Trump says coronavirus 'worse than Pearl Harbor,' 9/11 attacks

Trump says coronavirus 'worse than Pearl Harbor,' 9/11 attacks
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE told reporters on Wednesday that the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to the death of tens of thousands of people in the United States in recent months, is worse “than Pearl Harbor” and the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.

In remarks in the Oval Office, Trump referred to the ongoing crisis as “the worst attack we've ever had.”

“We went through the worst attack we've ever had in our country. This is really the worst attack we've ever had. This is worse than Pearl Harbor. This is worse than the World Trade Center. There's never been an attack like this,” Trump said of the deadly outbreak, which has resulted in more than 1.2 million cases in the country

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Overall, nearly 72,000 people in the U.S. have died of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, as of Wednesday afternoon. The staggering death toll is more than 24 times higher than the number of those who died in the 2001 terror attacks and more than 29 times higher than the number of fatalities recorded in the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

Trump on Wednesday also said his administration would be “adding some people” to its coronavirus task force after Vice President Pence’s office said earlier this week that the White House was in the early stages of scaling back the unit.

Trump also said on Twitter earlier Wednesday that his administration "may add or subtract people" from the task force, even as some governors have begun phased reopenings in their states in efforts to boost their economies.

“We'll be leaving the task force indefinitely. We'll see. You know at a certain point it'll end. Things end, but we'll be adding some people to the task force,” Trump said at the White House, according to pool reports. “I thought we could wind it down sooner.”

“But I had no idea how popular the task force is until actually yesterday when I started talking about winding it down,” he went. “I get calls from very respected people saying, ‘I think it would be better to keep it going, it's done such a good job.’”

“It's a respected task force. I know it myself. I didn't know whether or not it was appreciated by the public but it is appreciated by the public,” he continued.