With 30 states seeing a resurgence in cases, and the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 nearing 125,000, President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force will hold its first public briefing in two months on Friday morning. The briefing will be led by Vice President Mike Pence, not Trump, and will take place at the Department of Health & Human Services, not the White House. Instead of attending the briefing, Trump reportedly will travel to his golf club in Bedminster, N.J.
The task force’s last public briefing came on April 27, a few days after President Donald Trump suggested injecting bleach as a treatment for COVID-19.
CNN reports: The public meeting comes as President Donald Trump has tried to declare the pandemic “over” despite the rising numbers, and has instead focused his administration’s energy on reopening the economy. He has also resumed campaign rallies, despite warnings by health experts on his own task force that the events could be super spreaders of the virus. … Even as cases rise, an administration official familiar with discussions inside the coronavirus task force told CNN that the panel has remained sidelined and muzzled. Key members — such as Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci, White House coronavirus response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx and Director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Dr. Robert Redfield — are now far less visible than they were during the early weeks of the pandemic.
More from the Hill: The White House has shifted its messaging around the virus in the time since to largely focus on the economic recovery after states shuttered businesses to slow the spread of the disease. While case numbers, hospitalizations and death tolls dropped significantly in April and May, they have started surging again in Texas, Florida, California, Arizona and North Carolina, among other states, as businesses have reopened and citizens begin mingling again. The U.S. on Wednesday recorded the largest single-day increase of new COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 2.4 million.
The briefing is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Eastern, and you can watch it live below.