Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence as they participate in a Fox News Virtual Town Hall on March 24, 2020.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence as they participate in a Fox News Virtual Town Hall on March 24, 2020. (Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images)

 

Despite CDC Prediction of Surging Death Rate to Come, Pence Confirms Trump's Coronavirus Task Force Winding Down

"They are just going to declare victory, let thousands die, and hope nobody cares too much."

Eoin Higgins

President Donald Trump's coronavirus taskforce is winding down, Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday, with operations expected to conclude by June 1—the very same day an internal document from the Centers for Disease Control predicts will mark a doubling of daily deaths from the disease.

"They are just going to declare victory, let thousands die, and hope nobody cares too much," tweeted journalist Jack Mirkinson.

The New York Times broke the news Tuesday afternoon, reporting that the committee's "gradual demise, which officials said might never be formally announced, would only intensify the questions about whether the administration is adequately organized to address the complex, life-and-death decisions related to the virus and giving adequate voice to scientists and public health experts in making policy."

Pence confirmed the report to the press later Tuesday, saying that the taskforce would aim to end its mission by Memorial Day or June 1 and delegate managing the outbreak to federal agencies. 

"It really is all a reflection of the tremendous progress we've made as a country," Pence said of the taskforce's closure. 

As of press time, 1.22 million Americans were confirmed infected with the disease and 71,148 had died. The death toll is expected rise, according to internal CDC projections published by news outlets on Monday, which showed the daily death rate could increase from its current 1,700 to 3,000 by June 1. 

"Mission Abandoned," tweeted writer Craig Mazin.

Though the White House is wrapping up the taskforce's efforts, a "shadow" group run by presidential advisor and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner will remain in place. That committee, which is expected to continue operations, is reportedly being run by inexperienced volunteer staffers.

According to the Washington Post:

About two dozen employees from Boston Consulting Group, Insight, McKinsey, and other firms have volunteered their time—some on paid vacation leave from their jobs and others without pay—to aid the Trump administration's response to the coronavirus pandemic, according to administration officials and others familiar with the arrangement.

Although some of the volunteers have relevant backgrounds and experience, many others were poorly matched with the jobs they were assigned, including those given the task of securing personal protective equipment, or PPE, for hospitals nationwide, according to a complaint filed last month with the House Oversight Committee.

The volunteers are expected to prioritize communicating with Trump allies, including Fox News personalities with ties to the White House like Brian Kilmeade and Jeanine Pirro.


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.

'Infuriating Disappointment': Biden DHS Ramping Up Deportations to Haiti

"It is unconscionable for the Biden administration to resume deportation flights to Haiti, despite the country's ongoing political, economic, and environmental disasters."

Jessica Corbett ·


Architect of Texas Abortion Ban Takes Aim at LGBTQ+ Rights While Urging Reversal of Roe

"Make no mistake, the goal is to force extreme, outdated, religious-driven values on all of us through the courts."

Jessica Corbett ·


Ahead of Canadian Election, Bernie Sanders and Rashida Tlaib Endorse NDP

"Bernie, you have fought courageously for public healthcare, affordable medication, making the rich pay their fair share, and tackling the climate crisis," said party leader Jagmeet Singh. "We're doing the same here."

Jessica Corbett ·


US Urged to End Drone Strikes After Pentagon Says Killing 10 Afghan Civilians Was 'Horrible Mistake'

"That was not a 'mistake,'" said journalist Anand Giridharadas. "War crimes are not oopsies."

Brett Wilkins ·


40+ NYC Activists Arrested for Protests Against Banks Fueling Climate Emergency

"We're sending a message loud and clear that the little action that politicians and greenwashing CEOs have taken so far does not begin to deal with the magnitude of this crisis."

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo