Two of President Donald Trump’s top officials are blaming the high coronavirus death toll on the administration’s own scientists and pre-existing health conditions.
On Sunday, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar suggested that pre-existing health conditions, especially among minorities, were one reason for the high American death toll that’s nearly at 90,000.
“Unfortunately the American population is … very diverse,” Azar told CNN.
“It is a population with significant unhealthy comorbidities that do make many individuals in our communities, in particular African American, minority communities particularly at risk here because of significant underlying disease health disparities and disease comorbidities – and that is an unfortunate legacy in our healthcare system that we certainly do need to address.”
Trump Trade adviser Peter Navarro added that the government’s own Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, China and the Obama administration are also to blame for the high death toll.
“Early on in this crisis, the CDC, which really had the most trusted brand around the world in this space – really let the country down with the testing,” Navarro told NBC.
“Not only did they keep the testing within the bureaucracy, they had a bad test and that set us back,” Navarro said.
The White House has been criticized for its slow response to the coronavirus pandemic. Many officials, including the president, have been trying to change the narrative.
The U.S. has about 29% of the world’s coronavirus cases. The White House previously predicted a death toll of about 147,000 by August.
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