“100 DAYS SINCE…” Trump Suggested Recommendations to Socially Distance and Wear Masks Were “Worse” than the Spreading Pandemic
WASHINGTON, D.C. – One hundred days ago today, President Trump signaled his intent to roll back previous guidelines around social distancing and other public safety guidance, tweeting, “WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF.” Fifty days later, he doubled down on his confidence that safety protocols could be on the way out, asserting on May 11 that the U.S. has “prevailed” on COVID-19 testing — even as the country lagged far behind each shifting benchmark the administration set for testing.
Trump’s misguided suggestions ran counter to the widespread opinions of the nation’s health experts. For weeks, Trump pushed the unproven drug hydroxychloroquine despite scientific evidence suggesting it was ineffective in treating COVID-19 — even after Americans were hospitalized and died following the president’s advice. Trump also suggested drinking cleaning products and using light as treatments for the coronavirus.
And even as Dr. Anthony Fauci, Dr. Deborah Birx, and a host of medical experts recommended against reopening the economy too soon because the nation didn’t have the proper testing resources, Trump encouraged states to do so against their expertise. Now, states including Texas and Florida that were quick to plow ahead on reopening are seeing new spikes in COVID-19 cases and are being forced to close down again.
100 DAYS AGO TUESDAY: March 22, 2020
- Trump tweeted: “WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF. AT THE END OF THE 15 DAY PERIOD, WE WILL MAKE A DECISION AS TO WHICH WAY WE WANT TO GO!”
- The United States hit more than 40,000 positive COVID-19 cases and nearly 500 deaths.
50 DAYS AGO TUESDAY: May 11, 2020
- Trump said the United States had “prevailed” on testing.
- The United States was testing between 20,000 and 30,000 people per day. Experts had previously stated that 500,000 Americans needed to be tested each day.