Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Bill Announcement

Office of the Press Secretary

On Wednesday, July 22, 2020, the President signed into law:

S. 4148, which extends by approximately three years the Department of Homeland Security's authority to administer the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards Program.


Office of the Press Secretary

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

5:50 P.M. EDT

     THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you very much.  Thank you.  Today, my administration reached a historic agreement with Pfizer to produce and deliver 100 million doses of their vaccine immediately following its approval.  Hopefully, the approval process will go very quickly.  And we think we have a winner there.  We also think we have other companies right behind that are doing very well on the vaccines -- long ahead of schedule.

     As part of Operation Warp Speed, this agreement will also ensure that we receive an additional 500 million doses shortly thereafter.  This is another crucial step in our effort to develop, manufacture, and distribute a vaccine in record-breaking time -- really a very small fraction of the time, based on previous schedules.  I want to thank the FDA.  I want to thank everybody involved.  It's been an incredible process.

     As discussed yesterday, the China virus poses the greatest threat to our senior citizens, as we all know.  The median age for those who die from the virus is 78 years old, and nearly half of the deaths have occurred among those living in nursing homes or long-term care facilities.  That's really something.

     In other words, approximately half of the fatalities have occurred among less than 1 percent of the U.S. population.  So think of that: less than 1 percent, half of the fatalities.  So we know what to look for.

     From the beginning, we have made it our top priority to shelter our seniors.  In early March, we announced guidelines suspending all medically unnecessary visits to nursing homes and prioritized resources for those facilities.  And we gave it a very strong priority.  FEMA has sent shipments to many different locations of protective equipment, and it's going directly to 15,400 Medicaid- and Medicare-certified nursing homes throughout the country.

     Today, I'd like to provide an update on the additional actions we've been able to take, and they've been very constructive.  First, we're requiring increased testing of the nursing home personnel in states where you had the worst outbreaks.  All personnel will be tested at the highest level. We're distributing 15,000 rapid, point-of-care diagnostic devices to support this effort.  These are the tests where it takes five minutes to fifteen minutes.  They're very accurate. They're very good.  And we're sending them all over the country.  And over 600 devices will be also shipped this week to additional facilities.

     Second, HHS will be distributing an additional $5 billion from the Provider Relief Fund to all nursing homes.  Nursing homes in higher-risk areas will be receiving more funding.  This money can be used to address critical needs, including the hiring of additional staff, increasing testing, and providing technology support so residents can connect their families and they can connect to their families.  They are having a tremendous time.  They want to be with their loved ones.  They can't do it, so what we're doing is we're working it so that we can connect -- have them connect with their families if they're not able to visit.

     Third, we've been identifying especially high-risk nursing homes and sharing that information with the governors, so that the governors and their staffs can take appropriate action.  We're able to find -- because of the testing programs and other means, we're able to find certain areas that are very high-risk. The governors can then take action.

     Additionally, CMS, CDC, and the U.S. Public Health Service are providing enhanced technical assistance and support, including visits to the highest-risk nursing homes.  And that's their priority right now: nursing homes, but the highest-risk nursing homes.

     CMS and CDC are implementing a national training program focused on infection control for those nursing homes that need it most.  And we have them surveyed, and we have them mostly pinpointed.

     Over the past few months, we've created a surveillance system to detect outbreaks.  And currently, 99 percent of all nursing homes are reporting directly to it, so we have great data.  When a nursing home has three or more cases, we alert the state and make sure that it responds very quickly.  We check on it and make sure they respond very quickly.

     I want to send a message of support and hope to every senior citizen who has been dealing with the struggle of isolation in what should be the golden years of your life.  We will get to the other end of that tunnel very quickly, we hope.  The light is starting to shine.  We will get there very quickly.  But we send our love; we send a message of love -- very important.  We're with you all the way.

     As far as the outbreak in the Sun Belt, I said yesterday: We continue to vigorously combat the rise of cases in the South and Southwest and the West.  We're closely monitoring and aggressively acting to control the infection in Texas, Arizona, California, Florida.  Arizona is starting to come down.  Done a very good job.  They're all doing a good job.  They're very talented people.

     There are likely a number of causes for the spike in infections.  Cases started to rise among young Americans shortly after demonstrations -- which you know very well about -- which presumably triggered a broader relaxation of mitigation efforts nationwide.  And a substantial increase in travel also was a cause.

     Increased gathering on holidays, such as Memorial Day, as well as young people closely congregating at bars and probably other places -- maybe beaches -- four or five different listed places; we have 12 that are listed on the guide -- likely also contributed.

     We're also sharing a 2,000-mile border with Mexico, as we know very well, and cases are surging in Mexico, unfortunately.  I was with the President, and it's a big problem for Mexico.  But cases are surging very sharply and all across the rest of the Western Hemisphere.

     Two hundred and fifty-seven miles of newly constructed wall along the southern border has had a great, positive impact on people coming in.  And we have record-low numbers of people coming in illegally; that's helped greatly.  It was really meant for a different purpose, but it worked out very well for what we're doing right now and for the pandemic.

     Nationwide, beyond the outbreak in several states, cases remain low and very stable.  Nineteen states have positive test rates of less than 5 percent.  Eight states have positive test rates of less than 2 percent.  Our nationwide positive test rate is beginning to decline and is currently at 8.8 percent, compared to over 16 percent at its peak in April.  It's coming down.  It's coming down fairly rapidly.

     Today, we surpassed -- first time -- we surpassed 50 million tests.  That's far more than any country in the world.  India is second, we believe.  We think -- 1.4 billion people; that's about 12 million tests.  We have 50 million tests.

     We're working with every state to ensure the supply of remdesivir for early case intervention and steroid treatment and various other treatments for those that are seriously ill.  We're working very closely with hospitals, doctors, nursing homes -- everybody.  The remdesivir has proven to be terrific.  Our case fatality rate continues to decline, and we want to push this rate even lower.

     The therapeutic research continues daily on new and very promising treatments, including antibody treatments and the use of blood thinners and steroids.  A lot of different things are happening, and a lot of things are coming out that we wouldn't have known a number of months ago.  We're doing tremendously well on therapeutic research and tremendously well on the vaccines.

