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Trump: Coronavirus Task Force Press Conference

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President Trump and the Coronavirus Task Force held a press conference to update the nation on the latest news regarding the COVID-19 Virus.

Trump was Monday’s KVML “Newsmaker of the Day”. Here are his words:

“Thank you very much. A lot of things going on, and we’re going to be going over to the Hill, and we’re having a lot of meetings. And, from the financial — this is a medical situation, not a financial situation. The financial, though, is moving along very nicely.

I want to thank you for being here and update you on the progress we’ve made after a week of extraordinary mobilization in our war against the virus. Governors, mayors, the businesses, charities, and citizens are all working with urgency and speed toward one common goal, which is saving American lives.

We’re in communication with foreign countries. It’s now at 148 foreign countries. Can you believe that? One hundred — you talk about a spread. You talk about a violent spread. One hundred and forty-eight countries. Not even believable.

This has been a week of national action and of great national solidarity. People are getting along. We’re getting along with Republicans and Democrats and independents and liberals and conservatives. And actually, it’s a very nice thing to see. We’re all one beautiful, big American family, and that’s taking place right now.

Last night, I proved a major disaster declaration for the State of New York. I worked very closely with Governor Cuomo. And is the first time in our nation’s history that a President has used the Stafford Act to declare a major disaster in response to a public health crisis. Never happened before. I’m considering other areas where we may or may not be doing that. And I’m working very closely with Gavin Newsom, Governor of California, and others; we may be doing the same thing, depending on their needs, depending on what they’re asking for.

It’s been unprecedented action in New York, and we’ve had a tremendous federal response all over the country. And I want to thank all the people in the federal government and obviously in the state governments and local governments. We are working hard. Everybody is working hard. And the people standing alongside of me are working very hard, that I can tell you.

We’ve also reached agreements with Canada and Mexico on new travel rules at our northern and southern borders to halt the entry of the Chinese virus while continuing trade and commerce. And we’ve had very good talks, I’ve — with Prime Minister Trudeau, and today, this morning, with President López Obrador. And we talked about joint measures that we’re taken to prevent the spread of the virus in our countries and to temporarily suspend nonessential travel. We had a great conversation this morning — the President of Mexico. And our close cooperation with Mexico and Canada will keep our people healthy, keep their people healthy, keep everybody safe.

Yesterday, I had a call with 12,000 small businesses — representatives of these businesses. That’s the engine of our country. People don’t realize that. You know, you read all about the big ones, but the — these small businesses, when you add them up together, are really the engine — economic engine of our country. And I assured them that my administration is doing everything within its very considerable — considerable power, frankly, to support them and their employees.

Nobody has ever done what we’ve done. Likewise, I had calls during the week with all sorts of representatives and systems, like the hospital system. We spoke to many of the hospital systems throughout the country — nurses and doctors, representatives representing hundreds of thousands of nurses and doctors; airlines and cruise ship companies.

The business roundtable, which was fully attended and it’s all of the top CEOs of our country and beyond, frankly — the businessmen of — really, these a world — world-styled businessmen. These are businessmen that control the biggest companies in the world. Many of them have taken hits, and many of them are just, you know, going forward. They — their businesses have been — have been great. Some have been very badly affected, some haven’t been affected at all, and, frankly, some are doing very well. They continue to do very well.

It’s — Walmart, as an example, has been really helpful to us. Doug McMillon, the head of Walmart — really helpful to us. And I guess — I assume they’re doing pretty well because people are certainly buying — buying more than even a clip at Christmas, by substantial numbers. Pretty amazing. But they’re doing incredibly. They put on tremendous extra staff. You don’t have empty shelves. A lot of things have happened that are very good.

Restaurants, fast food executives, grocery stores, all retailers — literally, all of them — in groups.

And we spoke with the G7 leaders at length, as you know. You probably know about that.

Spoke to many of the governors. Spoke almost all of the governors at conference calls and many of the governors individually.

And, very importantly, the religious leaders. We had a great conversation yesterday — the Vice President and myself — with the religious leaders of — of our country. Many of the religious leaders. And we’ve had a number of them, during the course of the last two weeks, actually. But yesterday, we had a very, very significant call with the religious leaders of our country.

I signed legislation providing American workers with paid sick leave and paid family medical leave at no cost to employers and free testing for those who need it. The testing is going very well and the Admiral will speak to that, along with Tony.

