Conservative Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin attacked Republicans on Thursday demanding that they stop putting American lives at risk during the coronavirus crisis.
This week President Donald Trump proclaimed that the country would be back up and everything would reopen by April 12. It flies in the face of doctors and epidemiologists, who have warned the country must have a total lockdown to stop the spread of coronavirus.
During a CNN interview with Chris Cuomo on Wednesday, Dr. Anthony Fauci explained that Trump can’t make the timeline, “the virus makes the timeline.” He went on to urge using data to make decisions not hopes and wishes.
“What would happen if governors, mayors and businesspeople listened to Trump and reopened schools, businesses, entertainment venues and restaurants? News reports such as this one from CNBC made clear that the results could be disastrous,” wrote Rubin.
Rubin cited Dr. Tina Tan, a member of the board of Infectious Diseases Society of America, who said that the president isn’t “rooted in reality.”
“This is the making of a major public health disaster. I am not sure where he is getting his information from, but it is extremely flawed,” Tan said.
The New York Times worked with experts to create a model showing what would happen if people stopped social-distancing on April 12. The people who will contract the coronavirus went from 14 million to 128 million. Deaths obviously also shot up along with it.
“In case you thought there is no harm in Trump spouting unrealistic, potentially deadly proposals, consider what is happening in Mississippi. Gov. Tate Reeves (R), who announced ‘Mississippi’s never going to be China,’ issued an executive order on Tuesday that ‘considers most businesses in the state as ‘essential’ and are therefore exempt’ from orders to shut down. This presumably will override the directives of ‘cities and counties [that] had previously defined ‘essential businesses’ more narrowly.’” Rubin continued.
At the same time, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) was slow to close beaches, allowing crowds to go wild for spring break. The vacationers became known as COVID-Bros, and after five of them turned up positive for coronavirus, one took to Instagram to apologize and urge people to stay at home.
“In short, Trump has signaled that opening up for business should take priority over health experts’ recommendations,” wrote Rubin. “It is becoming gospel on the right that keeping the economy shut down for an extended time is ‘worse’ than the alternative of prolonged social distancing and stay-at-home orders.”
People coming out of their homes to congregate would mean the numbers would go up even more.
“To the extent they resist stay-at-home orders, reverse more stringent orders or lift them prematurely, more people will likely become sick and some will die,” Rubin explained.
“Trump needs to stop making quack treatment recommendations and stop encouraging individuals and political leaders to abandon prematurely the only strategy we presently have for slowing the spread of the virus and hence preventing the health-care system from buckling,” she closed. “Before they contribute to more deaths, Trump and his right-wing acolytes should pipe down and let Fauci do the talking.”