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Trump’s ex-FDA chief: ‘Win or lose’ the election, administration must do more to fight Covid


Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former FDA chief underneath President Donald Trump, on Friday urged the White House to step up its response to the coronavirus pandemic, no matter the end result of the election.

While the U.S. awaits a projected winner in Tuesday’s election between Trump and Democrat Joe Biden, the nation’s newest resurgence of Covid-19 instances has continued unabated. On Thursday, there have been a document 121,888 new infections reported, sooner or later after eclipsing 100,000 for the first time ever, in accordance to knowledge from Johns Hopkins University.

Gottlieb, who led the Food and Drug Administration from May 2017 to April 2019, particularly known as on Vice President Mike Pence, as the chief of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, to coordinate a more cohesive nationwide response.

“I think there’s an opportunity do to that, win or lose,” Gottlieb mentioned CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “I think if the administration does lose the election, I think the vice president can get more engaged in trying to lead a national strategy around coronavirus mitigation now that the election is over. … It’s not too late.”

The seven-day common of day by day new coronavirus instances in the U.S. is at an all-time excessive of more than 94,600, in accordance to a CNBC evaluation of the Hopkins knowledge. New instances of Covid-19 are rising, based mostly on a seven-day common, in 43 states and Washington D.C.

In 19 states, the seven-day common of sufferers presently hospitalized with Covid-19 has reached an all-time excessive, in accordance to a CNBC evaluation of knowledge from the Covid Tracking Project, which is run by journalists at The Atlantic. More than 1,000 folks have died from the coronavirus every day since Tuesday, in accordance to the Covid Tracking Project.

Biden presently has 253 of the 270 electoral votes wanted to win the presidency, in contrast with Trump’s 214, in accordance to NBC News. Gottlieb’s remarks Friday got here earlier than Biden’s vote totals in Pennsylvania overtook Trump. A victory for Biden in Pennsylvania, which has 20 electoral votes, can be sufficient to win the White House.

If Trump fails to win a second time period, “they’re going to be handing over power against the backdrop of, really, a raging epidemic,” Gottlieb mentioned. “I mean, we’re going to be hitting the peak of this epidemic as the inauguration happens, and that’s not going to be a good backdrop, win or lose, to be having a change in the administration or for this administration to be getting reinaugurated.”

The Trump administration’s strategy to the pandemic has relied, largely, on permitting governors to take the lead on outbreaks of their respective states. The president, who overcame his personal bout of Covid-19, additionally has routinely downplayed the seriousness of the virus and urged the nation was “rounding the corner.”

White House chief of workers Mark Meadows mentioned in late October, “We’re not going to control the pandemic,” including the administration was primarily centered on growing vaccines and different therapies. Gottlieb, who has mentioned widespread availability of a vaccine will not occur till mid-2021, confused the want for a more coordinated response from the Trump administration, working along side native authorities.

“Their legacies are going to turn on what they do right now,” Gottlieb mentioned. “Again, if the backdrop of the change over in power is a national crisis of really significant proportion because this is going to get worse before it gets better — and it could get significantly worse — I don’t think that anyone wants to be handing over power against that backdrop.”

As of noon Friday, there have been more than 9.6 million confirmed instances of Covid-19 in the United States, in accordance to Hopkins knowledge. At least 235,071 folks have died, the most of any nation in the world.



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