Anthony Fauci: We “Could Have Saved Lives” by Acting Earlier on the Coronavirus

Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Sunday that the nation likely “could have saved lives” by acting earlier on the coronavirus outbreak.

“Obviously, if we had, right from the beginning, shut everything down, it may have been a little bit different,” the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases told Jake Tapper on CNN’s State of the Union.

He continued: “But there was a lot of pushback about shutting things down back then.”

The admission from Fauci follows yesterday’s bombshell New York Times story finding Fauci and other top administration officials urged Trump to take aggressive action weeks before he did. “We look at it from a pure health standpoint” Fauci said on Sunday. “We make a recommendation. Often the recommendation is taken. Sometimes it’s not.”

While President Trump has said he is eager to lift stay-at-home restrictions, Fauci continued to voice caution: Lifting the measures shouldn’t be an “all or none” proposition, but should be a gradual process that could “probably start, at least in some ways, maybe next month.” He warned that lifting the restrictions too abruptly could make things worse: “If all of a sudden we decide, ‘OK, it’s May, whatever,’ and we just turn the switch on, that could be a real problem.”

Asked about whether Americans would be able to go to the polls in November, Fauci said: “I hope so.” He continued: “There is always the possibility, as we get into next fall and the beginning of early winter, that we could see a rebound.”

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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