As the U.S. neared 150,000 deaths from the novel coronavirus, President Donald Trump doubled down on his defense of an unproven drug to treat COVID-19 and offered a rosy picture of the growing public health crisis and of what is to come.

“We’re seeing improvements across the major metro areas and most hot spots. You can look at large portions of our country, it’s — it’s corona-free,” Trump said Tuesday afternoon. “But we are watching very carefully California, Arizona, Texas and most of Florida is starting to head down in the right direction — and I think you’ll see it rapidly head down very soon.”

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