We’re working quickly to pass additional legislation that will provide massive relief to small businesses and affected industries and give direct payments to our great workers and hardworking American families. There’s never been anything like we’re doing on the Hill right now. They’re negotiating — Mitch McConnell, Chuck Schumer. They’re all up there — Kevin McCarthy and Nancy Pelosi. They’re all negotiating and everybody is working hard and they want to get to a solution that’s the right solution. I think we’re getting very close.

We’ve also announced that we’ve moved Tax Day from April 15 to July 15, which is a big deal, giving businesses and individuals extra time to file and pay without interest or penalty. So we’ve moved the date way back. And so it’ll be July 15, instead of your traditional April 15. And, very importantly, you will have a lot of time, but you’re not going to have interest penalties or any kind of penalties by filing at that later date.

HUD announced that foreclosures and evictions are suspended for single-family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages for the next 60 days. And our great head of HUD, who’s with us today, Ben Carson, is going to say a few words in a moment.

The Department of Education will not enforce standardized testing — which is another big deal — requirements for students in elementary through high school for the current school year. Not fair to do that, so we are waiving that. I would imagine it’s probably the first time ever that has been waived, but I think it’s only fair to the students and to the parents of the students.

It is also waiving interest and other things that we’re discussing right now on federally held student loans and directed that borrowers be allowed to suspend their student loan payments without penalty for at least 60 days. And we’ll be talking about student loans; going to help the students. They’re under a great burden right now, so we will be talking about that further. But we’re — we’re waiving, during this 60-day period, various elements — very important elements — on student loans. Big subject.

I signed an executive order invoking the Defense Production Act, as you all know, giving us powerful new authorities to help states, cities, and hospitals procure needed supplies. There’s been a clear call to action to the private sector, and the call is made right here. It’s been really pretty amazing what’s happened with the private sector — they are really in sixth gear, I think — which has responded in full force, helping to produce and supply much-needed masks, swabs, sanitizers, ventilators, and everything else. There’s a move on that’s incredible right now.

And, by way of example, Hanes — everybody knows Hanes; great company, great consumer cotton products company — is retrofitting its manufacturing capabilities in large sections of their plants to produce masks. And they’re in that process right now.

And, at my direction, the FDA is taking rapid steps to make these items available for medical use right now. Most excitingly to me is what the FDA has done in order to get, possibly, a very successful number — it’s not just one or two — number of therapeutics: medicines that can help — help people that are already sick, help people not get sick. And, obviously, you know about the vaccine. And Tony will discuss that a little bit later, but the vaccine is moving along.

But this is something that, right now — for right now, this is what we really — it’s incredible. And what the FDA has done and Dr. Stephen Hahn, who is highly respected — came as a — just a highly respected man. He’s been fantastic. He’s only been here for a couple of months and he’s — he’s gotten thrown into the swim of it and he’s really standing up.

But the FDA has really moved mountains. I said it this morning: They’ve moved mountains to get approvals on things that — that maybe work. We’ll find out very soon. It won’t take long.

An example of the Pernod Ricard, which is — this is really an example where we’re repurposing alcohol. They went out and repurposed their alcohol production capabilities in Arkansas, Kentucky, Texas, and West Virginia to make hand sanitizer. That’s a big difference. And they’ve been unbelievable. They really — Pernod Ricard. Their first delivery will be on Tuesday. It’s going to go to various states. They’re going to start, I think, in New York and they’re going to work their way around. They’re making a tremendous amount of hand sanitizer — at a very high level too, by the way.

We’ve activated the National Response Coordination Center to Level 1. That’s your highest level. This is the nerve center of all of our government response to crisis and it’s coordinating very closely with our nation’s governors. Our nation’s governors — many of you were at the call yesterday with the governors and I think you can see the relationship. And we’ve had numerous calls with governors, by the way, but the relationships are pretty amazing. They like — they’re loving what we’re doing and the coordination between the federal government and the governors, states, and even local has been pretty incredible.

FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor, who is with us, will soon be providing you with an update on the Center’s operations. And FEMA has been incredible. We got them involved last week — very much involved — and now they’re involved nationwide. We’ve dramatically expanded telehealth so Americans can see a doctor without leaving home — something which more and more people are using and now they’re really using it. And now the ones that are using it are loving it. And I think we’re going to change the way our country functions, medically and probably in other ways, because of what’s going on right now. This will reduce the chance of infection and preserve hospital capacity. So it solves a lot of problems.

