, tweeting, “The New York Times changed headlines 3 times in order to satisfy the Radical Left. What should have been a good story got “worse & worse.””
  48. Trump added, “Fake & Corrupt News that is very dangerous for our Country!” He retweeted an image of the three headlines from an unverified account that referred to the NYT as “ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE.”
  49. On Monday, governors of Indiana, Oregon, Michigan, and Wisconsin issued stay-at-home orders, impacting 36 million people. Massachusetts, Kentucky, and Maryland ordered all non-essential businesses to close.
  50. On Monday, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves rejected calls for a stay-at-home order, saying, “Mississippi’s never going to be China.” The state had 249 detected cases out of 1,392 tests — a 213% increase from Friday.
  51. On Monday, Trump ally Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University, announced the school would reopen to its 5,000 students after spring break, despite an outbreak in the Lynchburg, Virginia area.
  52. Lynchburg Mayor Treney Tweedy denounced the move, saying, “We are in the midst of a public health crisis,” calling it “reckless.” Gov. Ralph Northam’s office said the state has banned gatherings of more than 10.
  53. On Sunday, the University of Tampa in Florida announced at least five students traveling with students from other schools had tested positive for coronavirus. Gov. Ron DeSantis resisted calls to close the state’s beaches.
  54. On Monday, DeSantis ordered a 14-day quarantine for anyone flying from New York or New Jersey to Florida. The quarantine applies to those who fly, but not drive. Criminal charges may apply for those who do not obey.
  55. On Monday, the Dow Jones closed down another 3% after Congress failed to push through a fiscal stimulus bill. The Dow closed at 18,592, its lowest closing level since November 2016.
  56. On Monday, NBC News reported an Arizona man died after he and his wife ingested chloroquine as a way to prevent coronavirus. The man’s wife, who was in critical care, said they got the idea from Trump’s briefings.
  57. On Monday, Vanity Fair reported Trump is frustrated and furious with Anthony Fauci and governors who advocated for shutting down large parts of the country, and is calling business leaders asking if he should just re-open.
  58. Jared Kushner is telling Trump he can ignore Fauci, and bringing him conspiracy theories and experimental treatments he had heard about from Silicon Valley. One officials said Trump is waiting for the magic pill.
  59. On Monday, AP reported Trump is struggling to adjust amid the coronavirus crisis, agitated he cannot run the campaign he wants against Joe Biden, and instead is using the daily briefing as a campaign rally proxy.
  60. While some around him told him to only appear at the daily briefings when there is major news, Trump wants to be in the spotlight. His Sunday briefing scheduled for 4:30 p.m. was pushed later to improve ratings.
  61. Trump has been furious about his inability to stop the stock market drop. He has called friends and economists at all hours, and berated aides and reporters who try to explain to him the severity of the outbreak.
  62. On Monday, at his daily press briefing, Trump vowed to reopen businesses, saying, “America will again and soon be open for business — very soon,” adding, “We cannot let the cure be worse than the problem itself.”
  63. Trump added, “If it were up to the doctors, they’d say let’s keep it shut down, let’s shut down the entire world…for a couple of years,” adding, “We can’t do that.” Notably, Fauci did not attend the briefing.
  64. Trump compared coronavirus deaths to the flu and accidents, saying, “You look at automobile accidents, which are far greater than any numbers we’re talking about. That doesn’t mean we’re going to tell everybody no more driving of cars.”
  65. Dr. Fauci has called out the “false equivalency” of comparing Covid-19 deaths with accidents, calling it “way out” and questioning how anyone with a “moral conscience” could say “just let it rip” and see people die.
  66. The argument made by some business leaders, Trump allies, and media on the right is that no matter how many lives are lost to the coronavirus, millions more may lose their jobs if the economy does not reopen.
  67. Conservatives close to Trump also embraced an article last week by the Hoover Institution titled “Coronavirus Perspective,” which said deaths would peak at 500. On Monday, there were already close to 600 deaths in the U.S.
  68. The consensus among health experts is that businesses, schools, and other gathering places should stay closed for many more weeks to mitigate spread, saying without that effort hospitals would be overwhelmed.
  69. In explaining his rationale, Trump compared Covid-19 to the flu, which he said was on pace to kill 50,000 — what Fauci called a false equivalency — and to deaths in automobile accidents, arguing that people still drive cars.
  70. There was also dissent to Trump’s idea, including from his ally Sen. Lindsey Graham. However, Trump was fixated on the economy, and the impact of a recession and unemployment on his chances for re-election.
  71. Trump also falsely promised, “The vaccines are coming along very quickly,” and said, “Our country will be stronger than ever before, and we fully anticipate that,” and falsely claiming, “And it won’t be that long.”
  72. Trump also complimented Idaho, Iowa, and Nebraska for being “countries” he said were handling the virus well. As of Monday evening, there were more than 375,000 cases worldwide, and more than 16,000 had died.
  73. Shortly after, Kudlow echoed Trump’s remarks, telling reporters that some states with low numbers of confirmed cases might be able to ease off their restrictions quickly, and predicting an economic rebound.
