Giroir breaks with Trump, says surge in coronavirus cases ‘not just a function of testing’

In fact, the U.S. tallied a single-day record of more than 83,000 new Covid-19 cases on Friday, a new high-water mark as coronavirus has roared back across the country. Public health experts have warned that the fall and winter months will be an especially bleak period for Americans, as the coronavirus converges with the annual flu season.

But at a campaign rally in Michigan on Tuesday, Trump argued that the reason the U.S. has “so many cases” is “because we test more,” adding that “in many ways, I hate” testing.

“We test everybody, and because of that — now, if I tested half, if I said, ‘We are going to cut our testing down in half,’ they’d go crazy because the cases would go down in approximately half, right?” Trump told supporters.

Trump’s remarks come as he has sought to promote misleadingly positive assessments of the pandemic in the final days of the presidential race, returning to his false assertions that the U.S. is “rounding the turn” in its fight against the coronavirus.

Reports emerged over the weekend of another White House coronavirus outbreak among Vice President Mike Pence’s staff, and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Sunday seemingly acknowledged that the administration had given up on its efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19. “We’re not going to control the pandemic,” Meadows said.

Giroir disputed that message on Wednesday, saying that although the U.S. was at a “critical point” in its pandemic response, “we can control the virus” through mitigation measures including mask-wearing, hand-washing and avoiding crowded indoor spaces.

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