tv White House Coronavirus Task Force Briefing CSPAN March 20, 2020 11:50am-1:27pm EDT
likewise are wanting something to happen. there is tremendous. to get something done, so we will see what happens, so my conversation was very good with senator schumer. i thank you all for joining us, and i would like to begin by providing an update on what we are doing to minimize the impact of the chinese virus on our nation's students. with many schools closed due to the virus, the department of education will not enforce standardized testing for students in elementary through high school for the current year. they have been through a lot. they have been going back and forth. school is open. school is not open. testing, you know, it's -- we are not going to be enforcing that. so i think you can let people know. i think probably a lot of the
students will be extremely happy. some, probably not. once who work hard, maybe not, but it is one of those things. unfortunate. very unfortunate circumstance. we have also temporarily waived all interest on federally held student loans. they will be very happy to hear that, and i have instructed them to take that action immediately. today, secretary devos has directed federal lenders to allow borrowers to suspend their and loan payments without penalty for at least the next 60 days, and if we need that, we will extend that. we have temporarily waived all interest on federal student loans. to come on student loans.
we are moving tax day from april 15 to july 15. we are moving it out to july 15. hopefully that time, we will have people getting back to their lives. there will be extra time to file with no penalties. we are getting rid of interest and penalties. credits,ve refunds or you may still file. you can file early if you borrowed money -- if you are owed money by the irs. other than that, we are moving at all the way out to july 15. no interest, no penalties. we will update on the continued effort to prevent the transmission of virus across america's borders. i watch what has been happening in california with governor
newsom, and this morning with governor cuomo, and i applaud them. they are taking broad, bold steps, and i applaud them. we are working very closely together. together.king based on the call, i think we can say that with respect to virtually every governor on that call, i think every governor, we had almost all of them, if not all of them, and i would say that you can see for yourselves and the level of respect esprit de corps, working together, was extraordinary. there was nobody angry, nobody upset. we were able to help them, and that is what we are all about. we want to help. we are doing things that a lot of people would not be able to do. with the relationship with governors and states is, i think, very extraordinary, especially under the circumstances, where this just came upon us. and're working with canada
mexico to prevent the spread of the virus across north america. pompeo will be making a statement having to do with mexico and the border. chad, likewise, will be making a statement. this is a joint, comprehensive effort, in collaboration with our neighbors. the measure, and all of those measures that we are putting in place, will protect the health of all three nations, and reduce the incentive for a mass global migration as we compete for the resources needed for our people. we are working very closely with mexico, very, very closely with canada. the relationship has never been better. for the samerking goal. our nation's top health care
officials are concerned about the consequences of mass, uncontrolled, cross-border movement. that would be even beyond but mostly during this global pandemic. agents counter unscreened and unvented entries from dozens of countries. we have had this problem over decades, for decades. with the national emergencies and all the other things that we have declared, we can actually do something about it. we are taking a very strong hold of that. and we have before, this is now at a level that nobody has ever approached. in normal times, these massive flows place a vast burden on our health care system. but during a global pandemic, they threaten to create a perfect storm that would spread the infection to our border thets, migrants, and to
public at large. left unchecked, this would cripple our immigration system, overwhelm our health care system, and severely damage our national security. we are not going to let that happen. the centers for disease control has decided to exercise its authority under the title 42 of the u.s. code to give customs and border protection the tools it needs to protect the transmission of the virus, coming through both the northern and the southern borders. we are treating the borders equally, the northern border and the southern border. they are both being treated equally. a lot of people say they are not treated equally. well, they are. as we did with canada, we are working with mexico to implement new rules at our ports of entry, to suspend non-essential travel. these new rules and procedures
will not impede lawful trade and commerce. furthermore, mexico has taken action to secure our own southern border and suspend air travel from europe. we are coordinating very closely with the air travel going to mexico and then trying to come into the united states. the actions we are taking together with our north american partners will save countless lives. at the conclusion of my remarks, secretary azor, secretary bepeo, we are going to taking some questions with tony and deborah, who you have gotten to know very well. but they will be discussing certain things, and i think you will find them of great interest. we are going to be providing tremendous detail over the coming days, but a lot of it will be provided right now, if you would like to find out about it. ofre has been a week resolute action, tremendous
action, tremendous relationships have developed with people that frankly did not get along, did not like each other, that are now working together and maybe even in some cases learning about each other and liking each other. that is nice. i invoke the defense production act. and last night, we put it into gear. the highest level of activism. if you take a look at what we did, the level of activation has one,increased to a great the highest level. we are providing historic support to small businesses and to the states, the states need support. normally they would do this themselves, but because of the magnitude of it the federal government has gotten involved in terms of getting the equipment that they need. so we are helping them. it is a responsibility that they have, but we are helping the
states a lot. that is why the governors, i think in every case, have been impressed. we enacted legislation, guaranteed sick leave for workers at no cost to employers. i think it is very important. so they get paid sick leave at no cost to employers.w we are accelerating the use giving treatment and payments to hard-working families. americans from all walks of life fightllying together to the unseen enemy. see the of struggle, we true greatness of the american character. a lot of people are talking about it. we are in 141 countries. some of those countries are really working in a unified manner, very unified with us, almost i could say -- a good number of them.
doctors and nurses are working nonstop to heal the sick. citizens and churches are delivering meals to the needy. truckers are making the long haul to keep shelves stocked. we have been dealing with the big stores and chains. walmart, they have been fantastic, and others. they have all been fantastic. we made it easier for them to stock in terms of travel restrictions. we are lifting restrictions so they can get the trucks on time. you were seen very few empty shelves. the amount of volume they are doing is unprecedented, because people want to have what they feel they have to have. they are buying and slightly smaller quantities, which is good. because we are not going anywhere. we are going to be here. i want to thank those companies. americans from every walk of life are coming together, and thanks to the spirit of our people, we will win this war.
