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"We did what we did last winter; we're at a different place today," Kudlow said during an interview with FOX Business' Stuart Varney. "We have vastly better equipment, much more knowledge and experience, we know how to do targeting, so far as any community spread. Closing down the economy is a bad idea."
Kudlow's comments came as large swaths of Europe implement new lockdown measures. Germany entered a partial shutdown on Monday, and Britain and Austria will follow later this week, shuttering restaurants, bars and halting many leisure activities.
Italy, Greece and Kosovo also announced new measures. In some places, the new rules — which vary in strictness — are prompting violent protests by people frustrated at once again having to forego freedoms.
But certain places in the U.S. that have seen a flare-up in COVID-19 infections are also closing down parts of their economies, including Illinois, which banned indoor dining; Denver, Colo., which tightened its restaurant and social gathering restrictions; and El Paso, Texas, which announced a two-week shutdown of nonessential services beginning Thursday.
"You've got to keep the economy open," Kudlow said. "You have to do it safely with masking and distancing and good hygiene and testing and be careful in close quarters."
He added: "Let me emphasize this: Safety first, yes. Closing down? That will make the cure worse than the problem ... I think most Americans completely agree."
Confirmed coronavirus cases have topped 9 million in the U.S., more than any other country in the world, and new daily infections are rising in 47 states. More than 231,000 Americans have died from the virus, the most in the world.
The Associated Press contributed to this report