President Trump on Sunday said that if his administration “can hold” the death toll down to 100,000 Americans or less, “we all together have done a very good job.”
Trump announced his administration was extending the guidelines on social distancing amid the COVID-19 outbreak until April 30 with hopes of avoiding a catastrophic death toll.
“So if we can hold that down, as we’re saying, to 100,000, it’s a horrible number, maybe even less, but to 100,000, so we have between 100 and 200,000, we all together have done a very good job,” Trump told reporters at his daily White House press briefing.
— EHA News (@eha_news) March 29, 2020
Asked if he considered easing guidelines in states that have not been hit as hard by the virus yet, Trump said he, Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx were not fans of that idea.
“They said, we don’t like that idea,” Trump said. “They didn’t like the idea. We could do it, but I don’t think it will be good.”
Trump said last week he wanted to see much of the country return to normal by Easter, April 12, despite warnings from top health experts that easing the guidelines too soon could cause widespread deaths and economic damage.
But on Sunday, the president said the Easter target date was “just an aspiration” and said he expects “great things to be happening” by June 1. Instead, Trump said he believes Easter will mark “the peak number, and it should start coming down, hopefully very substantially at that point.”