PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: And others, yeah. And then ultimately I have to make a decision. But I certainly listen to them. I listen to a number of people. I have a lot of respect for Dr. Fauci and for Dr. Birx, and I’ll be listening to them and others that we have that are really doing good job.
JONATHAN KARL, ABC NEWS: But are you worried that if you do this too quickly, if you lift these restrictions to quickly, the virus will start spreading unabated? And–and how can you be sure that that’s not going to happen?
TRUMP: Well, you know, we have now a system and the system’s in place. And we have two very, very powerful alternatives that we have to take into consideration. As I said, one of the things that has really got me thinking about this, number one, I’m looking at what’s going on. And, you know, it’s–life is fragile and economies are fragile.
But one of the things is the mortality rate, John. When we first started this, nobody knew anything about this particular virus, very, very little. I mean, we started off–we were hearing numbers of 5 percent. That would–that’s an astronomical number when the flu is .001 and .002 and .003, right? And so, 5 percent would be an astronomical number.
Now we’re seeing numbers that may be less than one, and that’s not including the exercise that I just went through where many people don’t report. So, everybody getting very sick is reporting, but nobody getting, you know, not very sick, and that should be part of that equation. So, that just keeps reducing the number.
So, the mortality rate is a–you know, it’s a big–to me, that’s a very big factor. When we were hearing 3 percent and 4 percent–remember we had one day where we thought it was 5 percent and we were getting a lot of bad numbers from countries that–I don’t know why, but we were getting a lot of bad numbers. I do wish–again, our relationship’s very good with China, but I wish they could’ve told us about this a little bit sooner. You know that. But the mortality rate’s a big thing for me because I think we’re very substantially under 1 percent now. That’s–that’s–it’s still terrible.
It’s still–the whole thing–the whole concept of death is terrible, but there’s a tremendous difference between something under 1 percent and 4 percent or 5 percent or even 3 percent. So, that’s something that we’re learning now, and I think the number may be lower than people think because of what I’ve been saying.