- The Washington Times
Tuesday, September 15, 2020

It could be three weeks before there’s a COVID-19 vaccine, the president announced at a town hall hosted by ABC in Pennsylvania on Tuesday.

President Trump told voters at the event in Philadelphia at the National Constitution Center that the previous administration would have taken years to produce a vaccine for the pandemic.


“Could be three weeks, four weeks,” he told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos. “We think we have it.”

There’s been more than 195,000 Americans who have lost their lives to COVID-19, and 6.6 million cases in the U.S. The U.S. has a population of almost 330 million.

The president was defensive on his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, saying he shut the country down early compared to others who were downplaying the virus.

The president was defensive on his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, saying he shut the country down early compared to others who were downplaying the virus.

There’s been more than 195,000 Americans who have lost their lives to COVID-19, and 6.6 million cases in the U.S.

The president pointed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi walking through Chinatown in San Francisco telling people to come visit and accused Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden of downplaying the virus in March.

Mr. Trump, though, admitted on recently released tapes by Bob Woodward to downplaying the virus in early February so as not to panic the public.

“We are starting to get very good marks if you look at what we’ve done compared to other countries,” the president said, referencing America doing far more testing than other countries.

He said if Mr. Biden gets into office, he would raise taxes and double up on regulations, which would be an economic catastrophe.

“If Joe Biden ever got in, I think you would have a depression the likes of which you have never seen,” Mr. Trump said. “It affects everybody.”

Mr. Trump said he’s learned how fragile life is from handling the coronavirus, saying it’s been the most difficult time during his presidency.

“It was the fault of a country that could have stopped it,” Mr. Trump said of China.

The president said he doesn’t think there was anything else he could have done to stop the virus.

Race relations was also a topic that came up during the hour and a half event, as Black Lives Matter protests have erupted for months across the country after George Floyd, a black man, died while in police custody in Minneapolis on Memorial Day.

Violent riots, too, have occurred in several cities. The president said there can be some “bad apples’ in law enforcement, but 99% are good.

He also acknowledged to a black voter who previously voted for a third-party candidate in 2016 that there’s still an income gap between white families and black families. But the president argued that black unemployment had been better — and at record numbers — under Mr. Trump’s administration prior to the COVID-19 shutdown and subsequent economic fallout.

The president also defended his foreign policy, saying if former United States Secretary of Defense James Mattis, former Chief of Staff John Kelly, and former National Security Adviser John R. Bolton were still in the administration, there would be no peace deals being reached in the Middle East.

The White House celebrated the agreements this week between Israel, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates that promoted peace through allowing Muslims to visit holy sites in Israel. The negotiations also covered trade and security concerns.


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