Tensions are rising

Trump is getting more and more tantrummy about the CDC.

As the coronavirus pandemic stretches past its ninth week, tensions are rising between the White House and the nation’s leading public health agency. In interviews with CNN, senior administration officials in Washington, as well as top officials at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta describe a growing sense of mistrust and animosity between the White House and CDC over how quickly the US should reopen and how the government tracks data on the virus.

Similarly, if Trump Tower had a fire raging on the tenth floor, Trump would be expressing mistrust and animosity toward the NYC fire department.

Except no he wouldn’t, of course, at least not until the fire was completely out, because Trump Tower is something Trump cares about. Us? Not so much.

Last week, Redfield was forced to apologize to administration officials after a draft of the CDC’s guidelines to reopening America were leaked to the media. The 68-page document outlined a detailed approach for how states, businesses and individuals could safely ease back into normalcy and were far more strict and detailed than the White House’s own road map toward a return to normal, a CNN review found.

On Thursday the CDC published just 6 pages of graphics labeled “decision trees” as updated guidance. After spending “innumerable hours” on the guidance draft of recommendations, which they say was asked for specifically by Dr. Birx, two senior CDC officials tell CNN that the White House decision to shelve it for now in favor of a 6-page outline has only added to mounting frustration toward Birx within the CDC.

It’s almost as if there’s a downside to letting politics trump medical expertise.

Birx is a Trump whisperer, and she remains in his good graces while Fauci is now way out of them.

In interviews with CNN over the past several weeks, CDC officials have expressed a disappointment that Birx has not done more to correct some of the misinformation that Trump has touted during many of the coronavirus press briefings. “As a scientist when you stand-up in front of all that, it doesn’t help your credibility,” said the same official in describing the prevailing view of officials within the CDC about Birx.

But it helps your credibility with Trump.

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