  74. Shortly after, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who turns 70 next week, echoed Trump, telling Fox News that he was “all in” with risking death for “the America that all America loves for your children and grandchildren.”
  75. Patrick added, “My messages is that let’s get back to work, let’s get back to living. Let’s be smart about it and those of us who are 70+, we’ll take care of ourselves. But don’t sacrifice the country.”
  76. On Monday, NYT reported Trump is losing patience with Fauci, who has served every president since Ronald Reagan. Trump has given him leeway but his public disagreements with Trump is rankling the regime.
  77. In the past two weeks, Fauci has done more interviews, and officials have become concerned with his publicly criticizing Trump. On the facepalm moment last Friday, Fauci claimed a lozenge got stuck in his throat.
  78. On Monday, NYT reported Chinese-Americans are contending with growing racism in the form of verbal and physical attacks, and fear for their safety — afraid to go to grocery stores, on buses, or outside alone.
  79. Americans with families from Korea, Vietnam, the Philippines, Myanmar and other places are also facing threats, being lumped in by those who do not know the difference.
  80. Unlike after 9/11 when President George W. Bush urged tolerance of American Muslims, Trump and his allies are using language which is inciting racist attacks according to Asian-Americans.
  81. On Monday, a federal appeals court affirmed a ruling that Trump cannot block critics on Twitter from the account he uses to communicate with the public, saying he violated the First Amendment when he blocked people.
  82. On Monday, ABC News reported that FBI intelligence has found that white supremacists are encouraging their members who contract the coronavirus to spread it to police and Jews.
  83. An alert warns extremists are told to spread it “through bodily fluids and personal interactions,” and use spray bottles to spread bodily fluids to cops, and to spread to Jews “any place they may be congregated.”
  84. On Tuesday, ABC News reported the FBI stopped white supremacist Timothy Wilson, 36, who was on the verge of trying to detonate a car bomb at a Kansas City-area medical center amid the Covid-19 panic.
  85. The FBI said Wilson had also shared instructions with an active U.S. Army soldier, who wanted to attack a major American news network and discussed targeting Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke.
  86. On Tuesday, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, scheduled to take place in the summer, will be postponed, following an agreement with the International Olympic Committee.
  87. On Tuesday, Trump again mocked Romney, quoting a tweet with an article about his test for the coronavirus coming out negative, and adding, “This is really great news! I am so happy I can barely speak.”
  88. On Tuesday, Cuomo grew visibly angry at his briefing, saying he had asked for 30,000 ventilators to prepare for the “apex” of the caseload, which his team predicted was two to three weeks away. New York had 25,665 cases.
  89. Cuomo said Trump “says it’s a war. Well, then, act like it’s a war!” adding, “You pick the 26,000 people who are going to die because you only sent 400 ventilators.” New York had 3,000 to 4,000 ventilators on hand.
  90. Cuomo also fired back at Trump’ idea to reopen the economy, citing health experts say people will die if there is a pullback, adding, “No American is going to say ‘accelerate the economy at the cost of human life.’”
  91. On Tuesday, Rep. Liz Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, tweeted her disagreement with Trump, saying, “There will be no normally functioning economy if our hospitals are overwhelmed” and thousands lay dying.
  92. On Tuesday, in an interview, Bill Gates called Trump’s approach “very irresponsible,” saying we cannot simply restart the economy and “ignore that pile of bodies over in the corner.”
  93. On Tuesday, instead of a daily press briefing, Trump held a “virtual town hall” event at the White House broadcast by Fox News. There was no scheduled task force briefing that day by any of the medical experts.
  94. Trump said he wants the economy to “open” back up by Easter Sunday, April 12, saying, “Wouldn’t it be great to have all the churches full?” As Trump was speaking the number of cases in the U.S. passed 50,000.
  95. Trump added, “I would love to have the country opened up, and rarin’ to go by Easter,” adding, “You’ll have packed churches all over our country … I think it’ll be a beautiful time.”
  96. Dr. Tina Tan, a doctor and board member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, told CNBC, “Obviously Trump is not rooted in reality,” adding, “This is the making of a major public health disaster.”
  97. Trump also blamed governors, including Cuomo, for not getting ventilators and other medical supplies they requested, saying, “It’s a two-way street. They have to treat us well, too.”
  98. Trump also said he would stop calling Covid-19 the Chinese virus, saying, “Look, everyone knows it came out of China, but I decided we shouldn’t make any more of a big deal out of it,” adding, “I think people understand it.”
  99. On Tuesday, a World Health Organization spokesperson said roughly 40% of the newest coronavirus cases are coming from the U.S., and that the U.S. could become the new epicenter for the pandemic.
  100. On Tuesday, Vanity Fair reported Trump’s private business has shut down six of its top seven revenue-producing clubs and hotels because of coronavirus restrictions— a possible motivation to re-open the economy.
  101. On Tuesday, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported one person tested positive for Covid-19 after attending a “coronavirus party” of young people. Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear admonished the practice.
