The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Trump says it’s safe to reopen states, while Birx finds protesters with no masks or distancing ‘devastatingly worrisome’

As more states reopen their economies stalled by the coronavirus, governors discuss the latest in the response on May 3. (Video: The Washington Post)
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President Trump expressed confidence at a Sunday town hall that the United States could reopen safely, as many Americans fear a return to normal coming too swiftly amid the coronavirus pandemic. He also offered support for protesters opposed to the lockdown measures that remain in place in many states.

Earlier in the day, White House coronavirus task force coordinator Deborah Birx said protesters’ disregard of social distancing is “devastatingly worrisome.” Meanwhile, governors are outlining plans to reopen along widely varying timelines as federal officials defend the White House’s decision to let states decide.

Here are some significant developments:

  • Some officials are backing off requirements that people wear masks inside businesses, as cities, counties and states run into limits on their ability to maintain public health precautions with stay-at-home orders easing.
  • Video of a violent arrest during social distancing enforcement in New York City has gone viral, and police said they will investigate.
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed that “enormous evidence” indicates that the covid-19 virus originated at a laboratory in Wuhan, China.
  • Remdesivir, a drug that has shown promise in reducing recovery time for coronavirus patients, will start going out to U.S. hospitals this week, the CEO of the treatment’s manufacturer said Sunday.
  • Congressional leaders are girding for a huge fight over the reentry of millions of Americans to the workplace.

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