Coronavirus USA news summary: 10 October
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Is a Trump and Biden face-off likely?
Trump's recent covid-19 diagnosis continues to wreak havoc on the election 2020 schedule.
It was "like a slave factory"
The LA Times released an investigation today into a prison factory in Chino, California in which a prison factory kept running, paying inmates pennies per hour, while a covid-19 outbreak tore through the prison.
Stimulus check talks: the lowdown on why Pelosi and Senate Republicans rejecting Trump's highest bid yet
Regeneron’s CEO says its promising Covid-19 treatment must be rationed
There is not nearly enough of the experimental Covid-19 drug that President Trump called a “cure” after receiving it and promised to distribute for free to treat the many Americans who may need it, the chief executive of Regeneron, the drug’s maker, said on Sunday.
Currently, there are enough doses of the drug to treat 50,000 patients, the company has said. There were more than 51,000 new infections reported in the United States on Saturday alone, according to a New York Times database.
“We have to figure out ways to ration this,” said Dr. Leonard S. Schleifer, the co-founder and CEO of Regeneron.
Fauci says he was taken out of context in new Trump campaign ad
Dr. Anthony Fauci did not consent to being featured in a new advertisement from the Trump campaign touting President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic. The nation's leading infectious disease expert told CNN his words were taken out of context.
"In my nearly five decades of public service, I have never publicly endorsed any political candidate. The comments attributed to me without my permission in the GOP campaign ad were taken out of context from a broad statement I made months ago about the efforts of federal public health officials," Fauci told CNN when asked if he agreed to be featured in the ad.
The Trump campaign released the new ad last week after the President was discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center following treatment for Covid-19. The 30-second ad touts Trump's personal experience with the virus and uses a quote from Fauci in an attempt to make it appear as if he is praising Trump's response.
"President Trump is recovering from the coronavirus, and so is America," the ad's narrator says. "Together we rose to meet the challenge, protecting our seniors, getting them life-saving drugs in record time, sparing no expense."
The ad then flashes to an interview with Fauci in which he says, "I can't imagine that anybody could be doing more." Fauci's quote is from an interview with Fox News in March. During that interview, he praised the White House coronavirus task force's round-the-clock effort to respond to the pandemic.
Trump announces "he's back" after contracting Covid-19
US President Donald Trump has announced his return from Covid-19 in a fundraising letter to supporters sent out on Sunday complete with lots of bolds and caps.
I’ve just been CLEARED by the White House doctor to return to the campaign trail. Amazing! I feel great - better than I have in the last 20 years - and I cannot wait to be back with the American People.
The Democrats were hoping I would be out of commission for WEEKS. They wanted to keep me from YOU. They wanted to keep me from WINNING. Too bad for them - I AM BACK AND BETTER THAN EVER."
WHO warns against Covid-19 lockdowns due to economic damage
The World Health Organization has warned leaders against relying on Covid-19 lockdowns to tackle outbreaks, after previously saying countries should be careful how quickly they re-open.
Dr. David Nabarro said in a video interview with the British magazine The Spectator, that such restrictive measures should only be treated as a last resort.
“We in the World Health Organization do not advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus,” Nabarro said.
“The only time we believe a lockdown is justified is to buy you time to reorganize, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it. Lockdowns just have one consequence that you must never ever belittle, and that is making poor people an awful lot poorer,” he added.
White House pushes for limited coronavirus relief bill as broader effort meets resistance
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows on Sunday called on Congress to pass a coronavirus relief bill using leftover funds from the small business loan program as negotiations on a more comprehensive package face resistance.
Their proposal was the latest twist in the on-again, off-again talks to try to secure more stimulus for the economy. In a letter to House and Senate members, Mnuchin and Meadows said the White House would continue to talk to Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, but that Congress should "immediately vote on a bill" that would enable the use of unused Paycheck Protection Program funds.
"The all or nothing approach is an unacceptable response to the American people," they wrote.