     And, frankly, therapeutically -- or maybe a word even beyond that word is “cure” -- would be the best of all, and we'll see what happens.  But that would be great if we could go into the hospital, and just cure people.  And we're at a position we're actually able to -- to a certain extent, with what we have right now.  And we think, in a very short period of time, we'll be able to do that.

     Our strategy is to shelter the highest-risk Americans, while allowing younger and healthier citizens to return to work or school while being careful and very vigilant.  Wear a mask, socially distance, and repeatedly wash your hands.  Practice very, very good sanitary means.  You have to do this.  You have to just -- you have to look at it differently.  Wash your hands often.  I'm finding more and more people are saying, “Wash your hands.”  So wash your hands.  We want young Americans to avoid packed bars and other crowded indoor gatherings.

     And we're all in this together.  And as Americans, we're going to get this complete.  We're going to do it properly.  We've been doing it properly.  Sections of the country come up that we didn't anticipate -- for instance, Florida, Texas, et cetera -- but we're working with very talented people, very brilliant people, and it's all going to work out, and it is working out.

     So, with that, I'll take a few questions, please.  Yeah, please.

     Q    Mr. President, I just wanted to ask you a question about the surge of federal agents to various cities.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.

     Q    The mayor of Chicago just said, moments ago, that you're doing this to divert attention from your failures on coronavirus.  You are only targeting cities --

     THE PRESIDENT:  But we haven’t had that failure.  And --

     Q    You are only targeting cities, though, run by Democrats.  Is this just a political stunt?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah, the cities, unfortunately, that are in trouble are all run by Democrats.  You have radical-left Democrats running cities like Chicago and so many others that we just had a news conference.  And, unfortunately, that's the way it is.  I mean, that's the facts.

     When you look at Chicago and you look at the job -- Mayor Lightfoot sent me a letter yesterday, and I think, in their own way, they want us to go in.  There’ll be a time when they're going to want us to go in full blast, but right now we're sending extra people to help.  We're arresting a lot of people that have been very bad.

     As far as the coronavirus, as you say, I think we've done some amazing things, and I think you'll probably see that if you compare our statistics to other countries.  And if you look at death rates, et cetera, you're going to see -- and especially into the future, with what's happening -- you're going to see some very, very impressive numbers for the United States.

     Jon, please.

     Q    Just to follow up on that, sir, real quick?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Go ahead, Jon.

     Q    Mr. President, do you plan to do a national strategy to help schools reopen and reopen safely?  And regarding the children in your family -- your son, your grandchildren -- are you comfortable -- do you plan to have them back in person, in school this fall?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.  Well, I am comfortable with that.  And we do have a national strategy, but, as you know, ultimately it's up to the governors of the states.  I think most governors, many governors want these schools to open.  I would like to see the schools open, especially when you see statistics like this.  We have great statistics on -- on young people and on safety.  So we would like to see schools open.  We want to see the economy open.

     We just had a report, literally as I walked in, that we set an all-time record on housing price increases -- up, I think they said, 21 percent, which is a record.  It’s never happened before.  That's a great sign.

     We have a -- an economy that's going to be booming.  It's going to be -- a lot of jobs are being produced.  The job numbers will be coming out shortly -- meaning over the next week or so -- and I think it'll be a continuation of the last two months.  The last two months have been incredible.

     So I think we're going to have a great economy.  You're going to have a fantastic next year.  I think you're going to have a very good third quarter, actually, when the third quarter numbers come out.  Interestingly, they'll be announced just before the election.  They'll be announced around November 1st.

     So, yeah, I would like to see the schools open -- open 100 percent.  And we'll do it safely; we'll do it carefully.  But when you look at the statis- -- the statistics I just read, having to do with children and -- and safety, they're very impressive.  They have very strong immune systems.

     Q    But you would understand that the --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Please.

     Q    -- the children who go to school then go back to home, they’re with -- some live with their grandparents.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Sure.

     Q    That there's -- there's a real risk.  Would you understand if some schools --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, they do say that they don't transmit very easily.  And a lot of people are saying they don't transmit, and we're looking at that.  We’re studying, Jon, very hard that particular subject: that they don't bring it home with them.

     Now, they don't catch it easily; they don't bring it home easily.  And if they do catch it, they get better fast.  We're looking at that fact.  That is a factor, and we're looking at that very strongly.  We'll be reporting about that over the next week.


     Q    Mr. President, at least three governors today came out with new orders on mask requirements.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.

     Q    Is that something you wish all the governors would do?  Is that something you would encourage?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, a lot of the governors, they have different requirements.  Some of the governors are very strong on masks; others aren't.  I think it’s really going to ultimately be up to them.

     We've given them the facts.  We've given them everything we know.  They have their own facts.  Some are strong on masks, and, as you know, some aren't in the same ballpark.  But I think --

     Q    Shouldn’t they all be?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think all are suggesting if you want to wear a mask, you wear it.  I bring one.  I have one.  I've worn it.  And I think when I'm in certain settings, like hospitals and various -- or when I'm close -- when, you know, when you can’t socially distance, I believe in it.  Let's see: Do I?  I do.  I have it.

     And if -- if -- you know, in certain -- in certain instances, I think you really -- I think you want to travel with a mask.  There are instances where you really can use it.  I would believe it would be a good thing.

     Yeah, please.

     Q    Sir, one, just, follow-up: D.C. Mayor Bowser came out with such an order today.  It, of course, doesn't apply to federal properties, but would you encourage federal properties and -- including the White House complex -- to follow the order?  Or on military bases?

     THE PRESIDENT:  We're going to -- we're going to make a decision over the next 24 hours.  We'll let you know what that decision is.  Okay?

     Q    Thank you.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.


     Q    President Trump, do you agree with Senate Republicans discussing the possibility of extending short-term unemployment insurance today so that they prevent benefits from expiring?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think a lot of politicians are discussing that -- Republicans, Democrats.  And right now, a lot of my representatives are on the Hill.  They’re discussing CARES Act or phase four -- whatever you want to call it.  And I think, ultimately, something good will come out of it.

     The economy is starting to really come back strongly, when you look at the numbers -- even with the fact that -- like California is still closed up and many big states.  I think the numbers are even more impressive, considering that some states like California -- big ones -- are pretty well shut down.

     So we expect to have something over a period of time -- over the appropriate period of time.


