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THE LEAD WITH JAKE TAPPER

Trump Announces Tougher Guidelines to Slow Coronavirus Spread; President Trump Takes Questions on Coronavirus Response; Trump: New Coronavirus Reality Could Last Until July, August; Trump: The Coronavirus is Not Under Control; . Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired March 16, 2020 - 15:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


QUESTION: Do you have any kind of estimate, that if -- if Americans really were to band together. Do I do what the White House is suggesting, how quickly we could turn this corner (ph)?

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: My favorite question.

[15:30:00]

I ask it all the time. How many times, Anthony? I think I ask him that question every day, and I speak to Deborah, I speak to a lot of them. I get the opinion.

So it seems to me that if we do a really good job, we'll not only hold the death down to a level that is much lower than the other way, had we not done a good job, but people are talking about July, August, something like that.

So it could be right in that period of time, where it -- I say wash -- it washes through. Other people don't like that term, but where it washes through.

QUESTION: So is the new normal until the height of the summer?

TRUMP: We'll see what happens, but they think August, could be July, could be longer than that, but I've asked that question many, many times.

Yes?

QUESTION: That being said, Mr. President, Americans today and looking forward are living with so much anxiety and--

TRUMP: Yes.

QUESTION: --so much fear, facing uncertainty right now. I'm curious, how are you talking to your own family about this? How are you talking to your youngest son? Do you empathize with this sense of anxiety? People are really scared.

TRUMP: Yes, no, I think they are very scared. I think they see that we're doing a very professional job. We've been working with the governors and the -- frankly the mayors, local government, at every level.

We have FEMA totally involved. FEMA's been -- usually, we see FEMA for the hurricanes and the tornadoes, now we have FEMA involved in this.

They've been doing a fantastic job locally, working with people that they know because they work -- like, as an example, in California, in the State of Washington, they worked with them a lot on other things and they're very familiar, so they're working on it.

What you can do and all you can do is professional, totally competent, we have the best people in the world.

We have really the greatest experts in the world, and someday soon hopefully it'll end and we'll be back to where it was, but this came up -- it -- we came up so suddenly, we were surprised, we were all surprised, we heard about it, we heard about reports from China that something was happening, then all of a sudden we did make a good decision, we closed our boarders to China very quickly, very rapidly, that was a -- that was a -- otherwise we would be in a very -- as Tony has said numerous times, we'd be in the very bad position, much worse than it would be right now.

You look at what's happening in other countries. Italy's having a very hard time.

QUESTION: (inaudible) your family--

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: But I think that -- I think that what we do -- and I've spoken actually with my son. He says how bad is this? It's bad. It's bad. But we're going to -- we're going to be hopefully a best case, not a worst case, and that's what we're working for. Yes?

QUESTION: (inaudible) I was hoping you can clear up some confusion on two key fronts. One is about your own test. The other is about containment efforts. Is the administration considering more aggressive containment options, like a quarantine, a national curfew, restricting domestic travel (ph)--

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Well we have that very much. Yes, we have that very much, and we are -- we've been pretty aggressive. We were early with Europe, but we were very, very early with China and other places, and fortunately we were, and as far as containment here, we are -- we're coming out with strong suggestions, and you know, it's becoming a little bit automatic.

You look at people, they're not doing certain things. For instance, they're obviously not -- I wouldn't say the restaurant business is booming and bars and grills and all; people are self-containing for -- to a large extent.

We look forward to the day when we can get back to normal.

QUESTION: (inaudible) ..to be specific--

TRUMP: OK, what's your second question (ph)?

QUESTION: Are you -- are you considering instituting a nationwide lockdown, a nationwide quarantine? The NSC knocked that down, but there are still some questions about how it all can't wait (ph)--

TRUMP: At this point, not nationwide, but -- well there are some -- you know, some places in our nation that are not very affected at all. But we may -- we may look at certain areas, certain -- certain hotspots, as they call them, we'll be looking at that, but at this moment no we're not.

QUESTION: The second question is you said you had (ph) -- you had your coronavirus test Friday night. The White House doctor's office put out a statement around midnight Friday saying that no test was indicated. So when exactly was your test administered? TRUMP: Well I had my test -- it was late Friday night, and the reason I did it was because the -- I had no symptoms whatsoever, so the doctor said you have no symptoms so we don't see any reason, but when I did the press conference on Friday everybody was going crazy, did you do the test, did you do the test, so very late on Friday night I did the test, and he may have put out -- the doctor may have put out something at -- I don't know what time the letter went out, maybe it was put out by somebody else, but the results came back, I believe the following day, and we tested negative.

