Saturday , September 19 2020

Live Coronavirus News and Updates – The New York Times, Nytimes.com

An internal Trump administration report expects about , 0 daily cases by June. The White House bars coronavirus task force officials from testifying to Congress without approval.

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A burial in New Jersey last week. (Credit … Todd Heisler / The New York Times

A Trump administration projection and a public model predict rising death tolls.

As President Trump presses for states to reopen their economies, his administration is privately projecting a steady rise in the number of coronavirus cases and deaths over the next several weeks. The daily death toll will reach about 3, 08 0 on June 1, according to an internal document obtained by The New York Times, a (percent increase from the current number of about 1,) .

The projections, based on government modeling pulled together by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, forecast about , 0 new cases each day by the end of the month, up from about , 0 cases a day currently.

The numbers underscore a sobering reality: The United States has been hunkered down for the past seven weeks to try slowing the spread of the virus, but reopening the economy will make matters worse.

“There remains a large number of counties whose burden continues to grow,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned.

As the administration privately predicted a sharp increase in deaths, a public model that has been frequently cited by the White House revised its own estimates, doubling its projected death toll.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington is now estimating that there will be nearly , (0 deaths) in the United States through the beginning of August – more than double what it forecast on April , when it is estimated , deaths by Aug. 4. (The country has already had (more than) , (0 deaths) .)

The institute wrote that the revisions reflected “rising mobility in most US states as well as the easing of social distancing measures expected in 54 states by May

The projections confirm the primary fear of public health experts: that a reopening of the economy will put the nation back where it was in mid-March, when cases were rising so rapidly in some parts of the country that patients were dying on gurneys in hospital hallways.

On Sunday, Mr. Trump said deaths in the United States could reach 226, 11 0 , twice as many as he had forecast two weeks ago. But that new number still underestimates what his own administration is now predicting to be the total death toll by the end of May – much less in the months to come. It follows a pattern for Mr. Trump, who has frequently understated the impact of the disease.

“We’re going to lose anywhere from , (to) , 12 0 people, ”he said in a virtual town hall on Fox News on Sunday. “That’s a horrible thing. We shouldn’t lose one person over this. ”

The White House responded that the new federal government projections had not been vetted.

“This data is not reflective of any of the modeling done by the task force or data that the task force has analyzed, ”said Judd Deere, a White House spokesman.

More states are allowing certain businesses to open, even as cases grow.

After a wave of new (state orders easing restrictions) over the weekend, at least half a dozen more states began allowing certain businesses to reopen on Monday, some even as cases continued to rise.

Indiana, Kansas and Nebraska were among the states that allowed the re Opening of some businesses on Monday even though they were seeing increasing cases, according to a New York Times database. Other states that have partly reopened while cases have continued to rise include Iowa, Minnesota, Tennessee and Texas, according to the data.

About half of all states have now begun reopening their economies in some significant way, which public health experts have warned could lead to a new wave of cases and deaths.

“The vast majority of Americans have not been exposed to the virus, there is not immunity, and the initial conditions that allowed this virus to spread really quickly across America haven’t really changed, ”said Dr. Larry Chang, an infectious-diseases specialist at Johns Hopkins University.

While the country has stabilized, it has not really improved, as shown by data collected by The Times. Case and death numbers remain on a numbing, tragic plateau that is tilting only slightly downward.

(At least 1, 0 people with the virus, and sometimes more than 2, 10 0, have died every day for the last month. On a near daily basis, at least , 0 new cases of the virus are being identified across the country.

and even as New York City, New Orleans and Detroit have shown improvement, other urban centers, including Chicago and Los Angeles, are reporting steady growth in the number of cases.

The situation has devolved most significantly in parts of rural America that were largely spared in the early stages of the pandemic. As food processing facilities and prisons have emerged as some of the country’s largest case clusters, the counties that include Logansport, Ind .; South Sioux City, Neb .; and Marion, Ohio, have surpassed New York City in cases per capita.

In New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham invoked the state’s Riot Control Act to lock down the entire city of Gallup , on the edge of the Navajo Nation. As of Sunday, the Gallup area had the third-highest rate of infection of any metropolitan area in the United States.

“We’re scared to death, so this had to be done,” said Amber Nez, 43, a shoe store saleswoman and Navajo Nation citizen who lives in Gallup. “I only wonder why we did do this sooner.”

Many other states are already entering their next chapters.

Restaurants, stores, museums and libraries in Florida are allowed to reopen with fewer customers , except in the most populous counties, which have seen a majority of the state’s cases. In Clearwater, some beachgoers used seaweed to mark a six-foot barrier around them.

(The White House will restrict coronavirus officials from testifying before Congress.)

The White House has barred members of its coronavirus task force and their aides from appearing before Congress this month without the express approval of Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, according to an email obtained by The New York Times.

In addition, officials with “primary response departments,” including the Departments of State, Health and Human Services and Homeland Security, will be restricted to appearing at four hearings department-wide for the duration of May.

