Trump Claims 'Vaccine By The End Of The Year' At Fox Town Hall

In a Fox News organized virtual town hall held Sunday, President Donald Trump spoke about a potential vaccine for the coronavirus, China’s culpability for the spread of pandemic, and an easing of the lockdown.

'Vaccine By End Of The Year'

Predicting that the United States would have a vaccine sooner rather than later,  Trump said, “I think we'll have a vaccine by the end of the year.” However, both public and private sector experts said at the beginning of the outbreak a vaccine would take up to 18 months to develop. Trump also stressed the need for America to be self-reliant in the production of antibiotics within two years.

China’s 'Horrible Mistake'

Trump claimed China had misled the world health organization and others on the pandemic. Alluding to the role that China played in the spread of the pandemic, Trump said, “I think, personally, they made a horrible mistake, and they didn't want to admit it.” An intelligence research dossier compiled by the “Five Eyes” intelligence alliance, made news at the weekend. In the document obtained by Australia’s The Daily Telegraph, China is accused of suppressing and destroying evidence of the outbreak.

People 'Want To Go Back' To Work

The town hall was centered on returning back to work and Trump told hosts Bret Baier and  Martha MacCallum, “A lot of people want to go back. [to work]” He remarked, “You see demonstrations all over the country -- and those are meaningful demonstrations.” Calling for the need to reopen the country he said,  “Now we have to get it open. We have to get it open safely, but we have to get it open as quickly as possible." Trump's comments come a week after armed protestors in Michigan broke into the state capitol to protest the state’s stay-at-home orders.

Trump Feels 'Vindicated'

Disclosures in Washington support Trump’s assertion that FBI officials targeted some of his former top officials. Trump recently tweeted that he has been vindicated in his early banning of flights from China. Trump said that the intelligence service told him he was correct, and China did not bring up the coronavirus until late January, and then only in a non-threatening or “matter of fact” manner. He also claimed his early banning of flights from China had saved “tens of thousands of lives.” On Sunday, the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden,  challenged Trump’s China travel ban as xenophobic, and blamed the incumbent for leaving the country “unprepared” on Twitter.

Trump Says He 'Lost Friends In The Pandemic'

Trump revealed he suffered the loss of three friends due to COVID-19 during the town hall. He described the disease as “A very advanced, very horrible thing we're fighting.”

As of Sunday more than 3.5 million people had been affected by the coronavirus, more than 1.1 million of them in the United States. Of the 247,431 global deaths reported from COVID-19, 67,680 have been in the U.S, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.

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