Every American has a role to play in defending our nation from this invisible, horrible enemy. It really is — it’s an invisible enemy. And we will be successful — very successful — hopefully very much sooner than people would even think.

So we say, “Stay at home and save lives.” This is a time of shared national sacrifice, but it’s also a time to treasure our loved ones and to take stock of what is most important: our faith, our families, our neighbors, and our great country. And I want to thank all of the incredible people of our country, the citizens of our country that — what you’ve done and the way you’re responding has just been very special — something that we will never forget, that the history books will never forget.

And we’re going to have a great victory. We’re going to be celebrating a great victory in the not-too-distant future. And I just want to thank everybody.

And now I’ll introduce our Vice President, Mike Pence, who’s led the Task Force. And I will tell you this: He has not slept much. Maybe a tiny bit, maybe a little bit, but not much. And he’s done an incredible job.

Mike, thank you. Please.

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, all. And thank you, Mr. President. The White House Coronavirus Task Force met today. We briefed the President on our latest recommendations. We continue, at the President’s direction, to lead not a whole-of-government approach, but a whole-of-America approach.

You just heard the President describe one inspiring story after another of the way the American people are responding, the way American businesses are responding, and religious communities across this country. The American people are coming together. They’re responding with common sense, compassion, and generosity.
People are heeding the advice of state and local authorities, and tens of millions of Americans are putting into practice the “15 Days to Slow the Spread.” We are — we are officially, Mr. President, 6 days into our 15 days. And as we look all across this country, while we — we strongly support the decisions that governors in states where we have significant outbreak have taken, we encourage every American to listen to those state and local authorities.

For every American, this is what you can do to make a difference over the next week and a few days to protect your health, protect your family’s health, but most especially slow the spread and the potential for the coronavirus to impact the most vulnerable.

As the President said, we’ve been — we’ve almost been overwhelmed at the outpouring of support from American businesses. The President spoke yesterday to thousands of small businesses. We spoke to manufacturers yesterday. And, in fact, as President indicated, the FDA, in record time, just approved one manufacturer that will be producing millions of surgical masks in a matter of weeks for the American people.

The pastors we spoke to, we — we want to thank all the religious leaders from every community of faith in the country making the hard choice to suspend services, to have online services, even while those ministries are continuing to support food banks and come alongside the most vulnerable. And, of course, the chorus of prayers that is coming up from communities of faith around the country is making the difference that it always has in the life of this nation.

One thing the President and I promised was to remind people that on the weekends that you’re not in the pews, it’s still a good — it’s still a good idea to — if you can, to go ahead and make that donation. Because all the ministries are continuing to play a vital role in our communities and we encourage your continued support.

The President and I are grateful that the American people are listening to state and local authorities and putting into practice all of — all of the recommendations in the President’s coronavirus guidelines.
And, as you will hear in just a few moments from Admiral Giroir, testing is expanding rapidly across the United States of America. State-run drive-throughs are expanding across the country. And, as you will hear detailed this morning, now more than 195,000 Americans and more who have been symptomatic have been tested. That number does not include county hospitals or healthcare labs around the nation, some 15,000 in number.

And among the number of the more than 195,000 that have been tested, it’s important to remember that only 19,343, at this moment, have tested positive for the coronavirus. We want to — we continue to urge state and local health authorities to contact FEMA for all the latest developments and innovations in testing. But we want to remind Americans, as Dr. Fauci will emphasize in a moment: If you don’t have symptoms, don’t do a test. It is another way that the American people can make sure that we are preserving the resources that our healthcare workers need to minister and to support those who are dealing with the coronavirus and other illnesses.

In a moment, Pete Gaynor will detail the efforts at FEMA. Since the President’s National Emergency Declaration, we have FEMA in the lead; stood up the National Response Coordination Center; as the President said; and we are working closely, literally hour by hour, through FEMA, processing requests from states most impacted, like New York, Washington State, and California, and we’ll continue to work very, very closely with those states through their very traditional means of federal emergency management at FEMA.

Secretary Carson will describe decisive actions the President alluded to, to bring foreclosure relief to Americans. And, on the subject of supplies, in a moment, you will hear of not only the progress that we’re making on testing, but on Monday, we’ll be detailing for the American people the progress that we are making on the President’s strategy of procuring more personal protective equipment and medical supplies, allocating them through the system at FEMA, and continuing to urge conservation by Americans.

