‘It’s time for a national lockdown’: NYT calls for Trump to push a ‘two-week shelter-in-place order’
US President Donald Trump, pictured on July 8, has assailed Britain's US ambassador as a "pompous fool" and slammed outgoing premier Theresa May's "foolish" policies following a leak of unflattering diplomatic cables. (AFP/File / NICHOLAS KAMM)

With President Donald Trump pushing for society to re-open, The New York Times is urging him to do the exact opposite.

"President Trump needs to call for a two-week shelter-in-place order, now, as part of a coherent national strategy for the coronavirus to protect Americans and their livelihoods," the newspaper wrote in an editorial published Tuesday evening.

"We are not suggesting that Mr. Trump has the authority to order a national lockdown, much less advocating that he attempt to enforce one. Instead, we are urging him to use the bully pulpit to put pressure on, and provide political cover for, governors to take the hard steps that are needed," The Times explained.

"Rather than raising false expectations of a rapid and full return to business as usual, the president needs to be pursuing even more drastic measures. He should announce that, within 24 hours, all nonessential businesses should be shut and residents directed to remain in their homes except for vital trips out, such as to obtain food or medical care," the newspaper urged.

"A nationwide lockdown is the only tactic left to parry a viral adversary that is constantly on the move, and to buy the time for medical workers to prepare for what comes next," the editorial concluded.

Read the full editorial.