we are winning. america will triumph and rise higher. we will be stronger than ever before. we have learned a lot. we have learned a lot about relying on other countries. ad i can say that i think in very good and bad way. some good things came out of it, some not so good things came out of it. and we will invite our team to provide information now on the new measures to prevent viral spread at our borders. i will start by asking secretary of state, mike pompeo, to speak. he is doing a fantastic job. he has been working hard and he is doing the other more normal jobs of a great secretary of state. but he got tied into this, like everybody else, and he has been doing a fantastic job. mike, please. sec. pompeo: thank you, mr. president.
before i address the efforts we have been engaged in, pushing back against the chinese virus, i want to assure the people that the state department, the entire national security team is staying focused on other diplomatic challenges around the world, including reducing risk to america from afghanistan, and counterterrorism efforts against isis. they remain a priority for our team. a number one priority remains of the protection of the american people. the president and our team are focused on. -- on it. i want to think my team that has been working long hours to take care of americans who are stuck in places around the world. i will talk about that in a minute. x withve all seen dr. bir me. i want to give a shout out to the team here and around the world that are working overtime to help us push back against this pandemic. under the leadership this week,
we have taken two important steps. as the president announced on wednesday, the u.s. and canada jointly agreed to restrict nonessential traffic across the border. this decision goes into effect tonight at midnight. the restrictions we reviewed after 30 days -- will be reviewed after 30 days. that includes movement across the border. we grateful to have such an outstanding friend to the north committed, as we are, to defeating the virus. i want to announce today that the u.s. and mexico have agreed to restrict nonessential travel across our shared border. both countries know the importance of working together to limit the spread of the virus, to ensure the commerce that supports our economy will keep flowing. we are glad to have a friend working with us in this fight. secretary wolf will talk more about the details of how we are working alongside our partner in mexico to keep her southern borders safe and secure.
on another note, yesterday the state department issued a level four global travel advisory. this means and that all international travel from u.s. citizens should be avoided. in countries where commercial departure options remain available, u.s. citizens who reside in the u.s. should arrange for immediate return to the united states, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an extended time. if you choose to travel internationally, your plans may be severely disrupted. and finally, i want to talk about the disinformation people are seeing on twitter and around the world, some of it coming from governments, some from individuals. i urge everyone, if you see information, if you see information this came from the united states army, information about lockdowns taking place, every american and people around the world should ensure that where they turn for information is a reliable source and not a bad actor trying to create
information that they know is wrong. this is a tough fight. the market people are tougher. our teams are working around the clock to help them keep safe abroad and we are showing once again the global leadership that america has always delivered, and it is great to see other countries rally behind what we are doing. thank you. pres. trump: thank you. we will take questions after this. thank the let me president and vice president for their continued leadership and commitment in protecting the american people. early on, the president again took unprecedented actions to restrict travel from areas affected by the coronavirus. and today dhss -- has its over 200,000 individuals coming back from those countries. it has been an immense undertaking, one we have accomplished. the announcement today is another example of the extraordinary steps the a
ministration is taking to make sure the american public is safe. the fire, on the order -- before i look at the order, let me address the progress we've made with ou canadian and mexican partners around cross-border travel. as we look at measures that reduce risk and prevent further spread, it only makes sense that we looked at the measures that our neighbors are undertaking. we have been working closely with those partners since the earliest days of the virus and outbreak, and again as the president said earlier this week, and secretary pompeo, we reached an agreement with canada and mexico to limit non-essential travel across our land borders. let me be clear, neither of these agreements with canada or mexico applies to lawful trade or commerce. essential commercial activities will not be impacted. we will continue to maintain a strong insecure economic supply chain across our borders. a few examples of essential
travel include but are not limited to individuals traveling for medical purposes, to attend educational institutions, public health services, and those involved in cross-border trade. as the secretary said committee agreements with canada and mexico will go into effect on saturday, march 21. we are also working with canada in mexico to take decisive joint action regarding individuals seeking entry between our ports of entry. the cdc order directs the department to suspend the introduction of all individuals seeking to enter the u.s. without proper travel documentation. that is for both the northern and southern border. the cdc directors determined the introduction and spread of the coronavirus and the border patrol stations and detention facilities presents a serious danger to migrants, our frontline agents, and officers and the american people. so it is important to note that
the department currently apprehends foreign nationals from over 120 countries around the world, the vast majority of those having coronavirus cases. many of these individuals arrive with little or no identity travel, or medical documentation, making public health risk determinations all but impossible. it is also important to note that the outbreak on our southern border will likely increase the strain on health systems and our border communities, taking away life-saving resources from american citizens. tonight at midnight, we will execute the cdc order by immediately returning individuals arriving without documentation to canada, mexico, as well as a number of other countries without delay. so again, we are positioned to execute these measures as we continue to keep our borders secure and safe. before i conclude, let me wrap up by thanking the brave men and women of dhs across the government for the work they do
every day to keep the american people safe from the coronavirus. but burma has a number of frontline officers that have tested positive, as well as others who are self-quarantining, and i am doing everything i can to protect these patriots as they continue to defend our homeland during this crisis. you. pres. trump: thank you very much. >> today's announcement is the latest in a long line of bull decisive actions the president has taken to protect americans from the coronavirus spreading across these borders -- our borders. within two weeks of china notifying the who, and with only 45 cases in china, we began screening travelers from wuhan. over time, as the upper involved, the present restricted travel from iran and europe. our health experts say that these measures have been effective in slowing the spread to our shores. and theout this, italy
united states both saw the first travel related case of coronavirus around the exact same time, the last week of january. yet we have had precious time to continue our work around vaccines, therapeutics and other preparations, while italy has tragically been overwhelmed with critical patients for several weeks now. the president today is taking action to slow the spread of disease via our border. under section 362 of the public health service act, the cdc is suspending the entry of certain persons into the united states, because of the public health threat that their entry into the u.s. represents. this order applies to persons coming from mexico and from canada, who are seeking to enter the country illegally and would normally be held in a customs and border patrol station. it does not apply to u.s. citizens or lawful permanent residents.