QUESTION: But the question is how could the White House doctor's office say a test wasn't indicated, implying that you hadn't had one, when in fact you had?

TRUMP: Well, I told them that -- and I went totally by what they said, the doctors, more than one, they said you don't have any of the symptoms, they checked what you were supposed to check and that I didn't have symptoms, but I did it -- I did a test late on Friday night and it came back probably 24 hours later or something.

[15:35:01]

They sent it to the labs, it came back later. Yes, please?

QUESTION: Mr. President, you had a teleconference with the nation's governors today and in that teleconference you told them if they need things like respirators or masks to try to get it on their own. What did you mean by that and what will --

TRUMP: If they can get them faster by getting them on their own -- in other words, go through a supply chain that they may have, cause the governors -- you know, during normal times, the governors buy a lot of things, not necessarily through federal government. If they're able to get ventilators, respirators, if they're able to get certain things without having to go through the -- the longer process of federal government -- we have stockpiles now where we're ordering tremendous numbers of ventilators, respirators, masks and they're ordered and they're coming and we have quite a few at this point. I think, Mike, we have a lot. But if they can -- if they can get them directly, it's always going to be faster if they can get them directly, if they need them -- and I've given them authorization to order directly.

(CROSSTALK)

Go ahead, please.

QUESTION: Mr. President, one of the big weaknesses in our healthcare system is surge capacity for medical facilities and I wanted to ask what precautions, what -- what planning is being done to get -- China was able to build hospitals in a matter of days. Are you prepared to use the Corps of Engineers or FEMA to start building surge capacity that we may need in a couple of weeks?

TRUMP: Well first of all, we hope we don't get there and that's what we're doing and that's why we're taking a very strict look at this but we also are looking at areas -- and not only looking, we're expanding certain areas, we're taking over buildings that aren't used, we're doing a lot in that regard.

We hope we don't have to get there but we are doing a lot in that regard.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Mr. President, could you clarify something? These guidelines say stay home if you're sick. Yesterday, the Vice President said no one should worry about losing a paycheck if they stay home when they're sick but the House bill exempts companies of 500 employees or more from paid sick leave requirements (ph), and that's 54 percent of the American workplace.

Why is it a good idea to only require small businesses to provide paid leave?

TRUMP: Well we're looking at that and we may be expanding that. We are looking at that. (Inaudible), we want it for everybody. No, we're looking at that through the Senate cause as you know, the Senate is now digesting that bill so we may very well be adding something on that, OK? Good question.

QUESTION: Two questions for you, Mr. President, one going off of what he was asking. How many ventilators and how many ICU beds do we have right now and will it be enough?

TRUMP: I could get back to you with that number. We've ordered a lot. We have quite a few but it may not be enough and if it's not enough we will have it by the time we need it. Hopefully we won't need them.

QUESTION: And you'll give us the exact number?

TRUMP: Yeah, we'll be able to give you --

QUESTION: -- they have not given us an exact number.

TRUMP: Well we'll give you -- we can give you a number. If it's important, we'll give you a number. Go ahead.

QUESTION: OK. And yesterday, you said that this was under tremendous control. Do you want to revisit that statement if we are going to experience it -- experience this until July or August, five more months ahead of --

TRUMP: -- I'm talking about control, I'm saying we are doing a very good job within the confines of what we're dealing with. We're doing a very good job. There's been a -- there's been a tremendous amount of -- the -- the -- the way they're working together, they're working hand-in-hand.

I think they're doing really a great job and from that standpoint, that's what I was referring to. Yes, Steve (ph)? Go ahead.

QUESTION: -- you're not saying it's under control, right?

TRUMP: I'm not referring to it, meaning the -- yeah, if you're talking about the virus, no, that's not under control for any place in the world. I think I read --

QUESTION: Yesterday, you had said it was under control.

TRUMP: I think I read -- no, I didn't, I was talking about what we're doing is under control but I'm not talking about the virus. Yes, please?

QUESTION: The stock market took another hit today. Is the U.S. economy heading into a recession?

