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ROUNDUP 2: Trump shows more pessimistic tones in corona pandemic | message


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WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) – US President Donald Trump has alerted Americans to the worsening of the coronavirus pandemic. “Unfortunately, it will probably get worse before it gets better,” Trump said on Tuesday (local time) at a press conference at the White House. “I don’t like to say that about things, but that’s the way it is.” Trump held a press conference for the first time in almost three months to provide information about the corona pandemic. Many of his comments contrasted with statements made in the past few weeks.

“Worrying Rise” and “Big Flames”

The USA is currently experiencing a dramatic escalation in the pandemic. Trump admitted this and said: “In the past few weeks we have seen a worrying increase in cases in many parts of our south, (…) south west and west.” Authorities have reported between 60,000 and 77,000 new infections per day and hundreds of deaths in the past two weeks. The states of Florida, Georgia, Texas, Arizona and California are particularly affected. Trump has always explained the multitude of new cases with the multitude of tests that are now being carried out, and compared the outbreaks with “embers” and “flames”. On Tuesday, he spoke of “big flames”.


Trump encouraged Americans to wear protective masks when there is no distance: “Whether you like the masks or not, they have an effect, they will have an effect, and we need everything we can get.” The Republican rejects a nationwide mask requirement. Critics accuse him of being a bad example in the pandemic because he hardly ever appears in public with a mask. In order to underline that he has no problem with masks, Trump brought out mouth-nose protection at the press conference. “I have the mask here,” he said. When presenting guidelines from the CDC health authority in April, Trump had made it clear that, despite the recommendation, he would not wear a mask himself.


Trump said he was working hand in hand with the governors to fight the pandemic and promised them 100 percent support. “They’ll get everything they need.” Because of the way the pandemic has been dealt with, there has recently been repeated outbursts between the government in Washington and governors in some states. Criticism has also recently come from Trumps Republicans: Maryland state governor Larry Hogan accused Trump last week of not responding quickly enough to the threat and leaving the governors alone in expanding tests. Trump made it clear on Tuesday – also referring to the governors – that he does not see responsibility for the corona crisis alone. “I think we are all responsible.”


Trump already made it clear during the first escalation of the corona pandemic in the spring that he wanted to bring the country back to normal as quickly as possible. In view of the dramatically increasing death toll, he turned around in April by swearing the Americans into difficult weeks. In May, he reconciled the country with the return to normal. Most recently, he focused on the rapid reopening of the economy and schools, and he praised the actions of his government.


But criticism of Trump’s crisis management grew, as confirmed by a survey published on Friday. The resumption of the Corona press conferences was also seen as an attempt by Trump to counter the declining approval. His advisor Kellyanne Conway had said last week that it was no coincidence that the survey scores were better than Trump himself had raised the coronavirus problem. “People want to hear from the President of the United States. It doesn’t have to be daily, it doesn’t have to be for two hours, but I think it has to be,” she said on Friday. Trump had held press conferences almost daily until the end of April, some of which lasted longer than two hours.


On Tuesday, Trump spoke for less than half an hour, allowing comparatively few questions from journalists. He complained “every single valuable life that has been lost” and thanked doctors and other first aiders in the crisis. “My government will not shy away from anything to save lives,” Trump promised. The aim is not only to contain the pandemic, “but to get rid of it,” said Trump.

Biden’s Critique

It sounds “hollow” when Trump claims he has an “untiring focus” on the Corona crisis, said US Democratic nominee for president, Joe Biden. Trump has spent months dismissing the incredible damage the virus has caused. “He even repeated tonight that it would just” go away “after it killed 140,000 Americans and shook our economy.” Biden wants Trump to contest his place in the White House in the November election. Surveys currently see him at the front – but they should be treated with caution. In addition, a lot can happen in more than three months.


Members of the White House Corona Working Group did not speak at Trump’s press conference. The immunologist and director of the National Institute for Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, had previously told CNN that he had not been invited to the press conference. On Tuesday, however, it appeared that Trump had borrowed from his advisor. Fauci had already said in April: “It will get worse before it gets better.” / Lkl / DP / zb

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