during the pandemic, and number of health challenges arise when illegal immigrants arrive at our northern and southern borders and are taken into immigration custody. we are talking about significant numbers of illegal immigrants. from this past october through february, dhs has processed more than 21,000 inadmissible aliens at the northern border, and more than 151,000 inadmissible aliens at the southern border. cbp facilities were never designed to hard -- hold large numbers of people, and to protect migrants and agents from a pandemic, nor to treat them for a novel virus. when held at border facilities, the migrants are spreading the virus to other migrants and health-care workers, and even the u.s. population as a whole. in such circumstances, the social distancing measures the cdc have recommended are simply not enough or possible.
on top of that, any resources we are using to reduce the risk of infection among cbp agents and migrants are drawing on american health care system that is already fighting the coronavirus pandemic. that is why the president is taking these important steps to keep americans and our immigration system safe from these health risks, as part of our whole of government approach to combating the coronavirus. thank you, mr. president, for the work you are doing just -- doing to keep our country safe. pres. trump: thank you. we continue to review data from around the globe, as i know you are. we continue to see signs that again individuals under 20, 19 and under, may have severe
disease, but the majority and all have recovered to date. we still see that same trend, and frankly from italy we are seeing another concerning trend that the mortality in males seems to be twice in every age group of females. they should alert all of us to continue our vigilance to protect our americans in nursing homes. this requires all of the community, when you see the sacrifices that many americans have made, the sacrifices of the service industry to close the restaurants, bars, so the spread is discontinued. then you really understand how all americans must make the same sacrifice. we continue to ask you to follow the presidential guidelines of no groups coming together of more than 10. that if anybody in the house is a sick, that everybody quarantines together. and that we continue to focus on those who have the most
vulnerability to this illness. to the moms and dads who have children with immuno medicalcies or other conditions, we do not know the level of risk. i know you will protect them in the same way. there is not enough numbers at this time to really tell them if they are at additional risk or not in the same way that adults are. i do not have new data. i can see the look on your face, is she seeing something new? i do not have new data, but it is important for us to be as honest as we can and when we do not have data, be clear that we do not know. finally, no one is immune. i sometimes hear people on the radio or others talking about, i am immune to the virus. we do not know if the contagion levels are different in age groups, but we know it is highly contagious to everyone. do not interpret mild or moderate disease as lack of contagion or you are immune.
you just happen to have a better immune system. and the ability to fight the virus in a way that may be older people or people with existing medical conditions can't. that is why it is very important that all of you carry that message about the sacrifices that many have made, particularly our service providers and frontline health workers, they are making that sacrifice everyday so every american can move through this. we needed -- but every american following the guidelines. >> thank you. i want to underscore a couple things i have said to this group. you may recall that just a week ago i said, the two elements of our capability to contain the infection and the possible infections rely on two things, keeping infections from coming from without in.
we have been successful in doing that with china and with europe. now we have the northern and southern border issues. there is a public health reason for doing that, because we cannot be preventing people from coming in from one area when they can actually go into the other. so that is an important reason. understand there is a public health reason for doing that. the second thing that i think is really important is what happened in new york today with governor cuomo, what he mentioned about one hour ago, some rather strong issues that have been addressed with his recommendations -- not recommendations, essentially orders. we have a group of recommendations and guidelines that are applicable to the entire country. you know them, we have been over them. yet there are places, regions, cities in this country that are being stressed much more than the country as a whole, and one of them is washington, another one california.
governor newsom made important difficult decisions today. and governor cuomo did the same thing. i want to say that i strongly support what he is doing. and one thing, as a new yorker myself, for those who have not figured it out for my accent, as a new yorker i know what new yorkers can do. we are tough. i was in new york city on september 11, 2001, and i know whether new yorkers can do. so please cooperate with your governor, with your mayor, it is very important. thank you. pres. trump: thank you. >> thank you, mr. president. the white house coronavirus task force met this morning and we continue at the president's direction to bring the full resources, not just of the federal government, but with our state governments, businesses around america and in partnership with the american people to respond to the threat of the coronavirus. i no i can speak on behalf of
the president with confidence when i say how inspired we are by the way that the american people and american businesses are coming together to help defeat this virus in our country. millions of americans are putting into practice the president's 15 day guidelines, and we encourage everyone, even those not in areas with significant outbreaks, to review these guidelines over the next week and more and put them into practice. and you will continue to do your part. later today, we will speak with manufacturers around the country and the president and i continue to be inspired by the way american industry is stepping forward, we have businesses utterly volunteering to retrofit plants to help us meet the needs of our health care workers and our health care system in confronting the coronavirus. as the president mentioned, yesterday, following his decision to put fema in the
lead, the emergency declaration, we actually met with all the nation's governors from the fema national response coordination center. the president and i and our team at the federal level could not theore appreciative for efforts of the governors for implementing the guidance that is being issued not only from our task force, but also in taking strong measures in their own communities to protect their citizens. we want to urge every american local authorities, listen to their guidance, and also do your part to slow the spread. we reiterated to all the governors that the president, by putting fema in the lead, will continue to implement a plan that is locally executed, state managed and federally supported that puts the health of america first. we received a report today, as the president mentioned, on our legislative team on capitol hill, working with republicans and democrats at this very hour
to pass an economic recovery package that the president described, and we hope to see congress act on that early next week. on the subject of supplies, we continue to make progress on testing, thanks to the involvement of commercial labs, the public and private partnership, more americans are being tested every day. femarow, the admiral and will update the american public on the status of testing and our support of state-based testing efforts are that are literally expanding by the hour. on the subject of medical supplies, we continue to pursue every means to expand the supply of personal protective equipment for the extraordinary and courageous health care workers that are ministering to the needs of people impacted by the coronavirus. we have a policy of procuring, allocating and conserving the resources and that we have in our system. and now that the president has
worked with congress to make industrial masks fully available for hospitals to be able to purchase and use as protective equipment, we are more encouraged than ever about the availability of those important masks, and over the weekend we will announce a major procurement of masks from the federal government as well. we are also encouraged we are finding new alternatives to increase the supply of ventilators. we mentioned we have a federal stockpile of some 20,000 ventilators on standby, but that does not count the tens of thousands of ventilators in our health care system around the country. the president has challenged us to work to free up ventilators from other sources around the country, and there are two different ways we are doing that. number one, in our recent discussion with