  102. On Tuesday, the Dow rebounded 11%, up 2,113 points, the best day since 1933, as investors bet that Congress would deliver on a coronavirus stimulus deal, after Speaker Pelosi said there is “real optimism.”
  103. Later Tuesday, Trump went ahead with a briefing, along with Dr. Deborah Birx and Fauci. Trump called New York City a “hot spot,” and Birx and Fauci urged anyone who has left the city to self-quarantine for 14 days.
  104. Birx said, “Everybody who was in New York should be self-quarantined, meaning for the next 14 days, to ensure that the virus doesn’t spread to other,” while Fauci called it a “very serious situation.”
  105. Trump said the country was beginning to see the “light at the end of the tunnel,” even as the number of cases is doubling every two to three days, adding he and his regime “will deliver for you as we have in the past.”
  106. When asked about Trump’s Easter Sunday goal for lifting restrictions,
    Fauci said, “you’ve got to be very flexible
    and on a literally day-by-day and week-by-week basis,” and “evaluate the feasibility” of what you are doing.
  107. It was Fauci’s first time appearing alongside Trump since Friday. Trump said, “I think that would be a great thing for our country and we’re all working very hard,” and said he would listen to advice from Birx and Fauci.
  108. Trump also falsely claimed, “We kept hearing about South Korea. In eight days, we’re doing more testing than they’ve done in eight weeks. That’s a tremendous turn.” The U.S. has done 367,710 tests, far less than South Korea.
  109. Kudlow said the economic package “urgently needed to bolster the economy” is roughly $6 trillion, the largest in history, including $2 trillion for direct assistance, and $4 trillion in Federal Reserve lending power.
  110. On Tuesday, Seattle’s NPR station, KUOW Public Radio, announced it will no longer air Trump’s briefings live “due to a pattern of false or misleading information provided that cannot be fact checked in real time.”
  111. Shortly after, conservative radio host Glenn Beck echoed Trump, saying, “I would rather have my children stay home and have all of us who are over 50” go to work, adding, “it’s not the economy that’s dying, it’s the country.”
  112. Shortly after, Fox News commentator Brit Hume echoed Trump, telling host Tucker Carlson that is an “entirely reasonable viewpoint” to expect grandparents to die to protect the economy.
  113. Hume added, “this circumstance as we try to beat this virus, is not sustainable,” and, “We don’t shut down the economy to save every single life that’s threatened by a wide-spread disease. We just don’t.”
  114. On Tuesday, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro echoed Trump, urging Brazilians to go back to work and school, attacking governors, and blaming the media for a climate of “hysteria” in the country.
  115. On Wednesday, Trump repeated his false claim, tweeting, “Just reported that the United States has done far more “testing” than any other nation, by far!” The U.S. has done among the fewest tests per capita of any country.
  116. Trump added, “over an eight day span, the United States now does more testing than what South Korea…does over an eight week span. Great job!” South Korea has tested 1 in 170 people. The U.S. has tested 1 in 1,090.
  117. On Wednesday, as Trump considered re-opening, a Morning Consult poll found 74% of Americans support a national quarantine, including 81% of Democrats, 72% of Republicans, and 69% of Independents.
  118. The poll found 1 in 5 support Trump’s idea to resume normal activity next month. On handling the crisis, 56% of Republicans said Trump’s response is “excellent,” while 16% of Independents and 6% of Democrats agree.
  119. On Wednesday, CNN reported the State Department is asking other countries to sell the U.S. a list of 25 items related to fighting the coronavirus, ranging from basics like hand sanitizer to ventilators.
  120. The list also included hospital items: biohazard bags, N95 masks, gloves, gowns, surgical caps, shoe covers, sharps containers, protective eyewear, metered dose inhalers, elastomeric and air purifying respirators.
  121. Shortly after, Trump blamed the media, tweeting, “The LameStream Media is the dominant force in trying to get me to keep our Country closed,” adding the media hopes “it will be detrimental to my election success.”
  122. On Wednesday, at the daily press briefing, Trump said he approved major disaster declarations for New York, California, Washington, Iowa, Louisiana, Texas, and Florida. Birx and Fauci also attended.
  123. WAPO calculated Trump spent 25% of his time congratulating himself and blaming others. Trump said, “It’s been incredible how we’ve done,” adding, “We’ve done one hell of a job; nobody’s done the job that we’ve done.”
  124. Trump again pointed to his closing the border with China, calling it a “great response, and we’re the ones that kept China out of here,” adding if he “didn’t do it, you’d have thousands and thousands of people dead.”
  125. Trump also falsely claimed that testing capacity is growing “exponentially,” and touted the success of deploying supplies to states, “It’s hard not to be happy with the job we’re doing, that I can tell you.”
  126. Trump also continued to blame the Obama administration, saying, “We’ve come a long way from an obsolete, broken system that I inherited,” despite this being Trump’s fourth year in office.
  127. Trump indicated he reached a truce with Cuomo, saying New York is facing a “number of very tough weeks” but Cuomo was doing “a very good job,” and “I’m doing everything in my power to help the city pull through.”
