Two US lawmakers exposed to virus before meeting Trump


Category:  News & Politics

Via:  tessylo  •  4 months ago  •  15 comments

Two US lawmakers exposed to virus before meeting Trump

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


Two US lawmakers exposed to virus before meeting Trump

AFP March 9, 2020, 5:22 PM EDT

Washington (AFP) - Two US lawmakers with recent close contacts with President Donald Trump announced Monday that they were in self-quarantine after being exposed to the new coronavirus at a late-February conservative conference.

Republican Representative Doug Collins, who met and shook hands with Trump last Friday at the headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control, said he had been informed he had been in contact with a person who tested positive for the new coronavirus at the conference last month.

A second representative, Matt Gaetz, who traveled with Trump on Air Force One on Monday, likewise announced his self-quarantine after being notified that he too had come in close contact with the infected person at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) 11 days ago.

Neither Collins nor Gaetz reported any symptoms of the virus.

"I have decided to self-quarantine out of an abundance of caution," Collins said.

"He received testing today and expects results soon," Gaetz's office said on his Twitter account.

Collins was with Trump last Friday visiting the Atlanta, Georgia CDC headquarters where they were briefed on the virus's spread.

A photograph published by the Atlanta Constitution-Journal shows the two shaking hands at what appears to be an airport during the visit.

The newspaper said Collins was also in close contact with the state's governor, Brian Kemp, and Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler -- who Collins is challenging for election in November.

There was no immediate comment from the White House.

Five US lawmakers have now said they are distancing themselves from others after coming in contact with coronavirus-infected individuals.

The other three are Republican Senator Ted Cruz and Republican Representative Paul Gosar, both of whom also were exposed at the CPAC conference, and Democratic congresswoman Julia Brownley.

Earlier Monday Trump downplayed the threat of the disease, which has recorded more than 600 cases of the COVID-19 virus in the US, and 26 deaths.

"So last year 37,000 Americans died from the common Flu. It averages between 27,000 and 70,000 per year. Nothing is shut down, life & the economy go on. At this moment there are 546 confirmed cases of CoronaVirus, with 22 deaths. Think about that!" Trump tweeted.


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1  seeder  Tessylo    4 months ago

Sounds like the gop and this administration are spreading the corona virus.

Didn't the moron in chief shake hands with a bunch of people in Florida recently?

Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
1.1  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom  replied to  Tessylo @1    4 months ago
Didn't the moron in chief shake hands with a bunch of people in Florida recently?

Why yes, yes he did.  

In addition, I'm surprised Matt Gaetz is quarantined.  He has that top-of-the-line gas mask he thought was such a hoot.  BTW, someone needs to tell him how his bromance with Trump is being perceived by US citizens, regardless of political affiliation.  Is it possible that he has no idea he is being dog-walked by Trump?  The thing about off-the-chain arrogance is that it comes with its own karmic/comic relief.    

1.2  devangelical  replied to  Tessylo @1    4 months ago

I damn near fell out of my chair laughing when I saw this yesterday. I wonder who the "typhoid larry" was at CPAC. no worries trumpski, no worse than a common cold, says he. hear that knocking? it's karma come to call. bwah ha ha ha, tough shit.

Trout Giggles
1.3  Trout Giggles  replied to  Tessylo @1    4 months ago

I thought trmp was averse to shaking hands?

1.4  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  Tessylo @1    4 months ago

And your point is? Other than sheer hate filled rhetoric that is...

1.4.1  XDm9mm  replied to  Ed-NavDoc @1.4    4 months ago
And your point is? Other than sheer hate filled rhetoric that is...

There is no other point.   The vitriolic hate is all consuming to many on the left.

1.4.2  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  XDm9mm @1.4.1    4 months ago

Sadly, that is true of the extreme fanatics on both sides of the spectrum. It's got to be all their way or no way at all. There can be no middle ground for compromise.

2  seeder  Tessylo    4 months ago

Trump says doctors keep asking how he knows so much about the coronavirus

Tim O'Donnell
The Week March 7, 2020

President Trump mused about a career path not taken Friday.

Speaking to reporters at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, about the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, which is spreading across the United States and throughout the world, Trump mentioned how much he enjoys talking about "this stuff." He attributes his previously unknown interest in epidemiological research to his uncle, Dr. John Trump, who used to teach at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The president, who   considers   himself a genius, raised the scale even higher for his uncle, who he described as a "super genius."

Trump said doctors he's come across as the administration tries to get a handle on the outbreak have been surprised about how much he knows about COVID-19. "Maybe I have a natural ability," he said. "Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president."

Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
2.1  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom  replied to  Tessylo @2    4 months ago
Trump said doctors he's come across as the administration tries to get a handle on the outbreak have been surprised about how much he knows about COVID-19. "Maybe I have a natural ability," he said. "Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president."