     Q    Thank you, sir.  Thank you very much.  These two questions are with Andrew Feinberg and J.C. Bua.  One is: Today you said you're sending federal law enforcement officers to run cities run by “extreme politicians” -- that's the word you used -- which -- who happen to be all Democrats who have supported Black Lives Matter protests.

     THE PRESIDENT:  I didn’t say I that.  I didn’t say who supported --

     Q    Millions of Americans voted for these people --

     THE PRESIDENT:  No.  I said Democrat politicians, and these are the cities where you have the problem.  If you look at Chicago, if you look at Detroit, if you look -- I mean, look around any of these cities where we have the problems.

     And we're sending them help, but we're really waiting for them to call for the big help, for the big numbers, for the large numbers of people that we have ready, willing, and able.

     You look at Chicago, where 14 people were shot yesterday; where, over the weekend, many people died and many people were shot; and, over the last month, they’re setting record numbers.

     We are waiting for the mayor, respectfully, and other mayors and governors to call us.  We are ready, willing, and able to go in there with great force.

     Now, we also have people that are going in and arresting drug dealers, arresting some of the shooters that are doing the shooting.  We know who they are.  We're working with police forces.  And even though, in some cases, they're told, “Don't work with the federal government,” the police forces have great respect for the federal government -- what we do.

     But we're ready, willing, and able to go into these cities that are just being decimated with shooting.  And we're going to help.


     Q    I have a question on crime.  But first, I don't think we really got an explanation yesterday on why the health experts are no longer joining you at these briefings.  Can -- can you explain why?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Because they are briefing me.  I’m meeting them.  I just spoke to Dr. Fauci.  Dr. Birx is right outside.  And they giving me all of -- everything they know, as of -- as of this point in time.  And I'm giving the information to you, and I think it’s probably a very concise way of doing it.  It seems to be working out very well.

     Q    Okay.  So, on crime --

     THE PRESIDENT:  But they’re very much -- they're very much involved.  They're very much -- the relationships are all very good.  All very good.  The relationships that we have with the doctors, with everybody working on the virus has been, I think, extraordinary.

     Kayleigh is here, and I think you would say the same thing.  You work with them all the time.

     Yeah, go ahead.  Please.

     Q    So, on crime: In 2016, you said it was President Obama's fault that homicides were up in Chicago.  So why was it the President's fault then, but it's not your fault now?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Chicago is a disaster.  The mayor is saying, “Don't come in.”  The mayor is telling us not to come in.  At some point, we can void that if we have to, but we -- and we may have to, at some -- because it's out of control.  I assume she's saying that for political reasons.  I think it's negative political reasons.

     She's a -- she's a Democrat.  I'm going to be nice.  She's a Democrat.  She's making a big mistake.  People are dying in Chicago and other cities, and we can solve the problem.  They have to ask us, but --

     Q    Right, but --

     THE PRESIDENT:  -- we can solve the problem.

     Q    -- why was it President Obama's fault in 2016?  You credited it as him being in office.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Because President Obama was invited in, and he did a poor job.  President Obama could have gone into Chicago.  He could have solved the problem, and he didn’t.  In our case, they don’t want us in.  We can solve the problem very easily.  We’re equipped with the best equipment, the best people.

     And you see what we're doing.  I mean, Portland was coming down; it was busting at the seams.  And we went in and protected all the federal buildings.  Those federal buildings are totally protected.  But -- and we had to do that.  And Portland is a very different place than Chicago.

     But Chicago should be calling us -- and so should Philadelphia and Detroit and others -- to go in and really help them.  Because when you're losing many people a weekend -- many, many people; you see the same numbers as I do -- when you’re losing these people, they should call us, and they should say, “Come on in.”  And it's incredible to me, but they're not doing it.

     At some point, they will.  At some point, we may have no other choice but to go in.

     Jeff, please.

     Q    Mr. President, are you looking at closing further Chinese embassies in the United States?

     And did you ask Ambassador Woody Johnson to bring the British Open to your Thurnberry -- or Turnberry property in Scotland?

     THE PRESIDENT:  No, I never spoke to Woody Johnson about that, about Turnberry.  Turnberry is a highly respected course, as you know -- one of the best in the world.

     And I read -- I read a story about it today.  And I had never -- I never spoke to Woody Johnson about doing that.  No.

     As far as closing additional embassies, it's always possible.  You see what's going on.  We thought there was a fire in the one that we did close.  And everybody said, “There's a fire.  There's a fire.”  And I guess they were burning documents or burning papers, and I wonder what that's all about.

     Okay, how about one or two more?  Please.

     Q    Yes, thank you.  Would you like to respond to Joe Biden, who, today, described you -- you might have heard that -- as the first racist to be elected President.  Those are his -- that was his words.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, you know, it’s interesting because we did criminal justice reform.  We passed criminal justice reform, something that Obama and Biden were unable to do.  We did opportunity cities.  We did the greatest -- if you look at what we've done with Opportunity Zones, nobody has ever even thought of a plan like that.

     Prior to the China plague coming in, floating in, coming into our country, and really doing terrible things all over the world -- doing terrible things -- we had the best African American, Hispanic American, Asian American -- almost every group was the best for unemployment.  The unemployment numbers were the best.

     You look at -- so you look at employment; you look at Opportunity Zones; and maybe most importantly of all, you look at criminal justice reform; you look at prison reform.  I've done things that nobody else -- and I've said this, and I say it openly, and not a lot of people dispute it: I've done more for black Americans than anybody, with the possible exception of Abraham Lincoln.  Nobody has even been close.

     Thank you very much everybody.  Thank you.

                        END                6:12 P.M. EDT

1600 Daily The White House • July 22, 2020 NEW: President Trump Announces Actions to Restore Safety and Peace in U.S. Cities

1600 Daily
The White House • July 22, 2020

NEW: President Trump announces actions to restore safety and peace in U.S. cities

On June 29, 4-year-old LeGend Taliferro was shot and killed in his bed after a gunman opened fire on an apartment complex in Kansas City, Missouri.

This afternoon, President Trump announced the expansion of Operation Legend, an interagency law enforcement effort led by the Department of Justice and named after LeGend. Its purpose is to quell the unacceptable levels of recent violence in U.S. cities.

“My first duty as President is to protect the American people, and today I am taking action to fulfill that sacred obligation,” President Trump said.

