Donald Trump has said that the relaxing of lockdown guidelines may result in some deaths but he is going ahead with it anyway.
Speaking to ABC anchor David Muir on World News Tonight, Trump defended the decision in some states to roll back the restrictions imposed by lockdown, despite there being no signs that the coronavirus pandemic is subsiding.
Speaking to the president in a face mask production factory in Phoenix, Arizona, Muir asked:
Do you believe that's the reality we're facing that -- that lives will be lost to reopen the country?
In response, the president said that it was "possible" but they are going to practice social distancing and wash their hands which is what everyone is supposed to have been doing anyway.
It's possible there will be some because you won't be locked into an apartment or a house or whatever it is.
But at the same time, we're going to practice social distancing, we're going to be washing hands, we're going to be doing a lot of the things that we've learned to do over the last period of time.
Trump also said that along with deaths, some people will be 'badly affected' by the decision to prioritise the US economy over the public's health and well-being.
Will some people be affected? Yes. Will some people be affected badly? Yes. But we have to get our country open and we have to get it open soon.
To further exemplify that he was favouring the economy over health, Trump told reporters outside the White House, before his trip to Arizona that's there is "no great win one way or the other" on this issue.
The fact that we are letting people go and go to their jobs - they have to do it. You know, if they held people any longer with the lockdown, your gonna lose people that way too and you already have, I'm sure but between drug abuse and suicide - there's no great win one way or the other. I'll tell you where there is a win, we're gonna build a country, I did it once.
Two months ago we had the greatest economy in the history of the world, the best employment numbers we've ever had but I will say this we are going to do it again and that's what we are starting. I view these last few days as the beginning and we are going to build the greatest economy in the world again and it is going to happen.
Trump then also suggested that he views the citizens of the United States as "warriors" against the virus who are fighting for the economy.
Trump on why businesses should reopen: "I'm viewing our great citizens of this country to a certain extent and to a… https://t.co/WuDOB1JyTC
It is true that the United States is facing record unemployment levels as millions of American's have lost their jobs, but that should be countered with the fact that the US is currently the only country with more than one million cases of coronavirus and also has the highest death toll.