anesthesiologists, we have identified tens of thousands of existing ventilators that can be retrofitted and converted to be ventilators for people who are struggling with the virus. but also on the president's behalf and on behalf of the task force, we want to continue to urge every american and every hospital and health care facility to postpone any elective medical procedures. this will free up bed space, free up hospital capacity for people who are struggling with the coronavirus, and it will also free up equipment that are health care workers need. continuepiring that we to receive reports of businesses around america donating n95 masks to their local hospitals, businesses large and small are donating hundreds, in some cases millions of masks. i know how grateful the president is, and we all are. as all of our experts have said many times, while the threat of
illness to the average american from the coronavirus remains low, every american can do their part to reduce the burden on your health, on your family, the burden on our health care system, and especially the threat to the most vulnerable among us, by putting into practice the president's 15 days to slow the spread. as the president said in his remarks, i know that millions of americans are doing that now and the greatness of the american character is a shining. pres. trump: thank you. ok, thank you. >> you had a call with senator schumer, he said you have agreed to invoke the defense production activity the medical supplies. is that what you are doing now? pres. trump: yes, we invoked it the evening the day before we signed it. and we invoked it yesterday.
we have people working hard on ventilators. >> you are using it now to tell businesses to make respirators, ventilators? pres. trump: for certain things we need, including some of the very important emergency -- i would say ventilators more, masks to a large extent. we have millions of masks that will be distributed to the states. the states are having a hard time getting them, so we are using the act, the act is very good for things like this. we have millions of masks we have ordered and it will be here -- and they will be here soon. >> you are signing it, not invoking it, that is what you said yesterday. you said he would do it. in the worst case scenario are we now in the worst case scenario? pres. trump: we need certain equipment, so we are invoking it to use the powers of the federal government to help the states get things that they need, like the masks and ventilators.
>> what governor cuomo has done in your, anymore consideration for a national locked on people in their homes? pres. trump: i do not think so. they have done it in new york and california. those are two hotbeds. i do not think so, because you go to the midwest and other locations and they are watching on television, but they do not have the same problems, they do not by any means have the same problem. miami, thealifornia, governors are doing an excellent job. governor desantis in florida. we have some hotspots in florida, too. and the state of washington, but that was largely one nursing home that had problems like you wouldn't believe. so we are working with the governors. i do not think we will find that necessary. >> what about the 15 day guidelines, are you happy with the progress? pres. trump: i am happy with the
progress. but we will have to see the results after 14 days, let's say. we will know by the 15th day to see what we do. but i am certainly honored by the way that the american people are working, because it has worked. this is the first time it has ever happened. we are working out a financial package for them so they do not work. who ever heard of this? usually work out a package to get people working. we are asking people not to work. social distancing, that new term that has become the hottest term there is. i'm honored by the way the american people are taking this so seriously. >> question for you and for the doctor. there has been concern on capitol hill that the phase three fiscal stimulus is too much of favor of corporations, not so much for individuals, what did your conversations with chuck schumer yield on that? pres. trump: that is all being
discussed now. as an example, we talked about stock buybacks. i do not want people spending -- i do not want executive saying we will buy 200,000 shares of stock, i want that money for the workers, and also for the company, to keep the company going. but not first stock buybacks. i have not spoken -- for stock buybacks. i have not spoken to a lot of republicans or democrats on it. but i did not like the buybacks. we are discussing that. are you on the same page? pres. trump: we are not very far away. it was explained yesterday that there has been progress with some potential therapy for those infected with the virus. any evidence that suggests that it might be used as a prophylaxis against this virus? dr. fauci: that evidence is
anecdotal evidence. as the president mentioned yesterday, we are trying to strike a balance between making something that has potential of an effect available, at the same time we do it under protocol that would give us the information to determine if it is truly saving effective. t the information is anecdotal, it was not done in a clinical trial, see cannot make a definitive statement about it. ahead.rump: go i amut saying too much, probably more of a fan of that than may be than anybody. but i am a big fan. we will see what happens. we understand what the doctor says is 100% correct, certainly. but i have seen things that are impressive. we will know soon. we will see. including safety. but when you talk about safety,
this has been prescribed for many years for people to combat malaria, which was a big problem. it is very effective. it is a strong drug. we will see. >> [indiscernible] pres. trump: is that a correct statement? it was effective with sars? dr. fauci: it was given to individuals. they felt may be at work. >> was there anything to compare it to? dr. fauci: you do standard of care plus the agent you are evaluating. that is the reason why we showed with ebola those particular interventions worked. about the possible therapies, yesterday you said that they were for immediate delivery. pres. trump: we are ordering them, yes. we have millions of units
ordered. bayer is a big company, one of the companies. a very great company. millions of units are ordered. we will see what happens. we will be talking to the governors about it, and the fda is working on it now. the advantage is it has been prescribed for many years and everybody knows the levels of -- the negatives and positives. mani will say that i am a that comes from a positive school. we will see how it works out, peter. i am not saying it will, but i think people may be surprised. it will be a game changer. we wonder very soon. we have ordered millions of units. bayer,eing ordered from and there are a number of companies that also do it. >> there is no magic drug, would you agree? pres. trump: i think we only
disagree a little bit. i disagree. maybe, maybe not. maybe there is, maybe there isn't. we will see. >> is it possible that your impulse to put a positive spin on things may give americans a false sense of hope? pres. trump: i do not think so. i think it has got -- >> it is a not yet approved drug. pres. trump: look, it may work, it may not work. i agree with the doctor. it may not work. but i feel good about it. that is all it is, just a feeling. you know, i am a smart guy. i feel good about it. we will see soon enough. we have big samples of people, if you look at the people. there are people in big trouble. this is not a drug that obviously i think i can speak for a lot of, from a a lot of experience going because it has been out there for over 20 years. so it is not a drug that you
have a huge amount of danger with. it is not a brand-new drug just created that may have a monumental effect, like kill you. we will know very soon. the fda is working hard to get out. right now in terms of malaria, if you want that you can get a prescription. by the way, it is very effective. it works. i have a feeling -- i am not being optimistic or pessimistic. i think we should give it a try. there has been some interesting things that are happening. some very good things. let's see what happens. we have nothing to lose. you know that expression? what the hell do you have to lose? say to americans that are scared, nearly 200 dead. and millions are scared. what do you say to americans watching right now who are scared? pres. trump: i say that you are a terrible reporter. that is what i say.