TRUMP: Well, it may be. We're not thinking in terms of a recession, we're thinking in terms of the virus. Once we stop -- I think there's a tremendous pent up demand, both in terms of the stock market and in terms of the economy, and once this goes away, once it goes through and we're done with it, I think you're going to see a tremendous -- a tremendous surge.

QUESTION: Are you looking at any domestic travel restrictions? I know that's been on the table before but is that firming (ph) up at all?

TRUMP: We're not really -- we hope we don't have to, Steve (ph). We -- we think that hopefully we won't have to do that but it's certainly something that we talk about every day. We haven't made that decision.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: -- doctors and nurses in this country are telling us across the board that they're terrified of this virus, of the fact that they could get it, of the fact that they might take it home to their families.

What can you say to assure healthcare providers in this country that the federal government is doing something today to ensure that they get personal protective equipment to protect themselves and their families? TRUMP: Well I think the federal government is doing everything that we can possibly do. We made some very good early decisions by keeping people out, by keeping countries out -- certain countries where the infection was very immense.

I notice a lot of people are talking about South Korea cause they've done a good job on one side, but on the other side, tremendous problems at the beginning -- they had tremendous problems and great numbers of death.

I think that we've done a fantastic job from just about every standpoint. With that being said, you look -- no matter where you look, this is something -- it's an invisible enemy and -- but we are speaking all the time, not only with the people, but also the professional people, the nurses, the doctors, they have been doing a fantastic job.

[15:40:14]

We are also working very much on getting them the kind of equipment that they need and for the most part, they either have it or they will be getting it. But remember this, we want the governors, we want the mayors, we want them locally, from a local standpoint, because it can go quicker.

We want them to work and we had a great talk with the governors today. I think it was a really great talk. There's a tremendous coordination, there's a tremendous spirit that we have together with the governors and that's pretty much for the most part bipartisan. Yes.

QUESTION: Mr. President, you just -- you told John (ph) that you think that this could wash through, you said, July, August, you just told Steve (ph) when he asked you about possibility of recession, you said it may be. I'm curious, if there is a recession, when do you think that might hit?

TRUMP: Well, I don't -- I don't, number one, determine recession. I just say this. We have an invisible enemy, we have a problem that a month ago nobody ever thought about. Nobody and -- I've read about it, I read about many years ago, 1917, 1918, I've seen all of the different problems similar to this that we've had. This is a bad one, this is a very bad one. This is bad in the sense that it's so contagious.

It's just so contagious. Sort of record-setting type contagion and the good part is the young people are -- they do very well and healthy people do very well. Very bad for older people, especially older people with problems. My focus is really on getting rid of this problem, this virus problem. Once we do that, everything else is going to fall into place. Yes.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: (Inaudible) a lot of rumors last night, a lot of rumors last night that you were going to put in a national curfew.

TRUMP: Yes.

QUESTION: Or some kind (inaudible) --

TRUMP: I've been reading. I've been watching.

QUESTION: Right. Exactly. Me, too. Your people were saying this was a foreign disinformation campaign. Is that what's going on? Are people messing with us on the internet?

TRUMP: Well, I don't know. I mean that I can't tell you if they are or not. I think a lot of the media actually has been very fair. I think people are pulling together on this. I really think the media's been very fair.

I think it could be that you have some foreign groups playing games but it doesn't matter, we haven't really determined to do that at all and hopefully we won't have to. That's a very big step. It's a step we can take, but we have not decided to do it. Jennifer (ph) --

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Mr. President, two things -- on one airlines and one on Jeff Bezos.

TRUMP: Yes.

QUESTION: Can you talk a little bit specifically about what you'd like to do to help the airlines first of all? And then second of all, we heard that Jeff Bezos has been in contact with the White House daily, can you say what he has been asking for or proposing to do?

TRUMP: Well, I heard that's true. I don't know that for a fact but I know that some of my people have, as I understand, have been dealing with them or with him and that's nice. We've had tremendous support from a lot of people that can help and I believe he was one of them.

As far as the airlines are concerned, the airlines -- we are going to back the airlines 100 percent. It's not their fault. It's nobody's fault, unless you go to the original source, but it's nobody's fault and we are going to be in a position to help the airlines very much.

We've told the airlines we are going to help them.

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Well, we're going to be helping, we're going to be backstopping the airlines. We're going to be helping them very much. It's very important.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Mr. President, what will you do about the stock market, sir?

