US President Donald Trump on Monday suggested he may lift personal and business restrictions once the 15 days of social distancing the administration announced last week end.
“Our country wasn’t built to be shut down,” Trump said at a White House press conference.
“America will again and soon be open to business, a lot sooner than three or four months, as somebody was suggesting,” he said. “We cannot let the cure be worse than the problem itself. At the end of the 15-day period, we will make a decision as to which way we want to go: the timing of the opening of our country.”
Regarding the opinion of health experts about such a move, Trump said: “If it were up to the doctors, they may say, ‘Let’s keep it shut down. Let’s shut down the entire world because you’re up to 150 countries [with coronavirus]. So let’s shut down the entire world, and when we shut it down, that’d be wonderful, and let’s keep it shut for a couple of years.’ We can't do that.”
“I’m not looking at months, I’ll tell you right now,” he said. “We’re going to open up our country.”
When asked what Dr. Anthony Fauci, a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, thinks about such a plan, Trump said: “He doesn’t not agree. He understands there is a tremendous cost to our country both in terms of lives and economics and many, many years of rebuilding something that was a fine-tuned machine.”
Earlier on Monday, US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams warned that the situation in the US was about to take a turn for the worse.
“This week, it’s going to get bad, and we really need to come together as a nation,” he told NBC. “Everybody needs to take the right steps right now, and that means stay at home.”
Trump said he agreed with those remarks, adding: “Certainly this is going to be bad. We’re trying to make it much, much less bad. Obviously, the numbers are going to increase with time, and then they’re going to decrease.”