  128. Trump was asked about his LameStream Media tweet, and replied, “I think there are certain people that would like it to do financially poorly because they think that would be very good as far as defeating me at the polls.”
  129. Trump added of the media, “I do think it’s so that there are people in your profession that would like that to happen, I think it’s very clear,” and the media would love to see him lose “because we’ve done one hell of a job.”
  130. Trump bragged, “nobody’s done the job that we’ve done,” adding, “and it’s lucky that you have this group here right now for this problem or you wouldn’t even have a country left.”
  131. After his appearance, Trump tweeted, “I hear that Fake News CNN just reported that I am isolated in the White House, wondering out loud, ‘when will life return to normal?’ Does anybody really believe that?”
  132. Trump added, “they made it up — they are CORRUPT & FAKE NEWS,” and, “I have been packed all day with meetings, I have no time for stupidity. We’re working around the clock to KEEP AMERICA SAFE!”
  133. Shortly after, Daily Beast reported that CNN and MSNBC staffers have acknowledged that airing Trump’s briefings live and in full amplifies the spread of misinformation, citing the Arizona death as an example.
  134. Going forward, the two networks will air the beginning of the briefings, then cut away after Trump’s first lie, and return when the lies stop to air Fauci and Birx.
  135. On Wednesday, NYT reported hospitals in New York City are facing a surge in coronavirus cases, the kind that overwhelmed the healthcare systems in China and Italy. Doctors and nurses are stretched and lack adequate PPE.
  136. A refrigerated truck has been place outside Elmhurst Hospital in Queens to hold dead bodies. People line up at 6 a.m. to be tested. In 24 hours, 13 people died. One general medicine resident said, “It’s apocalyptic.”
  137. At least two city hospitals have filled their morgues. Medical workers say in early March they saw an increase of patients with flu-like symptoms, but did not know much about Covid-19. Tests now show it was the virus.
  138. Close to 4,000 have been hospitalized in NYC. All of the city’s 1,800 ICU beds are expected to be filled by Friday. Officials have begun building four 250-bed hospitals at the Javits Center in Manhattan.
  139. On Wednesday, Arizona Health Department Director Dr. Cara Christ told healthcare providers not to test most patients for Covid-19, saying the state’s “current reality” is that it does not have enough supplies.
  140. She also advised given the PPE shortage that health care professionals move testing outdoors, and, if possible, to reuse equipment, and for primary care officials to send patients to “higher care” without testing.
  141. On Wednesday, right-wing commentator Dinesh D’Souza told Fox News the virus “spreads are mainly in the blue states,” and after criticizing Trump, “they want the racist and the fascist to step in and help them.”
  142. On Wednesday, according to online ammunition retailer Ammo.com, there has been a massive increase in sales of guns and ammunition amid the coronavirus. Ammunition sales were up 1000% in some states.
  143. On Wednesday, Trump’s re-election campaign sent a “cease and desist” letter to liberal super PAC Priorities USA over an ad running in battleground states which claims Trump called the virus a “hoax.”
  144. The ad, titled “Exponential Threat,” splices together clips of Trump downplaying the virus over a graphic showing the number of cases sharply rising, and a clip of him saying, “The coronavirus, this is their new hoax.”
  145. On Wednesday, an entire nursing home in New Jersey was evacuated and moved to a new home. At least 24 of the 94 residents had tested positive for the coronavirus, and the other 70 were presumed to have it as well.
  146. On Wednesday, NY Post reported hedge fund manager Bill Ackman, who said on CNBC last week that “hell was coming” due to the pandemic, netted $26 billion by shorting the stock market.
  147. On Wednesday, the number of U.S. deaths topped 1,000— almost double from two days before. There was 68,960 confirmed cases, with the U.S. third behind Italy (74,386) and China (81,667).
  148. On Wednesday, NYT reported on an anonymous forum of more than 1,200 health care workers sharing coronavirus stories. Over 90% said lack of proper equipment, particularly the N95 masks, is the biggest problem.
  149. A nurse in New York City said, “Our hospital is taking on way more patients than we can handle.” Roughly 26% said “they weren’t sure” if patients they were treating had the coronavirus due to lack of testing availability.
  150. A nurse in Texas with 17 years of emergency room experience said, “Protocols change minute to minute if there are any at all. I can no longer trust the CDC. For the first time in my career I am scared to go to work.”
  151. On Wednesday, WAPO reported hospitals on the front-line of the pandemic are discussing universal do-not-resuscitate orders for coronavirus patients, given the surge in new cases, regardless of family wishes
  152. The conversations were in part prompted by the risk to staff amid a dwindling supply of PPE. Hospitals systems in cities and states including Chicago, D.C., Pennsylvania, and the Carolinas have had discussions.
  153. On Thursday, just after midnight, the Senate passed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill, with a unanimous vote, 96–0. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she would take up the bill on Friday.
  154. On Wednesday, local NBC News reported more than 100 employees staffers at Boston-area hospitals — ⁦⁦Brigham & Women’s, Mass General Hospital and Boston Medical Center — had tested positive for Covid-19.
