Inside Biden’s plan to take over a tumultuous Covid-19 response

By | August 20, 2020

STAT reports:

No president has ever inherited a pandemic.

But if Joe Biden is elected in November, he has made clear that his first moments in office would mark a dramatic shift in the nation’s approach to Covid-19.

Biden’s first post-election phone call, he has said, would be to Anthony Fauci, requesting that the renowned infectious disease researcher continue his government service. For months, he and his staff have pressed for specific answers about how many coronavirus tests the U.S. could conduct by January, when he’d be sworn in as the 46th president. (Biden’s optimistic target: 100 million per month.) And he has pledged to institute daily pandemic briefings for the American public — conducted by scientists and public health experts, not by politicians.

The platform is as much a rebuke of President Trump as it is a pandemic-response roadmap. Throughout the past six months, Trump has repeatedly undermined Fauci, suggested that the government should “slow down” coronavirus testing, and has taken center stage at careening, misinformation-heavy press briefings.

In interviews with STAT, numerous campaign surrogates, scientific advisers to Biden’s campaign, and an array of former U.S. health policy officials have made clear that Biden’s inauguration, and the weeks leading up to it, would set off a mad dash to reverse the country’s pandemic misfortunes. They described in detail a de facto Covid-19 war room, and identified the key aides who brief the former vice president. [Continue reading…]

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