i think you had a nasty question. it is a bad signal you are putting out. to the american people the american people are looking for answers and hope. you are doing sensationalism, the same with nbc and comcast. i do not call it comcast, i call it concast. let me say something. that is really bad reporting. you should get back to reporting instead of sensationalism. let's see if it works. it might come in might not. i feel good about it. i have been writing a lot. john? >> let's go back to the science and logistics. the units, are they for distribution to the general public or clinical trials? pres. trump: as i understand it, we will be taking samples -- the new york governor is very interested in it -- and they are going to work on it also, after they get a certain approval. we are waiting for a final approval from the fda.
we will see what happens. we will use it on people who are not doing great, or even at the beginning of not feeling well. what do we have to lose? john, it has been out there for so long. we hear good things. be it works. >> i understand. so that would be a modified access? pres. trump: we are doing it. that is what it is called. >> i would like the doctor to follow up, should americans have hope in this drug? and i want to follow up on peter's question, could you issue or address americans who are scared? this is a very valid concern that people have. there is not much of a difference. the president has a feeling about it. i am saying it might be effective, i am not saying it isn't. it might be effective, but as a scientist, as we are getting it out there we need to do it in a
it to peopleget who have a hope it might work, but you also collecting data that will ultimately show that it is truly effective and deceive under the conditions of covid-19. so it is not different, it is a question of how one feels about it. >> any reason to believe it is not safe? dr. fauci: any drug has toxicities. the decades of experience we have with this drug indicate that the toxicities are rare and reversible in many respects. what we do not know is when you put it in the context of another disease whether it is safe. fundamentally, i think it will probably be safe, but i like to prove things first. it is not a lot of difference. it is the hope it will work versus proving it will work. do not se i do not see a big difference. >> there are people working at
home, doctors who say they do not have masks to do their jobs, what is your message to them? pres. trump: my message to the american people is that there is a low incident of death, you understand that. we will come through this stronger than ever before. if you happen to get it, it is highly unlikely -- it is looking like it is getting to a number much smaller than people originally thought in terms of the ultimate, ultimate problem, which would be death. my message to the american people is, number one, you have done an incredible job. what you have gone through, it was not their fault. it was not the fault of 140 other countries where this has happened. there is tremendous hope. i think we will come out stronger, better, bigger in every way. i think we will be a better country. we learned a lot. we learned on reliance, who to
rely on and who not to rely on. the country has been incredible. including the fact i just spoke with senator chuck schumer. we both want to get to a good solution. really for me,, watching and seeing people that were not speaking now getting along well because we all have one common aim, that is to get rid of the invisible enemy, get rid of it fast, and go back to the economy we had and may even better. yeah? please. the back. >> two questions. many small businesses are concerned that they have weeks, not months. pres. trump: we will be helping them. a big focus, including my conversation with mitch and chuck, a big focus of the conversation was a small businesses, because they are the engine behind our country, more so than the big ones. they are the engine. >> are you concerned about
members of congress that may have used information they learned on updates to sell stocks and profit off of it? pres. trump: i am not aware of it. i know some names. i know everybody mentioned, diane feinstein and a couple of others. i do not know much about what it is about, but i find them to be honorable people. and they said they did nothing wrong. i find it the whole group very honorable people. >> mr. president, the whole group would include richard burr, and it also would include senator kelly, so the question is whether or not they should be investigated for that behavior. pres. trump: you did not mention diane feinstein, a democrat. i think she is an honorable person, by the way, so i am not upset. people, butd two not the democrat. >> any senator?
pres. trump: i find them to be honorable people. said you see yourself as a wartime president, leading the country through a pandemic, to really think that going off on peter and a network is appropriate when the country is going through something like this? pres. trump: i do, because i think peter -- i have dealt with peter for a long time. and i think that peter is not a good journalist when it comes to fairness. >> he is talking about your message to the country. pres. trump: the country has to understand that there is, whether we like it or not, some of the people in this room do not like it, but there is a lot of great news. there is also a lot of fake news. and i understand it all because i am in the middle of it. when somebody does a story on television, and i know it is false or fake. and when they say they have 15 sources, and i know there are no
sources, they are making it up, i called peter out and i call other people out, too. this is a time to come together, but coming together is much harder when we have dishonest journalists. it is a very important profession that you are in. a profession that i think is incredible, i cherish it, but when people are dishonest they truly hurt our country. in the back. has beenesident, china in communication with the united since and the who shut the yet you atders on february 2, and all happened two months ago. -- and all this happened two months ago. why did you say if you had known earlier? pres. trump: i can speak for myself.