In fact, I’m pleased to report to the President today that HHS just placed a — an order for hundreds of millions of N-95 masks that will be being made available to healthcare providers across the country.

On behalf of the President, we do renew our call for Americans to postpone elective medical procedures, including dental services. And remember, this is another way that you’re going to make sure that medical supplies are available, because, by postponing elective medical procedures, you’re freeing up medical supplies for those dealing with the coronavirus.

As the President mentioned, our team is on Capitol Hill as we speak, working with members of Congress in both political parties. They’re making progress, by all accounts, on a bipartisan bill. They worked late into the night last night and started early this morning, and we are working to pass that legislation on Monday in both the House and the Senate.

Now, on a personal note, many of you may have been made aware that a member of my staff has tested positive for the coronavirus. We learned of that late yesterday. I am pleased to report that he is doing well. He had mild, cold-like symptoms for about a day and a half; has not been to the White House since Monday.

Neither the President nor I had direct contact with that staff person. We worked immediately with the White House physician and the CDC. We’ve done all contact tracing. And while the White House doctor has indicated that he has no reason to believe that I was exposed and no need to be tested, given the unique position that I have as Vice President and as the leader of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, both I and my wife will be tested for the coronavirus later this afternoon.

Let me say again how grateful the President and I are that every American has acted on the President’s coronavirus guidelines. We are 6 days into 15 days that, but as Dr. Fauci may well reflect in a moment, it’s an opportunity for us here on the footholds of this epidemic curve in our country to literally lower the impact in our nation and save lives. Every American can do their part to slow the spread. And we encourage you each to continue to do that.

As the President says often: Remember we’re all in this together. And also remember that, for most Americans, the risk of serious illness from the coronavirus remains low. The reason we want to put into practice the President’s coronavirus guidelines is because no American would want to inadvertently expose someone who is vulnerable — a senior with a serious underlying health condition — to the coronavirus with a potential threat.

I did hear one story this morning, Mr. President, about a senior named Geneva Wood. She actually is at the Life Care Center in Kirkland, Washington. She is not only a grandmother, she is a great, great grandmother. Ninety years young, and she tested positive for the coronavirus on March 6th. But by all accounts, she’s doing well and she wanted America to know there is hope. And her strength and her enthusiasm is truly an inspiration to the nation.

As the President said many times, we’re going to get through this and come out stronger than ever before. And we’ll get through this as Americans, together.

Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. Thank you, Mike.

Admiral, please.

ADMIRAL GIROIR: Thank you, Mr. President and Mr. Vice President.

As I told you earlier last week, we are in the process and are effectively transitioning to large-scale testing by leveraging all the components of the American healthcare system. When we started, it was CDC only, then it was the state public health laboratories. Now we’re transitioning into the mainstream of American testing with many of the companies that the President invited in the Rose Garden just a week ago.

So, currently, 91 public health laboratories, state public health laboratories are up and running in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.

This is our curve, and I want to be very clear about this — that this only accounts for CDC state public health laboratories and the laboratories that are members of the American Clinical Laboratory Association. These are the main reference laboratories: LabCorp, Quest, Mayo, ARUP, Bio-Reference Labs, and Sonic Healthcare. It does not account for the well over 10,000 — 15,000 hospital-based labs, many of which are doing testing, for whom we will get data this week to give you an overall rollup.

As you can see, over 195,000 people in America have completed their testing. That means tests plus results. This does not count the people whose tests are in process. And, as you see, this curve is going — it will continue to rise dramatically over the next period of time.

So, again, this is utilizing all the components of the great American healthcare system, the state and local public health laboratories, the hospital system, which is not represented here, and the main reference laboratories.

Now, I do want to make it clear that, although testing is becoming more available, and Dr. Fauci will definitely emphasize this more, there are priorities for testing. And clearly, everyone across the country should understand that those hospitalized or in an ICU are our priority for testing: Symptomatic health care workers, for obvious reasons, we want to make sure that they — their health is preserved and that they are not going to spread to those who may be seriously ill;
symptomatic people in long-term care facilities: As the Vice President has highlighted and we’ve said many times, elderly in our society have a much higher mortality rate, much higher serious complication rate; Symptomatic individuals over 65: Symptomatic individuals who have underlying conditions, like chronic heart disease or liver disease or other types of chronic diseases; Patients in public health investigations. And there are local priorities around the country, particularly healthcare workers for testing.

