Florida on Sunday (July 12th) reported 15,299 new coronavirus cases, breaking the previous daily record by a state which had been set by California five days earlier, with 11,694 new cases. That came as two top officials in Houston called for the city to lock down again, as hospitals have been inundated there with coronavirus patients. Houston's Harris County has been hit hardest by the virus in Texas, and Harris County Judge Line Hidalgo tweeted yesterday, "Not only do we need a stay home order now, but we need to stick with it this time until the hospitalization curve comes down, not just flattens." Texas Governor Greg Abbott warned on Friday that the state would need to lock down more if the numbers of cases doesn't go down.
Meanwhile, the number of deaths nationally from the coronavirus, which had been falling for months, even as cases began surging in recent weeks in Southern and Western states, including most prominently Florida, Texas, Arizona and California, has started to rise again. Since people usually die from the virus several weeks after first becoming infected, experts had expected an increase in deaths to follow the rise in cases. An AP analysis shows the seven-day rolling average for daily deaths from the virus in the U.S. has risen from 578 two weeks ago to 664 on July 10th. However, that's still significantly below its peak in April. There have been more than 135,200 deaths in the U.S. as of early this morning, according to Johns Hopkins University's count, and more than 3,304,000 confirmed cases.
NYC Reports No Coronavirus Deaths for First time Since Mid-March:New York City on Sunday reported no confirmed or probable coronavirus deaths for the first time since March 11th, when it had its first fatality. New York City was once the epicenter of the outbreak in the U.S., and had a peak of daily deaths on April 7th with 597.
White House Targeting Fauci:The White House is targeting Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, with several news organizations saying over the weekend that a White House official told them, quote, "several White House officials are concerned about the number of times Dr. Fauci has been wrong on things." The official also listed examples -- which CNN described as resembling "opposition research on a political opponent" -- that included Fauci downplaying the virus early on and saying in March, "People should not be walking around with masks." The attempt to discredit Fauci comes as he and Trump are reportedly no longer speaking and as Fauci has openly disagreed with Trump in some recent interviews. Trump has also recently spoken out against Fauci, saying last week, "Dr. Fauci is a nice man, but he's made a lot of mistakes."