QUESTION: (Inaudible) $25 billion to the passenger carriers and 4 billion for cargo? TRUMP: We're going to be looking at it very strongly. We have to back the airlines. It's not their fault. In fact, they were having a record season, everybody was. They were having record seasons and then this came out. And it came out from nowhere.

So, not their fault but we're going to backing the airline. Yes.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: (inaudible) stocks continue to fall today. Would the White House support negative rates?

TRUMP: Best thing I can do for the stock market is we have to get through this crisis, that's what I can do. That's the best thing we can do. That's what I think about. Once this virus is gone, I think you're going to have a stock market like nobody's ever seen before.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Thank you, Mr. President.

QUESTION: (Inaudible) tomorrow, Mr. President?

QUESTION: Mr. President, the other day -

(CROSSTALK)

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY & INFECTIOUS DISEASES: He'll be -- he'll be back in a second. He'll be back in a second.

I think the question that I think maybe John (ph) asked about until July, the guidelines are a 15-day trial guideline to be reconsidering. It isn't that these guidelines are now going to be in effect until July. What the president was saying is that the trajectory of the outbreak may go until then, make sure we don't think that these are -- is solid in stone until July.

TRUMP: Yes. That would be the outside number.

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Hold on one second, please, go ahead.

QUESTION: Mr. -- oh --

TRUMP: Go ahead.

QUESTION: A follow-up. Senate Republicans -- do you want Senate Republicans to change the package that had passed the House last week, even though you--

[15:45:02]

(CROSSTALK) TRUMP: I think they may make it even better. Look, they're working together very well with the House, they're working very much in unison like the question before. They're working to only enhance it and make it better, and make it fair for everybody, and that's what we're looking to do. So we may go back and forth with the House a little bit, but both will be in a very positive fashion.

Please?

QUESTION: Mr. President, these new guidelines say avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people. The CDC"s recommendations yesterday were for people to avoid gatherings of more than 50 people. What's evolved in you and your team's thinking in just the past 24 hours?

And also, what exactly do you need to see in a stimulus bill?

TRUMP: Well, let me just have the professionals answer that.

Would you like to do that?

DR. DEBORAH BIRX, WHITE HOUSE CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE COORDINATOR: Great. Thank you.

And thank you for that question. So we have been working on models day and night around the globe, to really predict. Because some countries in a very early stage -- like the United States -- we've been working with groups in the United Kingdom. So we had new information coming out from a model.

And the -- what had the biggest impact in the model is social distancing, small groups, not going in public in large groups. The most important thing was if one person in the household became infected, the whole household self-quarantined for 14 days. Because that stops a hundred percent of the transmission outside of the household.

And as we talked about, early on, it's silent. We had another silent epidemic, HIV. And I just want to recognize the HIV epidemic was solved by the community: the HIV advocates and activists who stood up when no one was listening, and got everyone's attention.

We're asking that same sense of community to come together and stand up against this virus and if everybody in America does what we ask for over the next 15 days, we will see a dramatic difference and we won't have to worry about the ventilators, and we won't have to worry about the ICU beds because we won't have our elderly and our people at the greatest risk having to be hospitalized.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: -- Dr. Birx, can we ask you to comment on the -- on the -- doctor?

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Go ahead, (inaudible), go ahead.

Yes, Mike, please.

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Than you, Mr. President.

Very productive call today with governors. We talked about the new rollout of testing that we described yesterday, drive-through and community-based testing. And I know how grateful the president is for the efforts that our governors are making. And now with the admiral and the United States' Public Health Service as well as FEMA, we made great progress today in coordinating those efforts.

But the other issue that was raised with the president today was personal protective equipment. And the reason I mentioned testing is because one of the recommendations that we have for states is that these remote testing sites make a priority of two groups.

One would be people over the age of 65 that have symptoms -- we don't want them to go to hospitals or emergency rooms, we want them to go to a remote site in a parking lot or at an isolated community location.

But the other category is our health care workers. We want to make sure that our health care workers have the opportunity to be tested. And using that new high-throughput test that the president arranged with our major commercial labs, we'll be able to do that much more expeditiously.

So we're putting a real priority on our extraordinary health care workers that are -- that are at this very hour, coming alongside people that are struggling with the coronavirus and people that are concerned that they may have been exposed.

