President Donald Trump delivered an address from the Oval Office on Wednesday evening on the coronavirus outbreak, asking Americans to put “politics aside, stop the partisanship, and unify as one nation and one family.”
Trump spoke calmly and in measured tones from a prepared text as he recounted the administration’s steps thus far to fight the spread of the illness, which the World Health Organization declared a “pandemic” earlier Wednesday.
The president noted that “taking early, intense action,” such as banning travel from China, had helped slow the spread of the illness. He announced that there would be a 30-day suspension on travel from Europe — with the exception of the United Kingdom — as of Friday at midnight, given concerns about the spread of the illness there.
Trump also noted that the health insurance industry had agreed to “waive all co-payments for all coronavirus treatments,” and that his administration would cut regulations to make “antiviral treatments” available quickly.
He noted that he had signed a new law providing for $8.3 billion to fight the illness, and announced emergency economic interventions, as well as an extension of tax filing deadlines for affected business and individuals.
“Each of us has a role to play in defeating this virus,” Trump added. “Wash your hands, clean often-used surfaces, cover your face and mouth if you sneeze or cough, and most of all, if you are sick or not feeling well, stay home.”
He asked Americans to transcend politics, and unite: “The virus will not have a chance against us,” he vowed.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.