Patriots v Broncos postponed after covid-19 positive
The New England Patriots' Week 5 game against the Denver Broncos has been postponed after their training facility was shut down in the wake of a new positive coronavirus test.
Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore tested positive for covid, it emerged on Wednesday, becoming the team's second high-profile case after Cam Newton.
Quarterback Newton missed the Week 4 trip to the Kansas City Chiefs, with that game pushed back a day as a result of isolated cases for both teams.
The NFL's official website reported that a further positive test occurred on Saturday, causing the training base to be closed. It did not name the Patriots player involved.
In a short statement, the NFL confirmed the Patriots and the Broncos would now have a bye week in light of a COVID-19 positive, with a new date for the game to be announced in due course.
Trump steel tariffs bring job losses to swing state Michigan
President Donald Trump promised a new dawn for the struggling U.S. steel industry in 2016, and the lure of new jobs in Midwestern states including Michigan helped him eke out a surprise election win.
Four years later, Great Lakes Works - once among the state's largest steel plants - has shut down steelmaking operations and put 1,250 workers out of a job. A year before the June layoffs, plant owner United States Steel Corp called off a plan to invest $600 million in upgrades amid deteriorating market conditions.
Trump's strategy centered on shielding U.S. steel mills from foreign competition with a 25% tariff imposed in March 2018. He also promised to boost steel demand through major investments in roads, bridges and other infrastructure.
But higher steel prices resulting from the tariffs dented demand from the Michigan-based U.S. auto industry and other steel consumers. And the Trump administration has never followed through on an infrastructure plan.
Record number of LGBT+ candidates set to run in U.S. election
A record number of LGBT+ people will run for office in next month's U.S. election, reflecting stronger support for LGBT+ rights among Americans that is eroding concerns about the electability of gay, bisexual and transgender candidates.
A report by the LGBTQ Victory Fund, which seeks to elect gay, lesbian, bi or trans lawmakers, said this week at least 574 openly LGBT+ candidates would appear on the ballot for the Nov. 3 election.
That would be a third more than the number who contested the 2018 midterm elections.
"LGBTQ people are running for office in numbers thought unthinkable just a decade ago and the impact will be enormous if this growth trend continues," Annise Parker, head of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, said in an email.
UK study tests if BCG vaccine protects against covid
The widely used BCG tuberculosis vaccine will be tested on frontline care workers in Britain for its effectiveness against covid-19, researchers running the UK arm of a global trial said.
Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine, used to protect against tuberculosis, induces a broad innate immune-system response and has been shown to protect against infection or severe illness with other respiratory pathogens.
"BCG has been shown to boost immunity in a generalised way, which may offer some protection against covid-19," Professor John Campbell, of the University of Exeter Medical School, said. "We are seeking to establish whether the BCG vaccine could help protect people who are at risk of covid. If it does, we could save lives by administering or topping up this readily available and cost-effective vaccination."
Trump says he no longer has COVID-19 and is not a transmission risk
U.S. President Donald Trump said in a Fox News interview on Sunday he no longer has Covid-19 and is not a transmission risk for the virus, as he prepares to hit the campaign trail on Monday with a return to big rallies. Trump said tests showed he would be able to return to campaigning with no risk to others.
His doctor said on Saturday the president was not a transmission risk but did not address whether he tested negative for the virus. "I passed the highest test, the highest standards, and I'm in great shape," Trump said on Fox News Channel. "It seems like I'm immune. I can go way out of the basement."
Patient who caught Covid-19 twice
Jordan Josey came down with Covid-19 symptoms in mid-March and was ill for over a month before starting to feel the effects of his recovery in early May. But just before 4th of July, he started developing Covid-19 symptoms again but this time more debilitating. He was so drained, that doctors first thought he might have glandular fever. It is not known whether Josey fully recovered from his first bout of the virus or was reinfected during a visit to see his family.
Americans trust Biden more than Trump in handling Covid-19 pandemic
Joe Biden would have managed the coronavirus pandemic better than President Donald Trump has according to a poll conducted by ABC News and The Washington Post. A total of 55% of 879 voters would rather have Biden handling the crisis while 38% felt Trump has done what he can.
