Dr. Anthony Fauci and others from President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force are testifying before members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee in a hearing called “COVID-19: Safely Getting Back to Work and Back to School” on Tuesday. During the hearing, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren pressed the doctor about the state of the virus’s containment in the United States, according to a CBS Boston report.
When it was time for her to speak, Senator Warren noted that Dr. Fauci had served under six presidents. She asked him for his opinion about the state of containment of the novel coronavirus throughout the country.
“Right now, it depends on what you mean by containment. If you think that we have it completely under control, we don’t. I mean, if you look at the dynamics of the outbreak, we are seeing a diminution of hospitalizations and infections in some places such as in New York City, which has plateaued and started to come down, New Orleans. But in other parts of the country, we are seeing spikes… I think we’re going in the right direction. But the right direction does not mean we have, by any means, total control of this outbreak.”
Dr. Fauci confirmed to me today: our country does not have coronavirus under control. President Trump needs to stop pretending that if he just ignores that bad news, it will go away. It won’t. The time for magical thinking is over. pic.twitter.com/urXZPqyDpY
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) May 12, 2020
The senator went on to ask the doctor about predictions that foreshadow as many as 200,000 new cases of COVID-19 per day in the U.S. in June. Those numbers would be up from the roughly 25,000 infections each day currently. However, Dr. Fauci said that he does not foresee that the country will end up with that many new infections considering that the curve appears to be flattening.
Warren also asked Dr. Fauci about the measures that the U.S. needs to have in place by the fall to help keep a predicted second wave from being bad for the end of 2020, and he said that while such things aren’t in place right now, they should be there by Labor Day. The doctor also repeated his concerns that the fall will end up seeing many infections and deaths if the country does not put in place the proper testing and tracing over the next 16 weeks or so that it has left to prepare.
After Dr. Fauci answered her questions, Senator Warren, who ran for president in 2020 but dropped out when she didn’t win enough delegates during the Democratic primaries, said that she wished she could tell the American people that the Federal government had the pandemic under control. She also accused President Trump of “magical thinking” and encouraged him to act now to ensure that more American’s don’t end up dying later this year as a result of COVID-19.