James S. Brady Press Briefing Room Washington D.C. August 11 5:37 P.M. EDT
Thank you very much. Nice to be with you all. Good evening.
Before providing today's update on the China virus, I want to address the violence, looting, and rioting taking place in the Democrat-controlled cities of New York, Portland, Chicago, and Seattle. The mayors and governors of these states and cities have an absolute duty to use all resources necessary to end the violence and all of the injury and death.
New York City has an army of great police. I know them very well. And the law enforcement and the New York's Finest are as good as it gets, and they should be allowed to do their job. If they do their job, if they're allowed to do their job, the New York City problem will be solved and be solved quickly. They do it well.
The mayor, Bill de Blasio, should immediately hire back all of the police who were fired without justification. They were fired. I guess that's part of "Defund the Police" by the Democrats. They should hire New York City's Finest back. You have some incredible policemen doing specific jobs that nobody else can do, actually, when it comes to terrorism and other things.
Together, the city of Chicago and the state of Illinois have 25,000 police officers, sheriffs, and Guardsmen available to quell any violence. They can do it very quickly, very easily if allowed to do their jobs — again, if allowed to do their jobs. Our police, our law enforcement is incredible, but they have to be allowed to do their jobs. The Democrats or the radical-left Democrats — or both, because they're becoming one and the same, if you look at election results — the Democrats are being taken over by the radical left.
The city of Portland and the state of Oregon have 10,000 fine officers and Guardsmen available. Seattle, Washington, and Washington State have 10,000 available. So Seattle — the city of Seattle and Washington State itself, they have great people. They have to be allowed to do their job. I'm urging them to deploy these resources to protect their citizens and to stop the violence and all of the things that we watch on television going on — although a lot of the, unfortunately, fake news don't like to put it on because it shows that the Democrats are doing a very bad job of law enforcement. They have to put it on. They have to be honest with the people of this country.
But I'm offering all available federal support requested to stop the violence and arrest the criminals. We have to be asked by the governors or the mayors, and we'll be there very rapidly. It's ready, willing, and able. We're all ready, willing, and able to go to these jurisdictions and take care of them. We'll do them very quickly. You saw what happened in Minneapolis; they ripped the city apart. When the National Guard went in, it ended immediately. It was immediate and lasted.
These acts of destruction are not isolated incidents, but demonstrate the pattern of violent, leftwing extremism that you get to see if you're watching the right news program. Under any rational definition, the arson attack on the police precinct in Portland would be considered an act of leftwing domestic terrorism. They really are anarchists. These are leftwing anarchists. They are anarchists. And I'm directing the Department of Justice to stop these anarchists — immediately, to stop them — and to work with the city and the state to get the job done.
Local authorities have to investigate and prosecute all of these crimes immediately. We'll work with you. And the local authorities know who they are. They know where they come from. They know a lot about them. They ought to get their act together and get it done, and we're ready to help. If you need that help — you shouldn't need that help, actually. You should be able to do it yourselves and get it done very well. Again, you have excellent police and law enforcement, but you have to let them do their job.
What you're seeing in Portland and Seattle, New York, Chicago is really the Democrat roadmap for America. They want every city in America to resemble Portland, in a form. They want to pass federal legislation gutting and hamstringing every police department in America. They want to get rid of your Second Amendment. They want to end cash bail; close prisons; defund police departments — or at least largely defund. You see that with New York. A billion dollars they took out of their police department, and crime has gone through the roof. And appoint far-left prosecutors who side with the criminals and target law-abiding citizens. If the left gains power, no city, town, or suburb in our country will be safe.
On the vaccine front, some very good news. Today, I met with the leaders of Operation Warp Speed, our historic undertaking to produce a safe and effective vaccine in record time.
We heard an update from the top scientists and the government and the leaders of pharmaceutical companies, which, right now, aren't too thrilled with me. They're taking millions of dollars' worth of ads because I've created a favored-nation status for drugs, which is going to reduce drug prices by 40, 50, 60, and maybe even 70 percent in some cases — numbers that have never been heard or thought of. So when you see those ads, remember: That means your drug prices are coming down. When you see ads attacking your President, it's very simple — that means drug prices are going to be falling very soon.
This evening, I'm pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement with Moderna to manufacture and deliver 100 million doses of their coronavirus vaccine candidate. The federal government will own these vaccine doses; we're buying them.
Recently, we also secured partnerships with Johnson & Johnson, as well as Sanofi and GSX [GSK] to support the large-scale manufacturing of their vaccines. Doing very well on those vaccines — tremendous promise in every single one of them, and we have many of them. And they're years ahead of schedule. This would have been — if it were in the previous administration or any of the previous administrations, where we are now would have taken years.
Three vaccine candidates are now in phase three trials already — the final stage of clinical trials. This is the final stage. We are investing in the development and manufacture of the top six vaccine candidates to ensure rapid delivery. The military is ready to go. They're ready to deliver a vaccine to Americans as soon as one is fully approved by the FDA, and we're moving very close to that approval.
We're on track to rapidly produce 100 million doses, as soon as the vaccine is approved, and up to 500 million shortly thereafter. So we'll have 600 million doses. Operation Warp Speed is the largest and most advanced operation of its kind anywhere in the world and anywhere in history.
We've treated more than 86,000 Americans with convalescent plasma. A recent Mayo Clinic study found that this treatment may produce results which are incredible. We look to a reduction and reduced mortality rate by 50 percent, and possibly even more than 50 percent.
I urge Americans who have recovered from the virus to go to Coronavirus.gov and sign up and donate. We would really appreciate that because it's been very successful — unbelievably successful — and we would love you to go and donate.
As we continue to confront the global pandemic, the United States economy is rebounding with strength like nobody thought possible. You've seen the numbers. You see what's going on yesterday, today — and tomorrow, in my opinion. We're very poised for a great third quarter and very poised for some great stock market numbers and 401(k) numbers and everything else.
Today, the Dow Jones passed 28,000 points for the first time, more than a 50 percent surge since just March. So we've increased by 50 percent more than since just March. It has gained approximately 9,500 points that same period — March — and has recovered nearly all of its value since the virus struck our nation — think of that.
America's economy is incredible, and its economic recovery is outpacing our peer nations. Last quarter, the European Union's GDP decline was nearly 40 percent worse than the United States. So it's 40 percent worse than the United States. We've built such a strong base that we're able to do things and sustain better than anybody in the world, by far.
France's GDP decline was nearly 80 percent worse than ours. And Spain experienced an economic contraction twice as severe as the United States.
Nationwide, we continue to see improvements in our fight against the pandemic — very substantial improvements. Since last week, 87 percent of the counties in the United States report declining cases. Think of that: 87 percent of the counties in the United States, they reported declining cases.
Mortality has declined by 7 percent, and hospitalizations are declining rapidly. States that were primary hotspots, such as Florida, Texas, and Arizona have reduced cases by nearly 25 percent. But all Americans must remain vigilant, practice good hygiene, socially distance, wear a mask whenever possible. Whenever you are getting too close to people, wear a mask. And protect the elderly — always protect the elderly.
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