Failed Trump challenger Hillary Clinton (D) on Tuesday warned that “Americans will suffer” as the Trump administration signaled it is engaging in “preliminary talks” to shut down the coronavirus task force.
“It appears the plan is, shamefully, to have no plan. Americans will suffer. We must replace this administration in November,” Clinton said in response to the reports:
It appears the plan is, shamefully, to have no plan.
Americans will suffer.
We must replace this administration in November. https://t.co/WWuRRK253t
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 5, 2020
Vice President Mike Pence told reporters on Tuesday that the administration is having conversations regarding the “proper time” to shut down the task force.
“I think we’re having conversations about that, and about what the proper time is for the task force to complete its work,” Pence said. “And for the ongoing efforts to take place on an agency by agency level.”
Despite Clinton’s assertion of there being “no plan,” the vice president said the White House is “discussing a transition with FEMA and other agencies for a task force turnover in late May or early June, suggesting that Memorial Day weekend would be a possibility,” as Breitbart News reported.
“It really is all a reflection of the tremendous progress that we’ve made as a country,” Pence stated.
Dr. Deborah Birx, the coronavirus task force coordinator, will remain working at the White House, Pence added.
“We’re going to keep Dr. Deb Birx around every bit as long as we need to,” he explained.
The news comes as some states begin to see their coronavirus cases drop, with several already entering into the first phase of reopening, allowing “nonessential” businesses to slowly reopen and relaxing certain restrictions, like the closure of parks and beaches.
The United States never came close to the original doomsday scenario, sparked by a study from Imperial College, London. Researchers predicted that 2.2 million could die in the U.S. alone if the country did not respond with preventative measures. Even with “moderate” action, deaths could surpass one million and result in the health care system being “overwhelmed many times over,” the study suggested.
Professor Neil Ferguson, an epidemiologist behind the study — also nicknamed “Professor Lockdown” due to his calls for the public to obey lockdown orders — apparently broke the lockdown orders himself to meet with his married lover, according to a report in Britain’s Daily Telegraph.
The U.S. had 1,171,510 cases of the virus and 68,279 related deaths as of Tuesday afternoon, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).