The White House will be adding up to three members to its coronavirus task force by next week, President Donald Trump announced in the Oval Office on Wednesday.
Trump has made no indication of who the new members might be, however, and the White House did not immediately respond to a request for clarification. The announcement comes after Trump said on Tuesday that the task force would be winding down, a statement he walked back with a tweet Wednesday morning. (RELATED: White House Bars Coronavirus Task Force Members From Testifying To Congress In May)
“We’ll be adding two or three members,” he said. Asked why he turned so suddenly from his Tuesday comments, he explained “I thought we could wind it down sooner. But I had no idea how popular the task force is until actually yesterday when I started talking about winding down.”
Trump now says the task force will continue on “indefinitely,” whereas he said Tuesday that Dr. Deborah Birx and Dr. Anthony Fauci would maintain their current roles, but the task force would be officially wound down.(RELATED: Democratic Witness In House Coronavirus Hearing Pleaded Guilty In 2019 Sex Abuse Case)
….gloves, gowns etc. are now plentiful. The last four Governors teleconference calls have been conclusively strong. Because of this success, the Task Force will continue on indefinitely with its focus on SAFETY & OPENING UP OUR COUNTRY AGAIN. We may add or subtract people ….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 6, 2020
The Wednesday comments came during an event Trump hosted to recognize the work American nurses are doing in the front lines of the battle against coronavirus. During the event, Trump compared the coronavirus pandemic to the 9/11 and Pearl Harbor attacks, saying the virus was “the worst attack we’ve ever had in our country.”