Trump, perhaps trying to lower expectations somewhat, said this Thursday about the timeline:
"I'm not overpromising. I don't know who said it, but no matter what the maximum is, what you humanly can do, we're going to have. I hope we're going to get a vaccine and we're going to track it down you've never seen before if we come up with a vaccine. I think they probably will. "
For the sake of the American public and our collective desire to return to a certain look, we must hope that this is a Trump boast / promise that he will actually make a good profit.
The simple truth is that for all the focus on reopening state economies this week and in the coming months, nothing will even be close to life before coronavirus in this country, unless and before a vaccine is widely available.
Ask yourself if you would get on a plane without a vaccine? How about going to a concert? Or go to the company's annual event? Or do one of a thousand other things that we all never even thought of until two months ago?
The reality, of course, is that Trump is not a physician or specialist in communicable diseases. His ability to influence the timeline – except as a kind of cheerleader and press exercise – is relatively limited.
But the president's leadership matters when faced with extraordinary challenges like this one. Puts a man on the moon. Fighting and winning the world war. Maybe – just maybe – Trump can strain anyone.
The bottom line: If the past is a prologue, Trump will miss his stated goal for a vaccine and then blame others for it somehow. But we all – regardless of your partial inclination – should be rooted in that direction and for a true medical miracle that produces a vaccine as soon as possible.