Protesters encouraged by Trump have spread Covid around state

It was easy to see this coming, with White House experts and the vice-president battling against the President’s messages.

Fox News – Dr. Birx: Michigan protests ‘devastatingly worrisome’

Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of President Trump’s coronavirus task force, warned that some activities that Americans are engaging in across the country are potentially putting lives in danger as the coronavirus pandemic continues to plague the nation.

In a “Fox News Sunday” interview, Birx weighed in on recent incidents ranging from crowds flocking to Califonia beaches to the reopening of salons and spas, but came down particularly hard on Michigan protesters who stormed the state capitol in large numbers without wearing masks.

“It’s devastatingly worrisome to me personally because if they go home and infect their grandmother or their grandfather who has a co-morbid condition and they have a serious or a very unfortunate outcome, they will feel guilty for the rest of our lives. So we need to protect each other at the same time we’re voicing our discontent.”

Fox News:  Gov. Whitmer asks Pence to discourage protests due to concerns of COVID-19 spreading to rural areas

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer told Vice President Mike Pence she was concerned that COVID-19 was spreading to rural parts of Michigan after groups of protesters gathered at the state capitol in defiance of her social distancing orders.

On a call with governors Monday afternoon, ABC News reports that Whitmer told Pence she was not only worried about the safety of those protesting, but also the health and safety of the communities where the protesters lived.

“We have seen from initial protests here is that we’ve got COVID-19 spreading in rural parts of our state, from which people traveled. And so, our ability to move on to the next phase and keep re-engaging our economy. I’m just concerned about it,” Whitmer said. “We’re going to keep watching those numbers and doing the tests.”

Whitmer also asked Pence to reinforce that people should take this seriously.

“If discouraging protests is something you could consider doing, I’d really be grateful,” she added.

Pence didn’t address the concerns over the protest, but later added that the Trump administration will “continue to emphasize to people the safe and responsible practices while we’ll move toward reopening.”

It might be futile for the administration to emphasize to people the safe and responsible practices while the Trump does the opposite.

Michigan has the seventh highest deaths per million of the US states at 468 which is high by international  standards – there are only 4 large countries with higher rates, with the whole of USA on 252.  Current deaths in Michigan 4,674, cases 48,021.

Trump lurches into undermining of state lockdowns

Donald Trump is well known for his inconsistencies and swings, He recently claimed to have supreme power over state governments in dealing with Covid, and then appeared to backtrack a bit.

Now he’s playing with lives and livelihoods in appearing to support protests against Covid-19 lockdowns in states with Democrat governors.

This is just after issuing guidelines for reopening businesses and schools – Trump’s coronavirus reopening guidelines:

President Donald Trump rolled out his guidelines for how the United States can reopen businesses and schools shut down by the coronavirus Thursday evening.

  1. States should have a “downward trajectory” of COVID-19 cases for a 14-day period before reopening, or a downward trajectory of positive tests for the same time period, given flat or increasing testing levels.
  2. U.S. states have core responsibility for testing and tracing citizens. A list of “core state preparedness responsibilities” includes the “ability to quickly set up safe and efficient screening and testing sites” and ensure “surveillance sites are screening for asymptomatic cases” and COVID-19 positive people are traced. U.S. testing to date has been delayed here and chaotic, thanks to federal government roadblocks and failures. Alphabet’s (GOOGL.O) Google and Apple Inc (AAPL.O) are working together on software to make contact tracing easier, but that will not be available here until mid-May.
  3. Phase 1 of the reopening recommends that schools and daycare facilities remain closed and that people maintain social distancing in public. Businesses should continue to encourage teleworking, and meetings of more than 10 people should be discouraged. Event spaces like movie theaters can reopen, with “strict” social distancing measures in place. Elective surgeries can resume, on an outpatient basis. Non-essential travel and visits to senior living facilities should remain suspended. Gyms can reopen, with proper sanitation and distances, but bars should not.
  4. Phase 2 of the plan, which states should progress to after another 14-day decline in positive cases, includes lifting the ban on non-essential travel. It recommends businesses continue to encourage teleworking and close common areas where people congregate. Employers should consider special accommodation for personnel who are members of a “vulnerable population,” which is defined as the elderly or people with underlying conditions like obesity, asthma and chronic lung conditions. Schools and youth activities can resume, and bars can reopen with minimized standing room areas. Large venues, like sporting arenas and houses of worship, can operate under “moderate” physical distancing. Elective surgeries on an in-patient business can resume.
  5. Phase 3 of the plan, which states can enter after another 14-day period of declining cases, allows businesses to resume “unrestricted staffing” of worksites, and visits to senior homes to resume. Large venues can operate with limited physical distancing guidelines and bars can increase standing-room-only areas.

But despite this Trump appears to be encouraging people protesting against lockdowns in some states.

Total deaths to Friday 111 deaths from Covid (+17 today)

Currently 2,227 deaths from Covid (+134 today)

Currently 231 deaths from Covid (+23 today).

USA Today:Trump calls to ‘liberate’ states where protesters have demanded easing coronavirus lockdowns

President Donald Trump called on supporters Friday to “liberate” states that have experienced protests over coronavirus lockdowns, a day after he unveiled guidelines aimed at reopening the nation’s economy.

Less than 24 hoursafter declining to name states he felt are prepared to begin easing social distancing guidelines to halt the spread of the virus, Trump named Virginia, Michigan and Minnesota as states that could benefit from what he described as liberation.

Trump has lurched from slamming Democratic governors, to saying he has developed friendships with them and back to attacking them. In a series of combative tweets Friday, Trump defended his performance on the virus, renewed his criticism of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and attacked his predecessor, President Barack Obama.

All three states that Trump called to “liberate”are led by Democratic governors, and all three have experienced protests in recent days demanding a rollback of stay-at-home orders. Demonstrators drove thousands of vehicles to Michigan’s state Capitol this week to protest Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s stay-at-home order, for instance.

This is dangerous incitement from Trump. With recent jumps in poll support reversing Trump appears to be campaigning in key election states – as usual it’s all bout him, but with Covid many lives are potentially at stake.

Trump has also lurched back into attacking China, Obama and Biden (over H1N1), and Governor Cuomo of New York who wanted more medical equipment.

And it looks like a surge of deaths in the US. Yesterday 2,174,  today 2535, current total 37,154.