With the number of coronavirus cases surging yet again in at least a dozen U.S. states, the Trump administration is planning to end all federal financial support for local testing sites across the nation at the end of June, according to a report from The Houston Chronicle:
“Houston officials are urging the White House to rethink the move, warning of ‘catastrophic cascading consequences’ of pulling federal support for testing sites, four of which are in Houston and Harris County and administer thousands of tests per day. City officials consider two of those sites — the largest in the city, administering up to 500 tests each per day — the backbone of Houston’s testing efforts.”
Even Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who has steadfastly defended the White House during the COVID-19 outbreak, is worried that ending funding for testing could be catastrophic:
— Ben Wermund (@BenjaminEW) June 23, 2020
In April, the administration had to reverse a similar plan to cut all funding support for testing in the states, but it remains unclear if a retreat will happen this time.
Ever since states began reopening last month, the White House has signaled that it is trying to distance itself from the health crisis caused by the virus as quickly as possible. President Donald Trump has resumed his political rallies and repeatedly insisted that the only reason the number of coronavirus cases is skyrocketing is because more testing is being done. Apparently, the administration believes that testing alone is to blame for the dramatic increase in cases being seen in states such as Arizona, Florida, and Texas.
At a rally he held in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Saturday, the president suggested he had told federal officials to slow down testing for COVID-19, telling supporters:
“When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people. You’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’”
A poll released Wednesday shows Trump’s approval rating on handling the coronavirus has hit a new low, with only 37 percent of Americans saying they think he’s done a good job of dealing with the deadly virus.
Featured Image Via NBC News