Donald Trump has hit out at his favourite broadcaster Fox News after it published a new poll indicating Democratic front-runner Bernie Sanders would beat him comfortably to the White House in this year’s presidential race.
The president is meanwhile facing further heavy criticism for his handling of the coronavirus as it emerges he closed 37 out of 47 anti-pandemic programmes in vulnerable countries around the world set up by his predecessor Barack Obama to tackle just such a contagion.
When asked about handling the virus on a local level, it was revealed the Trump administration has no plans to divert federal funding for hospitals and clinics. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar called the coronavirus threat “low” during a Friday briefing with reporters.
Other highlights from the press briefing include Mr Azar revealing clinical testing of a possible vaccine is still six weeks away.
Trump’s administration is considering a tax cut package as a potential economic option to combat the growing fear in the country, The Washington Post reports. This plan is currently at the preliminary stage with Vice President Mike Pence being consulted on options.
The vice president faced backlash on Friday as it was revealed his plans to travel to Florida for a Republican fundraising event. Attendees could pay $5,000 to get a selfie with the vice president at the event.
Anticipating backlash, Pence’s team scheduled meetings to address the coronavirus in Florida. There are no known cases in the state.
The stock markets continue to tumble as fears over the crisis spread, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average losing 1,200 points on Thursday, the biggest one-day drop in its history at 4.42 per cent, as the S&P 500 and Nasdaq swiftly followed suit.
The DOW closed on Friday with a drop of 355 to end the worst week on Wall Street since 2008.