Sanjay Gupta, CNN's chief medical correspondent, said that Vice President Pence made wrong and misleading claims about the coronavirus in an op-ed touting the administration's supposed success at fighting the disease.
In a series of tweets late Tuesday, Gupta pushed back on many of Pence's claims, saying it's too early to declare victory over the virus and move on.
"While we have flattened the curve in some places, the fight is far from over. And the way to win is not by declaring a premature victory. Yes, scientists all over the world are working to find a vaccine, but we still have to buy them time to do their job," Gupta wrote.
While we have flattened the curve in some places, the fight is far from over. And the way to win is not by declaring a premature victory. Yes, scientists all over the world are working to find a vaccine, but we still have to buy them time to do their job. (23/24)— Dr. Sanjay Gupta (@drsanjaygupta) June 16, 2020
In a Wall Street Journal op-ed Tuesday, Pence blamed the media for stoking concerns of a "second wave" of the coronavirus in the United States, and insisted that most of the increase in COVID-19 infections in recent weeks has been because of an increase in testing.
"That’s not how this works," Gupta wrote. "This may seem counter intuitive, but if you are doing enough testing, cases should start to go down because you are finding people early before they spread it."
April 27 was the last time there was a White House coronavirus task force briefing, leaving us with more than a month without regular updates from the group Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Dems attempt to tie government funding, Ida relief to debt limit Trump lawyer offered six-point plan for Pence to overturn election: book Poll: Trump dominates 2024 Republican primary field MORE was tapped to lead. (1/24)— Dr. Sanjay Gupta (@drsanjaygupta) June 16, 2020
Gupta cited New York, where the seven-day average of the number of tests performed has rapidly increased, while cases have decreased.
Pence claimed Oklahoma has "flattened the curve" and said the number of cases in the state "has declined precipitously."
But the state's infection curve has been rising in recent days, Gupta said, and cases have been increasing while testing has actually been decreasing.
Pence and President TrumpDonald TrumpUN meeting with US, France canceled over scheduling issue Trump sues NYT, Mary Trump over story on tax history McConnell, Shelby offer government funding bill without debt ceiling MORE are scheduled to hold an indoor rally in Tulsa, Okla., on Saturday, in an arena that can hold nearly 20,000 people. There have been mounting concerns among public health experts that the event could contribute significantly to spreading the coronavirus.
City residents and business owners sued in an attempt to stop the rally from happening, and the director of the Tulsa Health Department has said on multiple occasions he wishes the Trump campaign would reconsider and postpone the rally.
Gupta also faulted Trump for not adhering to basic public health recommendations known to slow the spread of the virus, like wearing a mask in public and staying physically distant from other people.