The Trump administration is preparing to wind down within weeks the White House taskforce that was formed to deal with the coronavirus pandemic in the country. This was announced by Vice President Mike Pence at a news conference Tuesday.
He told reporters, “A reflection of the tremendous progress we’ve made as a country”, the Trump administration was “starting to look at the Memorial Day [late May] window, early June window as a time when we could begin to transition back to having our agencies begin to manage, begin to manage our national response in a more traditional manner.”
Later, talking to the media during a visit to the Honeywell International Inc. mask production factory in Phoenix, Arizona, Trump was asked why it was time to wind down the taskforce.
“We can’t keep our country closed for the next five years,” he replied.
“Mike Pence and the task force have done a great job, but we’re now looking at a little bit of a different form, and that form is safety and opening. And we’ll have a different group probably set up for that,” he added.
The task force was set up on January 29 with Vice President Mike Pence as its chairman.
Trump said had been regularly conducing White House briefings accompanied by Pence and other members of the Task Force, including Dr. Deborah Leah Birx, who is the coronavirus response coordinator for the Task Force, and Dr Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease.
However, Trump nearly stopped the routine briefing after his suggestion that researchers try putting disinfectants into coronavirus infected patients’ bodies as potential treatment for the killer disease met with scathing criticism by experts.
Trump told reporters that both Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx would remain as advisers.
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