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US Coronavirus deaths top 100,000, worst in the world

“We have it totally under control,” President Donald Trump said the day after the first U.S. Covid-19 case was confirmed on Jan. 21.

At the time, China and Europe were battling a virus as puzzling as it was deadly. Eight days later, he gave a little bit, saying at a rally:

“You know, it’s something that we have to be very, very careful with.” But no one knew how bad it could be as models forecast deaths from a few thousand to 240,000 or more.

Yesterday the U.S. reached the grim milestone of 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus, the highest official toll in the world.

Anthony Fauci, the U.S. government’s top infectious-disease expert, said there’s a “good chance” a vaccine may be deployable by November or December. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued guidelines for reopening office buildings.

Cases also soared in Brazil, and police opened an investigation into Rio de Janeiro’s handling of the crisis, while Mexico had its deadliest dayyet.

The European Union will propose a fiscal package worth more than $800 billion, and Japan is planning new economic stimulusvalued in excess of $1 trillion.

In the US it is 126 days since the first case and 87 days since the CDC announced the first fatality, on Feb. 29 in Washington State.

The elderly have fared the worst, though now children are suffering from a rare, sometimes fatal condition.

In New York, 799 people diedon a single day, April 9. Two days later, the U.S. passed 20,000 fatalities, moving it to the fore with the world’s highest death toll.

This US milestone is concrete. It’s as if the city of South Bend, Indiana, vanished or Albany, New York, where Governor Andrew Cuomo offered a split-screen to Trump’s media briefings.

The number who have died is equal to about half of all McDonald’s employees, before the lockdown, or two sold-out Yankee Stadiums.

Now, after battles over masks, distancing and unthinkable economic destruction, all 50 states have begun a reopening intertwined with election politics and fear.

Plus, with the line on the nation’s death chart still pointing upward, the unanswerable question of the final human cost still looms.

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