🎬 President Trump: Anti-police policy and rhetoric has consequences

Attorney General Bill Barr announced the creation of Operation Legend fewer than 10 days after LeGend’s heartbreaking death. The Justice Department is now surging over 200 federal law enforcement officers into Kansas City to help curb the kind of senseless violence that took the young boy’s life.

The President announced today that the operation will expand into Chicago and Albuquerque. Over the next 3 weeks, the Justice Department plans to further expand the initiative into Cleveland, Detroit, and Milwaukee.

In Chicago, for example, more than 300 federal law enforcement personnel will work with state and local police to help apprehend violent criminals. Just yesterday, another mass shooting in Chicago injured 15 people outside of a funeral service.

More than $61 million will be provided by the Justice Department to hire hundreds of new police officers, and about 200 federal agents and deputy marshals will be permanently reassigned to Operation Legend cities.

“We will never defund the police—we will hire more great police,” President Trump said. “We want to make law enforcement stronger, not weaker. What cities are doing is absolute insanity.”

Watch: For decades, politicians have failed law-abiding citizens

President Trump: ‘We’re very close to the vaccine’

President Trump briefed Americans last night on our continued nationwide fight against the Coronavirus. As a result of the Administration’s quick, aggressive response to recent hotspots, there are currently no unfilled equipment requests from governors.

Cases requiring hospitalizations continue to drop, and fatalities have fallen by 75 percent since mid-April. The Administration is working with numerous partners to accelerate the development of a vaccine, and two possibilities will reach their final stage of clinical trials this month. “This was achieved in record time,” President Trump said.

🎬 President Trump: Case fatality rates continue to decline

“Ultimately our goal is not merely to manage the pandemic, but to end it. We want to get rid of it as soon as we can,” the President said. “That is why getting a vaccine remains a top priority.”

He also urged Americans to continue to socially distance—and to wear masks whenever social distancing isn’t possible. “We are imploring young Americans to avoid packed bars and other crowded indoor gatherings. Be safe and be smart,” he said.

Watch: “When you are not able to socially distance, wear a mask”

Photo of the Day

President Trump announces the expansion of Operation Legend | July 22, 2020


Office of the Press Secretary

“We’re deploying every tool, resource, and power at our disposal to protect our seniors and Americans of every age and background.” – President Donald J. Trump

PROTECTING THE VULNERABLE: President Donald J. Trump is making it a priority of our COVID-19 response to protect America’s most vulnerable citizens.
  • President Trump and his Administration are following a four-part strategy to provide additional protection to our most vulnerable seniors.
  • The White House and the Department of Health and Human Services will provide weekly data to States on high-risk nursing homes.
  • The Administration will distribute $5 billion in funding – in addition to approximately $5 billion already approved for skilled nursing facilities – to all nursing homes who receive funds from Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement.
  • To enhance testing in nursing homes, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is mandating that all nursing homes in states with elevated positivity rates test their entire staff each week.
    • To help nursing homes comply with this mandate, the Administration will distribute more than 15,000 rapid point-of-care diagnostic devices and associated tests over the next few months, starting with nursing homes located in hotspot areas.
  • The Administration will continue providing nursing homes and States with substantial technical assistance and training focused on infection control and best practices for nursing homes.
CARING FOR OUR SENIORS: The Trump Administration is focused on slowing the spread of COVID-19 and limiting exposure for America’s nursing home residents.
  • Nursing homes have been severely impacted by COVID-19, with outbreaks occurring in multiple states.
  • The vulnerable nature of a nursing home residents, combined with the inherent risks of congregate living, requires aggressive efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19.  
  • Older Americans have been shown to be at increased risk of COVID-19 complications and the median age of those who have succumbed to the virus nationwide is 78 years old.
  • Data suggests that nearly half of all COVID-19 related deaths have occurred among residents of nursing homes and long-term facilities.
  • By providing additional support to nursing homes, the Administration is ensuring that our vulnerable seniors and support staff are protected.
SUPPORTING NURSING HOMES: Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, President Trump has taken strong action to support nursing home residents and staff.
  • The Administration has provided technical assistance and support to nursing homes and States throughout the pandemic, including onsite visits to higher-risk nursing homes.
  • On April 30, the President announced an initiative to deliver personal protective equipment to more than 15,000 nursing homes across the Nation.
  • CMS has issued comprehensive guidance to support nursing homes in their response to COVID-19, expanding access to free testing and telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries.
  • The Administration has distributed more than 66 million gloves, 14 million masks, and 13 million gowns to nursing homes.

President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Individual to a Key Administration Post

Office of the Press Secretary
President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Individual to a Key Administration Post

Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate the following individual to a key position in his Administration:

Dr. Greg Autry, of California, to be Chief Financial Officer, National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Dr. Greg Autry researches and teaches technology commercialization at the University of Southern California where he is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Entrepreneurship. He also teaches graduate courses in space entrepreneurship for the International Space University Center for Space Entrepreneurship at the Florida Institute of Technology. In addition, Dr. Autry directs the Pacific Commercial Spaceflight Initiative within the Aldrin Space Institute at Florida Institute of Technology.

Dr. Autry currently serves as the Chair of the Safety Working Group on the Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee with the FAA’s Office of Commercial Space Transportation. He is also the Vice President for Space Development at the National Space Society and has published extensively on space policy and the business of space development.

Dr. Autry previously served on the NASA Agency Review Team and as the White House Liaison at NASA. He holds a Master of Business Administration and a PhD from the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine as well as a B.A. from the California Polytechnic University, Pomona.

Text of a Message to the Congress on the Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Transnational Criminal Organizations

Office of the Press Secretary


     Section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1622(d)) provides for the automatic termination of a national emergency unless, within 90 days before the anniversary date of its declaration, the President publishes in the Federal Register and transmits to the Congress a notice stating that the emergency is to continue in effect beyond the anniversary date.  In accordance with this provision, I have sent to the Federal Register for publication the enclosed notice stating that the national emergency with respect to transnational criminal organizations declared in Executive Order 13581 of July 24, 2011, is to continue in effect beyond July 24, 2020.