The other piece is, we're grateful that the legislation passed by the House of Representatives includes liability protection for N95 masks produced by companies like 3M in Minnesota, by Honeywell. Literally tens of millions of masks are produced every year for industrial purposes, for construction. But the health experts say they can be used just as readily to protect health care workers from respiratory ailments.

3M and other companies were not able to sell those to hospitals, but the president negotiated with the Democratic leadership of the House and Senate. We've added a provision to the bill that will literally -- from one company alone -- add another 30 million masks per month back to the marketplace.

We're strengthening the supply chain, and health care workers around America can be absolutely certain that the president and our entire team are going to continue to put the health of America first and put first our health care workers across this country that are meeting the needs of the people of our country.

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Admiral (ph)? QUESTION: Mr. Vice President, how many test kits have been sent out and how many people can actually be tested?

TRUMP: I think the Admiral can answer that. And you might want to talk about the roving parts (ph) of (ph).

[15:50:01]

DR. BRETT GIROIR, HHS ASSISTANT SECRETARY: So thank you very much for that. As we talked about yesterday we're really entering a new phase of testing. At first we were at the initial phase where the CDC developed test was only available in public health laboratories in the CDC. Works very well for a few thousand tests per day after it gets running.

We're now moving into a phase that the big commercial laboratories with high-throughput screening have availability. So as we talked about last week, because of the historic efforts of the FDA, a Roche test and as the president predicted a Thermo Fisher test were both produced last week under an emergency use authorization.

1.9 million of those tests will be sequentially into the ecosystem this week. From the information we have right now 1 million tests are available. With all the reagents (ph), everything ready to go, primarily at the reference labs called Quest, LabCorp, and a couple others.

Now it doesn't matter if they're not in your neighborhood because everyday when people get tests a little white box goes out in front, it gets shipped by an incredible distribution system, the test resulted (ph) and it's electronically reported. So these are available to people nationwide.

We expect more and more than 1 million coming onboard this week as the reagents (ph) and as people with the testing capacity validate that in their hospitals and other places. And in the future we expect at least 2 million next week and at least 5 million the week thereafter.

There are also a whole growth of what's called laboratory determined testing or laboratory drive testing where individual laboratories, because of the regulatory deregulation of the FDA, can develop their own tests and start using them.

So if you're a CLIA certified lab with complexity you can do that. So the point is testing is now entering sort of what we normally do in the healthcare system where big labs and high-throughput bases receive these through normal channels. So that part of it is really underway.

QUESTION: But do you know how many Americans have actually been tested? Do you have a number?

GIROIR: There is a number. I don't have that number because I've been working on setting up this distribution system. So this is where we are, the state and public health laboratories and the CDC are published everyday on the CDC website. The CDC gets feeds from lab -- from LabCorp and Quest and they get

that on a daily basis. What is not being received right now -- and Ambassador Birx is fixing is that these homegrown tests in highly complex labs don't necessarily get reported in the system.

However, as we move forward particularly in the high -- in the commercial phase of where we are right now we expect about 80 to 80 percent of the tests to flow right into the CDC. We know them. That's not good enough for Ambassador Birx. She wants a hundred and we'll work on that.

QUESTION: Sir --

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: So I think just to put it a different way, a lot of -- a lot of testing's been going on and I don't believe anybody's been able to do what we're doing and what we will be doing.

GIROIR: And let me just say that we talked about the drive-thru testing yesterday. I want it to be clear to everybody this is just another tool for states and local public health systems and healthcare systems to use.

It's not replacing testing that it (ph) -- goes on in a doctor's office or in a hospital or if you go to your doctor and wants to get tested in that office. This is just another tool that we're helping (ph) the states to have. And again as we talked about this is modeled on the FEMA based Points of Distribution system, optimize for testing.

We expect this week -- we now have gear, people being shipped right now today that will be in over 12 states with multiple sites, many of -- many of states having multiple sites to start augmenting the local capacity and really providing the state and the local people what they need as another way for people to get tested.

QUESTION: Mr. --

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: So this has never been done before. That's never been done and certainly not on a level like that. And I will say that I think I can speak for the professionals that if you don't have the symptoms, if your doctor doesn't think you need it, don't get the test. Don't get the test. I think that's very important. Not everybody should run out and get the test --

GIROIR: That's right.

TRUMP: -- but we're able to handle tremendous numbers of people. John (ph)?

