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Finally, the Biden transition team has put together a real coronavirus task force

Published Nov 10th, 2020 7:12PM EST
Biden transition team
Image: Kevin Dietsch - Pool via CNP/MEGA

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  • The Biden transition team on Monday unveiled the members of the coronavirus task force that will advise the President-elect and his administration on how to address the COVID-19 pandemic that’s continuing to get worse across the country.
  • White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci was asked about the new coronavirus task force on Monday and praised its members as “qualified” and well-established.
  • This came the same day that the US added another 130,000 cases to the number of daily COVID-19 infections in the country.

White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci was asked about the set of experts unveiled Monday by the Biden transition team to help the incoming administration tackle the coronavirus pandemic, and the high-profile doctor’s response should probably come as no surprise.

Fauci, who’s been the plainspoken public face of the US response to the pandemic for almost a year now, called the health experts now advising President-elect Biden and his team a group of “qualified” and “established” experts. “They are colleagues of mine,” Fauci told anchor Wolf Blitzer during an appearance Monday on CNN’s The Situation Room. “They are people that I’ve been dealing with for years and years. Of course, they are qualified. They are qualified colleagues.” So that’s something to look forward to, I guess — you know, once we get past this month and the next, which is the period when the pandemic will explode to such a degree that we’re expected to see more cases, hospitalizations, and death from COVID-19 than ever.

The coronavirus group that will help the Biden administration set the country on a better path includes former FDA commissioner David Kessler, as well as Rick Bright, the former chief of the nation’s vaccine development agency. “I mean, obviously, you could not possibly be in the business that I and my colleagues are in without knowing each other,” Fauci said. “These are people that have been involved in this for years and years. Of course, I know them. I know them well.”

Fauci made those comments the same day we learned that another 130,000 people had been added to the daily total of new coronavirus cases in the US. And that, according to the team at Johns Hopkins University that tracks the global trends associated with the pandemic, means that now more than 10.2 million Americans have contracted COVID0-19 and almost 240,000 Americans have died from the virus, as of the time of this writing.

“This is what exponential math looks like,” Malia Jones, a social epidemiologist with the University of Wisconsin Applied Population Laboratory and the UW-Madison Department of Community and Environmental Sociology, told MarketWatch.

“Everything seems fine until quite suddenly it seems completely out of control. We’ve been seeing the slow build to this for a month, and we have also seen little or no action to put the brakes on it. This is a predictable outcome, unfortunately. And we will keep on posting record numbers of cases day after day unless something changes.”

Biden’s task force is certainly going to prod him to take steps to try and ensure something changes. Among other things, the new administration’s coronavirus strategy that’s emerging includes directing the CDC to lay out clearer guidance that would spell out when to close businesses or schools.

“We’re still three months away” from the inauguration, said Dr. Zeke Emanuel, a bioethicist and oncologist who’s part of the Biden-Harris COVID-19 task force, per CNN. “I don’t know where we’re going to be then, and a lot depends on what we do now.”

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.