‘False Dichotomy’: Tim Scott Says ‘Goalposts’ for Flattening the Curve Keep Moving

In this screengrab from video, Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., speaks during the U.S. Senate COVID-19 hearing on May 12, 2020.

By Published on May 13, 2020

Republican South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott said at Tuesday’s Senate hearing that while America has done a “pretty good job” of flattening the curve of the coronavirus outbreak, the “goalposts” for moving beyond lockdowns have kept moving.

Adverse effects of continued lockdowns are being ignored, Scott said.

The senator added that “when we set out to flatten the curve by taking aggressive, unprecedented measures like staying-at-home orders and mass small business closures, we didn’t set out with the goal of preventing 100% of fatalities. That would be unrealistic. It is impossible.”

“And we didn’t set out to keep quarantines in place until we found a safe and effective vaccine. That would take too long,” he said.

The “whole point” of flattening the curve “was to make sure that we did not exceed hospital capacity. So, while I respect the need for caution, we are too often presented with a false dichotomy — either saving our economy or saving lives,” Scott continued.

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“We’ve seen the goalposts around flattening the curve move, and I think that’s unfortunate, because at the same time we’re doing that, businesses have collapsed, mental and physical health have declined, depths of despair escalate, educational outcomes nosedive, as we wait in our living rooms praying for some good news around therapies and around vaccines,” Scott added.

“We set out to flatten the curve, and I think we’ve done a pretty good job of that.”



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