The move will restrict travel to and from the three states, which are some of the hardest-hit by the outbreak.
‘Some people would like to see New York quarantined because it’s a hotspot — New York, New Jersey maybe one or two other places, certain parts of Connecticut quarantined. I’m thinking about that right now,’ he said Saturday.
‘We might not have to do it but there’s a possibility that sometime today we’ll do a quarantine – short term – two weeks for New York, probably New Jersey, certain parts of Connecticut.’
He said the possible quarantine would be ‘short-term’ but that it would be ‘enforceable’.
The president dismissed the idea that he would need to deploy the National Guard to ensure residents comply with the quarantine rules.
‘We’re not going to need that,’ he said.
President Trump is considering quarantining the whole of New York, Connecticut and New Jersey in desperate efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic
The move would help tackle the issue other states are facing where New Yorkers are fleeing the city and traveling to other states and areas, where they are potentially risking more lives and spreading the disease further afield.
‘Restrict travel, because they’re having problems down in Florida, a lot of New Yorkers going down. We don’t want that,’ he said.
New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo hit back at the president’s plans in a press conference Saturday.
‘I don’t even know what that means. I don’t know how that could be legally enforceable,’ said Cuomo.
‘And from a medical point view, I don’t know what you would be accomplishing.
‘But I can tell you, I don’t even like the sound of it.’
Cuomo said he had spoken with Trump earlier Saturday and the two had not discussed a possible quarantine.
The president made the comments as he touched down in Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews around noon Saturday and spoke to reporters.
US President Donald Trump boarding Marine One as he departs the White House in Washington, DC, on Saturday, as he said a short-term quarantine could be enforced in the three states
‘We’re looking at it,’ he said about the possible quarantine of the three states.
‘We’re looking at it and will be making a decision. A lot of the states that are infected – they’ve asked me if I’d look at it so we’re going to look at it. Maybe for a short period of time.’
‘It would be for a short time’ for parts of New York, Connecticut and New Jersey, he said.
However when asked if he would shut down the New York City subway he said: ‘No we wouldn’t do that.’
He said he would talk to New York state Governor Cuomo about the measures later today.
Trump also took the opportunity to praise the work Congress had done to pass the $2 trillion emergency bailout package, which he signed into law Friday.
‘We have great oversight – a lot of oversight. We have a lot of people watching. It’s a wonderful thing we’ve done for the workers and for the citizens,’ he said.
‘A lot of people are going to work. It will bring back the economy I think very fast.’
Trump reinforced the quarantine claims on leaving the air base and traveling to Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, where he was sending the US Navy Comfort on to New York where it will be turned into a makeshift hospital.
‘We will make a decision, very quickly, very shortly’ on quarantining the ‘hot areas’ of those states, he said.
‘We’ll be announcing that one way or the other, fairly soon.’
The president said that, if enforced, the move would not restrict trade coming in and out of the states.
‘This does not apply to people, such as truckers, from outside the New York area,’ he said.
‘It won’t affect trade in any way.’
His comments on a possible quarantine seemed to backtrack on his previous claims that he wants to get the economy and normal life back up and running as soon as possible.
Trump said this week that he wanted the US ‘opened up and raring to go’ by April 12 for Easter.
One in three Americans have already lost their jobs following state shutdowns designed to stop the outbreak in its tracks.
The number of new unemployment claims soared to 3.3 million Thursday, and experts have warned that those in low-income jobs have been hardest hit.
But the president’s plan to rush through the country’s reopening has been slammed by healthcare professionals and other politicians.
Lindsey Graham, Senator and Trump’s golf buddy, warned the president not to reopen the country too soon and that if he does, he will be responsible for the coronavirus deaths that follow.
In a call last Sunday, Graham advised Trump that if he opens the economy too soon, more lives will be lost, according to the Washington Post.
He warned the president that he and the rest of the Republican Party would be held personally responsible for the deaths that arose from them ignoring advice of medical experts.
The move could be detrimental to the upcoming presidential elections, he said.
Fauci, America’s top disease expert, also poured cold water on the president’s plan saying: ‘I think what the President was trying to do, he was making an aspirational projection to give people some hope.’
Trump has come under fire for his plans to have the US ‘opened up and raring to go’ by April 12. Experts and even his own party have warned him that the move could cost lives
‘But he’s listening to us when we say that we’ve really got to reevaluate it in real time, and any decision we make has to be based on the data,’ he told CNN.
More than 800,000 doctors across the United States also sent a letter to Trump Friday, urging him to rethink his strategy and warning him that opening the economy by Easter could ‘gravely jeopardize the health of all Americans.’
It said medical staff are risking their lives to treat coronavirus patients and called on the Trump administration to support ‘science-based recommendations’ on social distancing.
The number of deaths in New York state reached 728 Saturday, as the US’s epicenter for coronavirus struggles to bring the pandemic under control.
The death toll in the city rose to 450 as of early Saturday morning as its healthcare system is threatened with imminent collapse.
New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo hit back at the president’s plans in a press conference Saturday: ‘I don’t know what it means … I don’t know how it will be enforceable. I don’t like the sound of it’
On both Thursday and Friday, another 85 people died of the virus, or an average of one New Yorker every 17 minutes. There are 26,697 confirmed NYC cases as the national total soars over 100,000.
Queens is emerging as the epicenter of the epicenter in New York City with 8,214 cases, a one-day increase of 32 percent.
In just the past week, one funeral home in Queens has held service for close to a dozen people who have died from the virus, and is expecting to do more.
Manhattan patients are testing positive at a significantly lower rate than the outer boroughs with no neighborhood reporting over 40 percent of patients confirmed positive.
The city’s healthcare system is buckling under the strain of the rise in cases.
Medical emergency calls were up 40 percent to about 6,500 a day, shattering historical records and leading to up to 170 callers being put on hold at a time, according to EMS union officials.
The U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort is headed for New York to be used as a makeshift hospital amid the pandemic
Inside the city’s hospitals, healthcare workers faced unspeakable scenes of suffering and death.
‘Hell. Biblical. I kid you not. People come in, they get intubated, they die, the cycle repeats,’ said Dr Steve Kassapidis of Mount Sinai Queens, in an interview with Sky News. ‘9/11 was nothing compared to this, we were open waiting for patients to come who never came. Now they just keep coming.’
‘The hospitals look like a war zone,’ Dr Emad Youssef of Brookdale Hospital in Brooklyn told CBS News. ‘People lining up out of the hallway, through the EMS bay, through the ambulance bay, with masks on themselves, with oxygen on their nose.’
USNS Comfort is headed for New York where it will be turned into a makeshift hospital to ease the burden on the state’s hospitals.
It left Virginia Saturday afternoon, after President Trump’s visit, and will now travel down the Elizabeth River, into Willoughby Bay, into the Chesapeake Bay, to the Atlantic for its voyage to New York.
A medical worker at the coronavirus testing tent set up outside Elmhurst Hospital Center in New York on Saturday: The number of deaths in New York state reached 728 Saturday, as the US’s epicenter for coronavirus struggles to bring the pandemic under control
The death toll in New York City rose to 450 as of early Saturday morning as its healthcare system is threatened with imminent collapse
Neighboring state New Jersey has also been grappling to bring the outbreak under control, with 8,825 confirmed cases and 108 confirmed deaths.
Last week, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed an executive order mandating that all non-essential retail businesses close their stores and almost all state residents stay home to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The order affects some 9 million residents in the state and exempts those who work in essential services such as healthcare and the food industry, the governor said at a news conference.
It banned all gatherings including weddings and parties, Murphy said.