And Dr. Fauci is going to emphasize this about the types of people who may not need to be tested. Testing is going well, it’s ramping up, but we should still have priorities.

Finally, I want to talk about the community-based testing sites. I know they’re popular now because there’s now an acronym, which I’m sure the Vice President doesn’t appreciate: CBTS or CBT sites. We talked about these earlier in the week and I wanted to emphasize, again, that these are state-managed and locally executed. The federal government is there to provide support, know how, blueprints on how to do this, but these are really springing up at dozens and dozens of sites all over the country, adapted to the local needs. Some are drive-throughs, some are walk-up, some are geared to healthcare workers and emergency responders.

So again, what we see in the upcoming week is this curve will continue to increase as testing becomes more widely available, as the great American healthcare industry continues to increase the availability of tests and the throughput of those tests.

Thank you, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much, Admiral. Dr. Fauci, please.

DR. FAUCI: Thank you very much, President, Mr. Vice President. What I want to do, just over the next minute or so, is maybe connect some of the dots of the things that you’ve heard today.
First, the status of the dynamics of the — of the outbreak. I mean, you all know the numbers. You’ve seen them. We have widespread infection, but to varying degrees throughout the country.

So, for example, when you talk about the kinds of mitigation issues that we have put forth and have emphasized, just as I mentioned the other day, there are two dynamic forces that are going on at the same time. You’re having the natural course of an outbreak, trying to peak at a high level. And then you have the mitigation strategies, which are aimed at dampening that. We’ve mentioned that multiple times.

We often get asked: “How do you know you’re having an effect?” Because there are two things that are going on at the same time, they may be confounding. Well, I can tell you for sure, from a public health standpoint and experience with other outbreaks, we know we are clearly having an effect, but we can’t quantitate it for you accurately now, because, looking forward, you’ll know what the impact of the rate of this steep inclines will be. So that’s why we’re going to come back to you every day and keep you up to date about that.

Getting — with regard to the disproportionate of the response, everyone — it’s right here. I’ll get the — open up the Vice President’s book, with his permission. This is baseline for everyone — in other words, throughout the country. But then there will be areas — and you’ve heard them: Washington State, California, New York City — in which the dynamics of the outbreak are clearly different and much more robust, if you want to use that word. And that’s the reason why we’re seeing the mitigation ratcheted up in that regard. And again, hopefully — and I have confidence it will happen — you will see an impact on that.

Next, getting to testing. You saw the numbers we’re testing. Remember, there was always an issue with testing. I think we’re getting to the solution that everybody in the country is looking for.

But I want to emphasize one thing that Admiral Giroir mentioned — is that not every single person in the United States needs to get tested. He gave you the priorities; I don’t want to repeat them. But let me tell you one of the unintended consequences of individuals who don’t need to get tested that flood the desire to get tested. Currently — and I hope we’ll be able to change it and make it much less reliable on PPEs — when you go in and get tested, you are consuming personal protective equipment — masks and gowns. Those are high priority for the healthcare workers who are taking care of people who have coronavirus disease.

So what we don’t want to do is to have a situation where we will — we do have disparities in availability of PPEs now and we’re working hard to correct that. But currently today, we want to make sure that the people who are taking care of people with coronavirus disease do not endanger themselves because they don’t have the personal protective equipment.

And then finally, one last thing — it was just mentioned. The Surgeon General has been pushing this: Please put off, cancel elective medical and surgical procedures. You don’t want to not ever do them, but, for the time being, don’t do them because they also not only consume personal protective equipment, they may also consume some of the things like ventilators that you might need. So let’s pull in this together, and we will get through it, I promise you.

Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, Tony, very much. Please.

ADMINISTRATOR GAYNOR: Thank you, Mr. President, Mr. Vice President. FEMA is now leading the federal operation — or the federal response for all operations on behalf of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, who oversees this whole-of-nation response.

HHS will continue to provide their expert — matter expertise on health. Pursuant to the nationwide emergency declaration, FEMA, in coordination with HHS, is assisting state, local, tribal, territorial governments and other eligible entities with health and safety emergency protective measures on behalf of the American public.

As of yesterday, 50 states, the District of Columbia, 5 territories, and 1 tribe are working directly with FEMA under the nationwide emergency declaration for COVID-19. In just 24 hours, we’ve obligated $100 million to states, territories and tribes.