  155. On Thursday, the Labor Department said a record 3.3 million Americans filed for unemployment last week. Just 282,000 filed for unemployment the week prior. The prior record was 695,000 in October 1982.
  156. On Thursday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell appeared on the “TODAY” show. He promised continued action by the central bank, saying, “When it comes to this lending, we’re not going to run out of ammunition.”
  157. When asked about Trump’s plan to reopen the economy, Powell said, “We’re not experts in pandemics over here,” adding, “Dr. Fauci said the virus is going to set the timetable. That sounds right to me.”
  158. On Thursday, at the G-20 virtual summit, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres said of the coronavirus, “The challenges before us dwarf those of 2008. And what we face today is not a banking crisis; it is a human crisis.”
  159. On Thursday, Global News in Canada reported Trump is considering putting troops near the Canadian border in light of security concerns amid the pandemic. Canada has roughly 3,000 cases, the U.S. nearly 70,000.
  160. Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said, “Canada is strongly opposed to this U.S. proposal and we’ve made that very clear to our U.S. counterparts.”
  161. On Thursday, Yahoo News reported as the U.S. struggles with the coronavirus, China is asserting itself as the global leader, stepping up to help in the global pandemic, a role typically played by the U.S. in the past.
  162. China has promised to send a thousand ventilators and 2 million masks, as well as a gift of $20 million to the WHO earmarked for the pandemic. Trump proposed slashing U.S. funding to the WHO last month.
  163. While China is helping other countries, according to a South Korean government readout, Trump asked the country’s president on Tuesday for help with medical equipment, an extraordinary request by a U.S. leader.
  164. On Thursday, in a stunning reversal in Israel, Benny Gantz agree to join forces with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu due to the coronavirus crisis. Gantz will serve as vice PM, then in 18 months assume the PM role.
  165. On Thursday, Gov. Cuomo said NY has 37,258 cases and 100 new deaths. He called the Senate’s $2.2 trillion emergency relief bill, in which NY will receive just $5 billion, “irresponsible” and “reckless.”
  166. Shortly after, the number of worldwide cases surpassed 500,000 — reaching 510,000 at mid-day with 23,000 dead worldwide. The U.S. had more than 75,000 cases and 1,070 had died.
  167. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the pandemic is “accelerating,” saying, “It took 67 days… to reach 100,000 cases, 11 days for second…four days for the third.” The last 100,000 took 2 days.
  168. On Thursday, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said “right now is not the time” for a shelter-in-place order, saying, “we are not Louisiana, we are not New York State, we are not California.” So far, 21 states have shelter-in-place orders.
  169. Alabama had 517 cases, up 34% from Wednesday. According to an Alabama reporter, Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth told the governor’s Covid-19 task force this week that the state has “not done enough to prepare.”
  170. On Thursday, Germany’s Der Spiegel reported G7 foreign ministers have been unable to agree on a joint statement because of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s insistence on calling Covid-19 the “Wuhan virus.”
  171. On Thursday, in a letter to governors, Trump provided guidelines for state and local governments to use when making decisions about “maintaining, increasing or relaxing social distancing and other mitigation measures.”
  172. Trump said officials are gathering data to categorize counties as “high risk, medium risk or low risk” for the virus, which will drive “the next phase” of the response, so parts of the U.S. economy can reopen by April 12.
  173. On Thursday, Fauci countered Trump, saying in an interview, the U.S. “can start thinking about getting back to some degree of normality when the country as a whole turns that corner” of reducing the spread of virus.
  174. Fauci added, “You need to see the trajectory of the curve start to come down” before the country reopens. Fauci said New York City is experiencing a “terrible time,” and, “This is serious business.”
  175. On Thursday, the U.S. passed China and Italy to have the most confirmed coronavirus cases in the world, with at least 81,321 infected at mid-day of more than 522,000 cases worldwide.
  176. NYT reported a series of missteps and missed opportunities dogged the nation’s response. Importantly, Trump and his regime failed to take the pandemic seriously, even as it engulfed China.
  177. There was no coherent message from the regime, as Trump sent mixed messages about scale of the virus and how to fight it. The regime failed to provide mass testing which left the U.S. blind to the scale of the spread.
  178. These actions with little and late response left the U.S. with a shortage of masks and protective gear to protect doctor and nurses, as well as a shortage of ventilators to keep people alive.
  179. Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan quickly began preparing for the worst early on, while the U.S., which should have been ready, was not, as Trump focused on other things.
  180. A Johns Hopkins infectious disease doctor said, “We are the new global epicenter of the disease,” adding, “all we can do is to slow the transmission” by staying home and ramping up PPE, ventilators, testing.
  181. On Thursday, the Dow rallied 1,352 points, or 6.4%, on moves by the Fed to shore up the economy and the Senate passing the bill. The Dow is up 20% in the past three days, the biggest three-day surge in 1931.
  182. On Thursday, at the daily press briefing, Trump said, “We will vanquish this virus,” and “large sections of our country” can probably “go back to normal” much sooner than others.
