Coronavirus pandemic in the US

By Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes, Elise Hammond and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 4:37 p.m. ET, April 30, 2020
65 Posts
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5:14 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

New Orleans mayor says canceling Mardi Gras 2021 is "something we have to think about”

From CNN's Kay Jones

Typically filled with people, Bourbon Street is seen nearly empty on April 23, in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Typically filled with people, Bourbon Street is seen nearly empty on April 23, in New Orleans, Louisiana. Claire Bangser/AFP/Getty Images

New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell said canceling the 2021 Mardi Gras festivities is "something we have to think about."

Cantrell said that one of the factors she needs to consider is when the city reopens and the steps that are taken to make that happen. She said she wants the city's reopening to be slow and steady.

"It will give me great pause right now before I commit to saying we are moving forward with Mardi Gras 2021," Cantrell said in a broadcasted interview with The Washington Post. "We will let the data dictate the dates." 

Asked during his daily press briefing about the mayor's comments, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, who had not listened to the interview, said that Mardi Gras 2021 is far enough out that "we don't know enough today to hazard a guess as to what the circumstances are going to be at that point and time."

Mardi Gras begins on January 6 and Fat Tuesday in 2021 is February 16.

5:18 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Everyone who needs a test will be able to get one by the end of May, Fauci says

Alex Wong/Getty Images
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Dr. Anthony Fauci said everyone who needs a test will be able to get a test by the end of May or beginning of June.

"Everyone who needs a test, according to the way we're approaching the identification, isolation, contact tracing, keeping the country safe and healthy, that hopefully we should see that as we get towards the end of May, the beginning of June," he told CNN's Jake Tapper on Tuesday.

He said that timeline was given to him by the groups responsible for the testing.

“I take them for their word. If that doesn’t happen, I am going to go to them and say, 'What happened? Why didn’t it happen? How could we fix it?'" Fauci said.

He said needing a test is much different than just wanting a test.

"A lot of times people say, I want a test, and it’s not part of a strategic approach. But needing is important," he said.

5:04 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Pence says he didn't wear a mask at Mayo Clinic because he wanted to look personnel "in the eye"

From CNN's Maegan Vazquez 

 

Pool
Pool

Vice President Mike Pence told reporters Tuesday that he didn’t wear a face mask while touring the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota because he’s tested for coronavirus regularly.

“As Vice President of the United States, I’m tested for the coronavirus on a regular basis and everyone who is around me is tested for the coronavirus. And when the CDC issued guidelines about wearing a mask, it was their recognition that people that may have the coronavirus could prevent the possibility of conveying the virus to someone else by wearing a mask,” Pence said.

“Since I don’t have the coronavirus, I thought it’d be a good opportunity for me to be here … and look (personnel) in the eye and say thank you,” he continued.

CNN previously reported that while Pence didn’t wear a mask, everyone around him did. Pence was told of the new rules before he visited, the clinic said on Twitter, a post that was subsequently deleted.

5:03 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Fauci: Federal government and states need to have "productive partnership"

From CNN's Maureen Chowdhury 

Oliver Contreras/SIPA/Bloomberg/Getty Images
Oliver Contreras/SIPA/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN's Jake Tapper today that there needs to be a “productive partnership” between the federal government and states on testing.

“The federal government has to provide strategic guidance as well as technical assistance,” Fauci said.

He added that one of the problems has been getting the test to people who need them, “we’re not connecting the dots.”

He said states can’t be left on their own on the one hand and on the other hand “the federal government can’t do it by its self.”

Watch:

4:48 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Connecticut reports its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in weeks

From CNN's Elizabeth Hartfield

Connecticut reported an increase of 315 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, the lowest number of new infections reported “in weeks,” Gov. Ned Lamont said in a news conference.

There are at least 26,312 cases of Covid-19 in the state.

Hospitalizations were slightly down on Tuesday. There were 1,732 hospitalizations in the state, a decrease of 26 since Monday.

The big curves in the state — which occurred mostly in the southern portion — are continuing to “bend down,” the governor said, though he, and the state's Public Health Department’s top epidemiologist, Dr. Matthew Carter, stressed that the numbers are still high. 

Lamont also noted that the unemployment rate in Connecticut is currently north of 20% — the likes of which the state hasn’t seen “since the Great Depression.”

4:51 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Trump says he thinks coronavirus is "going to go away"

From CNN's Nikki Carvajal 

President Donald Trump speaks in the East Room of the White House, on April 28, in Washington DC.
President Donald Trump speaks in the East Room of the White House, on April 28, in Washington DC. Evan Vucci/AP

President Trump said the worst of the coronavirus is over in the United States during an event at the White House Tuesday, and when pressed by reporters, once again said he thinks the virus is going to “go away.”

In remarks at an event celebrating the second round of funding for the Paycheck Protection Program, the President said, “our experts believe the worst days of our pandemic are behind us.”

He was asked later how he could be so sure when the country is only beginning to reopen. 

“I think what happens is it’s going to go away. This is going to go away,” the President responded, “and whether it comes back in a modified form in the fall we’ll be able to handle it. We’ll be able to put out spurts. And we’re very prepared to handle it.”

Trump significantly walked back his certainty that a vaccine would be developed quickly.

“I think that like other things, we’re going to hopefully we’re going to come up with a vaccine. You never know about a vaccine,” he said. “Tremendous progress has been made we think on a vaccine. You always have to say think, and then you have to test it, and that takes a period of time.” 

Watch:

4:24 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Utah to provide free masks for residents

From CNN's Shawn Nottingham

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert wears a mask as a plane filled with personal protective equipment arrives at the Delta Hanger on April 15, at the Salt Lake International Airport.
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert wears a mask as a plane filled with personal protective equipment arrives at the Delta Hanger on April 15, at the Salt Lake International Airport. Rick Bowmer/AP

A new program would provide masks to as many Utah residents as possible, the state's Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox said at a news conference today.

The “mask for every Utahan” program will allow residents to request a mask from the state free of charge.

The masks will be manufactured by Utah-based businesses, according to Cox. He said in addition to providing masks for residents, the program will save at least 200 jobs in the state.

Cox said that once the initial mask order is placed, it could take up to three weeks to have them delivered.

4:37 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Trump says he's lost three more friends to coronavirus

From CNN's Maegan Vazquez 

 

President Trump said Tuesday that in addition to his friend Stanley Chera, he’s lost three other friends to coronavirus.

The President also said he’s spoken to at least three families of other individuals who have died from coronavirus.

“I’ve spoken to three, maybe four families (of individuals who have died of coronavirus) unrelated to me. I lost a very good friend. I also lost three other friends,” Trump said during an event in the East Room of the White House.

He added: “Two of them I didn’t know as well, but they were friends, people I did business with.”

Watch:

4:28 p.m. ET, April 28, 2020

Illinois reports its most Covid-19 deaths in 24-hour period

From CNN's Chris Boyette

A runner, and two women wearing protective masks take advantage of a break in cold, damp weather and temperatures reaching the 60s on April 27, in Chicago.
A runner, and two women wearing protective masks take advantage of a break in cold, damp weather and temperatures reaching the 60s on April 27, in Chicago. Charles Rex Arbogast/AP

The past 24 hours have seen more people in Illinois die due to Covid-19 than any other day yet, Illinois Department of Public Health Director, Dr. Ngozi Ezike announced at a news conference Tuesday.

Ezike announced 144 new Covid-19 related deaths, bringing the state death total to 2,125.

The state has seen 2,219 new cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours. This brings the state total to 48,102 cases, Ezike said.