Rep. Jordan questions Dr. Fauci on how protests are contributing to pandemic

Rep. Jordan questions Dr. Fauci on how protests are contributing to pandemic”

Dr. Anthony Fauci warned the governors of four US states that they need to get new infections under control. "I'm not going to opine on limiting anything".

"The administration's approach of deferring to states, sidelining experts and rushing to reopen has prolonged this virus and led to thousands of preventable deaths", said panel Chairman James Clyburn, who denounced Trump's coronavirus response as "among the worst of any country in the world". "I don't think it's dreaming". Other members of the bipartisan committee grilled them on subjects including development of a vaccine for the virus, the safety of reopening schools and President Donald Trump's handling of the crisis.

"You should stay away from crowds, no matter where the crowds are", Fauci said during the combative parley. Some have pointed to HIV, and the struggle to find a vaccine for that virus, wondering how can one for COVID-19 be made so soon?

Also during Friday's hearing, House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.), who chairs the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, asked Fauci why the US has more confirmed cases of coronavirus than Europe.

"When you actually look at what we did, even though we shut down and even though it created a great deal of difficulty, we really functionally shut down only about 50% in the sense of the totality of the country, which means when we reached our peak, as they did they came down nearly to a low baseline", Dr. Fauci explained. "I'm telling you what it is - the danger - and you can make your own conclusion about that". "The irony, of course, is that if the president put the full weight of the federal government towards containing this pandemic, which has cost more than 150,000 Americans their lives, instead of focusing so much on his re-election, he would be in much better shape politically". That includes the need to wear masks, avoid crowds and practice good hand hygiene, he said.

Lawmakers pressed Giroir about the availability of tests and long wait times.

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As a result, the United States' baseline of transmission was higher than Europe. And the resurgence of COVID-19 in the Sunbelt in recent weeks has driven the number of new daily cases back up into the 60,000-70,000 range.

Citing a study he noted had been peer-reviewed, Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-Mo., said that the use of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients had been proven effective, when used with zinc.

"It's not a judgment, it's a public health statement", he said.

White House trade advisor Peter Navarro stoked concerns about such a disagreement when he published an op-ed in USA Today earlier this month claiming that Fauci had flip-flopped on the issue of wearing masks. "I don't have any horse in the game, one way or the other".

"I just have to go with the data", he said.

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