KEY POINTS

  • Trump will not shut down America again if the second wave comes
  • The president is confident coronavirus will be contained without closing economies
  • Trump also wants the G7 Summit to be in person in June

President Donald Trump said Thursday the United States will not close again if a second coronavirus wave hits the country, and reiterated another widespread lockdown would further stall the economy.

"People say that’s a very distinct possibility. It's standard," Trump said, while speaking at a Michigan Ford factory tour, after a reporter asked if he's concerned about the second wave. "We're not going to close the country. We’re going to put out the fires."

Health officials said the risk of a second wave is high as flu season begins in the fall through winter, which will likely overwhelm hospitals. Robert Redfield, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) director, said in an interview on Washington Post the second wave could bring worse numbers than the first one.

"There’s a possibility that the assault of the virus on our nation next winter will actually be even more difficult than the one we just went through," the CDC director said. "When I’ve said this to others, they kind of put their head back, they don’t understand what I mean. We're going to have the flu epidemic and the coronavirus epidemic at the same time."

But the president expressed confidence the second wave will be contained without shutting down the economy and keeping business as usual.

"Whether it’s an ember or a flame, we’re going to put it out. But we’re not closing our country," the president insisted.

49913622498_5208e44a85_k President Donald J. Trump arrives on Capitol Hill to attend a Senate Republican policy luncheon Tuesday, May 19, 2020, in Washington, D.C. Photo: Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour

In recent weeks, America's 50 states have slowly relaxed restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus. State economies have been returning to some semblance of normalcy despite concerns from health experts some areas are not yet prepared to lift their stay-at-home orders.

In his testimony before Congress, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director, Dr. Anthony Fauci, expressed hope the U.S. will be able to effectively prevent a second wave. He warned little spikes in cases, as a result of economies reopening, could become outbreaks if the states do not follow federal guidelines.

Meanwhile, tweeting that America is "transitioning back to greatness," Trump also said he wanted the G7 Summit to take place in person in June at the White House or at Camp David. The annual meeting of world leaders was scheduled from June 10 to June 12 but the in-person setting was canceled in March following the World Health Organization's (WHO) declaration of a pandemic.

Till the time of publishing this article, none of the members of G7 had committed to the in-person meeting hosted by the U.S. Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he'll look into the proposal "to see what kind of measures will be in place to keep people safe."

A spokesperson from the United Kingdom said they are in contact with the U.S. about the G7 Summit while representatives from Italy and Japan said they have only seen Trump's tweet and are awaiting details.