i have a good relationship with china and with president xi. i have great respect for president xi, i consider him to be a friend. it is unfortunate that this got out of control. it came from china. some people are upset. i know president xi, he loved china. he respects the united states. and i have to say that i respect china greatly, and i respect president xi. >> talk more about the stock buybacks. is this a dealbreaker for you? pres. trump: i never liked the stock buybacks. tax cut anda big when they took the money and did the buybacks, that is not building a hanger, that is not buying aircraft, that is not doing the things i want them to do. without talking about stock buybacks, we would've had to restrict it, because we thought they would have known better.
but they did not know better. not in all cases. some ended in incredible job, they built plans all over the country. you saw what happened. until this invisible enemy appeared, we never had an economy like this. but it was some companies that used the money to buy back stock, driving up the price of the stock, artificially in many cases. i do not like that. as far as whether or not we will allow them, when we give them money because we have to keep these great companies in business because of the workers, frankly, for the most part because of the workers, they are my number one concern, but the way that we take care of the workers is we have to keep the companies going. i am fine with restricting the buybacks. in fact, i would demand that there are no stock buybacks. i do not want them taking hundreds of millions and buying back their stock, because that does nothing. >> a question for you and dr.
fauci. pres. trump: secretary pompeo's extreme lay busy. busy.extremely if you have any questions for him, please ask. i would like them to go back into his job. does anybody have any questions? >> mr. secretary? >> can i ask a question? pres. trump: how about you. >> the exemptions on work travel, can you define that? can anybody with a work phase across the border? sec. pompeo: there is real concern about agricultural workers that need to go across, we need to make sure we do everything we can to keep that part of our economic lifeblood working. we will work together and we want to make sure that we keep that alive and functional and prepared for the day that this economy bounces back. mr. secretary,
the mexican government has not announced a travel ban on europe. have you been in talks with them as to when they will do this and what it is they are telling you? and they are also telling us, setting up a press conference for the morning, that they will not take back any non-mexican citizen, and third parties will have to -- we do not know what will happen to them. can you address what will happen to those immigrants that you are saying will not be allowed to enter, saying that they will not be allowed to stay in mexico either? sec. pompeo: i will take the first one. with respect to travel into mexico, i spoke with the foreign minister about this. i am confident we will get to a good place that protects mexican people and the american people from those traveling into places where we have a designation from china, so they are not coming to mexico than the u.s.
we will make that announcement shortly together. as we implement the cdc's order, we will take a number of individuals across the border and repatriate them back to mexico, back to the northern triangle and into any other country. we will continue to work with mexico to make sure that mexican nationals go back, as well as other populations. >> are you saying that those who come from cuba, what would you do with those immigrants who are not from mexico? >> we will send individuals back to mexico, back to the northern triangle countries, cuba, all of them. there are 122 different nations that we see nationalities come across the border and we will be sending them back individually to their countries, but also working with mexico to send additional populations back there as well. pres. trump: what you said before, the non-mexicans going to mexico, we are not sending
them to mexico we are sending them back to their own country. why would mexico take people not from mexico? in the case of guatemala, el salvador and a lot of other countries, they go back to the country from where they came. please. >> secretary pompeo, on the issue of disinformation, is there a particular source for this or is it diffused? sec. pompeo: we have seen it come from russia and iran and china, where there are efforts to disparage what america is doing. >> other than what you are doing, what are you doing to fight back? sec. pompeo: we want to make sure the american people go to trusted sources for their information, but we have made clear in we have spoken to those countries directly that they need to knock it off, that we do not approve of it and there are other things we are engaged in to make sure accurate information is out there. this idea of transparency and
accurate information is very important, it is how we protect the american people from something like this ever happening again. does it undermine you when the president says up here and calls us untrustworthy? sec. pompeo: next question. >> in terms of americans who find themselves stranded in places where there are no longer flights to compact the united states, what efforts are being made to help them? sec. pompeo: we are doing lots of things. morocco, i think we had the first three flights out of morocco and we ware trying to get people back. when people can get back on their own, we urge them to do that. we have a team, the repatriation task force, working on each of these instances that we have heard about. we are trying to get americans back from these places.
we will get that done over time and successfully. >> do you know how long? in a sense of how big the problem is? sec. pompeo: we think we have the largest number identified and we are working on that. those that are watching who are someplace, you go to the state department website and you can log in, and we will track you and try to get everybody back. >> how long are the border restrictions likely to last along the south and north borders? sec. pompeo: as long as we need to do it to protect the american people. i could not tell you. >> have you determined whether iran is responsible for the rocket attack last week? sec. pompeo: the rocket attack? pres. trump: maybe we should not say. sec. pompeo: let me get back to you on that. what we can say with certainty is we have made clear all along that the iraqi she and militias, equipped by the iranians.
we have told the iranians that they will be held responsible for those attacks when they threaten american lives. >> what about the peace corps volunteers and 60 plus countries, have they all been returned? sec. pompeo: i know that they were directed to come back, i know that most of them are back but i cannot tell you if we have all of them. >> secretary esper is not here, but the troops in iraq and afghanistan, have they been tested or are they able to get tests? sec. pompeo: we have state department officials that are concerned and we are working on that. we have had significant success to date. there are some places we have not been able to get them. but we will get them there. >> how will you get the americans back, and will the military be involved? sec. pompeo: we will use all the tools we can. the first efforts involve commercial and private flights that will bring them back to a destination in the united states. some will travel back in other ways as well. we have worked with the department of defense to say
where there is space available, we will bring them back on those flights. it is a full government effort. they will help us every place they can. tois there any consideration relaxing sanctions on iran during the current crisis? sec. pompeo: the whole world should know that humanitarian assistance in iran is wide open, it is not sanctioned. we offered assistance to the iranians. i spoke to the world health organization about it. we are doing everything we can to facilitate the humanitarian assistance, and to make sure that the financial transactions can take place as well. there is no section on medicines, no sanctions on humanitarian assistance going into that country. they have a terrible problem and we want health care assistance to get to those people. >> no movement on the sections? -- sanctions?
