“There Is a Real Risk That You Will Trigger an Outbreak”: Fauci Warns States Against Reopening Too Soon

Kevin Dietsch/POOL/CNP/Zuma

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In recent weeks, Dr. Anthony Fauci has served as a quiet dissenting voice to President Trump’s calls for states to reopen their economies despite the threat of resurgences in coronavirus cases. On Tuesday, the director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases heightened his warning, telling a Senate committee that if states open too soon, “there is a real risk that you will trigger an outbreak that you may not be able to control.”

More than 40 states have eased stay-at-home orders to various degrees, allowing their economies to partially reopen, even as case counts surge in meatpacking plants, nursing homes, and prisons. Governors are anxious to let their constituents get back to work, but, according to Fauci, reopening states now could cause adverse economic effects in the long run.

A new outbreak “paradoxically will set you back, not only leading to some suffering and death that could be avoided, but could even set you back on the road to trying to get economic recovery,” Fauci said during questioning by Sen. Bob Casey (D-Penn.). “It would almost turn the clock back, rather than going forward.”

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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