  183. Without specifying a time, Trump said Americans should go back to work “pretty quickly,” adding, “Our people want to work. They want to go back. They have to go back. And we’re going to be talking about dates.”
  184. On the unemployment report, Trump said, “it’s nobody’s fault. Certainly not in this country. Nobody’s fault,” adding, “When I heard the number — I mean, I heard it could be 6 million, could be 7 million. It’s 3.3 or 3.2.”
  185. Trump added, “I think we’ll come back very strong the sooner we get back to work. Every day we stay out it gets harder to bring it back very quickly,” adding, “you’ll see a very fast turn around once we have a victory.”
  186. On criticism over lack of medical equipment being provided to states, Trump said, “we’ve got tremendous amounts of equipment coming in. A lot of great companies are making equipment,” and “ventilators…take a little longer to make.”
  187. Asked if he had taken steps to protect Asian-American from hate, Trump said, “Asian-Americans in our country are doing fantastically well,” adding, “I’m very close to them…I think they appreciate the job we’re doing.”
  188. Trump repeated his false claim that the virus was “unforeseen” saying, “this was something that nobody has ever thought could happen to this country. Nobody would have ever thought a thing like this could have happened.”
  189. Birx claimed she was told New York had enough ventilators to meet its current needs in locations upstate, saying there are “over a thousand or two thousand ventilators that have not been utilized yet.”
  190. Birx also denied reporting on do-not-resuscitate measures, saying, “There is no situation in the United States right now that warrants that kind of discussion… we don’t have evidence of that right now.”
  191. On Thursday, at a press conference, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker emotionally ripped into the Trump regime for outbidding states for PPE after Trump told states they are on their own to buy the equipment.
  192. Baker said he has “had confirmed orders for millions of pieces of gear evaporate in front of us,” adding, “Our first responders, our health care workers, everybody deserves to have that gear.”
  193. On Thursday, a Fox News poll found Fauci had the highest approval on response to the coronavirus: 77% approve, 12% disapprove, and the only one with bipartisan support: Democrats (74%) and Republicans (85%).
  194. Trump had the lowest support (51% approve/46% disapprove), followed by the federal government (55/41), Vice President Mike Pence (55/37), and “your state government” (74/23).
  195. On Thursday, WAPO reported as Trump prepares to break from the advice of health experts on reopening the economy, a cadre of right-wing news sites are attacking and seeking to discredit Fauci.
  196. The sites have cited a hacked email published on WikiLeaks that Fauci sent in 2013 to one of Hillary Clinton’s top aides, Cheryl Mills, in which he praised her “stamina and capability” during the Benghazi hearing.
  197. A meme circulating on social media showed Fauci with his arm around Nancy Pelosi, with the question, “Look trustworthy to you?” and others accusing Fauci of trying to turn the country into a “police state like China.”
  198. Some of the same Twitter accounts that attacked the Ukraine whistleblower are attacking Fauci. However, so far Fauci does still have the support of mainstream Republicans.
  199. On Thursday, at her weekly news conference, Pelosi said the focus of bills was on “testing, testing, testing, very important so that we know,” and “masks, masks, masks, so that we can test, test, test.”
  200. Pelosi closed by saying to succeed, “It won’t happen unless we respect science, science, science. And for those who say we choose prayer over science, I say science is an answer to our prayers.”
  201. Late Thursday, House leadership told members to return to Washington D.C. for an in-person roll-call vote on the stimulus package, after Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) aired grievances that jeopardized a voice vote.
  202. On Thursday, NYT reported the White House was prepared to announce a joint venture between General Motors and Ventec Life Systems to produce 80,000 ventilators, when suddenly word came down the deal was off.
  203. The decision to cancel the announcement came after the Federal Emergency Management Agency said it needed more time to assess the price tag of $1.5 billion, roughly $18,000 per ventilator.
  204. Jared Kushner was brought in by Pence to ramp up ventilator production, and has been directing efforts at FEMA. Part of the reason for the hold-up was concern of over-ordering and the government having a surplus.
  205. Later Thursday, Trump called into Fox News host Sean Hannity’s show. Trump bragged he had postponed a conference call with Chinese President Xi Jinping to call in, after being prompted by Hannity asking about the call.
  206. Trump said of Cuomo’s request, “I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You go into major hospitals sometimes, and they’ll have two ventilators,” and now suddenly they need 30,000 ventilators?
  207. By Thursday evening, there were more than 85,000 confirmed cases in the U.S. Almost half of those cases, 39,000, were in New York. The state has had 519 deaths.
  208. Trump also attacked Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, both Democrats. Trump said of Inslee, “He shouldn’t be relying on the federal government. He’s always complaining.”
  209. Trump added, “the young, a woman governor, you know who I’m talking about, from Michigan,” adding, “She is a new governor and it’s not been pleasant,” and, “All she does is sit there and blame the federal government.”
  210. On Friday, Rudy Giuliani joined, tweeting, “Hydroxychloroquine is safe and in at least three international tests was found 100% effective in treating the coronavirus,” but Whitmer threatened doctors who prescribed it.