The poll also revealed that 62% do not believe what Trump has said about Covid-19 and 21% think that the crisis is under control.
More screaming people in close proximity, that's what we need
“I know our governor passed that rule, so certainly, hopefully the university administration decides to let us pack the Swamp against LSU,” Florida Gators coach Dan Mullen said.
“I certainly hope our university administration follows the governor. The governor has passed a rule that we’re allowed to pack the Swamp and have 90,000 in the Swamp to give us the home-field advantage Texas A&M had today.”
When getting your priorities right is a matter of life and death...
"The fact is this pandemic has exposed the cracks in our already broken mental health care system. We can and must do better.
As president, I’ll fight to achieve mental health parity, expand access to care, and wipe out the stigma. #WorldMentalHealthDay"
WHO say lockdowns have to be used strategically
“Lockdowns just have one consequence that you must never ever belittle, and that is making poor people an awful lot poorer,” Dr David Nabarro said to The Spectator.
“We in the World Health Organisation do not advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus.
“The only time we believe a lockdown is justified is to buy you time to reorganise, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it.”
Biden puts case to Pennsylvania
The economy, jobs and, of course, the topic of handling the pandemic are the main factors that Joe Biden is pushing as he bids to take the country in a new, fairer direction.
Will the voters agree? The polls suggest so, but we've seen that before...
WHO vaccine update
'So far, over 170 countries & economies, representing more than 90% of the world’s population, have joined forces in the COVAX Facility. This mechanism stands for safe development, & equitable & smart prioritization of eventual covid-19 vaccines.'
An update thread from the Director-General of the World Health Organization
Texas patient suffers brain damage following infection
A covid-19 patient in Texas who had no respiratory symptoms for the virus has suffered brain damage, which is causing concern for some scientists.
The 30-year-old male had difficulty speaking and walking - signs of damage to the cerebellum, which controls balance and coordination - but didn't have any common symptoms of covid-19, including a fever, cough or chest pains.
Read the full story as Rachel Sadler reports for Newshub.
MLS postpones two matches after positive covid-19 tests
Major League Soccer has postponed two Sunday matches after players and staff tested positive for the coronavirus, the league said, via Reuters.
The Columbus Crew match against Orlando City has been postponed following two confirmed cases of covid-19 among the Columbus Crew staff. MLS has also postponed the FC Dallas vs. Minnesota United match following two confirmed positive cases of covid-19 among the Minnesota United player pool.
'Both matches were postponed to ensure the health and safety of all players and staff, allowing for further testing and evaluation prior to travel and competition,' MLS said in a statement on Saturday. 'Further information about the new match dates and times will be announced at a later date.'
On Friday the league postponed the match between the Colorado Rapids and the LA Galaxy after a Rapids player tested positive, the fourth Rapids match postponed following a flurry of positive tests among Rapids players and staff since 23 September. The positive tests had previously led to the postponement of Rapids games against Sporting Kansas City, the Portland Timbers and LAFC.
India's coronavirus infections cross seven million
As the US approaches eight million, India's coronavirus case tally topped seven million after it reported 74,383 new infections in the last 24 hours, data from the health ministry showed on Sunday, even as the spread moderated in western states such as Maharashtra.
Deaths from covid-19 rose by 918 in the last 24 hours to 108,334, the ministry said. India added a million cases in just 13 days, according to a Reuters tally of government data, and it has the second-highest number of infections, behind the United States.
500,000 sharks could be killed for covid-19 vaccine
A conservation group is warning that the development of an effective coronavirus vaccine on a global scale could ravage shark populations worldwide, as researchers race to produce a vaccine using an oil derived from sharks.
Squalene, a compound that is harvested from the livers of sharks, is a common moisturizing ingredient in cosmetics. It's also used in malaria and flu vaccines as an agent that boosts the immune system's response.
