President Trump is projecting that coronavirus deaths in the United States could reach 70,000, higher than the 60,000 he has at times cited this month as the estimate of how many people would die from COVID-19. But he said original projections were much higher as he explained why voters should consider re-electing him in November, the AP reports. Trump was asked during a White House news conference on Monday whether an American president deserved to be re-elected after losing more Americans in six weeks than died in the Vietnam War. Approximately 58,000 US troops were killed during the Vietnam War; the number of dead in the US from COVID-19 has surpassed 56,000, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.
Trump said the nation has lost a lot of people. “But if you look at what original projections were—2.2 million—we’re probably heading to 60,000 to 70,000," he said. "It’s far too many. One person is too many for this. And I think we’ve made a lot of really good decisions. The big decision was closing the border or doing the ban, people coming in from China." Trump was referring to a pandemic forecast from the Imperial College London that predicted 1.5 million to 2.2 million deaths in the United States in a worst-case scenario, without efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus through social distancing. Politico notes Trump's 60,000 figure came from a different model, this one from the University of Washington.
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