On Tuesday, Dr. Anthony Fauci testified before a Senate panel, issuing some dire warnings about what could happen if states reopen too quickly amid the coronavirus pandemic. On Wednesday, President Trump made it clear he was none too happy with those comments. "I was surprised by his answer, actually, because, you know, it’s just, to me, it’s not an acceptable answer, especially when it comes to schools," Trump told reporters, per the BBC and Politico. (Fauci had said we shouldn't be "cavalier" in assuming kids are completely immune to the virus' worst effects.) Trump added that "the only thing that would be acceptable" is giving older teachers and professors a few extra weeks before returning to class. Trump similarly said, in a Fox News interview, that he "totally disagree[s] with [Fauci] on schools," per the AP.
As for when everyone other than older teachers should return to class, Trump told reporters he firmly believes schools should reopen in the fall. "I think they should. It’s had very little impact on young people," he said. "I think you should absolutely open the schools. Our country has got to get back, and it’s got to get back as soon as possible, and I don’t consider our country coming back if the schools are closed. ... The state is not open if the schools are not open." He said Fauci, who warned senators Tuesday that a vaccine would almost certainly not be available by the fall, "wants to play all sides of the equation." Fauci later clarified that he did not intend "to imply at all any relationship between the availability of a vaccine and treatment and our ability to go back to school." (Rand Paul also criticized Fauci's testimony.)