Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

A patient is transferred from Elmhurst Hospital in New York on April 25, 2020. (Photo: John Lamparski/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

'Kind of Like Large Scale Negligent Homicide': As Trump Urges Reopenings, CDC Report Warns of Surge in Covid-19 Deaths

Internal CDC document projects U.S. coronavirus deaths could reach 3,000 per day by June 1—nearly double the current daily death toll.

Jake Johnson

As President Donald Trump publicly encourages states to reopen their economies against the advice of public health experts, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is privately projecting that U.S. Covid-19 deaths could reach a staggering 3,000 per day by June 1—nearly double the current daily death toll of more than 1,700.

The New York Times on Monday obtained an internal CDC document (pdf) predicting around 200,000 new coronavirus cases each day by the end May, up from around 25,000 new cases per day at present.

"The projections confirm the primary fear of public health experts: that a reopening of the economy will put the nation right back where it was in mid-March, when cases were rising so rapidly in some parts of the country that patients were dying on gurneys in hospital hallways with cases rising so rapidly that the health care system is overloaded," the Times reported.

The CDC projection came to light just hours after Trump claimed during a Fox News town hall that the U.S. has been "successful" in limiting the death toll from the virus. More than 1.1 million people have contracted Covid-19 in the U.S. and nearly 68,000 have died. The virus has killed at least 1,000 people across the nation every day since April 2.

"The administration should be tried for crimes against humanity," Mairav Zonszein wrote in response to the CDC data.

Mother Jones reporter Dan Friedman ripped Trump for publicly urging states to reopen their economies even as his administration predicts a massive surge in coronavirus deaths behind closed doors. Georgia, Texas, Florida, Oklahoma, and other states have begun to lifting social distancing restrictions in recent days despite their lack of adequate testing equipment.

"Keeping dire internal projections private while publicly pushing states to 'reopen' due to electoral considerations is kind of like large scale negligent homicide," Friedman tweeted.

While a number of states have initiated the reopening of their economies, a new analysis published Monday by the Center for American Progress found that none of the nation's fifty states has reached the crucial kind of thresholds public health experts say would be needed to safely do so.

"Based on evidence-based thresholds for incidence and testing, no state is ready to substantially relax its stay-at-home order," wrote Topher Spiro and Emily Gee, the authors of the analysis.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Please select a donation method:

'A Very Serious Threat': CDC Document Warns Delta Variant Is as Contagious as Chickenpox

"People need to understand that we're not crying wolf here," said the CDC director. "It's one of the most transmissible viruses we know about."

Jake Johnson ·


As Biden Refuses to Act, Dems Make Last-Minute Push to Extend Eviction Moratorium

"If the administration won't act to extend the national eviction moratorium that expires on Saturday, we must," said Rep. Pramila Jayapal.

Jake Johnson ·


Poll: Overwhelming Majority of US Voters Want Robust Regulation of Tech Companies

"When it comes to Big Tech's monopoly power and surveillance business model, the public is unified: They want action. They want to see the Big Tech companies broken up and users' privacy protected."

Brett Wilkins ·


228 Republicans Blasted for Brief Urging Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade

"Every single politician who signed this amicus brief is actively working to strip away our fundamental freedoms and endanger pregnant people and families across the country."

Jessica Corbett ·


'Historic Victory': Bayer to End US Residential Sales of Glyphosate-Based Herbicides

"As agricultural, large-scale use of this toxic pesticide continues, our farmworkers remain at risk. It's time for EPA to act and ban glyphosate for all uses."

Kenny Stancil ·