Trump is no longer a covd-19 'transmission risk', says WH doctor
White House physician Sean Conley said President Donald Trump took a covid-19 test on Saturday which showed that he is no longer a 'transmission risk to others.'
Conley said in a statement that tests show there is no longer evidence 'of actively replicating virus.'
The White House had no immediate comment on whether Conley's statement indicated that the president had tested negative for the virus.
Biden points to possible Trump 'chicanery' at the polls
Democratic US presidential nominee Joe Biden said on Saturday 'the only way' he could lose to President Donald Trump was through 'chicanery,' before clarifying that he will accept the election result, Reuters report.
Biden encouraged potential voters at a campaign stop in the must-win battleground of Pennsylvania, telling them 'make sure to vote because the only way we lose this is by the chicanery going on relative to polling places.'
Biden referenced what he said were attempts by Trump to discourage voting, including casting doubt on the security of mail-in ballots and the encouragement of potentially intimidating Republican poll observers. When asked directly, Trump has repeatedly avoided confirming that he would accept the result of the election.
Before leaving the state, Biden told reporters his comments were 'taken a little out of context' and added that 'I'm going to accept the outcome of this election, period.' Biden has previously said that his single greatest concern was Trump trying to 'steal' the victory. His campaign has recruited hundreds of lawyers and volunteers to prevent Election Day chaos.
Trump's campaign has accused Biden of lying and stoking fear. Election experts have been on edge about the process, given chaos and legal challenges during primary elections held amid the outbreak of the novel coronavirus.
New cases of COVID-19 in the United States hit a two-month high on Friday with over 58,000 infections reported and hospitalizations in the Midwest at record levels for a fifth day in a row, according to a Reuters analysis.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Saturday reported 7,641,502 cases of new coronavirus, an increase of 58,302 cases from its previous count, and said that the number of deaths had risen by 926 to 213,037.
Boasting about his achievements and hurling unsubstantiated allegations against his opponents, U.S. President Donald Trump appeared back to his old self as he addressed supporters at the White House in his first public event since being diagnosed with COVID-19.
Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Joe Biden said on Saturday “the only way” he could lose to President Donald Trump was through “chicanery,” before clarifying that he will accept the election result.
Mayors in the UK will be given more control over a coronavirus test-and-trace system as the national government attempts to secure their backing for tough new lockdown rules that are due on Monday, The Sunday Times newspaper reported.
Trump vs Biden: when is the next presidential debate?
There were three live presidential debates planned. The first one was an embarrassing affair and was followed by Donald Trump being hospitalised. The second one has been cancelled. So what next?
Second stimulus check: who would receive payment first?
Talks are ongoing over a coronavirus economic relief bill, which would be expected to include a second round of direct payments.
President Trump takes off his face mask as he comes out on a White House balcony to speak to supporters gathered on the South Lawn on Saturday for a campaign rally that the White House called a 'peaceful protest'.
(Photo: REUTERS/Tom Brenner)
Trump holds White House rally in first public appearance since covid-19 diagnosis
In his first public appearance since being hospitalised with covid-19, US President Donald Trump gave a speech to supporters from a White House balcony on Saturday, declaring that he is “feeling great”.
Trump, who says he is no longer taking medication for the coronavirus, told a reported crowd of 300 to 400 people that the virus is “going to disappear”.
"Through the power of the American spirit, I think more than anything else, science, medicine will eradicate the China virus once and for all," Trump said, per Axios.
He added: "We'll get rid of it all over the world. See big flare-ups in Europe, flare-up in Canada. You saw that today. A lot of flare-ups. It is going to disappear. It is disappearing and the vaccines are going to help and the therapeutics are going to help a lot."
Trump's presidential rival, Democratic candidate Joe Biden, on Friday branded his decision to hold the event while possibly still contagious as "unconscionable".
Coronavirus live US updates: welcome
Hello and welcome to our live, US-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 19:30 ET on Saturday had registered over 37 million cases and 1.07 million deaths worldwide.
In the US, the world's worst-affected country, there have been more than 7.7 million confirmed cases, leading to approximately 214,300 fatalities.