A long, hot summer has come and gone but the coronavirus death toll in the United States has only grown worse and the number of America’s coronavirus cases nearly quadrupled during season.
From Memorial Day weekend through the unofficial end of the season Monday, the number of Americans who died of covid-19 shot up from just less than 100,000 to more than 186,000, as infections nearly quadrupled to upward of 6.2 million.
Trump continued to assert that his administration could produce a vaccine by November, although such a statement contradicts the timeline laid out by health officials in his administration.
The chief executives of nine drug companies pledged not to seek regulatory approval before the safety and efficacy of their experimental medicines is established in clinical trials, as an effort to restore public faith shaken by Trump’s rush to introduce a vaccine before Election Day.
“We believe this pledge will help ensure public confidence in the rigorous scientific and regulatory process by which covid-19 vaccines are evaluated and may ultimately be approved,” the executives wrote in a statement.
Trump’s earlier meddling was responsible for the FDA’s hasty authorization of hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus, which was withdrawn after clinical trials showed the drug provided no benefit while increasing fatal risks of heart arrhythmia.
He is also trying to equate doubts about the legitimacy of his promises with
Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democrats’ vice presidential candidate said that she would not trust a coronavirus vaccine at this point because “there’s very little that we can trust that … comes out of Donald Trump’s mouth” and claimed that scientists would be “muzzled” because he is focused on getting reelected.
Biden also claimed Trump has said “so many things that aren’t true, I’m worried if we do have a really good vaccine, people are going to be reluctant to take it. So he’s undermining public confidence.”
Under a program Trump calls “Operation Warp Speed,” the goal is to have 300 million doses of a coronavirus vaccine in stock by January.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious-disease expert, said last week that it is unlikely but not impossible that a vaccine could win approval in October, instead of November or December and that he’s pretty sure a vaccine would not be approved for Americans unless it was both safe and effective.
Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, said the agency would not cut corners as it evaluates vaccines, but could expedite its work.
“Who could have guessed that a TV celebrity with zero government experience, six bankruptcies, five kids from three different marriages, four college deferments, and 22 charges of sexual assault, could be so bad at being President?” asked Democrat Lisa McCormick, a progressive Democrat.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) proposed a weaker coronavirus relief bill on and said he plans to move to a vote later this week, an effort to put Democrats on the defensive after weeks of stalled talks.
The legislation is not expected to advance, since that would require support from Democrats, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called the measure “pathetic.”
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