Trump contradicts health advisers on vaccine timetable

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WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump's public rebuke of a top federal health official who did not parrot White House talking points about a fast-track coronavirus vaccine is the latest example of the president's effort to enforce an upbeat narrative about the pandemic,even if that does not square with the facts. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is the most recent government physician or scientist to run afoul of Trump's coronavirus message machine. He did so in congressional testimony Wednesday, saying a vaccine greenlighted later this year would probably not be available to most Americans until sometime in 2021 because those most in need would get the first doses. Redfield also rankled Trump by saying face masks are "more guaranteed to protect me against covid than when I take a covid vaccine." Trump said Redfield "made a mistake" on both counts, although the CDC director's projection about the timetable for vaccine approval and distribution mirrored those of other top officials, including Operation Warp Speed chief scientist Moncef Slaoui and Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "It's just incorrect information," Trump said, adding that he had called Redfield after his Senate testimony. With fewer than 50 days before the Nov. 3 election, Trump has keyed on a prospective coronavirus vaccine as a piece of good newsthat demonstrates his leadership amid a grinding pandemic, with continued job losses, school closures and disruptions to daily life. Trump argues that the worst of the crisis is past and that states should lift remaining restrictions meant to curb the spread of a disease that has killed nearly 200,000 Americans. But health and science experts say his continued swipes at the government's own experts are undermining...
Trump contradicts health advisers on vaccine timetable

WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump's public rebuke of a top federal health official who did not parrot White House talking points about a fast-track coronavirus vaccine is the latest example of the president's effort to enforce an upbeat narrative about the pandemic,even if that does not square with the facts.

Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is the most recent government physician or scientist to run afoul of Trump's coronavirus message machine. He did so in congressional testimony Wednesday, saying a vaccine greenlighted later this year would probably not be available to most Americans until sometime in 2021 because those most in need would get the first doses. Redfield also rankled Trump by saying face masks are "more guaranteed to protect me against covid than when I take a covid vaccine."

Trump said Redfield "made a mistake" on both counts, although the CDC director's projection about the timetable for vaccine approval and distribution mirrored those of other top officials, including Operation Warp Speed chief scientist Moncef Slaoui and Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

"It's just incorrect information," Trump said, adding that he had called Redfield after his Senate testimony.

With fewer than 50 days before the Nov. 3 election, Trump has keyed on a prospective coronavirus vaccine as a piece of good newsthat demonstrates his leadership amid a grinding pandemic, with continued job losses, school closures and disruptions to daily life. Trump argues that the worst of the crisis is past and that states should lift remaining restrictions meant to curb the spread of a disease that has killed nearly 200,000 Americans.

But health and science experts say his continued swipes at the government's own experts are undermining public trust in their guidance - as well as in an eventual vaccine.

"If you want people to…
Anne Gearan and Lena H. Sun, The Washington Post
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