Posted 10 days ago
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congressional Republicans and Democrats clashed about whether the Trump administration had a national strategy to respond to the coronavirus pandemic at the start of a hearing featuring Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ top infectious disease expert.
Fauci’s testimony comes at the end of a month when U. S. coronavirus deaths rose by almost 25,000 and cases doubled in at least 18 states during the month, according to a Reuters tally, dealing a crushing blow to hopes of quickly reopening the economy.
The United States has recorded nearly 1.8 million new cases in July out of its total 4.5 million infections, an increase of 66% with many states yet to report on Friday. Deaths in July rose at least 19% to a total of more than 152,000.
The proceedings got underway with a dispute between the top Democrat and Republican about whether Trump has implemented a national plan to combat the virus.
“The administration’s approach of deferring to states, sidelining experts and rushing to reopen has prolonged this virus and led to thousands of preventable deaths,” said panel Chairman James Clyburn, who denounced Trump’s coronavirus response as “among the worst of any country in the world.”
But Steve Scalise, the subcommittee’s top Republican, dismissed Clyburn’s criticism as political posturing, saying the Trump administration has provided effective plans for schools, em... (Read more)