A little bit about supplies: It is of the utmost importance that requests for assistance, especially for critical supplies, get routed through proper channels as soon as possible. And we ask everyone to follow the normal procedures — the normal procedures FEMA uses in a natural disaster. There’s no different procedure for the COVID-19 pandemic.

But, remember, you can still order supplies from your regular vendors and buy it on the open market. Buy it where you can find it. We will reimburse you. If you buy medical supplies from foreign sources, it is reimbursable. “Buy America” does not apply to the Stafford Act, except for Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.

If you can’t buy it on the open market, make a request to the FEMA system. Requests for assistance at the local and county level should first go to states — from states to the regional FEMA offices, and then from those offices right here in D.C., where the National Response Coordination Center is open and running.

We are getting requests for mass PPE swab sets, test site supports, ventilators, hospital-capacity assessments and many more. And we are in lockstep with HHS to answer these requests, but we will do whatever is necessary to get states, tribes, territories, and others, what they need.

And then, finally, what we are doing here in Washington, D.C. — again, this is a whole-of-government response. Like all emergency responses, it’s most successful when it is locally executed, state-managed, and federally supported. We can’t say that enough.

On Thursday, our federal partners fully integrated with our National Coordination — Response Coordination Center. And, additionally, all 10 FEMA regions across the country have been activated.

The FEMA regional administrators will continue to coordinate closely with governors, state emergency managers, state public health officials to determine the type and level of support needed to respond to this dynamic threat. Thank you, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much, Pete. Appreciate it.


THE PRESIDENT: Ben, please.

SECRETARY CARSON: Well, thank you, Mr. President and Mr. Vice President for your tireless leadership here. And I also want to thank the fellow Task Force members who have been working around the clock in a very patriotic way to serve their fellow Americans.

You know, part of the American Dream is having a home. And sometimes people say, “Well, what does housing have to do with health?” It has everything to do with health, having a safe home. And that is the reason that the President has authorized the immediate cessation of foreclosure and eviction proceedings for American citizens, single-family forward mortgages, as well as reverse mortgages. And, as you know, FHFA has also decided to do the same thing for 60 days, and the CFPB is very happy with all of this as well.

And it’s really all about helping our people, recognizing that they’re being severely impacted by the coronavirus. And we’ve also asked the various servicers of mortgage loans to exercise forbearance for anybody who is having difficulty. It is important, if you’re having difficulty, to actually contact the people who have made the loan, who established the mortgage because it doesn’t happen automatically. What does happen automatically is that we cover all 8.5 million people, in terms of the moratorium on foreclosures and evictions.

We want also for the PHAs to protected. HUD does not have authority to mandate that evictions can’t occur, but we are in contact with all the PHAs across the country, and are petitioning Congress for the power to be able to actually enforce that. But the fact of the matter is, most of the PHAs are run by people who actually care about other people, so we really haven’t seen much of a problem there. We haven’t seen much of a problem with forbearance and needing to try to force people to do it because they want to do it. People are stepping up and saying, “What we can do to be helpful?”

As far as Housing Choice vouchers — Section 8 — is concerned, the April vouchers will be sent out next week and May vouchers are already being worked on. And we’re also staying in contact with all the stakeholders, the advocates for low-income housing, as well as other stakeholders to make sure that we’re doing things that are most helpful to them.

And additionally, we’ve extended the deadlines for healthcare and multifamily financial reporting requirements. And that’s for over 20,000 multifamily and healthcare borrowers until April the 30th. And that provides them with a lot more flexibility to deal with the issues that they’re dealing with.

I also want to thank our FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery; as well as the FHFA Director, Mark Calabria; and Kathy Kraninger, the Director of the CFPB, who’ve all worked tirelessly with us to make this happen.

What we’re trying to do is bridge the gap, recognizing that it’s a lot easier for us to take these measures and for Congress to take the measures that they’re taking so that we don’t destroy a very excellent system and have to start all over again.

So for those who are worried about the money that’s being spent, if you don’t spend the money and deal with this now, it’s going to cost a whole lot more to try to build all this up again.

And, as was mentioned by the President, there’s been a sense of unity that we haven’t seen for a long time in this country, and let’s hope and pray that that unity lasts far beyond this crisis.


THE PRESIDENT: Okay. Ben, thank you very much.”

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