The Past 24 Hours Or So

Your Daily Dose of Trump and His Administration News

Coronavirus/COVID-19 Updates

  • President Trump has upended the panel of federal watchdogs overseeing implementation of the $2 trillion coronavirus law, tapping a replacement for the Pentagon official who was supposed to lead the effort.

A panel of inspectors general had named, acting Pentagon watchdog, Glenn Fine to lead the group charged with monitoring the coronavirus relief effort. But Trump on Monday removed Fine from his post, instead naming the EPA inspector general to serve as the temporary Pentagon watchdog in addition to his other responsibilities.

  • White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow on Tuesday left open the possibility that the administration would seek more money to fund government-backed small business loans amid surging demand for the $350 billion that Congress allocated in last month’s rescue package.
  • President Trump signed an executive order to shore up international support for mining the Moon or other bodies in the solar system. The executive order directs the State Department to find international partners that are interested in collaborating with the U.S. on creating “sustainable operations” related to commercial use of space-based resources.
  • A crew member aboard the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort has tested positive for novel coronavirus and is currently in isolation aboard the ship that is currently docked in New York City, according to a U.S. Navy statement.
  • The federal ‘Air Bridge’ flights from China, organized by the White House taskforce, are bringing PPE back from China which are then turned over to private companies. The states then have to bid against each other to purchase from those companies.
  • The White House is considering offering a coronavirus-related Treasury bond equivalent to a war bond to spur investment in the economy according to National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow.
  • Surgeon General Jerome Adams said African Americans, who are more likely to have preexisting conditions and lack access to healthcare, are at a higher risk during the coronavirus pandemic as numbers begin to reveal a disparity in cases and deaths.
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is predicting the country will be in “good shape” for reopening school by the start of next school year in the fall as the government will have parts of the pandemic under control.

“Bottom line is: No absolute prediction, but I think we’re going to be in good shape.”

  • Just minutes after announcing plans to slash funding for the World Health Organization, President Trump walked back his comments when pressed by reporters.

“I mean, I‘m not saying I‘m going to do it, but we are going to look at it,” he said. “I said we’re going to look at it. We’re going to investigate it, we’re going to look at it. But we will look at ending funding.”

  • Senior health officials are now predicting the total number of Americans to die as a result of the coronavirus pandemic could be significantly fewer than models previously estimated, citing the effectiveness of social-distancing guidelines.

Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Monday that earlier projections of the disease’s death toll in the United States assumed roughly half of Americans “would pay attention to the recommendations” first issued in March.

Other Administration News

  • A federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. has just handed a major win to the Trump administration, lifting a lower court ruling that halted Trump’s plan to resume federal death sentences under a new lethal injection protocol.
  • Stephanie Grisham is leaving her position as White House press secretary after less than a year on the job and will return to her original post representing first lady Melanie Trump.

Trump’s third press secretary, who replaced Sarah Sanders last June, has never conducted a White House press briefing.

  • Kayleigh McEnany will replace Stephanie Grisham as White House press secretary. 
  • Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly has submitted his resignation after calling the ousted commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt “stupid” in an address to the ship’s crew.
  • Trump told the egregious lie that Ivanka Trump “created over 15 million jobs.” 

NOTE: That would be more than twice the total number of jobs created in the country before coronavirus wrecked the economy.

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