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POLITICIZING THE PANDEMIC

‘Stunningly Lunkheaded’ Jim Jordan Decimated as a ‘Loudmouthed Bully’ for Attacking Dr. Fauci in House Hearing

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U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) played to the cameras Friday morning as he bullied, belittled, and attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci during a House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee hearing on the coronavirus crisis.

Jordan tried to politicize the immunologist and public health official’s testimony – and tried get Fauci, who has served for decades as the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), to say that the federal government should shut down the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests under the guise of combatting the pandemic.

“Do protests increase the spread of the virus?” Jordan pointedly asked.

Fauci repeated the question, offering to “make a general statement,” but Jordan immediately interrupted him after the doctor had spoken just 15 words.

“Half a million protestors on June 6 alone,” Jordan declared.

“Crowding particularly when you’re not wearing a mask contributes to the spread of the virus,” Fauci replied.

“Should we limit the protesting?” Jordan pressed.

Stunned, Fauci responded.

“I’m not sure – how do you mean? Should we limit the protesting?”

Jordan, insisting a public health official weigh in on a specific event and a specific legal issue, shot back with a terse and angry answer: “Should government limit the protesting?”

This is a question not for Fauci but for legal experts. Jordan could have asked the question another way, say, “Should the government limit outside events of more than 500 people?” But he didn’t want an answer, he wanted the television footage.

The attack went on for at least two minutes. Ultimately Chairman James Clyburn was forced to intervene.

Many on social media were furious – and only too happy to remind Americans that allegations by numerous of his former college wrestlers have never been resolved.

Some focused on the holes in Jordan’s line of attack:

Some just shared their feelings about the extremely polarizing Congressman:

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POLITICIZING THE PANDEMIC

Trump Shuts Down International Coronavirus Task Force

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The Trump administration is shutting down its international Coronavirus Task Force despite the pandemic surging across the globe, including in the United States. Coronavirus deaths globally just passed 900,000, with the number of cases approaching 28 million.

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which was the base of operations for the administration’s international Coronavirus Task Force, will deactivate the unit Wednesday, according to Politico.

“As we approach the deactivation of the Task Force on Sept. 9, the entire team is focused on ensuring a smooth transition of key functions back to Bureaus and Independent Offices,” an internal note to staffers reads.

President Donald Trump has not held a regular coronavirus press briefing in weeks, and during the Republican National Convention many in his administration referred to the pandemic in the past tense. He also has not been seen wearing a mask since July.

Since April “the White House has placed a slew of new political appointees at USAID,” Politico notes, “some of whom have in the past made comments that have offended women, Muslims, members of the LGBTQ community and others. There have been calls for several of these political appointees to be fired.”

 

 

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POLITICIZING THE PANDEMIC

CDC Chief Slightly Walks Back New White House Imposed COVID Testing Policy Experts Say ‘Will Kill’ – Still Toes Trump Line

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Dr. Robert Redfield, the controversial and embattled Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on Thursday slightly walked back guidance his agency had published on Monday that dramatically reversed months-long policy on coronavirus testing.

That new guidance decreed that even those who have come in close contact with people infected with coronavirus should not be tested unless they were showing symptoms. President Donald Trump has been trying for months to have fewer coronavirus tests performed.

Experts assailed the new policy, with one saying it “will kill” Americans.

The walk back was nuanced. CNBC described Redfield’s remarks as “defending” the guidance released earlier this week.

On Monday the CDC said those those who “have been in close contact (within 6 feet) of a person with a COVID-19 infection for at least 15 minutes but do not have symptoms…do not necessarily need a test.”

On Thursday Redfield massage the policy to say for those who have been exposed, “testing may be considered.”

It’s a small but important – for the Trump- administration – change, because it keeps the decision to test in the hands of medical professionals, which means fewer Americans will get tested, achieving Trump’s goal.

The decision to change the policy came from the top of the Trump White House, CNN reported Wednesday.

On Thursday, Redfield was careful to toe Trump’s line, even saying – falsely – that “Everyone who needs a Covid-19 test, can get a test.”

The Hill notes that Trump is achieving his goal of less testing.

“After reaching a peak of nearly a million new tests a month ago, the number of tests conducted on a daily basis has declined to fewer than 700,000 over the last four days, according to data maintained by the Covid Tracking Project, an independent group of researchers.”

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POLITICIZING THE PANDEMIC

‘Coming From the Top’: CDC Was Pressured to Issue Dramatic Reversal on Coronavirus Testing Says Federal Official

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has quietly issued a dramatic reversal on coronavirus testing guidelines, and after experts warned the new policy “will kill,” a federal health official says the nation’s top health agency was pressured “from the top” of the upper ranks of the Trump administration.

“It’s coming from the top down,” a federal health official told CNN.

The new guidelines say even after close contact with someone who has been infected with the coronavirus testing is “not necessarily” needed, and the decision to test or not should be made by a medical professional.

“If you have been in close contact (within 6 feet) of a person with a COVID-19 infection for at least 15 minutes but do not have symptoms,” the CDC’s updated guidance now says, “You do not necessarily need a test unless you are a vulnerable individual or your health care provider or State or local public health officials recommend you take one.”

President Donald Trump has been adamant that more tests mean more cases of coronavirus, which is not only illogical but plainly a lie.

Yale University Professor of Epidemiology Alison Galvani, who is also Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Modeling and Analysis says “This change in policy will kill.”

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