A spokeswoman for Vice President Mike Pence on Monday shot down a CNN reporter who said the Trump administration was considering a nationwide curfew in response to the coronavirus outbreak.
CNN anchor and chief national security correspondent Jim Sciutto had said Monday morning on Twitter, “New: There are active discussions within the Trump administration to encourage a possible ‘curfew’ across the nation in which non-essential businesses would have to close by a certain time each night.”
Pence spokeswoman Katie Miller tweeted in response, “This is not correct.”
This is not correct. https://t.co/Wh458d8TAK
— Katie Miller (@VPPressSec) March 16, 2020
Deputy White House press secretary Judd Deere also disputed CNN’s claim, tweeting simply, “This is not true!”
This is not true! https://t.co/xhdtRUsOa9
— Judd Deere (@JuddPDeere45) March 16, 2020
President Donald Trump has tapped Pence to lead the administration’s coronavirus response.
Regarding a possible curfew, Trump said during a Monday news conference, “We haven’t really determined to do that at all. And hopefully we won’t have to. That’s a very big step. It is a step we can take, but we haven’t decided to do it.”
His administration offered new guidance during the briefing, asking Americans to avoid groups of more than 10 people for the next 15 days.
“With several weeks of focused action, we can turn the corner and turn it quickly,” the president said.
On Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended canceling or postponing gatherings of over 50 people for the next eight weeks.
The New York Times reported that Trump offered encouraging words on his call with the nation’s governors.
“We’re going to get it remedied and hopefully very quickly,” he said.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC‘s Jim Cramer on Monday there will be a lot of “pent-up demand” created by the coronavirus when the outbreak subsides.
“We’ll always be thinking about what happens after we get through this,” Mnuchin said.
“There will be a huge amount of pent-up demand when this is done,” he said. “And it will be done.”
Over the weekend, the House of Representatives passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act on a vote of 363-40.
The bill calls for free nationwide testing for the coronavirus, paid family sick leave, emergency food assistance and enhanced unemployment benefits.
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