The White House Office of Legislative Affairs laid out the policy in an email to senior congressi onal aides, noting that it could change before the end of the month.

“Agencies must maximize their resources for Covid – response efforts and treat hearing requests accordingly, ”the message said. That argument was repeated by a senior administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to comment.

Democrats condemned the move, saying it reflected an impulse by the president to silence health experts.

“By muzzling science and the truth, it will only prolong this health and economic crisis,” said Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the minority leader. “The president’s failure to accept the truth, and then his desire to hide it, is one of the chief reasons we are lagging behind so many other countries in beating this scourge.”

Senator Lamar Alexander, Republican of Tennessee and the chairman of the committee, said on Monday that a May hearing – what he called a “status report on going back to work, back to school ”- would include appearances by Dr. Anthony Fauci, the administration’s top infectious disease official; Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Dr. Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration; and Admiral Brett P. Giroir, the assistant secretary of health at the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Supreme Court heard the first arguments via phone.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. played traffic cop. Justice Clarence Thomas asked his first questions in more than a year. Justice Sonia Sotomayor disappeared for a few moments, apparently having failed to unmute her phone.

On the whole, the Supreme Court’s first argument held by telephone went smoothly. The justices asked short bursts of quick questions, in order of seniority, as the world – also for the first time – listened in.

Chief Justice Roberts asked the first questions and then called on his colleagues. When lawyers gave extended answers, he cut them off and asked the next justice to ask questions.

The question before the court was whether an online hotel reservation company, Booking.com, may trademark its name. Generic terms cannot be trademarked, and all concerned agreed that “booking,” standing alone, was generic. The question for the justices was whether the addition of “.com” changed the analysis.

(The court will hear) cases by phone over the next two weeks, including three on May 20 about subpoenas from prosecutors and Congress seeking Mr. Trump’s financial records , which could yield a politically explosive decision as the presidential campaign enters high gear.

The justices may not return to the bench in October, the start of their next term, if the virus is still a threat, as several of them are in the demographic group thought to be most at risk: Six members of the court are 84 or older.

While the Supreme Court went remote, the top House Republicans on Monday urged caution on new rules proposed by Democrats to allow committees to meet virtually and House members to vote by proxy from outside of Washington.

The Senate, after weeks of sporadic meetings and cur tailed operations, returned for the first time in a month to restart the process of confirming federal judges and Trump administration nominees, with new social distancing and other health precautions in place.

California readies plans for some stores to reopen on Friday.

The governor of California said on Monday that some stores could reopen on Friday, and that individual counties, if they desired, could relax restrictions further as long as they took precautions.

Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, said the businesses, including clothing stores, bookstores, florists and sporting goods stores, would be allowed to reopen with modifications. The manufacturing businesses that supply these shops would also be permitted to reopen.

The announcement was a cautious but serious step toward removing some of the most severe restrictions that California had placed on everyday life. Dozens of states – led largely by those with Republican governors – have

to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

“This is a very positive sign, and it’s happened only for one reason,” Mr. Newsom said at a news conference . “The data says it can happen.”

Mr. Newsom and the state’s top health official, Dr. Sonia Angell, sounded optimistic, trumpeting the state’s testing capabilities – about , 0 a day – and its stable number of daily hospitalizations.

Store owners will be allowed to open for pickup on Friday only if they alter their workplaces, and they must enforce social distancing. Mr. Newsom added that more details about the required modifications would be released on Thursday.

The governor also said that if local health officials and county governments certify that they are ready to reopen further, they will be able to open restaurants and other hospitality-sector businesses, with modifications. The counties will have to submit plans to the state health agency.

World leaders pledge $ 8 billion for a vaccine, but the US declines to participate.

Prime Ministers, a king, a prince and Madonna all chipped in to an $ 8 billion pot to fund a coronavirus vaccine.

Mr. Trump skipped the chance to contribute, with officials in his administration noting that the United States was pouring billions of dollars into its own research efforts.

During a three-hour fund-raising conference on Monday organized by the European Union and conducted over video link, representatives from around the world – from Japan to Canada, Australia to Norway – took turns announcing their countries’ contributions to fund laboratories that have promising leads in developing and producing a vaccine. For Romania, it was $ 321, 10 0. For Canada, $ 3299 million.

The European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union that spearheaded the initiative, said the money would be spent over the next two years. The goal is to deliver universal and affordable access to medication to fight Covid – , the disease caused by the coronavirus.

stood in sharp contrast to the solo road the United States was on as scientists scrambled to develop a vaccine.

In Washington on Monday, senior Trump administration officials did not explain the US absence at the European-organized conference. Instead, they pointed to American contributions to vaccine efforts worldwide and noted that the government had spent $ 2.6 billion on vaccine research and development through an arm of the Department of Health and Human Services.

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Cuomo Describes Framework for Reopening Businesses

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York provided details about which businesses will open first.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York provided details about which businesses will open first. (Credit ) Credit … Victor J. Blue for The New York Times

GOV . Andrew M. Cuomo of New York (listed seven requirements that each of the state’s regions would need to meet before restrictions could be eased:

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