Home Coronavirus ‘It’s something that we have tremendous control of’: President Donald Trump provides...

‘It’s something that we have tremendous control of’: President Donald Trump provides update on COVID-19

Some passengers wear masks after arriving on international flights Sunday, March 15, 2020 at Terminal 5 of O'Hare International Airport amid coronavirus concerns. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

Sunday evening, President Donald Trump addressed the nation in a press conference in which he updated the American public regarding efforts made to mitigate the effects and spread of COVID-19. 

The president applauded the efforts of those in his administration who have been working “around the clock.” 

Trump said, “We are using the full power of the federal government to defeat the coronavirus and we will do whatever it takes. And we’re doing, I think, really, really well. A lot of good things are going to happen.”

The president began his speech by congratulating the efforts of the Federal Reserve and the measures they have taken to provide economic relief to the American public. 

“They lowered the Fed rate from what it was, which was 1.25, and it’s been lowered down to 0.0-0.25 (%). That’s a big difference” Trump stated. Later continuing, “Very importantly, the Federal Reserve is going to be purchasing $500 billion dollars of Treasuries and $200 billion dollars of mortgage-backed Securities, and that number can increase.”

Trump praised the swift efforts of the Federal Reserve by noting that they took action “in one step, they didn’t do it in four steps over a long period of time.” He noted that the stock market should be “very thrilled” with this development. 

“We’re the strongest country in the world by far – financially, and in every other way,” Trump stated.

Trump then transitioned to the coverage of COVID-19 and criticized the news media for the “fake news” that has been published.

“It would be great if we could really give the news correctly. It would be so, so wonderful,” the President said. 

The President made note that he has been in contact with a number of CEO’s of food supply companies. Among them being Whole Foods, Campbell’s Soup Company, Target, Hy-Vee, General Mills, Cisco, Costco, Publix’s, Tyson Foods, Cargill, Kroger, Walmart, Dollar General, and Alberston’s. 

“They’re going to work 24 hours around the clock keeping their stores stocked,” Trump said. “I would like to say that people shouldn’t go out and buy. We’re going to all be great. We’re going to be so good.” After praising the Federal Reserve again, Trump said, “You don’t have to buy so much. Take it easy. Just relax… it all will pass.”

Trump urged people to not continue buying essential supplies in excess. 

“There’s no need for anyone in the country to hoard essential food supplies. They said to me (food supply companies CEO’s), ‘Could you please tell them just go and buy it, enjoy it, and have a nice dinner, relax because there’s plenty.’ You don’t have to buy the quantities because it’s hard to refill the stores on a basis as rapid as their refilling them.” 

Vice President Mike Pence continued the press conference after the president excused himself to “make some calls.” 

“With more than 2,900 cases of coronavirus in 49 states across the country, I want to assure the American people that this administration, all of our partners at the state level, and local health officials have no higher priority than the health and safety of the American public,” Pence began. 

Pence stated that not only a “whole of government approach,” but a “whole of America approach” is what will be most effective in combating the exponential spread of COVID-19. 

According to health experts, for Americans as a whole, the risk of serious illness remains low, Pence noted. He acknowledged those who are most at risk of contracting this virus are the people that they are focusing their efforts towards. 

“Because the risk is heavily weighted to the most vulnerable, the people with immunodeficiencies and to people who are elderly with serious underlying chronic health conditions,” Pence said, “our administration, and I know state administrations, will continue to focus on the most vulnerable and we will continue to urge every American to be vigilant in practicing good hygiene and taking the advice of the CDC and local health experts to keep those most vulnerable safe.” 

Pence went on to commend the efforts of state governors and the “seamless partnership” that has been created with them and health officials. 

“We are in continuous communications with governors. (We are) a phone call away. They know that they can contact us and address even the smallest need. Because as a former governor, I know first hand that when it comes to health challenges in America, our states are on the ground, in the lead.” 

Following Trump’s declaration of today being a National Day of Prayer, Pence commended “communities of faith” that participated and made note of their efforts to “implement policies to keep those most vulnerable safe.”

“Not surprisingly, it is inspiring to see the way tens of millions of Americans are responding with compassion, with common sense,” Pence said.