  211. Twitter took the unusual step of removing Giuliani’s tweet, citing it violated rules by providing false information. Giuliani appeared to get the false information from conspiracy blogger Jim Hoft of Gateway Pundit.
  212. On Friday, Whitmer told WWJ 950 the state is having trouble getting the equipment they need, saying she is being told by vendors the state procured contracts with, “They’re being told not to send stuff to Michigan.”
  213. On Friday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced in a video that he had tested positive for Covid-19 and would self-quarantine. He said he had “mild symptoms,” including a fever and “a persistent cough.”
  214. Shortly after, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced he also had tested positive, and chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, said he had symptoms. The U.K. had roughly 12,000 cases, and 580 people have died.
  215. On Friday, the House passed a $2 trillion coronavirus relief package, the largest package in U.S. history. The bill passed in a voice vote, overriding Massie’s request for a recorded vote by having a 216 person quorum.
  216. On Friday, an ABC News/WAPO poll found 51% of Americans approve of Trump’s handling of the coronavirus crisis, 45% disapprove. A similar ABC News/Ipsos poll last week found 55% approved,43% disapproved.
  217. Trump’s overall approval in the poll rose to 48% approve, 46% disapprove — the first time since Trump took office with a positive net approval. ABC News noted presidents’ poll numbers typically rise in a time of crisis.
  218. On Friday, the U.S. index of consumer sentiment dropped to 89.1 in March, its lowest level since October 2016, from 101 in February. The drop was the fourth-largest in the past 50 years.
  219. On Friday, following the NYT reporting, Trump tweeted, “As usual with “this” General Motors, things just never seem to work out. They said they were going to give us 40,000 much needed Ventilators, ‘very quickly.’”
  220. Trump added, “Now they are saying it will only be 6000, in late April, and they want top dollar. Always a mess with Mary B. Invoke ‘P’,” seeming to refer to the Defense Production Act.
  221. Trump continued, GM “MUST immediately open their stupidly abandoned Lordstown plant in Ohio, or some other plant. START MAKING VENTILATORS, NOW!! FORD, GET GOING ON VENTILATORS, FAST!!!”
  222. Trump added in another tweet, “Invoke “P” means Defense Production Act!” And also tweeted, “We have just purchased many Ventilators from some wonderful companies.”
  223. Trump then attacked NYT, tweeting, “Will someone please explain to the Fake News New York Times (ALL THE NEWS THAT’S NOT FIT TO PRINT) that the Democrats make it almost impossible for us to fill positions.”
  224. Shortly after, Trump said he had signed an order directing Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar to investigate applying the DPA against General Motors
  225. On Friday, NYT reported luxury brands, including Fendi, Celine, and Chanel, boarded up their stores in the SoHo section of New York City in anticipation of possible riots and civil disobedience.
  226. On Friday, Fox said it “has parted ways” with Fox Business anchor Trish Regan, after her monologue in which she dismissed concerns about the coronavirus as a “scam” fueled by enemies of Trump.
  227. On Friday, WAPO reported New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell said agencies that are part of Mardi Gras every year planning, including the FBI and DHS, did not raise concerns about the coronavirus before it was held.
  228. The open-air party held in February had more than a million attend, including visitors from overseas. On March 9, the first Covid-19 cases appeared. Louisiana had 2,305 coronavirus cases and 83 deaths as of Thursday.
  229. Forecasting showed when the peak was expected to occur on April 8, Louisiana could be short 1,436 ICU beds. Morial Convention Center will be used for hospital beds starting this weekend.
  230. The city has had very limited testing available, with just 250 test kits per day allotted to two drive-thru sites, and are usually gone by midday. Area city hospitals have ramped up testing, including 1,900 Thursday.
  231. On Friday, Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo tweeted that she signed an “executive order mandating that anyone who’s traveled to NY by any form of transportation must self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in RI.”
  232. Raimondo added, “We’ll be stationing National Guard members at bus stops & at the train station” and State Police will stop cars, “to gather contact information from travelers and inform them of the quarantine.”
  233. She added on Saturday, Rhode Island law enforcement officers and the National Guard will be “going door-to-door,” asking people if they’ve been to New York and requesting their contact information.
  234. The ACLU of RI said, “While the Gov may have the power to suspend some state laws and regulations…Under the Fourth Amendment, having a NY state license plate simply does not..constitute ‘probable cause.’”
  235. On Friday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear urged residents not to cross the border to Tennessee unless they must do so for work or to visit a loved one. Tennessee had 1,203 cases, while Kentucky had just 22 as of Friday.
  236. On Friday, Trump declined to invite Speaker Pelosi to the White House ceremony where he planned to sign the coronavirus relief bill. The two have not spoken since October 16.
  237. On Friday, flanked by white male leaders in front of the media, Trump signed the bill, saying, “We got hit by the invisible enemy and we got hit hard,” and adding, “I think we are going to have a tremendous rebound.”
  238. Notably, amid the national call for social distancing, attendees which included Republican leaders and cabinet members stood close together. Trump also handed out pens to several attendees after he signed the bill.
