•   
  •   
  •   

Politics With social distance safety warnings, Birx tempers Trump's reopening message

01:03  23 may  2020
01:03  23 may  2020 Source:   politico.com

Republican voters give Trump and GOP governors cover to reopen

  Republican voters give Trump and GOP governors cover to reopen A partisan divide over coronavirus has widened in POLITICO/Morning Consult polling over the past month, increasingly leaving Republican voters in the minority.A month ago, half of GOP voters said they were more worried about public health than the economy. Now, fewer than 2 in 5 say their concerns about the physical dangers of the virus outweigh their fears of a free-falling economy — a 13 percent drop. And the percentage of Republicans who said it was more important for the government to address the spread of the virus than the economy fell 22 points, from 65 percent to 43 percent, versus a 15-point drop overall.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.

White House coronavirus coordinator Deborah Birx told Americans they can start venturing out more Memorial Day weekend, but stressed public health precautions and social distancing measures — a message that seemed at odds with President Donald Trump's upbeat tone on normalizing the economy and immediately reopening all houses of worship.

Deborah Birx standing in front of a building: 200522_birx_gty_773.jpg © Alex Wong/Getty Images 200522_birx_gty_773.jpg

"There are a lot of healthy people that look healthy with Covid,” Birx said Friday, adding: “You can go to the beaches if you stay six feet apart. But remember that is your space, and that is the space you need to protect to ensure you are socially distancing for others.” 

‘We need more prayer’: Trump orders states to let houses of worship reopen despite coronavirus crisis

  ‘We need more prayer’: Trump orders states to let houses of worship reopen despite coronavirus crisis In a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room, Trump said he had directed the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to update its coronavirus guidelines so that houses of worship are deemed “essential."President Trump called on governors Friday to let churches and other houses of worship in their states reopen in time for Memorial Day weekend, threatening to “override” them if they refuse even as the U.S. coronavirus death toll surged above 95,000.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.

Bing COVID-19 tracker: Latest numbers by country and state 

Birx repeatedly urged people to only use their own marked tennis balls, avoid touching golf flags, and to under no circumstances share utensils at a meal. She made it clear that the U.S. isn't out of the woods yet, noting a spike in cases in cities such as Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., which have been under lockdown for months.

Trump called an unexpected press conference to announce he was ordering churches, mosques and synagogues open this weekend — and promptly left without taking questions. Birx, who hasn't appeared at a White House press briefing in weeks, remained to deliver her public health plea — including caution about attending religious services in communities that still have outbreaks. 

Sevier County reopening, welcoming guests

  Sevier County reopening, welcoming guests With summer and reopening on the horizon, families across the nation and state are filtering into their favorite East Tennessee playground - Sevier County. © Provided by Knoxville WVLT-TV Source: WVLT One attraction, Gatlinburg's SkyLift Park, is operating under new guidelines, including asking customers to wear masks and social distancing. Marcus Watson, with the park, said, "It really is like a home away from home for people and if they need to feel safe anywhere it needs to be in these mountains.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.

Coronavirus: Donald Trump demands places of worship reopen 'right now' – video. Many sectors, including manufacturing, retail and restaurants have already reopened to various degrees. Birx just warned people to wear masks and observe social distancing over the holiday weekend.


"If there is a heightened number of Covid cases, maybe they wait another week," Birx said of religious attendance. "If there is a high number, there is a way to social distance, as you are here, in places of social worship."

To emphasize the need to maintain precautions, Birx during a brief slideshow presentation discussed data showing how outbreaks started in meatpacking plants, group housing and social gatherings.

"When you go out for this weekend, Memorial Day, and you want to do some kind of social gathering, it is important to maintain that six feet of distance, and to have your mask with you in case a six-foot difference cannot be maintained," she said.

Slideshow by photo services 

The White House task force's daily briefings stopped weeks ago, around the time the administration's stay-at-home guidelines expired in late April. Since then, Trump has mostly appeared with economic advisers, not public health experts, and the messaging has been about reopening the country.

After Birx left the briefing podium, White House press secretary Kaleigh McEnany took her place and got in a testy exchange with reporters over Trump's order for houses of worship to reopen. 

Chris Wallace Grills Dr. Birx: Did White House ‘Underestimate’ Virus and ‘Reopen Too Soon?’ .
Fox News anchor Chris Wallace pressed White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx on the rising coronavirus death count, asking Birx if the Trump administration has “underestimated” the strength of the virus as it rushes to fully reopen the economy. Fox News anchor Chris Wallace pressed White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx on the rising coronavirus death count, asking Birx if the Trump administration has “underestimated” the strength of the virus as it rushes to fully reopen the economy.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks
usr: 1
This is interesting!