United States Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina speaks with reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington [File: Alex Brandon/AP Photo]

United States Senator Richard Burr, a Republican, is drawing fire after a secret recording emerged on Thursday of him warning an insider group of contributors that the coronavirus outbreak in the US would be very serious six days before he first acknowledged it publicly.

In the February 27 recording, obtained and broadcast by National Public Radio, Burr can be heard comparing the coronavirus pandemic to the 1918 influenza outbreak that killed more than 20 million people worldwide.

“There’s one thing that I can tell you about this: It is much more aggressive in its transmission than anything that we have seen in recent

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