What.  An.  Idiot.

lady in black
2.2  lady in black  replied to  Tessylo @2    4 months ago

He is a moronic imbecile.  

3  seeder  Tessylo    4 months ago

Trump’s Coronavirus Press Event Was Even Worse Than It Looked

His remarks at the CDC on Friday were misguided, misleading, and show how misinformation could hamper Covid-19 containment efforts.
From left: Health and Human Services secretary Alex Azar, President Trump, and CDC director Robert Redfield  PHOTOGRAPH: HYOSUB SHIN/AP
During a visit to the Atlanta headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday, President Donald Trump spoke with the press. Alongside CDC director Robert Redfield and Health and Human Services secretary Alex Azar, Trump fielded questions about the federal response to Covid-19, the disease that has so far infected more than 100,000 people around the world and killed more than 3,500—including at least 19 in the United States .

As a reporter, in general I’m not supposed to say something like this, but: The president’s statements to the press were terrifying. That press availability was a repudiation of good science and good crisis management from inside one of the world’s most respected scientific institutions. It was full of Dear Leader-ish compliments, non-sequitorial defenses of unrelated matters, attacks on an American governor, and—most importantly—misinformation about the virus and the US response. That’s particularly painful coming from inside the CDC, a longtime powerhouse in global public health now reduced to being a backdrop for grubby politics. During a public health crisis, clear and true information from leaders is the only way to avoid dangerous panic. Yet here we are.

Most of the deaths from Covid-19 in the US so far have been in Washington state, concentrated in a care facility for the elderly in the Seattle area.   At the CDC , the president said of Washington governor Jay Inslee (who has declared a state of emergency), “That governor is a snake … Let me just tell you, we have a lot of problems with the governor and the governor of Washington. That’s where you have many of your problems, OK?” That animosity doesn’t seem to be related to Inslee’s handling of the outbreak. The president may have been reacting to criticism from Inslee on Twitter about the way the outbreak has been handled, and until last summer Inslee was a candidate for the Democratic nomination to run against Trump in the November presidential election.

Azar started talking about the tests health care workers use to determine whether someone is infected with the new coronavirus. The   lack of those kits   has meant a dangerous lack of   epidemiological information   about the spread and severity of the disease in the US, exacerbated by opacity on the part of the government. Azar tried to say that more tests were on the way, pending quality control.

Then Trump cut Azar off . “But I think, importantly, anybody, right now and yesterday, that needs a test gets a test. They’re there, they have the tests, and the tests are beautiful. Anybody that needs a test gets a test,” Trump said.

This is untrue. Vice President Pence   told reporters   Thursday that the US didn’t have enough test kits to meet demand. New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced that his state would develop its own coronavirus tests because the federal government version   wasn’t available   in enough quantity. In California, the first US resident to contract Covid-19 through community contact didn’t get tested for   four days   after entering the hospital, even though doctors asked for the test, because the criteria for testing were so strict, and only the CDC had test kits. The number of tests available, and the number actually completed, has varied   depending on which government official   was speaking. Federal officials have said they intended to distribute anywhere from thousands to millions of kits, and that as of Friday that   5,861 tests   have been conducted. But that’s actually the number of samples tested, and some tests require more than one sample—so that number doesn’t reflect the actual   number of individual people   tested. A recent   tally   in   The Atlantic   confirmed only 1,895 people had been tested. For comparison, South Korea is testing 10,000 people every day. This lack of data is critical—public health workers need to know how fast an outbreak is spreading, and where, if they’re going to be able to respond to it. An example: People are still arguing over how potentially deadly the virus SARS-CoV-2 is, because they don’t know the baseline number of people infected in the US, because too few people are getting tested. Health workers are flying blind.

The president went on: “If there’s a doctor that wants a test, if there’s somebody coming off a ship like the big monster ship that’s out there right now, which, you know, again, that’s a big decision. Do I want to bring all those people off? People would like me to do that. I don’t like the idea of doing that.”

He was referring, almost certainly, to a cruise ship currently anchored off the California coast, the   Grand Princess , with more than 3,500 people on board. The   Grand Princess   recently sailed from San Francisco to Mexico and back; two people on that trip got sick with what turned out to be Covid-19, and one died. Dozens of passengers stayed on board for a subsequent trip from San Francisco to Hawaii and back. Vice President Pence has   announced   that after an airlift brought test kits to the ship, it turns out that 21 of 46 people tested are positive for the virus. Apparently people on the cruise ship   first heard that news   via … the news, and the vice president’s announcement. They hadn’t been   otherwise informed . Friday night, the US Coast Guard   took one passenger   off the ship by helicopter.

