the coronavirus crisis
President Trump has officially declared a national emergency over the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Trump spoke in the Rose Garden on Friday afternoon and said he is declaring a national emergency after Bloomberg reported he would take this step in order to make more federal aid available for states and municipalities as they respond to the virus.
After touting "what we've done compared to other areas of the world" to combat the coronavirus, Trump said he is "officially declaring a national emergency, two very big words," to open up access to up to $50 billion to states and localities.
Vox explains that "the biggest impact of this declaration is that it will give states a boost in funding to address the need to pay more medical staff, bolster facilities, and treat patients." Trump had been facing pressure to take this step, but a report from Politico previously suggested he was reluctant to do so after downplaying the threat of the novel coronavirus.
Trump during his news conference also announced a "new partnership with private sector to vastly increase and accelerate our capacity to test for the coronavirus," saying Google would be developing a website that will "determine whether a test is warranted and to facilitate testing at a nearby convenient location."
"This will pass through, and we're going to be even stronger for it," Trump said of the pandemic. "We've learned a lot. A tremendous amount has been learned."