Trump breaks with Fauci on reopening schools

by WorldTribune Staff, May 14, 2020

Dr. Anthony Fauci’s statement expressing hesitancy in opening schools this fall due to the coronavirus is “not an acceptable answer,” President Donald Trump said on Wednesday.

President Donald Trump said he won’t consider a state open unless its schools are open.

During Senate testimony on Tuesday, Fauci said states should reopen carefully to avoid setbacks.

On schools, he said states will have to rely on testing strategies to keep students safe this fall, because it would be a “bridge too far” to bank on treatments or a vaccine by then.

Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, said it would be a mistake to keep schools closed, though Fauci said they must “be careful, especially when it comes to children.”

“I think we better be careful [that] we are not cavalier in thinking children are completely immune to the deleterious effects,” Fauci said.

Trump said Fauci wants to “play all sides of the equation” and was too hesitant about opening up the country.

“I was surprised by his answer, actually, because, you know, it’s just to me it’s not an acceptable answer especially when it comes to schools,” Trump said during a meeting on Wednesday with Colorado and North Dakota leaders in the White House’s Cabinet Room.

Trump said he won’t consider a state open unless its schools are open.

“I think they should open the schools, absolutely,” the president said. “I think they should. It’s had very little impact on young people. And I think that if you’re an instructor, if you’re a teacher, a professor over a certain age like let’s say 65 or maybe even if you want to be conservative, 60, perhaps you want to stay out for a little while longer. But I think you should absolutely open the schools. Our country has got to get back and it’s got to get back as soon as possible, and I don’t consider our country coming back if the schools are closed.”

The virus has “had very little impact on young people and I would strongly say they should open,” Trump added. “It’s up to the governors, it’s the governors’ choice, but their state is not open if the schools aren’t open.”

In an interview with Fox Business Network airing Thursday, Trump told host Maria Bartiromo:

“I think that we have to open our schools. Young people are very, little affected by this. We have to get the schools open, we have to get our country open, we have to open our country. Now we want to do it safely, but we also want to do it as quickly as possible, we can’t keep going on like this. You’re going to have — you’re having bedlam already in the streets, you can’t do this. We have to get it open. I totally disagree with him on schools.”

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