Romney: US Has Not ‘Distinguished’ Itself in Handling of Coronavirus

There are more than 21 million COVID-19 cases worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.  The U.S., with more than 5.3 million infections, has more COVID-19 cases than anyplace else. Following the U.S. is Brazil, with 3.2 million cases, and India, with 2.5 million.“I think it’s fair to say we really have not distinguished ourselves in a positive way by how we responded to the crisis when it was upon us,” U.S. Senator Mitt Romney said Friday.  “And the proof of the pudding of that is simply that we have 5 percent of the world’s population but 25 percent of the world’s deaths due to COVID-19,” the Republican senator from Utah added in an interview with the Sutherland Institute, a conservative public policy think tank located in Salt Lake City.A report in The New York Times says TeleTracking Technologies, the new manager of the Trump administration’s coronavirus database, is citing its non-disclosure agreement for not answering Democratic senators’ questions about the organization’s $10.2 million contract.Canada announced Friday that the border it shares with the U.S. will remain closed to nonessential travel for another month. Many Canadians remain concerned about reopening the border after Canada successfully flattened its epidemic curve.Canada has more than 123,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and more than 9,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.Canada, which first announced the border restrictions in March, made the announcement one day after Mexico announced similar restrictions for its border with the U.S.Spain announced Friday a new set of restrictions to contain a surge in coronavirus cases. Health Minister Salvador Illa said all discos and night clubs will be closed across the country. He also said smoking in public areas would be banned if smokers are unable to stay at least 2 meters from other people.Spanish authorities have recorded nearly 50,000 COVID-19 cases over the past two weeks, an average of about 3,500 new cases a day.In Paris, officials are expanding the areas of the city where pedestrians are required to wear face masks, including the Champs-Elysees Avenue and the area around the Louvre museum, as cases continue to increase. France has nearly 250,000 cases and more than 30,400 deaths.Meanwhile, a glitch in California’s COVID-19 reporting system undercounted the state’s cases by as many as 300,000 cases, state officials say.According to a New York Times database Friday, California is the first U.S. state to reach more than 600,000 COVID-19 cases, with almost 11,000 deaths.Gov. Gavin Newsom said Friday that while the number of cases in California is increasing, the number of confirmed infections as a percentage of tests done has declined from 7% to 6% statewide over the past two weeks.”I’m not going to back off on more tests because I fear (more cases),” Newsom said.The U.S. Postal Service is warning states that it cannot guarantee all ballots cast by mail for the November election will arrive in time to be counted as the country ramps up preparations for larger numbers of mail-in votes amid the coronavirus pandemic.The Washington Post reported Friday that the Postal Service sent warning letters to 46 states and the District of Columbia.Many states have made it easier to vote by mail to address voters’ concerns about public gatherings at election precincts during the pandemic.     


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