Trump asserts coronavirus ‘under control’ as stocks plunge
President Trump asserted Monday that the coronavirus is “very much under control” in the United States, even as stock markets plunged amid concerns about the spread of the virus.
“The Coronavirus is very much under control in the USA. We are in contact with everyone and all relevant countries,” Trump, who is traveling on official business in India, tweeted. “CDC & World Health have been working hard and very smart. Stock Market starting to look very good to me!”
The Coronavirus is very much under control in the USA. We are in contact with everyone and all relevant countries. CDC & World Health have been working hard and very smart. Stock Market starting to look very good to me!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2020
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1,031 points on Monday, one of its largest single-day drops in terms of points, as concerns rose about the spread of the coronavirus beyond China.
Trump has sought to project confidence in the steps his administration has taken to contain and mitigate the outbreak as cases are reported in the U.S. and at times has seemed to downplay the threat.
The White House is expected to ask Congress for emergency funding to combat the virus, which is believed to have originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, though it’s unclear yet how much.
There have been a handful of confirmed cases of the virus in the U.S., but it is not spreading among the general public. A number of countries, including Italy and Iran, reported considerable increases in confirmed cases over the weekend.
The Trump administration set up a coronavirus task force in late January and implemented a quarantine and travel restrictions in order to mitigate the spread of the virus. White House principal deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley told reporters at the White House earlier Monday that Trump continues to be briefed on the topic daily.
“The president’s concerns are always the safety and security of the American people, and so in this instance, because he has taken such aggressive action, because he does continue to receive briefings on a daily basis, he just wants to ensure the spread of this virus does not move quickly in this country at all,” Gidley said.
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