QUESTION: Mr. President earlier today (inaudible) of New York said that he believes that hospital capacity soon will be overwhelmed and implored you to call on the Army Corps of Engineers to build temporary facilities to house patients. Is that something -- TRUMP: We're looking into it. We've heard that. We've heard it from really two places. There are two places that have -- specifically New York being one. And we are looking into it very strongly. Yes.

(CROSSTALK)

[15:55:00]

TRUMP: Steve go ahead.

QUESTION: Sir, how have you changed your own behavior to take in account of this virus? Have you -- Are you washing your hands more?

TRUMP: Oh, I've always washed my hands a lot. I wash my hands a lot. Probably -- maybe if anything more, certainly not less.

QUESTION: What was it like taking the test?

TRUMP: Not something I want to do every day. I can tell you that. It's a little bit of a -- it's a little bit of good doctors in the White House but it's a test. It's a test. It's a medical test. Nothing pleasant about it.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: You said that -- in a tweet -- that Governor Cuomo should be doing more. What specifically -

TRUMP: Well I think he can do more.

QUESTION: What specifically should he be doing to (inaudible) -

TRUMP: But I think -- I think he can do more and it's an area of the country that's very hot right now. I think New Rochelle and it -- a place I know very well. I grew up right near New Rochelle. I think it's a very -- no I think it's an area that has to be tamped down even more because it's a hotbed.

There's no question about it. So I think they can look at doing it (ph). But we're getting along very well. We've had a very -- in fact I noticed you made some statements to -- just now that the relationship with the federal government has been good.

The federal government has done everything they wanted us to do. But we can -- I think it's very important that all of the governors get along very well with us so that we get along with the governors and I think that's happening.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: The Defense Secretary and the Assistant Defense Secretary have decided to separate and be in a bubble to avoid the spread of the disease and to protect the chain of command.

Is that something you and the Vice President should be doing and has there been any talk about having to have a 25th Amendment (inaudible) in place?

TRUMP: No we haven't thought of it but you know I will say this. It's -- we're very careful. We're very careful with being together. Even the people behind me are very -- they have been very strongly tested. I've been very strongly tested. And we have to be very careful but everybody should. Vigilant, we have to be vigilant.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Mr. President, two simple questions.

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: (Inaudible) before you.

QUESTION: Okay, I don't know if this is a question for you or for Dr. Birx but Dr. Birx said that it is the millennials who are going to lead us through this and that now is the time to look out for the older people in our home. Older might be a state of mind, not necessarily an age.

So for those millennials of us who have parents who are in their 50s, 60s, 70s, what is older? What should be tell them at this point?

BIRX: Well, if I was Dr. Fauci I would tell you there's a physiologic age and a numerical age. So older people with pre-existing conditions, what do we mean by that?

Significant heart disease, significant kidney disease, significant lung disease, any immunosuppression, even recent treatment for cancer, any of those pieces in any household. Now why do I think that millennials are the key?

Because they're the ones that are out and about and they are the most likely to be in social gatherings. And they are the most likely to be the least symptomatic. And I think we've always heard about the greatest generation.

We're protecting the greatest generation right now -- and the children of the greatest generation. And I think the millennials can help us tremendously by having -- plus they need to communicate with each other.

Public health people like myself don't always come out with compelling and exciting messages that a 25 to 35 year old may find interesting and something that will take to heart.

But millennials can speak to one another about how important it is in this moment to protect all of the people. Now you could be 40 and have a significant medical condition and at be at substantial risk.

You could be 30 and having come through Hodgkin's disease or non- Hodgkin's lymphoma and be at a significant risk. So there are risk groups in every age group but the age -- there's more millennials now than any other cohort and they can help us at this moment.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Mr. President thank you very much -- you already talked. Mr. President the other day you said that you were not responsible for the testing shortfall. Very simple question, does the buck stop with you and on a scale of 1 to 10 how would rate your response to this crisis?

TRUMP: I'd rate it a 10. I think we've done a great job. And it started with the fact that we kept a very highly infected country despite all of the -- even the professionals -- saying it's too early to do that.

We were very, very early with respect to China and we would have a whole different situation in this country if we didn't do that. I would rate it a very, very -- I would rate ourselves -- and the professionals. I think the professionals have done a fantastic job. As far as the testing, you heard the admiral.

[16:00:01]