During a media briefing on Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence announced that the coronavirus task force will likely disband within a month.
WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday that the White House coronavirus task force will likely disband within a month, even as the number of coronavirus cases climbed passed 1.2 million and the death toll passed 71,000.
The slow shutdown will happen because of "the tremendous progress we've made as a country," Pence said during a task force media briefing at the White House on Tuesday.
While touring a mask factory in Arizona the same day, President Donald Trump acknowledged that reopening the country will mean more American lives are lost, but "we can't keep our country closed. We have to open our country."
"I'm not saying anything is perfect," Trump added, the Washington Post reported. "And, yes, will some people be affected? Yes. Will some people be affected badly? Yes. But we have to get our country open, and we have to get it open soon."
Trump's statement came a day after an internal report from his administration predicted that reopening will come at a cost: 200,000 new coronavirus cases and 3,000 deaths every day by the end of May.
Those projections, based on data collected by various government agencies, far exceed current levels of 30,000 new cases and 1,750 deaths a day, The New York Times reported.