  239. On Friday, in a statement released in the early evening, Trump said he would not comply with the portion of the bill that authorizes an inspector general to oversee how $500 billion in business loans will be spent.
  240. On Friday, the Dow fell 915 points or 4%, breaking its three-day winning streak, on concern the stimulus package might not be enough to address the systemic risks.
  241. On Friday, the Boston Globe reported Larry Rasky, a longtime adviser to former vice president Joe Biden, posthumously tested positive for the coronavirus according to his son, after he died Sunday at the age of 69.
  242. On Friday, at the daily press briefing, Trump said he had instructed Pence, who leads the virus task force, not to reach out to governors who aren’t “appreciative” of the regime’s efforts.
  243. Trump added, “I think they should be appreciative. Because you know what? When they’re not appreciative to me, they’re not appreciative to the Army Corps, they’re not appreciative to FEMA. It’s not right.”
  244. Trump said he told Pence not to call Inslee, saying, “You’re wasting your time with him,” and Whitmer, saying, “Don’t call the woman in Michigan. It doesn’t make any difference what happens.”
  245. Trump said he had invoked the DPA to manufacture 100,000 ventilators, saying, “We will not hesitate to use the full authority of the federal government to combat this crisis. We have to get these people on board.”
  246. Trump also told ABC News’s Jonathan Karl, “Don’t be a cutie pie,” after Karl pressed Trump, asking if everyone who needs one will “be able to get a ventilator?” Trump added, “Nobody’s done what we’ve been able to do.”
  247. Fauci told reporters, “This is something that we have never seen before at least in our generation…We are really being challenged to not only learn in real time,” adding, “But we are also in uncharted waters.”
  248. Trump’s remarks came shortly before the number of U.S. cases passed 100,000, doubling in three days. In the early evening, there were 101,707 confirmed cases and 1,544 American deaths.
  249. Later Friday, Gov. Whitmer told CNN, “we’ve entered into a number of contracts, and as we get closer to the date when shipments…they are getting canceled — getting delayed.”
  250. Whitmer said the shipments are going to the federal government instead, adding this is an issue other cities and states are facing: “This is an issue we are confronting as a nation, where we are bidding against one another.”
  251. Later Friday, Whitmer tweeted, “I’ve asked repeatedly and respectfully for help. We need it. No more political attacks, just PPEs, ventilators, N95 masks, test kits. You said you stand with Michigan — prove it.”
  252. Shortly after, Trump tweeted, “I love Michigan,” which is why he is doing a “GREAT job for them,” but “Gretchen “Half” Whitmer is way in over her head, she doesn’t have a clue..blaming everyone for her own ineptitude!”
  253. Whitmer did not respond. Late Friday, Trump signed off on an emergency declaration for Michigan. The U.S. had more than 105,000 cases.
  254. Shortly after midnight, Trump tweeted, “Such Fake reporting by the @nytimes, @washingtonpost, @CNN & others,” claiming, “They use a small portion of a sentence out of a full paragraph in order to demean.”
  255. Trump added of the media, “They really are corrupt and disgusting,” adding, “No wonder the media is, according to polls, record setting low & untrusted. #MAGA
  256. On Saturday, Trump continued a storm of tweets, again attacking the media, saying, “So much of the Lamestream Media is writing and broadcasting stories with facts that are made up and knowingly wrong.”
  257. Trump added the media is “doing it by quoting unnamed sources that simply do not exist,” adding, “These are very dangerous & corrupt people, who will do anything to win. NAME YOUR SOURCES!”
  258. Trump added, “One of the reasons that Fake News has become so prevalent & far reaching is the fact that corrupt “journalists” base their stories on SOURCES that they make up” to “distort” a story.
  259. Trump continued, “When you see, “five sources say”, don’t believe the story, it is very often FAKE NEWS,” adding, “Lamestream Media should be forced to reveal sources, very much as they did in the long ago past.”
  260. On Saturday, Cuomo said the state should reach its apex in 14 to 21 days. New York has 52,000 confirmed cases and at least 728 deaths, but saw a slow in admits to the hospital and ICU for the day.
  261. Cuomo said he spoke to Trump that morning about new hospital sites, and later called out states having to compete with one another for supplies, and the lack of mass testing (New York has done 155,000 tests).
  262. On Saturday, Trump told reporters he is considering an “enforceable” two-week quarantine on New York, New Jersey, and part of Connecticut. Cuomo said Trump did not mention the measure in their morning call.
  263. Trump then left the White House for the first time in a week, to fly to Norfolk, VA along with Defense Secretary Mark Esper for a ceremony setting off hospital ship USNS Comfort on its way to New York.
  264. As the week came to a close, there were 640,589 cases worldwide and 29,848 deaths. In the U.S. at midday, there were 112,468 cases and 1,841 had died, including 400 on Friday and 270 on Thursday.

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Copyright Amy Siskind, March 28, 2020

A deserted Times Square in Manhattan, New York on March 24, 2020, amid the outbreak of a new coronavirus COVID-19.