The president seems not to want to allow passengers out of their quarantine on board the ship and into quarantine on land. It wasn’t clear at the CDC why sick people on board the   Grand Princess   wouldn’t get counted in US numbers of infected people, or why he thinks that accounting is relevant, but it very much sounded like the president didn’t want to bring sick people to safety and medical care because doing so might make him look bad. “I like the numbers being where they are. I don’t need to have the numbers double because of one ship that wasn’t our fault,” the president   said . Apparently what that means is that he doesn’t want the numbers of sick people to reflect the actual numbers of sick people—a statistic that would help researchers understand the spread of the disease. (See above.) “They would like to quarantine people. Now when they do that our numbers are going to go up.” (Charitably, the president could have meant that keeping people on the ship together, when many are sick, could exacerbate the situation, as it did during the   two-week quarantine   in Japan of the cruise ship   Diamond Princess , after which six passengers died.) The   Grand Princess   is now expected   to dock   on Monday in Oakland.*

Back on the subject of coronavirus testing, the president continued to insist that not only were there enough tests available, but they worked perfectly. To make that point, he fell back on an older talking point: “The tests are all perfect, like the letter was perfect. The transcription was perfect. This is not as perfect as that, but pretty good.”

By “transcription” the president seems to have been referring here to the misleadingly summarized phone call he had with the president of Ukraine that led to President Trump’s impeachment? The two things have no connection with one another except perhaps the fact that the president here chose the word “perfect,” which he’d also frequently used about his discussions with the Ukranian president.

Then the president returned to another old talking point—that because one of his relatives was a scientist, he, too, is good at science. A reporter started asking a question, and Trump cut her off: “I like this stuff. You know my uncle was a great person. He was at MIT. He taught at MIT for, I think, like, a record number of years. He was a great supergenius, Dr. John Trump.”

The president has often mentioned his uncle, a respected engineer  who worked with Robert Van de Graaf at MIT in the 1930s on electrostatic generators and went on to pioneer the treatment of cancer with radiation. President Trump has brought up his uncle in reference to  climate change  and as evidence that the president himself would have a  genetic predisposition  to be good at science. It’s putting it kindly to call this a bold claim. No one has identified a gene for science ability, because—well, how would that work, exactly? The effects of genetics on intelligence more broadly are controversial in science, and probably much less than the effects of  environment and upbringin g.

“I like this stuff. I really get it. People are surprised that I understand it,” the president went on. He started talking about his tour of the CDC he’d taken before his talk to the press. “Every one of these doctors said, ‘How do you know so much about this?’ Maybe I have a natural ability. Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president.”

It seems unlikely that every scientist at the CDC marveled at the president’s scientific acumen. Earlier in the very same press conference, the president admitted that he didn’t know, before Covid-19, that people died of the flu. Not only does seasonal influenza kill tens of thousands of people every year, but President Trump’s own grandfather was an   early victim   of the global 1918 flu pandemic.

Another piece of countervailing evidence: At a meeting with pharmaceutical executives earlier this week at the White House, people had to explain to the president that a flu vaccine wouldn’t also work against SARS-CoV-2. Also, his administration has   consistently tried to cut the budget for science   agencies. As he took office, public health researchers and epidemiologists   specifically cited   his inexperience and misunderstandings of science as dangers in the event of a disease outbreak. And the administration has   vastly cut back   efforts to   fight disease outbreaks   internationally during Trump’s presidency.

But the president insisted. “I understand that whole world. I love that world. I really do. I love that world,” he said “And you know what? The whole world is relying on us.”

Unclear what he meant there—whether the president loves the world of the CDC, or the world of science or medicine. Regardless, it’s clear that the world is in fact not relying on the US to do anything about Covid-19. According to   Science , at the end of February the World Health Organization had sent its version of a coronavirus test to 57 countries—but not the US, for reasons the US government still hasn’t explained. China was conducting 1.6 million tests a week with five different kinds of test kits, and South Korea had tested 65,000 people—all without US help. Singapore researchers   invented the first blood-based test   for use in keeping track of people with the disease. Italy and Japan are relying on their own public health infrastructures to deal with their outbreaks, and so far every other country where the disease is circulating guarantees paid sick leave, so people can stay home rather than spread it further. That’s a low bar, because the US guarantees zero days of paid sick leave to anyone.

So no. The world is not counting on the US response to Covid-19. And judging by this short press conference at the CDC, that’s probably for the best.

* Updated Sunday, March 8, 2:30pm EDT, with news that the cruise ship off the California coast will be allowed to dock on Monday.

3.1  seeder  Tessylo  replied to  Tessylo @3    4 months ago

Robert Redfield, the Director at the CDC, used to work where I now work, in their Infectious Disease division, he used to be the head of that division.  

Trout Giggles
3.1.1  Trout Giggles  replied to  Tessylo @3.1    4 months ago

I wish he would stop talking for an entire day

4  Kavika     4 months ago

The personification of bumbling idiot.

4.1  JBB  replied to  Kavika @4    4 months ago



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