     The activities of significant transnational criminal organizations have reached such scope and gravity that they threaten the stability of international political and economic systems.  Such organizations are becoming increasingly sophisticated and dangerous to the United States; they are increasingly entrenched in the operations of foreign governments and the international financial system, thereby weakening democratic institutions, degrading the rule of law, and undermining economic markets.  These organizations facilitate and aggravate violent civil conflicts and increasingly facilitate the activities of other dangerous persons. 

     The activities of significant transnational criminal organizations continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.  For these reasons, I have determined that it is necessary to continue the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13581 with respect to transnational criminal organizations.
    July 22, 2020.

Text of a Notice on the Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Transnational Criminal Organizations

Office of the Press Secretary

- - - - - - -


     On July 24, 2011, by Executive Order 13581, the President declared a national emergency with respect to transnational criminal organizations pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701-1706) to deal with the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States constituted by the activities of significant transnational criminal organizations.

     The activities of significant transnational criminal organizations have reached such scope and gravity that they threaten the stability of international political and economic systems.  Such organizations are becoming increasingly sophisticated and dangerous to the United States; they are increasingly entrenched in the operations of foreign governments and the international financial system, thereby weakening democratic institutions, degrading the rule of law, and undermining economic markets.  These organizations facilitate and aggravate violent civil conflicts and increasingly facilitate the activities of other dangerous persons.

     On March 15, 2019, by Executive Order 13863, I took additional steps to deal with the national emergency with respect to transnational criminal organizations in view of the evolution of these organizations as well as the increasing sophistication of their activities, which threaten international political and economic systems and pose a direct threat to the safety and welfare of the United States and its citizens, and given the ability of these organizations to derive revenue through widespread illegal conduct, including acts of violence and abuse that exhibit a wanton disregard for human life as well as many other crimes enriching and empowering these organizations.

     The activities of significant transnational criminal organizations continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.  For these reasons, the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13581 of July 24, 2011, under which additional steps were taken in Executive Order 13863 of March 15, 2019, and the measures adopted to deal with that emergency, must continue in effect beyond July 24, 2020.  Therefore, in accordance with section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1622(d)), I am continuing for 1 year the national emergency with respect to transnational criminal organizations declared in Executive Order 13581.

     This notice shall be published in the Federal Register and transmitted to the Congress.

                             DONALD J. TRUMP
    July 22, 2020.

West Wing Reads It is Trump's Constitutional Duty to Enforce Federal Law And He Should

West Wing Reads

It is Trump's Constitutional Duty to Enforce Federal Law And He Should

“‘[H]e shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.’ . . . The Constitution says the president shall perform this obligation. We’re not talking about an option or something he may do or not do as he sees fit. It is a solemn duty. It is what being the chief executive is all about,” former Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew McCarthy writes for Fox News.

Click here to read more.
“Pfizer said Wednesday it has signed a $1.95 billion pact to provide the U.S. government with 100 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. Americans will receive the vaccine for free, the pharmaceutical company said . . . Pfizer said it's on track to start the next safety and efficacy trial later this month, and is aiming to seek regulatory review as early as October,” Aimee Pichi writes for CBS News.
A mass shooting in Chicago yesterday “left at least 15 people wounded and drew new criticism for the city's leaders, who have pushed back against President Trump's call for federal intervention into big-city lawlessness,” Louis Casiano and David Aaro write. “We thought it was a war out here,” one witness told local reporters. Read more in Fox News.
“Opposition is growing to efforts by the political left to defund the police, with most Americans convinced that such a move will lead to more violent crime,” a new Rasmussen Reports survey finds. “Sixty-four percent (64%) of Americans are concerned that the growing criticism of America’s police will lead to a shortage of police officers and reduce public safety in the community where they live.” Read more in Rasmussen Reports.  


Office of the Press Secretary

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

5:10 P.M. EDT

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, thank you very much, and good afternoon.  Today, I want to provide an update on our response to the China virus and what my administration is doing to get the outbreak in the Sun Belt under control.  It seems largely in Sun Belt but could be spreading.

     My team is also working night and day with Capitol Hill to advance the next economic relief package.  We're working very hard on it.  We're making a lot of progress.  I also know that both sides want to get it done.  We'll call it “phase four.”  I think we're going to get it done.  We'll protect our workers, our schools, and our families, and protect them very strongly.

     As one family, we mourn every precious life that's been lost.  I pledge in their honor that we will develop a vaccine and we will defeat the virus.  We're doing very well with vaccine development and therapeutic development.  But I want to thank our brave doctors and nurses and frontline responders.  The job they do is incredible, and they are truly brave.

     My administration will stop at nothing to save lives and shield the vulnerable, which is so important.  We've learned so much about this disease.  And we know who the vulnerable are, and we are going to indeed shield them.

     And again, the vaccines are coming, and they're coming a lot sooner than anyone thought possible, by years.  If you look at the old system and look at the new system, I think by years.

     The China virus is a vicious and dangerous illness, but we've learned a great deal about it and who it targets.  We are in the process of developing a strategy that's going to be very, very powerful.  We've developed them as we go along.  Some areas of our country are doing very well; others are doing less well.  It will probably, unfortunately, get worse before it gets better -- something I don't like saying about things, but that's the way it is.  It's the way -- it's what we have.  If you look over the world, it's all over the world, and it tends to do that.

     The governors are working very, very hard, and we are supporting them 100 percent.  Everything they need, they get.  And we are taking good care.  We have tremendous supplies and a great supply chain, whether it's ventilators or gowns or just about anything they need.  So that's a big difference from inheriting very, very empty cupboards.

     The median age of those who succumb to the China virus is 78 years old.  Roughly half of all deaths have been individuals in nursing homes or in long-term care.  In one study, 90 percent of those hospitalized had underlying medical conditions, whether it's heart or diabetes, but usually it's some kind of a condition.  It seems that people have that.  And if they do, it's a problem -- no question about it.

     Young adults may often have mild or even no symptoms.  They won't even know they're sick.  They won't have any idea that they have a virus.  They won't have any idea at all.

     America's youth will act responsibly, and we're asking everybody that when you are not able to socially distance, wear a mask, get a mask.  Whether you like the mask or not, they have an impact.  They'll have an effect.  And we need everything we can get.

     Data shows children have the lowest fatality risk.  99.96 percent of all virus fatalities are in adults.  Think of that. So that's much, much, much less than 1 percent for children, young people.

