On Monday, I wrote about a doctor who spoke on CNBC about fears of a “second wave” of coronavirus. He expressed his concerns that some states have seen a slight rise in cases. Whether it’s a resurgence or a hiccup, I also wrote about how we can beat it and still avoid more lockdown and economic damage by being careful.
Vice President Mike Pence has led the White House task force on COVID-19 from the outset, and he has spent countless hours meeting with doctors and other experts who have tracked the disease and its progress and have a handle on what’s going on. So it’s safe to say that he knows his stuff.
Pence has penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal downplaying the idea of a coronavirus rebound and calling such concerns “overblown.” The Vice President writes:
While talk of an increase in cases dominates cable news coverage, more than half of states are actually seeing cases decline or remain stable. Every state, territory and major metropolitan area, with the exception of three, have positive test rates under 10%. And in the six states that have reached more than 1,000 new cases a day, increased testing has allowed public health officials to identify most of the outbreaks in particular settings—prisons, nursing homes and meatpacking facilities—and contain them.
Lost in the coverage is the fact that today less than 6% of Americans tested each week are found to have the virus. Cases have stabilized over the past two weeks, with the daily average case rate across the U.S. dropping to 20,000—down from 30,000 in April and 25,000 in May. And in the past five days, deaths are down to fewer than 750 a day, a dramatic decline from 2,500 a day a few weeks ago—and a far cry from the 5,000 a day that some were predicting.
Pence lays much of the credit at the feet of President Trump and his leadership, especially the administration’s willingness to be light on their feet and make decisions quickly. He also cites the development of efficient testing and the willingness of American industry to create and distribute personal protective equipment (PPE), along with pharmaceutical companies’ working on treatments and future vaccines.
In true, heartwarming fashion, the Vice President saves his biggest accolades for everyday Americans who did their part to help flatten the curve and keep COVID-19 from becoming as bad as it could have been.
But our greatest strength is the resilience of the American people. From the outset of this pandemic, the American people have stepped up and made great personal sacrifices to protect the health and safety of our nation. And it’s because of their embrace of social-distancing guidelines that all 50 states have begun to reopen in a safe and responsible manner.
As for the worries over a “second wave,” Pence pins the blame squarely on the media, who have put a negative spin on every effort to stop the pandemic.
All in all, Pence expresses his thoughts with a genuine, optimistic tone. It’s clear that he’s truly grateful for everyone who has done their part to continue to beat COVID-19. He acknowledges how strong the American spirit can be and what we can accomplish together. We’re not quite out of the woods yet, but we’ve made amazing strides.