sec. pompeo: we are working to deliver security for the american people. >> so -- pres. trump: they know the answer. the leaders of iran know the answer. next question. >> -- at a time when thousands are working hard around the world to combat the open them -- the pandemic? sec. pompeo: i know how much the president values the people on my team. i know how much he valued the work we did at the cia. he watches our team, all the teams who are pushing back against the virus. i know how much he values them. pres. trump: what a good answer. >> mr. president -- pres. trump: very true, too. go ahead. >> two questions. t has beenpompeo, i picked up that there was a virus happening in wuhan as early as
december, when did the cdc start letting other agencies know that there was something happening in china, and when did the whole government approach start to happen? sec. pompeo: i will let the cdc talk about that. we were alerted by discussions that dr. redfield, the director of the cdc had with chinese colleagues on february 3. it has since been known that there may have been cases in december, not that we were alerted in december. >> for the president, the other question for you. pres. trump: one more moment. ompeo: we need to know immediately. the world is entitled to know. the chinese government was the first to know of this risk. and that puts a special obligation to make sure that that data gets to our scientists. retribution.bout
we are in a live exercise to get this right. we need to make sure that even today, the datasets that are available to every country, including the data made available to the chinese government, is available to the whole world. it is imperative to keep people safe. we talked about not making judgments about what to do, not able to make judgments about what to do, this is not about political gains. it is about keeping people safe. so when you see a delay in information flowing from the chinese communist party to the technical people who we wanted to get into china to assist with this, every moment of delay to identify the risk vectors creates risk for people all around the world. it is not about blaming somebody for this, this is about moving forward to make sure that we continue to have the information we need to do our jobs. >> what message do you think it sends to other countries it you
have the president of the united states lashing out at reporters? sec. pompeo: i have had my frustration with reporters, too. listen to whatu we say and reported accurately. it is frustrating when that does not happen. we have a responsibility to tell the american people the truth, those reporting it have an equal response ability to report accurately. >> what does it say about the country when you are lashing out at reporters? sec. pompeo: i have seen many things at the state department being reported in accurately and i have spoken to those reporters about it each and every time, and i will continue to do so. >> mr. president -- pres. trump: if you can finish with the secretary. sec. pompeo: i think i have worn them out. pres. trump: is everybody finished? >> johnson has suggested that you and the administration may
have been overreacting, that we should not shut down the economy because thousands of people die on the highways, we do not shut down the economy because thousands die from the flu. say to people who have that view? that is 11 million people he is talking about. pres. trump: the entire world is agreeing with us, because they all have their choice and everybody is doing the exact same thing. we want to shut it down. we will do that and we will see what happens in two or three weeks. if we can save thousands of ifes, millions of lives, so you look at the world, they have smart people in the world, some smart leaders. everybody is doing at the way that we are doing it. i think we are doing a better job than hopefully most, if not all, we are doing an effective job. we will know better in 14 or 15 days.
you are talking about hundreds of thousands, may be more than that, numbers of people. and we can bring our finances but quickly, we cannot bring the people back. >> mr. president, to follow up on that, there are millions of people out there that share that view that say, i do not need to shut things down, i do not need to stay away from stores, i can go to the beach. those people making multiple actions exponentially is the difference between life and death. pres. trump: i agree, but i think i want anthony to answer that, because that is what he does. we had a lot of great, talented people telling us what they think we should do. fauci: i think that is a false equivalency to compare traffic accidents wit h this. when you have something that is youand it is emerging, and
cannot predict totally the impact it is going to have, and you take a look at what is going on in china and you see what is italy, andght now in what is happening in new york city, i do not think that with any moral conscience you could say, let's let it rip and happen and let x percent of people die. i do not understand that reasoning out all. pres. trump: the secretary of state is leaving. any other questions? in the back. excuse me, i did not: you. do you fear that supplies will run out in a matter of weeks? yesterday, the mayor called on you to use the military. america, "the fate of and the city rests in the hands
of one man." i have spoken to emergency department nurses who are being told they should not wear n95 masks because the supplies are so low. how do you respond to mayor bill de blasio? pres. trump: i am not dealing with him, i am dealing with the governor and the governor agrees with me. we have been very much in sync. i guess they are not agreeing with each other necessarily. but the relationship with new york, i love new york. i grew up in new york. the relationship has been very good. and i think that government and the governor have been getting along incredibly well with the federal government. ok. entries, how will the turnback process happen?
it is a public health crisis. we are trying to limit the amount of contact that we have with these individuals. not putting them in facilities. it will be very rapid. we will take them into custody and send them back to a port of entry. not be 10 days that we currently have. >> will they be taken to an airfield? >> that is correct. >> i want to get workers money. whatever is the best way to do it. and i want to keep businesses open.
>> analysts are saying that saying that unemployment numbers could skyrocket. it would be a historic number. as a thousand dollar check going to cut it? >> we are talking about much more than that. we are also talking about doing phases. we will keep doing it until we get it going. once we get the economy back and , thereemy is defeated will all come back to us very quickly. we have a tremendous economy. we do numbers like no other country has ever done before. number one in the world. that money comes back to us very
rapidly. when we win the war with the invisible enemy, these companies can immediately start. >> what are the projections for job losses? pres. trump: we are looking at different numbers. we have a best case and a not best case. the big thing is to defeat the virus. once it is defeated, everything falls in place very rapidly. we could have a tremendous upswing. you look at your stock market geniuses, some of whom are not geniuses but they think they are, a lot of people think i am right about that. virus, itfeat the will be like a rocket going up. i believe we will be stronger than ever.
you told governors to try to find whatever supplies they have on their own. they aresaying that being outbid by the federal government. pres. trump: that was yesterday's news. that will happen. we are getting them to them. we have a lot of things cooking right now at a high level. remember, nothing like this has ever happened before. over 140 countries. you have supply chains that are broken down for two reasons. because they cannot supply that much and people are sick. you have interesting things all over the world. we are getting an ordered and getting it done.