     By understanding these risk profiles and learning how to treat the disease, we've been able to greatly reduce mortality in the United States.  In fact, we'll show you a chart and how well we do compared to the rest of the world.  We have several treatments already available that significantly reduce the severity and duration of the disease, including remdesivir, which has been very successful and a widely available steroid treatment.  And we have many more happening and coming out.

     We've learned best practices for treatment of the virus at every stage and have shared these findings with medical providers, and we've shared them all over the world.  The relationship with other countries has been very strong.  We're all working together.  This includes ensuring all hospitals are aware of the importance of different approaches to oxygen treatment, including high-flow oxygen, the importance of steroid treatment for those on ventilators.

     And when you're on a ventilator, we've learned a tremendous about the use of the ventilator.  And at the beginning, people never had an experience like this, where we needed so many ventilators so fast, and even the use of the ventilators.  But the doctors have become incredibly -- and nurses and helpers have become incredibly good at the use of a ventilator, which is actually a very complicated procedure.

     And allocating remdesivir to hospitals based on new admission since it works best early in hospitalization.  And that's something that they've really started.  They’re using it much earlier.  Fatalities nationwide have fallen 75 percent since mid-April.  It's a great number.

     As cases and fatalities rise in certain hard-hit states, which you're looking at right now, we're surging personnel, supplies, and therapeutics.  We again have tremendous amounts of supplies.  We are in very good shape, and we can move them quickly.

     Our case fatality rate has continued to decline and is lower than the European Union and almost everywhere else in the world.  If you watch American television, you’d think that the United States was the only country involved with and suffering from the China virus.  Well, the world is suffering very badly.  But the fact is that many countries are suffering very, very, very badly, and they've been suffering from this virus for a long time.

     We've done much better than most.  And with the fatality rate at a lower rate than most, it's something that we can talk about, but we're working, again, with them because we're helping a lot of countries that people don't even know about.  I get calls all the time asking for help, especially as it pertains to the ventilators.  They need help with ventilators; they have to get them.  They're very hard to get.  We're making thousands now a month -- thousands of ventilators a month.  It's been quite amazing.

     We keep doing the good job, and things will get better and better.  We'll be putting up charts behind me showing different statistics and different rates of success and, I guess you could say also, things that we can do better on.  But you'll see them.  There'll be put up as we go.

     In April, the average age of individuals who tested positive for the virus was over 50 years old.  Today, the average age is significantly younger.  Hospital lengths of stay are almost half of what they were in April.  So the stays are about half.  The rate of cases requiring hospitalization has been reduced.  And mortality among those admitted to the hospital is nearly one half of what it was in April.

     We've learned a lot.  We've learned a lot about this disease, how to handle it.  The doctors have learned a lot, not only in the use of the ventilators but in many other things.  And things are happening too, like the remdesivir and other elements, steroids, et cetera.

     But these trends could change without our continued and relentless focus.  And that's what we have -- we have a relentless focus.  And it's been that way from the beginning.  But we have learned so much.

     As you know, in recent weeks we've seen a concerning rise in the cases in many parts of our south -- if you look at South, Southwest, and West.  This growth in cases first began to appear in mid-June, primarily among 18- to 35-year-olds, many of whom were asymptomatic.

     We're also facing the challenge of a significant spice [spike] in virus cases across the rest of the Western Hemisphere, including Mexico.  Mexico has been hit very, very, very hard.  As you know, the president, a great gentleman, was here two weeks ago.  And they have really been hit hard.

     Because we've achieved a nearly fourfold increase in testing capacity in two months, we’re successfully identifying more asymptomatic and mild cases.  Some cases so mild that you really don't even treat them.  Some cases with children, where they don't even know that they’re ill.  And I guess they're not very ill because they recover almost immediately.

     Per capita, the U.S. is conducting 50 percent more tests than Europe, and we've conducted nearly three times as many tests as all of the other countries in the Western Hemisphere combined.  We’ll be over 50 million tests.  This allows us to isolate those who are infected, even those without symptoms.  So we know exactly where it's going and when it's going to be there.

     We're also working to reduce turnaround time.  My administration has been aggressively responding to case growth in the Sun Belt, and we continue to do so, working very close with all governors, but right now, in particular, those governors.

     We’re coordinating closely with hospitals and governors.  In the last three weeks, I've sent senior officials into nine states to meet with governors and provide recommendations to the various leaders of the state, including hospital administrators, et cetera.

     My administration currently has zero unfilled requests for -- unfulfilled requests for equipment or anything else that they need from the governors.  No governor needs anything right now, and we think we'll have it that way until the end, because, frankly, we are stocked up and ready to go wherever we have to go.

     We have nearly 7,000 National Guard and military medical personnel in Texas, California, Florida, and Arizona that's helping us greatly.  I want to thank them very much.  The military has been fantastic.

     We're closely monitoring hospital capacity in these states.  Hospitals are open for elective surgeries and other procedures.  So hospitals are open for elective surgeries.

     We want Americans to get the medical treatments they need.  All of the governors we've spoken with say they have enough bed capacity.  That's a great thing.  Our initial shutdown was to prevent the overflow of our hospitals and to allow us to meet the demands caused by this global pandemic, including the ventilators.

     And a permanent shutdown was really never an option.  In terms of what we're doing right now, this would be completely unsustainable, produce debilitating economic fallback, and lead to catastrophic public health consequences.  There are consequences to shutdowns.

     And we've saved, potentially, millions of lives by doing the initial shutdown, but now we're very aware of this disease.  We understand the disease, to a large extent.  Nobody is going to maybe ever fully understand it, but we'll end up with a cure, we'll end up with therapeutics, we'll end up with a vaccine very soon -- all three.

     We’re instead asking Americans to use masks, socially distance, and employ vigorous hygiene -- wash your hands every chance you get -- while sheltering high-risk populations.  We are imploring young Americans to avoid packed bars and other crowded indoor gatherings.  Be safe and be smart.

     We're surging testing capacity to identify and isolate cases.  This includes a newly approved testing platform to nursing homes across the South.  We're being very, very vigilant with respect to nursing homes, because you know all of the problems that we've had with so many people -- so sadly, they were infected -- so that all of the staff and residents can be routinely tested and isolated to ensure our elderly are even more strongly protected than anybody else.  That's really the high-risk people -- the high-risk, wonderful people.

     Once this current surge in cases declines, the same testing platform will enable people to visit their loved ones after taking a test, which is a big difference.  Ultimately, our goal is not merely to manage the pandemic but to end it.  We want to get rid of it as soon as we can.  That is why getting a vaccine remains a top priority.

     Two vaccine candidates are entering the final stage of clinical trials this month.  This was achieved in record time.  It used to be years before you were in a position like we are right now.  Four other vaccines will enter final trials in the following weeks, and we're mass producing all of the top candidates so that the first approved vaccine will be available immediately.

     And logistically, we have the military ready to go.  We have great people -- logistic, military people.  A wonderful general who’s waiting for the vaccine so they can distribute it in record time.  That's what's going to happen.  So our military is all set to go.  We will deliver a vaccine, therapeutics, whatever it is that’s necessary, and defeat the virus once and for all.

     And I'll take a few questions if you'd like.

     I will say this: I want to thank all of the staff -- the White House staff, all of the doctors that we've been working with so closely.  And just a lot of very positive things are happening.  It's a nasty, horrible disease that should've never been allowed to escape China, but it did.  And it infected the world, and the world is suffering.  But we're going to get it taken care of, and we're helping lots of other countries.


     Q    Mr. President, first, I just wanted to get a clarification.  Your Press Secretary said today that you sometimes take more than one test a day.  Why is that?  And how often is that?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I didn’t know about more than one.  I do take probably, on average, a test every two days, three days.  And I don’t know of any time I've taken two tests in one day, but I could see that happening.

     Q    So Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill have both said they want to see more money for testing.  They want to send billions of dollars to the states so they can do more testing.  And you probably saw Mick Mulvaney the other day said that his kids -- it took them a week to get test results back.  He said this is “simply inexcusable” given where we are in the pandemic.  Do you think we have a problem with testing in this country right now?  And are you in favor of more money for testing?

     THE PRESIDENT:  We've done more testing, by far, than anybody.  Some of the tests -- because it is massive volume -- it takes longer.  Others of the tests, as you know, are very quick; they're 5 minutes and 15-minute tests.  And those are, frankly, the ones that I prefer.

     But we're doing massive numbers, and the numbers are coming down.  And as we go, as an example, there are thousands and thousands of kits being made right now which give you a 15-minute and a 5-minute test.  So we'll be able to get those numbers down.

     Those numbers are similar in other places.  They're also doing massive numbers -- numbers like nobody thought possible.  But those numbers will be coming down.  I agree.  I think it's a good thing if we can do that.

     Q    Are you in favor of more money for testing?  That if Republicans want --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, they're going to make a presentation to me tonight and tomorrow on that.  And again, we're leading the world.  And I think the second country at 12 million.  We're -- we're going to be over 50 million tests.  Second country is India with 12 million.  Then you have 7 million, 6 million, and 4 million.  I think that we are doing a tremendous amount of testing.  But if the -- if the doctors and the professionals feel that even though we're at a level that nobody ever dreamt possible, that they would like to do more, I'm okay with it.

     Q    Why aren’t your doctors not with you here today?  Where's Dr. Fauci, Dr. Birx?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, Dr. Birx is right outside.

     Yes, please.

     Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  I have got two questions for you, if that’s all right.  Number one, I just wanted to know, in November, do you want the American people to judge you --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Could you speak up, please?

     Q    Do you want the American people to judge you on the ballot in November by how you’ve handled this pandemic so far?

     THE PRESIDENT:  This, among other things.  I think the American people will judge us on this, but they'll judge us on the economy that I created and that already we're creating.  We're setting record job numbers, as you know.  I think we're going to have a very strong year next year.  I think we're going to have a very strong third quarter, a very good fourth quarter.  But I think next year is going to be a record year, and I think they're going to judge me on that.

     I think they're going to judge me on the tax cutting and the regulation cutting, which nobody has ever done to the extent that we've been able to do it.

     On rebuilding the military, on how we've handled the VA: On the VA, we got Veterans Choice.  Nobody thought that would be possible.  That's been many decades.  They've been trying to get Veterans Choice.  It's called "Choice," where they can go get a doctor if they have to wait on line for two weeks or five weeks or two days.  And frankly, that's been a great thing.  Veterans Accountability -- I think they'll judge me on that. They'll judge me on all of the things we've done.

     I don't think -- and I think we can say this with surety, and it's never ever been even challenged.  In three and a half years, the first three and a half years -- the first years of a presidency -- I don’t think any administration, any President has accomplished so much as we've accomplished, from energy to health to so many other things.

     And then this came in, and the plague -- I call it the "plague" -- the plague came in.  A terrible thing.  Should've been stopped.  Wasn’t stopped.  It came in.  We had to shut things down to save potentially millions of lives.  We did that, and now we've started them up.  And I think we've really started it up very successfully.

     Yeah, please.

     Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  You've been saying for months the virus would simply disappear, and now you're saying that it’s likely to get worse before it gets better.  If it does keep getting worse, if Americans keep dying, are you responsible for them?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, the virus will disappear.  It will disappear.  I think that -- I always like to say, as -- you know, either way, when you look at it, the governors are working with me.  I'm working with the governors.  We're working hand in hand.  I think we're all responsible.  I view it as a team.  Very good relationships with the governors.  Very, very good relationships.

     I could say I'm fully responsible.  But, you know, one day, we had a virus come in, and I closed the borders, did a lot of things that were very good.  In fact, Dr. Fauci said we saved tens of thousands of lives when I closed the border.  And nobody wanted to do it.  I wanted to do it.  We closed the border to China.  We put on the ban.  We didn't want people coming in from heavily infected China.

     Fairly shortly thereafter, I closed the borders from Europe -- coming in from Europe.  Those were tremendous moves.  We would have -- if it's one person, it's too much.  But we're at, let's say, 140,000; we could have double, triple, quadruple that number if we didn't.

     So we did a lot of things right.  We did a lot of things right, including with equipment.  So it's a shame that it happened.  It shouldn't have happened.  China should have stopped it.

     Please.  Yes, go ahead.  Please.

     Q    Thank you, President Trump.  If I could, two questions.  My first question is: We have a very quick testing platform here at the White House.


     Q    It's great.  You get tested, you know, very quickly.  Do you think that it would be easier to reopen and restart businesses if we could produce more of those machines for people?