some of you were at the call yesterday when i spoke with the governors. every one of them was very impressed with what we have done. >> the labor department has told states not to disclose their numbers. do you agree with that? you saying that the administration is requiring these industries to create these products? pres. trump: so far we have not have to. it is an amazing thing that has happened. we are being besieged in a beautiful way by companies that want to do the work. they want to help our country. we have not had a problem with that. help out states
and localities that are trying to bid on things like ventilators that are being outbid? >> when they call us, they let us know. if there is a conflict, we will drop our bid. we want them to go first. they are the point-of-sale. few instances where literally that was happening. we are both trying to get stock. us. will call we want them to buy it. it gets to them quicker if they buy it. they know that. it is happening more and more. >> there are labs across the country that do not have the testing supplies that they need. what specific actions are you taking?
pres. trump: it is going very well. we inherited an obsolete deal. we are making tremendous progress in terms of lab testing. they have supplies. we hear of a public health lab that has a concern about the supply or that supply. standing up, we are a laboratory task force to answer those questions. we have had to put out some common myths and truths about this.
our supply people went in the open marketplace. they are not listening or checking with us about all of the freedom and capacity out there. it is a complex system with 330 million americans. sometimes there is a lab that does not have the flexibility. more and more tests are being performed every day. this can give you a sense of the
magnitude of testing that is going on. cases thatumber of we reported today. let me stress how important it was in answering these questions for governors. we briefed governors yesterday. we are sorting out those potential conflicts between significant federal purchases. governors and states are going through their regional administrators.
you are the head of the task force you have seen the numbers. what do you say who -- two americans were scared? >> do not be afraid, be vigilant. the risk of serious illness to the average american is low. but we need every american to put into practice the president's coronavirus guidelines. 15 days to slow the spread. it is three times more .ontagious than the flu you can have very minor symptoms and expose someone who is vulnerable to a very serious health outcome.
they are willing to make products. medical product that we need very badly. >> you have not directed any companies to start making more ventilators or masks? pres. trump: i have. they are making a lot of ventilators and a lot of masks. are there automakers right now who are retooling their production facilities to make ventilators? pres. trump: they will be very shortly. we are working with one in particular that wants to make
ventilators. they called us yesterday. they can do it easily. >> you said you had spoken to the chairman of the carnival corporation and that he could donate ships. pres. trump: he is not giving them. he will let us use them. he said if we need ships for helping people that carnival would be willing to help us.
we are working with the governor of california. we have not made a determination. we are bringing the big hospital ships up. nott sounds like you have taken them up on it yet. pres. trump: i did. a cruise ship has a lot of frequently contacted circuses -- services. do you have concern about them? cleantrump: they are very . the virus disappears ovary time -- over a time.
it disappears. what are you trying to get at? it disappears. the virus disappears when it is on a surface over a number of days. can you name any of the companies that have asked to start making ventilators? pres. trump: i will be but first i want to get the approval from the company. i will let you know. one company that has openly stated it is general motors. i did not speak to them about announcing it. we have others also. outhere is new research that 13% of the people with the
symptoms and cannot get tests. pres. trump: i am not hearing it. we don't want everybody to go out to get a test. there is no reason for it. the real way to get to the end of this is for every single person living in this country to get tested. then you could have. . people go back to work is there any possibility could -- we could get to that point? heard that before. i don't connect the dots there. the things we talked about a , you really want to ratchet it up.
testing is important. it would be nice to know. there are certain things you could do. but let's not conflate testing with the action we had to take. i am not putting down testing. pres. trump: i think it is important that not everybody be tested. if you feel great and you have no symptoms whatsoever, it is not a good thing to be doing. you mentioned the possibility of aerosol transmission of the virus. that possibility always comes up when you have situations like this.
that means they can stay in the air for some time. possible? yes, it certainly is. seen in thehave areas we have experience, most of it is in a situation where people are close enough to each other that asymptomatic person will have a droplet transmission. it is not going to substantially change doing this. what is the demand pressure on testing in this country and are we meeting it? >> i get the same calls that many of you get.
someone who goes into a place who has a symptom and wants to get tested for one reason or another. that is a reality that is happening now. now that we have the private sector involved, the implementation of the availability is getting better. that, i understand and empathize with the people who are saying, i am trying to get a test and i cannot. >> so we are not yet at a point where we are meeting the demand pressure? >> the answer is yes. >> i can't emphasize enough
about the incredible progress we have made on testing. we brought in these and norma's companies. we have this existing system of state laboratories and the cdc processing tests for certain infections. the president ever handed early on that that would not be enough to meet the need. every american to know that hour-by-hour, in partnership with these commercial labs, we are making
more and more tests available every day. we have focused on states that have been dealing with the most serious outbreaks. washington, california, new york, and others. we have been making sure the tests are in those areas. the american people should be happy about the progress we are making. tomorrow we will detail that progress. for any american who has been concerned about having symptoms, we don't want every american to get the test.
we have fixed that system. we have done a great child. we have not been given the credit we deserve. the one who deserves the credit is the american people. they are doing things that nobody thought they would do. we will see you tomorrow. thank you very much. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2019] >> you can see this briefing orin online at c-span.org later here on c-span.
then at noonvel eastern to continue work on a third coronavirus relief bill. talks are ongoing between senate republicans, democrats, and the white house. we could see work continuing through the weekend. so far, no votes are scheduled. watch the senate live on c-span2. two members of the u.s. house have tested positive for the coronavirus. several members of the house and senate have self-quarantined. more on a story we reported earlier of the sale of financial securities by four senators before the crash of the market.
here is a response. coming up, ohio governor mike dewine has another coronavirus briefing that is due to start in a half-hour. we print to bring that to you live -- plan to bring that to life. >> it is easy to follow the federal response to the coronavirus outbreak at \coronavirus. watch briefings and hearings with public health specialists.