     THE PRESIDENT:  We're trying to do that.  That’s a great question.  We're trying very much to do that.  So rather than sending your tests in -- and, you know, it goes through the mail one day, comes back another day, no matter how they send them.  It's a day and a day, so that's two days already wasted.  And then, if it spends -- by the time you get it back, it's three or four days, if they do an efficient job.  We're trying to get the testing on site.  I like it the best.

     Q    And my follow-up -- my second question; it's a little bit different topic, but it's one that a lot of people are talking about.  Ghislaine Maxwell is in prison, and so a lot of people want to know if she's going to turn in powerful people. And I know you've talked in the past about Prince Andrew, and you've criticized Bill Clinton's behavior.  I'm wondering, do you feel that she's going to turn in powerful men?  How do you see that working out?

     THE PRESIDENT:  I don't know.  I haven't really been following it too much.  I just wish her well, frankly.  I've met her numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in Palm Beach and I guess they lived in Palm Beach.  But I wish her well, whatever it is.  I don't know the situation with Prince Andrew.  I just don't know.  I'm not aware of it.

     Yeah, please.  Go ahead.

     Q    On unemployment insurance, how much below $600 are you willing to go?  And you've said that the economy is bouncing back strong, so why do we need to even cut it at all?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, the economy is getting stronger, and I think we have a chance to have a very strong economy, especially if some of the things that I just spoke about work.

     We want to have people go back and want to go back to work as opposed to be, sort of, forced into a position where they're making more money than they expected to make.  And the employers are having a hard time getting them back to work.

     So that was a decision that was made.  I was against that original decision, but they did that.  It still worked out well because it gave people a lifeline, a real lifeline.  Now we're doing it again.  They're thinking about doing 70 percent of the amount.  The amount would be the same, but doing it in a little bit smaller initial amounts so that people are going to want to go back to work, as opposed to making so much money that they really don't have to.

     But we were very generous with them.  I think that it's been a tremendously successful program.  The whole thing has been successful, if you look.  I mean, we have -- we're in a pandemic, and yet we're producing tremendous number of jobs.  That was something that nobody thought possible.  Okay?


     Q    Mr. President, thank you very much.  Yesterday, you said that wearing a mask was an act of patriotism.  If that is the case, why don't you do it more frequently?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I do.  I actually do it when I need.  I mean, I carry the mask when I have to go -- I went into Walter Reed Hospital the other day.  I have the mask right here, and I carry it.  And I will use it gladly.  No problem with it.  And I've said that.

     And I say: If you can, use the mask.  When you can, use the mask.  If you're close to each other, if you're in a group, I would put it on.  When I'm in a group -- if I'm in an elevator and there are other people with me, including, like, security people, it's not their fault.  They have to be in the elevator; I want to protect them also.  I put on a mask.

     I will have -- I have no problem with the masks.  I view it this way: Anything that potentially can help -- and that certainly can potentially help -- is a good thing.  I have no problem.  I carry it.  I wear it.  You saw me wearing it a number of times, and I'll continue.


     Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  Thank you --

     Q    A quick follow-up.  Can I ask you a quick follow-up?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Go ahead, please.

     Q    Are you sending mixed messages, though?  Yesterday, you tweeted out an image wearing a mask.  And then, last evening, we saw you not wearing a mask at your hotel.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I don't know.  The hotel -- I was pretty far away from people, but I would say this: I've explained it, I think, very well.  If you're close together, I would put on the mask, and if you're not -- I would say that if you're -- for instance, I'll see -- like, here, you've been all tested; I've been tested.  Oftentimes, I'll be with people that are fully tested; I've been tested.  In theory, you don't need the mask.  I'm getting used to the mask, and the reason is -- think about patriotism.  Maybe it is.  It helps.  It helps.

     Now, we have experts that have said, in the recent past, that masks aren't necessarily good to wear.  You know that.  But now they've changed their mind.  If they change their mind, that's good enough for me.  So I wear it when appropriate.


     Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  Thank you, sir.  A lot of Americans, though, may be surprised at your change of tone over all of this -- a more, perhaps, realistic tone.  Some would look at it that way.  The sudden embrace of masks, social distancing, the --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I've always agreed with that.  I mean, I've never fought either one.  But certainly, social distancing, I want to -- it's -- that's common sense.

     Q    The idea that things --

     THE PRESIDENT:  Six feet, to me, is common sense.  I'd like to say maybe make it a little bit further.

     Q    The idea that things will get worse perhaps before they get better here, and perhaps the realization that this resurgence, if you will, is for real -- when you used to talk about it in terms of little fires being put out here and there. Would you respond that?

     THE PRESIDENT:  We have them too.  No, we have embers and fires, and we have big fires.  And, unfortunately, now Florida is in a little, tough -- or in a big, tough position.  You have a great governor there.  You have a great governor in Texas.  You have people that are very, very skilled people, and I think they're going to handle it very well.

     Their hospital capacities are holding up, but Texas is a big state and it's very well run, and so is Florida, and I think they'll do a very good job.

     Q    Are you changing your tone, though, sir?

     Q    Thank you, Mr. President.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah, go ahead.

     Q    I just wanted to ask you about the issue of vaccines, which you already mentioned.  Yesterday, a study by a Chinese company showed some promising results for its coronavirus vaccine candidate.  If China were first in developing the vaccine, or even if it weren't, would the administration be willing to work with China to bring a successful Chinese vaccine to the U.S.?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah, we're willing to work with anybody that's going to get us a good result.  We're very close to the vaccine.  I think we're going to have some very good results.  We're already in testing; nobody thought that would be possible.  Under the old system, it would be a year to two years before you can even think about using the word “testing.”

     So I think we've had a lot of -- and the reason we're testing: They've had good results.  So now we have to see -- and the testing also for safety because they have to make sure it's safe.  And I think you're going to see something over the next fairly short period of time, maybe very short period of time, having to do with therapeutics and vaccines that are very good.

     So we'll be doing these quite often.  We're going to keep you abreast of this, and we'll also talk about some of the other topics like our economy, which is doing well.  The stock market had another good day.  I think they have a good day because they see a lot of positive things happening on this front too.

     Thank you very much.  Thank you.

                                   END            5:37 P.M. EDT